To celebrate New Year’s 2011 in style a group of us decided we wanted to get away over the Holiday season and ring in the New Year in tropical style. The final destination chosen out of a few warm places was Hawaii, the big island to be exact. A few of us had never been to Hawaii so it made for the perfect getaway, easy enough to get to for a week-long stay in the sunshine but not so far that we had to spend countless hours traveling to and fro. Naturally I needed to equip myself for a few essentials prior to the trip and decided that I should give you all a little help, from my point of view, as to some essentials needed for any Hawaiian vacation, should you be headed that way soon…
I finally dove into the incredible world of DLSR camera photography and purchased a Canon EOS DSLR Camera (from my local Future Shop on Boxing Day) just in time to bring with me on the trip. I had heard from numerous people that the sunsets, volcanoes, marine life and black sand beaches were not to be missed, and more over, needed to be documented with the best-of-the-best in digital photography to ensure that my memories really do last a lifetime. Seriously, am I glad I bought this camera! Thankfully I had a few friends on the trip who are already well versed and quite savvy in the world of DSLRs, do after a few pointers and recommendations for settings, I was capturing every moment in front of me in stunning HD images. My boyfriend and all the colors that Hawaii has to offer have never looked better!
Everything you need to know and more about this camera can be found at the Canon website (or Best Buy and Future Shop’s website as well, if you wanted an easier place to grab one): click here.
Footwear is key when you’re in Hawaii. If you are coming from anywhere that isn’t already a Hawaiian island, then you’re probably going to show up rocking the wrong kind of kicks. Be prepared for a lot of walking, hiking, fine sandy beaches and lava rock when you land on any of the islands (I’m speaking from big island knowledge, so don’t quote me on this)! Sanuk shoes are the answer to your every need and wish. These gems are sold in Hawaii (and appear to be the state footwear) if you aren’t able to grab a pair before you get here. I lucked out and managed to snag myself two sets; first, a pair of Shore Leave deck shoes that were perfect for day-to-day events, visiting/hiking the volcano and hanging out in town – plus, it helps you look like more of a local. The shoes themselves are made of a breathable fabric which is a MUST-HAVE for this climate (humidity + heat = rotten feet). The second set I had are a pair of eco-friendly flip flops, and these babies were perfect for all Hawaiian beaches, be it white, black or green sand! Yes, they have green and black sand beaches too!!
Check em out: Click here.
My pair of Spy Optic Sunglasses are a few years old, but oddly enough I still get compliments about them so they must be somewhat in style (or else I’m just getting a wave of sass and not noticing). No joke, they shades are the only pair of shades I would even consider wearing in Hawaii and value them as much as my wallet when it comes to ensuring I don’t lose (or break) them. I’ve been rocking a grey and gold pair with paisley sides for the last three summers and have managed to keep them relatively scratch-free and unbroken! The best feature of Spy Optic Sunglasses is they actually do the job they are meant for, and BLOCK out the sun (well, partially, as you can still see out of them)! I saw a lot of people (and a few of my friends at that) rocking overly priced name-brand shades (Gucci, D&G and Prada all made appearances) and a few times I noticed they were still scrunching up their eyes behind the glasses. Hey, I get it, sunglasses have become a part of our fashion statements, so I’m not ragging on the brands as they definitely look hot. I personally prefer function over style when it comes to my shades. If you agree, they I strongly recommend you grab yourself a pair of Spy Optics before you jet off to a sunny locale.
Seriously, get a pair: Click here.
If you have ever traveled with a group of gay men than I think it’s safe to assume that you have seen a pair of Aussie Bum swim trunks parade past you, either at a pool or at the beach. The nice thing about Hawaiian culture is that they are laid back enough that if you have board shorts on you’re cool, and if you want to rock a speedo, no one is throwing you and your banana hammock a second glance. Aussie Bum offers up pretty much every style under the sun, and in the case of this trip I decided to rock a speedo underneath a pair of board shorts on the day we decided to head down to Magic Sand Beach and get tossed around in the epic waves, constantly crashing into the shore. Why would I wear two bathing suits? It was the perfect solution. Knowing my shorts would likely get ripped off my body in a mis-calculated wave jump, I was armed with the ability of NOT flashing entire families with young children. Instead, they got a quick glimpse of my behind with the Aussie Bum branding (the best form of marketing available in the market). Their assortment is RIDICULOUS, so check out their website and snag yourself up a pair today!
Heck, head to this site any time you want to look at hot men in next-to-nothing: http://www.aussiebum.com/en/swimwear/
You will absolutely be spending time either next to a pool or on the beach (next to the ocean), so you’ll want to grab yourself a good book to help make you look a little bit smarted as you sun your skin. Ideally, even if you don’t plan to read, it’s a good way to catch other people’s attentions and start a conversation about something other than the water. A few of the books I choose for this particular Holiday/have read in the past that would be ideal getaway books;
Check out Chapter’s website, or better yet, your local bookstore and see what their staff favorites are as well.