What we did on our summer vacation: we visited Hong Kong, Tokyo, and Honolulu—what I laughingly call our Asia-lite trip (anytime you go to Asia and you can drink the tap water, it’s not a true Asia trip).
The weather was hot and humid in both Hong Kong and Tokyo, but they were really fun trips. Here’s a view from our hotel in Hotel Kong:
view from the Island Shangri-la Hotel
Hong Kong Disney was a blast, and we were fortunate the day we went because there was some cloud cover and a slight breeze. Then, in true Hong Kong fashion, it poured during one of the parades where the characters spray you with water guns. As the kids said, “We didn’t get wet from the water guns at all!”
Hong Kong Disney parade
We also discovered the Museum of Coastal Defence in Hong Kong. (I know, the British spelling can be most disconcerting.) They used one of the actual bunkers to create the museum, which is very well done. Once again, the only quibble I have is the commentary about modern times. (“Reunification has brought about a new solidarity and brotherhood of common defence.” Or something along those lines.)
Tokyo was just a brief stop in order to participate in the US-Japan Leadership Program’s weekend activities. It was lovely to see a lot of people whom we hadn’t seen in a while and catch up. It was also nice to meet the new delegates and discover what an impressive group they are. We had a tour of the Diet (the Japanese Parliament building), walked around the fish market, and toured the Nezo Museum, which has a small but excellent collection of Chinese antique bronzes. (They have several other items of interest, but we love Chinese bronzes.)
Our final stop was Honolulu where we stayed at the Halekulani, our favorite hotel there.
The kids took surfing lessons every day; we visited the Bishop Museum, the Honolulu Art Museum, and the Plantation Life Museum. For a bit of kitsch, we went to the Dole Plantation, where we went through the maze and, most importantly, ate some Dole Whip. (I mean, yes, you can get fresh pineapple there, too, but what would be the fun in that?) We had some fabulous dinners at Alan Wong’s, Morimoto, Town, and Sushi Sasabune. More about the meals later. Their magnificence deserves their own blog entries. We also weathered Tropical Storm Flossie, which fortunately for us, only lightly touched Oahu. I’ve included some photos showing the imminent arrival of the storm (and the view from our hotel room).
view upon arrival
Tropical Storm Flossie approaching
Tropical Storm Flossie
after Tropical Storm Flossie
It was a relaxing and fun break, and we look forward to our next trip there!