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Published: February 5th 2015
Day 19 – Jan. 29, 2015 – Port of call: Nawiliwili, HI on the Island of Kaua’i – Weather forecast: sunny – temperature: 75°F/24°C – actual: 81°F/27°C – experienced mist then light showers leading to heavy showers on north shore
We rose early as is our usual practice on a port day when we have an excursion booked and had our breakfast delivered to the room. Today we shared harbour space with the NCL Pride of America, the only ship to be permanently stationed in the Hawaiian Islands.
Today we choose the shore excursion entitled: Hollywood Hawaii: Movies and Waterfalls which is scheduled to last approximately 6 hours. The description indicated that this excursion would be a comprehensive, in-depth and fun “movie-themed” sightseeing tour aboard a 25 seat capacity ‘Theatre on Wheels’ air-conditioned mini-bus. Throughout the tour we would be entertained with movie classics clips filmed in Hawaii and then visit the actual locations along the east and north shores, including the beaches and waterfalls of this beautiful island.
Our guide indicated that there have been over a thousand films, documentaries, commercials, music videos, etc. that have used Hawaii
as set locations. Of that total approximately 100 films produced in the USA by American citizens have used the islands.
Everything went smoothly this morning and we were ashore ahead of the scheduled assembly time and aboard our bus and on the road ten minutes early. This meant that we were the lead bus for most of the day and arrived at locations before everyone else, which allowed us to move around freely and not get bumped while taking a photo. Our first stop was at Wailua Falls that has been used in countless movies and even in a Coke commercial. Unfortunately we were only permitted to view it from one side and not direct on. Following that our next stop was at the bay where Donovan’s Reef was filmed.
The resort that was featured in the movie “Blue Hawaii” was next on the list. Sadly the resort closed down over 30 years ago and had fallen into disrepair, then it was hit by a hurricane in the late 1990s, and then two years ago suffered extensive fire damage. Only a small portion of the site was accessible, namely one
end of the man-made lake and we had to sign a waiver before we could even gain access to that. Here we met up with Larry Rivera, an 82-year-old local entertainer, who Elvis knew and with whom he had performed. Larry entertained us with some of his music and stories before we moved on. During the stop our guide collected our lunch choices and transmitted that information to the restaurant.
Following our lunch I took a quick jog over to a local grocery store to pick up some throat lozenges. The intense use of air conditioning, both on board ship and in the tour busses, has given me a sore throat.
As we moved further up the eastern side of the island we came to Opoaekaa waterfalls that is part of the Wailua Heritage Trail. Our final destination for the day was Hanalei Bay where the pier and its covered structure were featured in several movies, most notably South Pacific. As we drove into the park bordering the bay it start to mist heavily and eventually became a pronounced downpour, our first serious rain on this vacation. While we were out on the pier
we watched young people being instructed on the fundamentals of surfing. We also came upon a small flock of songbirds that had distinct red caps. Someone later said they were Brazilian cardinals.
Today on our return from the shore excursion we found that there was no water in our room. We tried to call the Front Desk but could not get through as all the lines were busy, so after getting a dessert and coffee I reported the problem in person to the Front Desk staff before returning to the room to work on the Blog. That was at 3:00 and a little after 4:15 the plumber showed up. The report he had was that there was water on the floor from the toilet, which was not what I reported. In fact I observed the front desk staff write down No Water. The lack of clear communications by the staff will certainly be on my comment card.
Sail away was delayed slightly since the chief engineer had taken the opportunity to have his staff do some necessary deck repair work and they were just cleaning things up when we returned to the ship. As
the harbour entrance resembled a large ‘S’ requiring the ship to maneuver carefully with the aid of a tug the captain was anxious to be away while it was still light out.
Elika Santos, Hawaii’s 2010 male singing star of the year, performed music from the islands for this evening’s entertainment. The graceful and elegant Hula dancer Celeste Akeo accompanied Elika as he sang.
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