Monday, May 11, 2009

Hawaii Cruise

I'm back from Hawaii and our wonderful 12-day quilting cruise! We flew to Honolulu and spent a couple of days there before we boarded the ship. This is the view from our hotel on the first night.
And we were welcomed 'Hawaiian Quilting-style' whenever we used the elevator. This is one of the quilts that greeted us!
















We toured some famous places in and around Honolulu. First is the Royal Hawaiian hotel - the 'pink' one. Right on the beach and built in 1927, the iconic Royal Hawaiian Hotel is known as the "Pink Palace of the Pacific" and ushered in a new era of luxurious resort travel to Hawaii. The gardens are immaculate with large palms and lush tropical plants. The hibiscus flowers were stunning.




















We also visited the Iolani Palace. A Hawaiian national treasure and the only official state residence of royalty in the United States, `Iolani Palace was the official residence of the Hawaiian Kingdom's last two monarchs--King Kalakaua, who built the Palace in 1882, and his sister and successor, Queen Lili`uokalani. During the monarchy period, the Palace was the center of social and political activity in the Kingdom of Hawai`i. Though its grandeur was neglected after the overthrow of the monarchy, restoration began in the 1970s through efforts of concerned individuals. Our audio tour explained the wonderful features of the Palace - I would have loved to spend a lot more time there.
















But...the ship was waiting and we boarded and watched our first spectacular Hawaiian sunset.














More to come as I go through almost 500 pictures!