The peculiar Hawaiian Banyan tree…The magic of coconut oil…One year ago…An injured Hippo…

Tom, standing by only a portion of the branches that grow downward from the Banyan Tree.

Over the past few days, it has been hot, humid, and challenging spending time outdoors in Honolulu during the daylight hours. Everyone is talking about the trade winds arriving soon which hopefully will cool it off. As I write this, it’s 90F, 32C, with the weather report stating it feels as if it’s 93F, 34C.

The first Banyan Tree we discovered on a walk.

This is far from the hottest climate, we’ve experienced in our travels. Dubai, UAE was the hottest and most unbearable when we visited for 13 nights in May 2013. Although Dubai is a dry desert climate, 105F, 40C was difficult to endure.

This Banyan tree either fell victim to graffiti or is dated for some unknown reason.

Hawaii is known for its year-round tropical climate that drives many retirees and vacationers to visit for both short and extended periods. Add the beauty of the volcanic created scenery, exquisite vegetation, clear blue waters, and friendly people results in Hawaii being one of the most desired places to visit in the world.

Unusual vines fall from the tree and attach themselves building a new root system.

Some have criticized Honolulu for its hustle and bustle lifestyle, the constant stream of tourists, and high prices.  For us, we’re enjoying every moment. Much to our surprise, we’ve run into three couples we’d met on the cruise as we wandered about the streets of Waikiki, including one couple from Australia while we investigated a shopping mall off a side street. What a coincidence!

The vines before attaching to the ground.

We’ve had nothing but great dining experiences, spending an average of $57 per day including the purchase of nuts and a new plastic jar of coconut oil from a GNC store (for our teeth). Near the end of the most recent cruise, I dropped and broke a glass bottle of oil in the bathroom in our cabin. Luckily, the oil was solid due to the cool temperature in the cabin, making cleanup easier which I did myself, rather than ask the cabin steward.

Impressive tree.

In each country we’ve visited we’ve searched for organic, extra virgin coconut oil, hard to find in many locations. The 16 oz. weight prevents us from stocking up. In Hawaii, we’ll have no trouble finding it when there are GNC stores on each island which we stumbled upon yesterday. We continue to use coconut oil for keeping our mouths and teeth clean reducing tarter and bacteria. Here’s a video from Dr. Bruce Fife regarding the use of coconut oil that may inspire others to try it.

An exquisite simple yellow Hibiscus.

Tom and I have used coconut oil since the onset of our travels and during both recent cruises never becoming ill aboard ship. (We’d contracted the “cruise cough” on three past cruises). Whether it was the coconut oil or the obsessive hand washing that benefitted us, we’ll never know for sure. Perhaps, the combination of the two added another layer of protection. Coconut palms are grown in all eight of the Hawaiian islands as explained in this article

The ever-popular common Hibiscus in beautiful shades of orange and pink.

Speaking of vegetation, a few days ago while on a walk on the grounds outside the Honolulu Zoo (we don’t visit zoos often, preferring animals in the wild) which is next door to our hotel, we were in awe of one of the most interesting trees we’ve ever seen, the Banyan Tree as shown in today’s photos. Many tourists make a special trip to this area to see these unbelievable trees. Please click here for information on the Banyan Tree and its origins.

After looking at hundreds of flower photos online, we’ve yet to find the name of these flowers.

Needless to say, vegetation in the Hawaiian Islands is like none other we’ve seen anywhere in the world. As it cools off over the next several days due to the trade winds, we’ll further explore in hopes of finding more interesting and unusual vegetation on the island of Oahu.

Nonflowering plants may be colorful in Hawaii.

The flower growing seasons of spring and summer in Hawaii have long since passed, although we continue to find many common beautiful flowers, as we walk the busy streets in Waikiki as shown in our photos. 

We’ll be back tomorrow with many more new photos we’re anxious to share with our readers. Please stay tuned.

                                           Photo from one year ago today, October 9, 2013:

This hippo we spotted appeared to have an injury on her left shoulder. For details from that date, please click here.