I’m back from a great visit in Hawaii. Got to see some old friends and spend a little time on a couple of the other islands. Overall a fantastic trip, great weather and lots of outdoors time.
As I use to live in Hawaii, I wasn’t too concerned about doing some of the traditional “tourist” trips and another luau was NOT on the agenda. This trip I decided would be more of a nature trip and I planned our excursions accordingly. We went on two tours with the Oahu Nature Tours, one to the Hidden Waterfalls which was about a 2 hour hike on the windward side of the island (opposite side of the mountains from Honolulu) and then we spend 3.5 hours hiking above Honolulu in the Manoa Valley rainforest. These were great tours with knowledgable guides and small groups (5 – 10 people)
One other day we took the hike up Diamond Head to the bunkers on the very top of the hill (if you take this one be ready for stairs and lots of them). We also walk about 2 miles through the Koko Crater Botanical gardens. We also took a 8 hour tour with a group called “The Home of the Brave.” If you like military history this is a great tour. You see the USS Arizona Memorial, Schofield Barracks, Wheeler Airfield, have lunch at the club on Fort Shafter, drive through Punchbowl Memorial and end the Home of the Brave military museum. While both myself and my husband are retired military, it wasn’t anything new for us, but it was nice to revisit the places where we once worked.
We also drove around the island, stopping at Makapuu Point, had lunch on the Marine Corps base,walked round the visitor center for Waimea Valley, stopped at the Dole Pineapple Plantation and visited their botanical gardens and then headed back to the city. On one other day, I went to Kauai, rented a car and headed up to Waimea Canyon and stopped at a couple of the more popular waterfalls. Another day my husband and I flew to Maui to revisit Haleakala Crater, Iao Valley and Lahaina.
And after all that, we actually had time to just hang out at our hotel, go shopping at the Ala Moana Mall and walk along Kalakaua avenue a couple of times.
Here are a few images from along the beach near our hotel. We stayed at the Hale Koa which is a military resort on Waikiki.
I’ve been practicing and learning about Camera Raw 6.6 which is a plug-in to Photoshop CS5. I can’t believe how fantastic this sofware is!! If you’re a photographer and shoot RAW and have Adobe CS5 as your post processing tool, don’t miss trying some of the features in the tool. The graduated filter and the adjustment brush are fantastic and you get your sharpening, curves adjustments and even your lens correction/adjustment right in one place. At the bottom of this post, I show you a couple of the “before” and “after” photos. You can really make your images pop!
And here are three examples of images “as shot” and then after processing with the Camera Raw. I did no adjustments in Photoshop accept maybe heal a spot or do a final crop. Hope your monitor is calibrated so you can see the difference.