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Big Island Adventure

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Big Island Adventure – Hawaii Travel Photo Blog #1

Pina Colada at Don’s Mai Tai Bar, Kona

“The purpose of life is to live it, to taste it, to experience it to the utmost, to reach out eagerly and without fear for newer and richer experience.”

– Eleanor Roosevelt


“You do realize your driver’s licence expires on your birthday?” says the rental car guy in the Kona airport on the Big Island of Hawaii a couple of weeks ago.

“WHAT?! No…I obviously did NOT realize my driver’s licence expires on my birthday, seeing as that’s in four days and I am renting a car for eight.”

“Not anymore you’re not,” he says. “Looks like you’re renting it for four days.”

“Give me that!” I say, reaching for my driver’s licence to double-check. Clearly, he has not read the expiry date properly.

Nope. Clearly, I hadn’t bothered to look at the expiry date recently. Okay, never.

“You can’t drive a rental vehicle without a valid driver’s licence,” he says.

“Yes,” I say, “I realize that. But I can drive it until my birthday, right?”


“And how much would it be for me to drop it off on the Hilo side of the island instead of bringing it back here?”

He smiles. “Normally that might be a bit costly but I’ll see what I can do.”

A moment later, he gives me an update. “My manager says you can drop it off in Hilo for $30.”

“Done!” I say. “How do I get back to Kona at the end of my trip?”

“You fly.”

So that’s what I did. I rented the car for four days and had a delightful time exploring the stunningly beautiful big island of Hawaii in my zippy little wheels. On my birthday, I dropped the car off in Hilo and my friend, Nina, who lives there, picked me up and we spent four days exploring in her car.

Due to the extreme beauty of the island (and therefore an excess of gorgeous scenery shots), I am splitting the photos from my Big Island Adventure into two blogs. Click To Tweet

Here are some snaps from the first few days:

This is me happily drinking solo & snapping sunset selfies at Don’s Mai Tai bar in Kona:


This is my new friend, Linda, who saw me taking selfies and came over to take my picture, then invited me to join her and her friends for dinner and drinks:


“End of the World” south of Kona


Body surfers north of Kona


Glorious swimming at Mauna Kea beach on the Kohala Coast


Pololu Valley


Pololu Valley Lookout…WOW!


On the Kohala Mountain Road from Hawi to Waimea…stunning views!


Seriously…can this island get anymore beautiful? Unbelievably…yes, it CAN!

The stunning Waipi’o Valley

All that driving & hiking & snapping of photographs made me hungry, so I stopped for a scrumptious snack at Tex Drive-In in Honoka’a:

Who IS this adorable little fellah you ask? It’s a “malasada” (Portuguese fried donut served warm and this one had chocolate filling…yum!)

Oddly enough, I also managed to get some work done. I finished the 47th rewrite (but who’s counting) of my Saviour play script. Then I read the 74th rewrite (just kidding…it’s only about the 43rd) of my God’s Country screenplay out loud to Nina. Very cool experience!

More pics & tales to come in next week’s WWOW.

In the meantime, if you’re planning a trip to the Big Island, I highly recommend Lonely Planet’s guidebook, “Hawai’i, the Big Island.”

Have a great week!

“Hawaii is not a state of mind, but a state of grace.”

– Paul Theroux

Related blogs by Maryanne

Big Island Adventure Hawaii Travel Blog #2

Maryanne Pope is the author of A Widow’s Awakening, the playwright of Saviour and the screenwriter of God’s Country. Maryanne is CEO of Pink Gazelle Productions and Chair of the John Petropoulos Memorial Fund. If you would like to receive her weekly blog, please sign up here.

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4 thoughts on “Big Island Adventure”

  1. Wonderful pics of my favourite state. Could feel the warmth of the ocean and the fabulous smells of the Island. Glad you are home safely. Aloha. Louise

  2. I look forward to more pictures. I love Maui and Kaui as well. Glad you were able to escape the Canadian winter!

  3. Hi Jennifer! I haven’t been to Kauai but I have heard it is absolutely lovely 🙂
    Hugs from Vancouver Island,

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