Honolulu Airport Stopover – Luggage Storage & Ubers

I did a bunch of research (googled) before I went to Waikiki, Hawaii and couldn’t find where I could hold my bags and the best way to get around during my stopover at Honolulu Airport. Don’t fret people, I sorted it out.

I wanted to do a tour to and from the airport, then I wouldn’t have to worry about my luggage. I couldn’t find one anywhere. I thought instead I’d uber in, but then I’d have my luggage and that wouldn’t work at the beach. I gave up and decided to stay at the airport. Other option was to hire a car of course but I couldn’t be bothered and knew the roads would be busy as it was the end of the holidays and Waikiki was full! But then I flew over that gorgeous island and there was no way that I was staying there!! Take me to the beach, baby!

What I learnt…
There is somewhere you can hold your luggage at the airport! It’s aptly called Baggage Storage and you can find it at baggage claim E. You can find baggage claim E right by the car park. You exit the main arrivals terminal, turn right outside and just follow it down. It’s well sign posted. Head on the first entrance and walk to the right, the stall is there on your right.

They have a variety of storage options, I paid $15 for my large suitcase which is the day rate. They even had it ready for me when I returned at 7.30pm which I had indicated may be my return time. Well worth the peace of mind knowing your luggage is safe and not having to lug it around the city. Plus you have to pay extra for it in a cab.

The other thing I learnt is that you can’t get an uber out of the airport. I tried and tried, there’s no info. A guy that works at the airport told me that you can’t get ubers there but you can walk to the post office (approx 10 mins) and order one to the city. I would do that next time for sure. Taxis are not only more expensive but there’s often approx a 30 min plus wait. And nobody likes standing around in the heat after a long flight.

The closest beach is A La Moana Park and it has shower and bathroom facilities there. Pack your towel in your hand luggage and happy days! The mall is just across the street, you can run over for a lunch fix of poke or a quick shop.

I did grab poke (and a Cinnabon) at A La Moana but I needed wifi to work and somewhere to charge my phone and laptop. I walked into Waikiki beach and found a bar right on the beach so I could work and watch the waves while drinking cocktails. It was lovely!

I had a quick dip right out from Waikiki and two turtles joined me! Some tacos at Surf n Turf and then it was back to the airport.

You can uber to the airport – it’s approx half the price of taxis and the rate is fixed which is great if there’s traffic. Hawaiian time and all that jazz!

Up & Away: Vancity, Caribbean, NYC & Hawaii

Well that snuck up quickly! I’m 40 minutes away from landing in Hawaii before I transit to Vancouver! I slept the entire flight (no surprises) and now I’m hoping to see whales out of my plane window – it never happens but I’m always hopeful.

I only booked this trip about three weeks ago, I knew I was going but took my sweet time booking it in.

I arrive in Vancouver on the 21st and I’m staying with my friends and working remotely until the 28th. Fortunately I don’t work Friday’s at Wiley anymore (I’m concentrating on my consulting that day) and there’s a public holiday thrown in the mix so it doesn’t make for too much work. My friends have a studio they work out of in Gastown so I spend my days working from there with them and working out where I should go for lunch and dinner. Spoiled for choice and I want to get to all my fave restaurants as well as try all the new ones!

This trip I don’t have many activities planned (other than eating) it’s all about spending time with my friends. We have plans to hike Joffre Lakes and I’m sure we will do some more hikes etc.

Next up, Caribbean! I’m spending six nights at a nice resort on the ridiculously good looking island of St Martin. I intend to sunbathe, chill and drink allllll the cocktails! Again not much planned (I’m working on relaxing here) but we will hire a car for a few days and explore the island. Hopefully get in lots of snorkeling. I can’t wait! Oh and St Barths is only a day trip away too.

Back to an old favourite after the Caribbean for three days, New York City, baby! My only plans here revolve around rooftop bars and food. There’s a Dumpling restaurant I want to visit (also the cheapest Michelin starred restaurant in the world) and a ramen place…

Then I fly to Hawaii. I booked flights to Maui however it’s 98% full and stupid exxy, plus I found out my good friend is in Waikiki so I thought I’d cancel my flights. Unfortunately I booked through a travel agent (I don’t usually) and to change that flight it would cost me $350 as they would have to reissue all my other flights. Ridiculous. With that in mind, my plan now is to head there for one night, do a day tour (road to Hana?) and fly back that night. I’d spend the next two nights in Waikiki with Nikita & Jake and fly back on the fourth to Brisbane.

Any hints, tips, places to eat, drink, shop or party on my travels?! I particularly would love some ideas for St Martin and Maui.

Peace from the sky!

Brisbane Gets Whitney! The Bodyguard Opening & After Party

It started with a bang! Literally. There was a massive, deafening bang. The theatre blacked out and the crowd received a huge fright! Definitely a way to get the attention of the audience quickly. I briefly considered there may have been a terrible accident behind the scenes and we were all going to have to find our way to the exits in the pitch dark theatre.

From the lighting to the staging, projections, choreography and the exceptional singing talent, The Bodyguard was masterfully and dramatically put together. At times you’re not sure whether it’s cringe worthy or brilliant but regardless, the entire audience bought in. The crowd was definitely into the show, with gasps and oooh’s, boo’s and ahh’s at every turn.

Thankfully, it felt less like a musical (not that I’m not a fan) and more like a concert. Rachel (Paulini) rocked it! As did the rest of the cast. Apart from Frank, that man cannot sing to save himself.

The cast received a standing ovation and then the entire crowd rocked out to Whitney’s ‘I wanna dance with somebody’, up and dancing in the seats. I was ready to party after that!

