Exploring the Magic of Disney Aulani Resort

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The magic that is Disney Aulani Resort.

Disney Aulani
Disney Aulani

This year we took a magical trip to Disney’s Aulani resort on the Hawaiian Island of Oahu. Disney Aulani resort is found at Ko Olina about an hour from Honolulu on the north west coast of Oahu.

Aulani is unmistakably Disney, whilst the decor would be 90% Hawaiian inspired and 10% classic Disney, the service, the little extra’s is what lets you know you are at a Disney resort.

From the minute you arrive you are transported in to the magical world of Disney. From Hidden mickeys located throughout the resort, opportunities to meet your favourite Disney characters and get their autographs, disney merchandise and classic Disney treats.

What makes Disney Aulani so special.

Disney Aulani Resort has so many amazing elements to it. Their is a fantastic spa, a teen spa, character breakfasts. Multiple pools, including an adults only pool, Keiki Cove Splash zone, Menehune bridge (Water area for the youngest in your family). Rainbow reef where you can snorkel with gorgeous fish away from the elements. Waikolohe stream where you can float down the stream on individual or double tubes, that also has two amazing waterslides, and spas. There are shows and Lu’au’s, Fire pit storytelling, Disney movie nights out under the stars. An adventure trail, photography courses. Aunties beach house a fantastic complimentary supervised activities club for guests aged 3 to 12. As well as Premium activities for the children that including Character Meet and greets, and so much more.

Not to mention the amazing beach at Ko Olina Lagoon, with it’s breathtaking blue water, its clean sand, it’s comfortable beach chairs and umbrellas. A great place to grab some snorkel gear, sand toys or boogie boards and swim in the Pacific Ocean.

There is a great selection of dining options. Buffet, table service, Room service, Lounges and Bars and Quick take away options. There is also a selection of meals available in their shop. The ABC Store the Island Country Market is also only a quick stroll away.

Disney Aulani it’s well worth a visit.

 

 

 

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Kualoa Ranch – Hawaii’s Hollywood link.

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Kualoa Ranch is a 4000 acre cattle ranch located on Oahu, Hawaii. whilst a working cattle ranch its claim to fame is as a popular tourist attraction due to the amazing list of films and tv shows filmed within its three valleys. Kaaawa Valley, Kualoa Valley and Hakipuu Valley.

Kualoa Ranch

Kualoa Ranch has been in the same family since 1850 when it was purchased of King Kamehameha III. Over that time it has had an interesting history from cattle, to sugar cane, to The military taking control during World War 2 and turning it into Kualoa airfield, and creating military bunkers on the land. To rock festivals, to its most famous claim to fame so far, the film site of the Jurassic Park films, lost, Pearl Harbour, Godzilla, Hawaii Five O episodes and many more.

Kualoa Ranch - Lost TV

If you head to Kualoa Ranch you can do a huge variety of tours from ATV, horse riding, jungle cruise and the movie tour.

We participated in the movie tour and it was great to see some of the landmark sites from some of our favorite movies.

We stopped to have a look at one of the military bunkers which has now become a film memorabilia museum.

Kualoa Ranch

At the time I was keen to keep moving to the movie sites, but looking back the museum was probably the highlight of the tour, there was more time to read about the movies, and to see all about the movies and tv shows filmed there.

It was also great to see the sites once we moved into the valley where Jurassic Park was filmed. There were some film sites where there wasn’t anything left there except a plaque showing you what they filmed but no other real props. Obviously they can’t leave much there as they continue to film in the area. However there are some fantastic sites that are iconic from some favorite movies, the log from Jurassic Park, the foot print from Godzilla and the skull area from Skull Island.

Kualoa Ranch

Kualoa Ranch

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Top travel tips for Aeroplane travel.

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With the additon of so many low cost aeroplanes, overseas travel is so much more accessible for travelers now. So we have put together our list of our top travel tips for aeroplane travel.

Aeroplane travel tips

Comfortable clothes
When traveling in aeroplanes, what you wear is so important to ensure you have a comfortable trip, but it is also important to help you get through security easily as well.

  • Select shoes that are easily to slip on and off, as often you will be asked to take your shoes off to get through security.
  • Also at most airports you need to be careful your belt won’t set off the metal detectors.
  • Loose fitting clothes, this is important not only to minimize the risk of DVT, but also makes you more comfortable. It is also easy for you to get to sleep.
  • Layers, when traveling you are often presented with a variety of climates, the place you are traveling from, the aeroplane itself which is often quite cold, and then your destination. The greatest way to ensure you are comfortable no matter where you are is to wear a couple of layers.
  • Depending on your health, a pair of support or compression tights is helpful.
  • Change of clothes, in case of spills, (or in case of emergency if your checked in luggage goes missing.

Sleep

It’s so important when flying long haul that you try and change your body clock to your destination from the minute you jump on the plane, and having a sleep is a great way to do this. The best way to be able to sleep in the plane is to be organised.

  • Pack a lightweight pillow to keep comfortable
  • Comfortable clothes.
  • Noise cancelling headphones to block out the noisy plane
  • Comfortable eye masks to block out the bright lights.
  • Make sure your buckle is on top of your clothes, so if you hit turbulence the cabin crew don’t wake you to check your seatbelt.

