We booked our trip to Hawaii (state #49) for the beginning of Thanksgiving week at the end of September. With such late planning, I didn't have any options to use hotel points I earn while traveling for my job. In addition, I didn't really want to pay high hotel prices during a holiday week when all we really do is sleep and shower in our rooms. I also knew that Lisa would not want to spend her trip to Hawaii camping.
I decided to give Airbnb a try and quickly found a nice looking duplex close to a beach, but far from Waikiki. It seemed like the best option available, so I booked. We were a little nervous when we struggled to find the place (confusing street numbers), but we called the owners who were able to direct us to the property. It was approximately 45 minutes from Waikiki Beach, but only a few houses from a beach.
When we walked down to the beach, we were the only ones on the sand for the entire afternoon. We are not exactly a beach family, but we found our own little paradise without any complaints. It was nice to step out the front door, walk two minutes and be all alone on a secluded beach. Maybe even more nice was the fact that we walked back and were able to hose off without every getting in a car or walking through a room. The duplex we rented is called Hale Nalu 1 and we would recommend the property if you are looking to get away from all the tourists and have your own private beach.
A few words of warning about parking on the street outside of Hale Nalu 1. There are large volcanic rocks scattered along the edge of the road. After we unloaded our luggage, we decided to drive to a grocery store to purchase a few staples since the duplex had a small kitchen. I had left the car on the street instead of pulling it into a spot through the gates. I pulled forward and the car came to a sudden stop. I backed up and saw a large rock. Fearing the worst with a rental car, I jumped out to look for damage. To my surprise, there wasn't any.
I drove to the closest grocery store and I remained in the car with the girls as Lisa ran in with our list. Within a few minutes, several strangers approached our car to alert us to the fact that coolant fluid was draining at a very rapid pace all over the asphalt. By the time Lisa returned, the rental car was out of coolant and it was warm outside. The car limped back to the house and I had to call the rental car company. To avoid paying $200 in towing on our first day of vacation, I told them that I could drive it back to exchange for another vehicle. Long story short, the next morning we had a new rental car after many stops to cool the car down on the return drive.
San Jose, CA to Honolulu, HI