Luckily, we checked in our envelopes at the end and found inside passes to the official after party. There was the traditional red carpet and media banners with stars mingling with the guests. Drinks and hors d’oeuvre every which way you looked. We had a photo with the Stalker. That guy is seriously good at being creepy. I didn’t event want to stand with him. Gave me the heebie jeebie’s.

I went in with no expectations. Sure, I know a few Whitney songs but I didn’t even know there was a movie and I hadn’t done any research so was going in blind. The show surpassed our expectations, we were all loving it! I definitely recommend getting along, it’s great entertainment.

Oh, and they have daiquiri’s and Moet just to sweeten the deal.

Oakridge Winery Cellar Door & Restaurant, Yarra Valley

Honestly, I expected more. I was really looking forward to this meal.

The cellar door itself is very impressive. The architecture is very modern and on point.

Inside, floor to ceiling windows set the scene. Lolling hills with beautiful vineyards and a stunning skyline. You can get lost in it.

We had a tasting of the reds, I really enjoyed the Shiraz and the Merlot. The Pinot Gris Hazeldine also receives an honorable mention. Matt from the cellar door was exceptionally knowledgeable with his descriptions and background of the wines.

We had a 1pm booking for lunch in the restaurant and made our way in, the floor to ceiling windows and views following us there.

The first thing I noticed was a gorgeous arrangement of royal purple tulips. The uniqueness was in their presentation. They had been dug from the ground in a patch and strung together and left on a slab. The layers of dirt were visible as were the bulbs. Later I managed to walk into them a get a whopping bruise on my arm but I forgive them. It was my fault for looking to see if my food had arrived yet.

Our sparkling (which was very nice) came out quickly. As did some soft sourdough with a crunchy crust and some salty whipped butter… cue drooling.

We ordered the burrata curd to share to start and the rye papadelle and the rainbow trout as our mains.

The burrata curd came out quickly. Beautiful and soft and mild and creamy with some high quality olive oil and cracked pepper. That’s my idea of a good time!

The mains took a long time to come out. A really long time. We were about to ask where they were when we were told they were coming out. It was a good 45minutes and we were starving.

I had inquired as to how creamy my pasta was and told not too much, however it was a lot more than that. It seemed to be lacking in flavour, despite its vibrant appearance. I was truly disappointed.

We had green teas and coffee to finish and worked there for a while. The waitress assisted us with their wifi password and we smashed out emails for an hour or so in the corner.

The drinks were on the house when the bill arrived which I thought was fair seeing as our wait and my meal being an average quality.

Weren’t you Rachael’s Crazy World Before?

Yup I certainly was Rachael’s Crazy World before! The blog had been around a while. I’ve grown up, it’s grown up and it was time for a bit of an image update. Plus I ran out of hosting space on my free WordPress account. That’s when Wander Wonder Wonton was born!

Why Wander Wonder Wonton? It’s really very simple. These words represent the three ways I love to spend my time. I travel, I think, I eat.

Wander: I love to travel. And explore. I wonder around alllll the time. Around my neighborhood, around my city of Brisbane, around Australia, around New Zealand and around the world.

Wonder: I am endlessly curious about the world. This curiosity leaves me constantly wandering about… well, everything!

Wonton: I love to eat. Like, so, sooo much. I am already thinking about what I will have or where I will go for lunch and dinner before I even have breakfast. I love breaking bread and sharing a meal with company.

This blog originated as a space I could document and share my travels on my first trip to the USA. Back then it wasn’t easy to get a phone plan or data so I would write my blogs and post them at night or when I found wifi so I could remember my adventures and my parents could see what I was up to. But guess what?! They never bloody read it! Hilarious.

Most of all, I like having a space where I can keep memoirs of my life, my travel adventures, what I eat and share them with you guys. I don’t mind if nobody even reads my blogs, but I’m grateful if you do! Thank you for sharing my world with me.

Shout out to my housemate, Developer Dave, who helped me with the changes!

What do you think of the new name and layout for Wander Wonder Wonton?
I would love to hear your thoughts.

Mount Maunganui Motorhoming

Yes, I know motorhoming isn’t a word, but I couldn’t think of a better title. They’ve put the purple sleeping lights on in the plane and I’m struggling to keep my eyes open. Planes do that to me in the best of times.

Anyway, the last two days in Mount Maunganui were probably some of my favourite from this trip. The camp was nice, the sun was shining and we stayed in one place for two nights. Not to mention it was great to be nearby shops, food, the beach and hot pools.

I was pretty damn exhausted after that fateful fishing trip where we caught zero fish. I spent half the day lying on a towel in the sun reading marketing magazines. The other half I went browsing around the shops then tried to nap.

Our extended family joined us for BBQ burgers and Alice, Mum and I kicked back in the hot pools. They were lovely and I think what I needed to get a good night’s rest. It was the first night I managed to sleep majority of the night and man did I need it!

No fishing this morning, we leisurely got up and packed ready to check out at 10am.

I had been really keen to walk around the Mount, unfortunately due to Cyclone Cook, most of the path was closed off. Luke, Alice and I went as far around as we could and a little up the summit before giving up and getting ice creams. Good job I say!

The remainder of the day was mainly spent travelling and working remotely. I had the rest of the week as leave but today I was back at my laptop which was fairly easy as we were on the road and then I flew from Rotorua to Auckland, with a few hours in the Koru Lounge and back on a plane to Brisbane.

It’s always saddening saying goodbye to my family, I’m lucky to love where I live and was missing work (yup I love my job that much) so it wasn’t as hard this time to head back. I’m lucky to be only a few hours away and have the ability to work remotely so can spend lots of time with them!

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