Saturday, June 16th
The Polynesian Cultural Center doesn’t open until about noon, so we took our time getting up and ready today. We bought breakfast and snack stuff at Wal-Mart the day before, so the kids took turns eating and getting ready. We drove along the western coastline and then crossed through the mountains on the way to the NE side to the Cultural Center. What a beautiful drive, the scenery always changing! We stumbled upon the Shrimp Shack that I had heard/read about, so that’s where we had lunch. It was really good and glad we found it. Food and fresh fruit drinks were delicious! After the kids were done eating, they crossed the road to a small beach and explored while we finished up. It was almost cool enough for a jacket…which was back at the room…but we all did fine, especially once we got to the cultural center.
The cultural center had lots of great shows and information, we thought this would be a great way to start off the trip and educate the kids of how their new surroundings came to be. Lots of “hands on” activities, even for the teens. At some points, it was hard to decide whether to go and see the next show or stay and play a new Hawaiian game.
The center is run by the Mormons and DS’s BFF is Mormon, so it was a must to go and see the nearby Mormon Temple and Brigham Young University. He was quite impressed, as we were. Had we arrived early, he would have been able to go into the Temple, but it was closed for the day when we got there. There’s a visitors center there, and we went in and watched a short film, looked around and visited with an older couple that was there on their Senior Mission Trip. Can you imagine being assigned Hawaii as your mission trip…how awesome is that. They’re there for 18 months and will move on. DS’s BFF will leave this Fall for his 2 year trip, but he’s going to Baltimore Maryland…Hawaii looked pretty good, but I guess Baltimore will have his perks too.
After our stop at the Temple, we went back to the center. We were wanting to do the canoe ride, but also wanted to make sure DS BFF got to see the Temple…and timing was on our side and we got to do it all! We even got a private canoe for our party of 12! The rowers and guides were alot of fun and I’m so glad we got to finish up our day there that way.
At the cultural center, since we weren’t staying for their Luau, we asked where a good place to eat would be…L&L down the road was recommended, but I wouldn’t do it again. It was in a strip center…part of our group walked over to Pizza Hut and others to Subway. We had stirfry and Spam and Ramon noodle soup (had to try it!). The food was fine, but the building and atmosphere left alot to be desired!
After our hour plus drive back to the resort, the adults headed straight to the hot tub for some relaxation. I can’t really remember what the kids did. LOL! I’m kinda liking having kids this age, they’re old enough to do their own thing and you don’t have to worry about them so much!