Day 5. Captain Zodiac snorkeling tour at Captain Cook Monument.
Friday morning we met most of our District and drove to Kona for a snorkeling adventure that we had signed up for a month ago. They split us up between two boats and headed out of the marina (oddly enough, there are only 5 marinas on the entire Big Island... according to one of our captains (above; blue shirt, black shorts who has been growing his hair our since 2003). Our other other captain (a female whom Jake had a small crush on) is pictured behind the only guy wearing a life jacket (above- his name is Mars and Jake shares an office with him back in WA)).
Right outside of the marina there were tons of dolphins.
They came right up to our boat/raft. It was awesome. Our male captain (Cory) told us a ridiculous amount of facts about dolphins... most of which I can't remember.
It was a 15 mile boat ride to the Captain Cook Monument. Along the way our female captain pointed out places to cliff jump...
...and this hotel that Frank Lloyd Wright designed. The very bottom right windows had to be replaced so often from the huge swells, that they eventually replaced them with bullet proof glass- and that's why they are so shiny.
Luckily, I got to sit at the front of the boat and I got the best view... but the wind blew sunscreen and salt right into my eyes. I could barely keep my eyes open by the time we got to the monument.
(these pictures are a very poor representation of what was down there.)
After several hours, we headed back to the marina. We were told several historical stories, facts and trivia about the island. She showed us the angry face in the lava:
coves and caves:
the way the island is constantly growing (because the lava keeps flowing and making more 'land') and shifting (because they have over 300 earthquakes a year):
and she showed us what the lava tubes look like when they stop flowing:
John Wayne got married to his second or third wife in the little Church below. It's the smallest church that the Vatican recognises as a church.
Everyone told us that Bite Me had the best fish tacos on the island so we had to try them. The fish tacos were ok.... but Jake ordered a 1/2 pound of shrimp and that was amazing.
(PuPu is the Hawaiian word for appetiser)
We got back to the hotel and decided to take a swim in the Kona pool.
The pool was huge... it even had a waterslide.
This was the 5th night that we were in Hawaii and we still hadn't gotten any good pictures of the sunset- and we heard that we were staying on the part of the island that had the best sunsets- so we headed over to Buddha Point to watch the sun go down.
We walked past the dolphin pond and Jake caught these pictures:
Pretty rad if you ask me!
We had to walk from one side of the hotel to the other to catch the sun going down.
Once the sun was down we started heading back to our room. Every time I looked back the sky was getting more and more colorful so we stayed until it was dark.