Thursday, February 16, 2012

Day 17 - Sea Turtles!

With only two days left we were determined to make full use of the resort today. We started the day with family time at the kids club.

Then we made some video postcards which we will be emailing soon.   This is the booth where you can make and send a video postcard...for free!  It's really fun and well done.  No one was there besides us, so I think word isn't out about this yet.  It is in the community room.  There is probably another name for the room but I can't recall what it is.

Zoe took a nap - that seems to be her favorite activity here. 
Max and Ella headed back to the kids club while Jacob and I hit the waterslides.   When Zoe woke up we got the kids out of the kids club and then tried out the Menehune Adventure Trail. This was really fun. They give you a small device like a smart phone which sends you video messages. The messages give you different tasks to do around the property. When you complete the task special things happen, like a waterfall starting up or a torch starting on fire. We all had fun with that.
Kids getting clues for the Menehune Adventure Trail
Watching the magic of the Menehunes making this rock come to life

We decided to try lunch at 'Ama 'Ama since we were tired of the counter service choices.  The prices at lunch weren't much more than the counter service entrees and the quality of the food was better.  The only problem is that the service was painfully slow even though we specifically indicated we would appreciate faster service and the restaurant was practically empty.  It took 30 minutes after ordering dessert (that came with the kids meals) to receive it and the check.  Meanwhile we could see a crowd gathering out by the pool area.  The TV show "Live with Kelly "was taping a promo.  People gathered around Kelly Ripa.  I figured I would take a picture when we left the restaurant...but by the time we got out of there it was too late. Maybe the staff went out to see what was going on too and that's why we waited so long!
Dessert Kabobs  come with kids' meals.  Can't you see why that would take 30 minutes?!
After lunch Kyrie did some snorkeling while Jacob tried to beat his waterslide record and of course Max and Ella headed back to the kids club. While snorkeling Kyrie heard a rumor that there were sea turtles nearby. She didn't see any, but that rumor was enough to get me back out there.  Sure enough after a while I found one. It was a really huge green sea turtle. It was at least as big as Ella and maybe as big as Max! It was incredible seeing it slowly gliding through the water. I was lucky enough to see a second one on the other end of the lagoon.  So now I've accomplished everything I wanted to on this vacation.
We did some more of the Menehune Trail before dinner.  The staff had given us a code when we returned the device this morning.  They entered it into the new device and we were able to pick up where we left off. 

For dinner tonight we walked over to the JW Marriott. It was a nice change from the three restaurants here. They have a neat area there with hammerhead sharks on one side and various other fish and rays on the other side.

We ate at the poolside restaurant.  The shark pool was right there too.  It's a pretty small but nice resort.  The food quality was not that great, but considering it was just a poolside restaurant/bar, it wasn't bad.  There were a lot more options than at Aulani. It was just nice to be at a different restaurant.  We should have started straying from Aulani much earlier in the week.  The J.W. Marriott also had a couple of restaurants inside.  This poolside one was just right for us though.  I certainly wouldn't have wanted to miss the most spectacular sunset of this trip...

The small but niceand unique pool at the JW Marriott

The best sunset of the entire vacation.  Missed photographing it at it's peak though.

Aulani after dark

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