The Traveling Steve's

Aloha to Waikiki . . . flying home to Orlando


We’ve had a wonderful 3 night stay here at the Hyatt Waikiki; it feels much longer than it sounds, perhaps because we stayed a night in the DFW Airport Hyatt before flying out here on Saturday.  As our flight to Los Angeles wasn’t until 10:30pm, we had the whole day, and hence paid for a 4th night so we didn’t have to worry about checking out early.  This gave us the full day to explore, relax, and have a nice farewell dinner before heading to the airport around 8:30pm.

We had a nice ocean-front lunch at the historic Mona SurfRider Hotel, (which is now a Westin), just across the street and down a bit from our Hyatt Hotel Waikiki.  IMG_7775

It was nice sitting by the beach while enjoying our light lunch.  We didn’t want to overeat, as we were looking forward to our early dinner at 5:45pm at ‘The Top of Waikiki’ revolving restaurant.  We did manage to share a pizza and enjoyed the beautiful weather, while people watching the other oceanfront diners and beachgoers.IMG_7770 IMG_7774 IMG_7772 IMG_7765

After lunch we did some last minute shopping in Waikiki, including one of our favorite’s ‘Crazy Shirts’ for a couple more T’s.  Crazy Shirt’s has some of the best quality T-shirts as well as designs, and they’re well worth the price.


Back at the Hyatt Regency Hotel, we noticed lots of vendors in the open-air atrium corridors of the hotels.  “It must be Tuesday, DOS said”, remembering that the Hyatt has a ‘farmers market’ type event every Tuesday, as he was just here last month.  We took a quick stroll through the crowded market area on the way to our room.  The market had lots of local produce as well as misc items for sale, and was popular with the locals and tourists alike.

Back in the room we packed for our trip home, followed by a shower and short nap.  Although we came with carry-on luggage, our luggage had ‘expanded’ a bit, so we planned on checking our luggage on the flight back, and DOS had brought another expandable bag we could use to check as well.

For our farewell Waikiki dinner, we walked a few short blocks to ‘Top of Waikiki’, which is the only revolving restaurant in the area.  IMG_8142IMG_8146We had reservations at 5:45p, (but got there a bit early) and first took an elevator up to a nearly top level, then up an escalator, and checked in with the hostess there.  She then escorted us to the lounge area, where we had drinks at the bar while waiting on our table.  I had a simple draft beer, while DOS had a nonalcoholic colada-like drink, but some of the drinks others got were quite exotic, which were topped off by exotic drops of different flavors.

IMG_8165 IMG_8160

When we got called to our table shortly after our reservation time, we had a nice window seat overlooking Diamond Head at first.  I say at first, as the restaurant makes one full revolution every 50 minutes, so the scenery is constantly changing.


We have a wonderful and leisurely dinner, and like our farewell dinner in Ho Cho Min City in February on the rooftop restaurant, it was truly a memorable night.  (That dinner too, we were also flying home on a late night flight).

IMG_8187 IMG_8190 IMG_8185 IMG_8195 IMG_8177

IMG_8188 IMG_8199IMG_8218We saw the sun set as we turn-tabled around, and a photographer took our picture, timed to get the best view with the Royal Hawaiian Hotel (pink hotel) in the background.  We had taken a photo of the Royal Hawaiian as well, but it was nice to get an official souvenir photo in a fancy photo jacket.

IMG_8204 IMG_8193

Before leaving, we took a selfie of us with our excellent waitress, who truly gave us outstanding service, and her bubbly personality made our dining experience even more memorable.

IMG_8211After dinner, we took the elevator back down to the ground level, and walked the couple blocks back to our hotel.  We had a driver scheduled to take us to the airport, and we left the hotel at 8:30pm for our 10:30pm flight to Los Angeles. IMG_8242 (1) As it was an overnight flight, we didn’t arrive until 7am California time.  We flew back First Class on an American Airlines A321 with ‘sharkets’, the newest A321 model with individual TVs and lots of entertainment choices.  Unfortunately, even though it was First Class, they weren’t sleeper seats, so it still made for a sleepless night for me.IMG_8484

IMG_8494Upon arrival in LAX, we had what turned into a 3 hour delay (from a one hour layover) due to a mechanical issue, also on a new A321 ‘sharket’ jet.  We started out walking to our departure gate from terminal six to terminal five (the Tom Bradley International Terminal), which was connected without having to go back thru security.  We waited there for quite a while, to learn our gate had been changed back to terminal six where we had originally arrived.  No problem, we both could use the exercise walking between terminals!  Plus we got to see some jumbo jets up close, including this Qantas jumbo Airbus 380.

IMG_8245 (1)


IMG_8244 (1) IMG_8250 (1)

Back at terminal six, we hung out in the LAX Admiral’s Club while we waited  for our delayed flight.  We got a seat right by the window overlooking our gate, so we didn’t have to keep going to the monitor to see when the flight was coming in.

IMG_8261 (1) IMG_8260 (1)

Finally we got on our delayed flight, and took our five hour ‘all day’ flight back to Orlando.  With the 3 hour time change loss, it literally does take all day flying east from California.

IMG_8500 (1) IMG_8499 (1)

IMG_8501 (1)  When we got back to Orlando around 7pm, it was storming, so they couldn’t unload the luggage.

Travel Tip:  When flying into Orlando, or Florida in the summer, try to do only carry on luggage as if there are storms and lightning your luggage will be delayed, perhaps for two hours such as ours.   We ended up having dinner in the airport while we waited on our luggage.

Finally after a long overnight and full day trip home, we arrived back to our home.  While a quick getaway vacation, it was wonderful and look forward to doing it again.

Welcome Home to MCO Airport- and ALOHA!

IMG_8263 (1)



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *