It didn't take long for me to venture out and about around the island. When I woke up, I debated on staying in the apartment to gather my barrings or immediately taking the bus and going out. Old me had "What ifs" swimming about in her head: "What if I get lost? I have no idea how to find my way back here!" New me decided to just go for it. After looking at the bus route map in front of me...and realizing that I couldn't read a map....I hopped on the bus and winged it. The first place I visited was Iolani Palace.
'Iolani Palace is the official residence of King Kalākaua and Queen Lili'uokalani, who were the last in line of ruling Hawaiian royalty. This palace is the only one in the US. I kind of stumbled onto this site by accident. When I got off the bus (after thinking "Hey this looks like a good spot!") A sweet tour guide called out to me: "If you go over there and get your ticket, we'll get started with the tour!" Too embarrassed to admit that I had no intentions of seeing the tour or even what it was about, I sheepishly went across the grounds and got a ticket for $13. She instructed me to sit on the bench provided and put slippers over my sandals (also provided). No photography was allowed inside the building, and nothing was allowed to be touched. I was allowed to take photos outside though.
After the monarchy was overthrown in 1893, the building was used as the capitol building for the Provisional Government, Republic, Territory, and State of Hawaii until 1969. Then the palace was reopened in 1978 as a museum to the public. I was enthralled by the history, and saddened to learn what had become of the monarchy, especially by how Queen Lili'uokalani was treated. If you'd like to learn more about the monarchy, go here and here where it can be explained way better then I can explain it here.
The tour took about an hour and a half. After that I walked to downtown Honolulu, in the business district. It was there that I found a great store called Local Fever. Awesome modern clothing, in addition to some vintage things. There were a lot of GREAT finds in that shop. This is what I bought for just $11.
Awesome right? I was so proud of myself. I didn't think in a million years that I would find cheaper clothes in HAWAII of all places then at home.
Jet lag hit me after lots of walking, so I decided to hit a cafe, and people watch by the university district. I love watching college kids. The excitement is always buzzing.
I wanted to see more, but my body just started to crash. After getting lost (I took the wrong bus back to my Aunt's) I had a sweet bus driver drive around the island and back to my area. Want to hear something crazy? If you miss an exit, or get off at the wrong exit, you CANNOT get back on. You have to go around the entire island, and that can take an additional 45 minutes to an hour. Crazy right? The locals joke that they're not proud of their horrible road system. I'm just glad I don't have to drive it. The lanes are very confusing. It took until 7pm for me to get back home...and slept.