My Blog on WCCO-TV: Bite of Minnesota

Sunday, July 24, 2011

The Beauty of the Big Island

Travel is a funny thing for us and always seems to fall in our laps. Ryan and I used to travel several times per year for our jobs and it was rare for us to be in control of the destination. Work travel has taken us to many great places like Boston, Denver, Salt Lake City, and Orlando to name a few. We'd always add a day or two to the trip and make a mini-vacation out of it, hitting up as many sights and restaurants as we could.

Now that we're not doing any work travel, it's up to us to plan our vacations and lately, we've been fantasizing about tropical destinations. We've considered Mexico, the Caribbean, and even the coast of Spain, but nothing stuck out to us as "the place". Then, all of the sudden, we received an invite to stay with some family members/good friends on the Big Island of Hawaii.

It took about 2 days for us to pick the dates, find a flight, and plan the trip. We had never been to Hawaii (much less on a beach vacation), but we knew to pack light. After some marathon shopping for shorts, sandals, and swimsuits, we flew out for a week of relaxation.

We lazed around with the sea turtles.

Snorkeled for the first time ever...
...and swam among schools of beautiful fish.
We hiked over unstable lava rocks… get to the most amazing hidden beach.
We rented a jeep and drove around the entire island,
watching the landscape change every few miles.

And stopped along the way to see beautiful waterfalls.

We hiked through a crater and saw a full rainbow.
And got to see an active volcano (from a safe distance, of course).
Simply put, the trip was amazing and just what I needed. I unplugged from technology (we even used walkie talkies to communicate instead of cell phones) and I had a really tough time getting back into doing the things I used to do, like blog. While I can't completely shun technology in my regular life, I love that the trip allowed me to take a step out of the daily grind and gain some perspective.
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