Toiletries

  • Pack some basic toiletries to freshen up before landing, toothpaste, small foldable brush, moisturiser. Basic make up (If you like to wear makeup)
  • Pack eye drops, aeroplane cabins are low humidity so your eyes often get dry and irritated, use eye drops to stop your eyes looking red.
  • Hand sanitiser, there is no way in the quick turnover of plane trips will your seat area by totally clean.
  • Lip balm. Your lips often get dry from aeroplane travel so lip balm will soothe your dry chapped lips.

Hydrate

  • Drink plenty of water it will help you from getting dehydrated. This is important not just for the flight but in the days leading up to your flight.
  • Limit your caffeine and alcohol intake.
  • Dehydration on a plane has a few flow on effects – increased risk of jet lag.

Limit your hand luggage.

  • Think do you really need it. This is really important when traveling with children as you will often be carrying them too.

Food

  • Aeroplane is famous for often being fairly inedible, often overpriced so the best way to ensure you enjoy your enjoy trip is to pack yourself some nice healthy snacks
  • Pack some treats to snack on for takeoff and landing to help with your ears.
  • Make sure your food isn’t to strong smelling
  • Pack nut free, think of your other passengers that may have nut allergies.

Stretch your legs

  • Inactivity in a plane increases your risk of DVT
  • Inactivity increases muscle pain and discomfort.

Device

  • Charge your device before you go, unless you are lucky to fly first / business class you most likely won’t be able to charge your device on the flight.
  • Pack a portable charger and your USB charging cord.
  • Load up your devices with games, books and videos that do not require Wifi.

Headphones

  • Bring your own headphones that are comfortable.
  • Bring noise cancelling headphones, as then it won’t matter if you have a screaming baby nearby, someone snoring, talking loudly, you can sit back and relax.

Wipes

Even if you don’t have young children a pack of baby wipes are one of the most versatile things to pack for your flight, they can be used for many uses.

  • Great for cleaning everything the tray, the chair, your hands, face.
  • Freshen up by wiping your face with a wipe.

Ziplock bags

  • Great for storing the wipes, toiletries, snacks. When empty they take up very little room in your luggage
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Extra tips for aeroplane travel with children

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Aeroplane travel with children.

Most aeroplane travel tips are the same when travelling with or without children however from experience there are a few other things you need to think about.

To check out our basic aeroplane travel trips click here otherwise read on to find out more.

Aeroplane travel

Pack EVERYONE spare clothes.

To really appreciate my first tip you need to take a trip with me to our magical journey home from L.A travelling with four children, A 21-month-old, a 3-year-old, a 7-year-old and a 9-year-old.

Our flight back was late in the day and after a long, busy day at Disneyland, and a nice 3-hour wait at the airport we were off and ready to go. Now I don’t know why it happened but only minutes into our 13-hour flight, our beautiful daughter started to feel a bit unwell and was sick. All over me, my top. Now whilst wipes are great at cleaning stuff up, nothing apart from a change of clothes can really take the smell away.

Now after being sick she felt fantastic, in her fresh change of clothes she enjoyed the rest of trip, however, I spent the next 12 and a half hours with the lovely smell.

Back when my children were babies I always packed a spare top for myself, but I didn’t this time as my children were older, big mistake.

Now the trip wasn’t over yet. Like a comedy over the rest of the flight, I had drinks spilt on me, a nappy accident that almost brought me to tears. I walked into Auckland airport with my baby covering me so it didn’t look like I was the one who had an accident, waiting for our next flight home I had one choice.

I walked into the nearest store and had to buy an overpriced pair of merino tracksuit pants, and t-shirt for myself and my toddler. A very expensive mistake.

Pack some snacks

Children are often fussy, and will often find aeroplane food a little interesting. Keep them happy by packing their own food. Or they will serve yoghurt, yes yoghurt at 10,000 feet, imagine the mess that brings.

Toilet

  • Set an alarm for 45-50 minutes before you are supposed to land, to make sure you take your children to the toilet. Once the seatbelt lights go on, you cannot leave to go to the toilet. And children often can’t last 30-40 minutes it might be between the seatbelt light going on and landing.
  • Young children wear pull-ups just in case. So much less stressful than an accident in the aeroplane, or dramas with in-flight turbulence and waiting for the light seatbelt light to turn off.

Clothes

Skip laces, buttons, zips and anything that could prevent them getting you them to the toilet on time.

Choose a Middle or window seat for your child. 

Aisle seats are dangerous for younger children, little hands reaching for the trolley, elbows or legs hanging over the side.

Hydrated

Keep them hydrated, pack a non-spill cup, a water bottle. When the flight attendants come around get them to refill your bottles.

Pack light

We have found that our children will often stay awake for most of the flight. But with only moments left in the flight will fall asleep. We then are faced with a major problem how we can get all our and our children back of the plane. Often juggling carrying children, carry own luggage back off the plane.

Think of worst case scenario, can I carry my children and my luggage off this plane?

Remember

Not all classrooms have four walls
Not all Classrooms have walls

Embrace the experience, relax memories made together are priceless.

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