Escape Waikiki – A Fab Way To See Oahu .

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I meant to write this post months ago, but life got in the way. I do have to tell you about our Escape Waikki tour because it was so fabulous and everyone should do it.

While we were on holiday it was my birthday and I chose the Escape Waikiki tour as my thing to do. We went for an afternoon tour and after much deliberation I went for The Hidden Gems Of The South/East Shores.

It isn’t the cheapest tour but you get what you pay for. On our first trip to Oahu we did a round trip and it was pretty shitty. This time we did it properly and for 3 of us it didn’t cost much more to do this private tour with Kevin. On top of the tour we got excellent photos with all three of us in the picture! 

From the minute we were picked up, I knew we were in for a great time. The first thing he did was ask what we wanted out of our day and if we needed to eat. The eating was answered with a big yes and we had a fab lunch at Ono’s Steak and Shrimp Shack. I had the fish tacos and the garlic fries. The garlic fries came with a warning that they were very garlicky, oh they were. The portions were of course huge and we couldn’t finish. After a bit more touring we also ate malasada at the famous Leonards Bakery and we didn’t have to queue. Kevin made sure they were ready and waiting for us. They were so good. 

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Our afternoon was spent laughing, looking at fabulous scenery, seeing places we would never have seen without a guide like Kevin. Saying that, there is no guide like Kevin, there is only Kevin.

I’m not going to tell you about all the spots as I don’t want to ruin your adventure. I will tell you we saw turtles swimming in the sea from a cliff face, dolphins who are fed by a chef, wild pigs being fed by and interesting local and a mongoose. I mustn’t forget the sneaky walk along a beach to see a spot where Hawaii Five-0 is filmed, that made Mr’s day.

If you are heading to Oahu you simply have to Escape Waikiki, eat malasadas, laugh and gaze at amazing scenery with Kevin. On our next trip, as soon as we know we are going we will be booking the tour we didn’t do. I am not kidding.

Use the book button on the website!

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Hawaii….. I Yelp on and on.

I have been rather absent over the past few months. Work, life and the thought of going on holiday to Waikiki, Hawaii with the family have all taken up my time. Now I am back and ready to keep things going and blogging recipes that I need to remember. Back to Hawaii.

We went on a family holiday for 12 nights to Waikiki.  Mr Muffin has always wanted to go and I was more drawn to an Asian destination.  I was happy to wait to do Asia when Miss Muffin is fully released to the world and our funding is better.  After a few emails back and forward with our lovely travel agent friend Joanna Derveaux we settled on staying at the Hilton Hawaiian Village.

With this destination set, it was time for the menu reading to commence.

I love to read menus, I would happily go on holiday and spend 80% of the time reading menus on the outside of buildings. Technology has now enabled me to obsess about the menu of various restaurants before the credit card has even been authorized.  Fantastic, I say.

Within an hour of our decision to go, I knew our first breakfast would be at the Wailana Coffee House, and it was. This place is a real money spinner and an old-fashioned diner, the kind you dream of finding. Miss Muffin had the strawberry waffle with a side of bacon every visit, Mr Muffin had various meat based meals and I enjoyed French toast stuffed with guava jelly and many variations on the good old pancake all covered in coconut syrup. You have to love a place that uses real fake cream, gives you 3 types of syrup, 4 types of jam and fills your coffee after every couple of sips.

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After finding breakfast, my search continued. I am not one to plan what evening we will eat where, no, I am not that frightening. I do like to have an idea that we can all find something we like and will all be happy. A rough idea of cost is good too.  After independently going through places and getting ideas using Google, I cottoned on to Yelp.

There are many review sites out there but for some reason, I found Yelp the easiest to use. The map feature is great and you can figure out exactly what is near to you at any given time. Through Yelp we went to a few places we wouldn’t have even looked at and this resulted in some very good and cheap Thai and Vietnamese food in real local places. You can find all my reviews at

www.muffin-mum.yelp.co.nz

I am going to make it my mission to post reviews about places in Wellington. This will be a kind of karmic mission and I hope I inspire one of the many tourists through my lovely city to go off the beaten track.  Talking of off track- back to Hawaii.

Everywhere we ate was good. Only one place was a bit just OK and not really that good I suppose. We only had one bad customer service experience and after my Yelp review the company apologized within 12 hours. The serving sizes were incredibly huge and we could have easily shared 2 meals between 3 of us. As most kids meals were around $7 with a drink included, this didn’t happen. The biggest serving size award from the Muffin’s goes to the chain restaurant, The Cheesecake Factory.

When we headed there I went with the image in my mind of just having a salad. Ha ha, how I laugh now. I could have easily taken the salad to a BBQ and a whole group of people would be more than happy. I did go on to help with the sharing of 2 cheesecakes after. You can read about this in my reviews on Yelp.

In conclusion, Hawaii was an excellent destination, the shopping was fantastic, the food was too and we will go back. We swam with turtles, yes, we did. We also shot guns, met a friend for drinks who lives in Melbourne and had fun.

Yelp defiantly helped make things great and no, I am not paid to say that. I don’t even have any followers or friends on there at the time of writing this.

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