Travel writer Jody Robbins has covered some of the world’s most exotic destinations for many of Canada’s most popular publications including WestJet Magazine, Calgary Herald, Today’s Parent, and others. In the below interview, Jody reveals what makes the Hawaiian Islands stand out.
What has been your most memorable Hawaii activity?
Each Hawaiian island is so diverse, it’s hard to select just one. The beauty of Hawaii is that there’s so much to explore, but you can just chill on the beach and not feel guilty about that. We found the perfect combo staying at Puakea Ranch on Hawaii Island. You stay in these gorgeously restored plantation bungalows on a real ranch close to Hawi.
Many of these bungalows have their own private lava rock pool. I’ll never forget watching my daughter skip down the pathway from our little cottage to the Ranch’s garden. There, she foraged for our meals (fresh kale, beans, lettuce and papaya), gathered eggs from the chicken coop and made friends with the pet bunnies. There are horses on site and she was able to have a riding lesson with this champion rider from Texas who works on the ranch. It was pure bliss, I’ve never come across a similar accommodation since. I almost hesitate to write about it as once this secret hideaway gets out, they’re going to be fully booked!
The Robbins family at Hawaii Volcanoes National Park; Photo Courtesy: Jody Robbins
Which only-in-Hawaii activity would you recommend to a first-time visitor?
Hawaii Volcanoes National Park is a must see. Where else in the world can you peer into the rim of an active volcano? There’s so many family activities that give visitor’s a glimpse in this otherworldly landscape. Be sure to trek through Thurston Lava Tube, a dark and mysterious lava cave and take part in the guided park ranger hikes.
Kipu Kai Beach on Kauai; Photo Courtesy: Jody Robbins
What does your ideal day in Hawaii look like?
Awake to the sound of the surf pounding against the shore. Head out for a 30-minute run along the trails that anchor the ocean. Take a break along the way to watch a traditional outrigger canoe race. Fuel up with fresh pineapple and homemade banana bread made from bananas gathered mere steps from the hotel. Head to the beach with your family. While snorkeling a few feet from shore, come face to face with an enormous green sea turtle. Take a nap after lunch, so you’re refreshed for happy hour. Wash back a few mai tais with appetizers that range from $5-$10 a pop. Head back to beach to watch the sun sink slowly into the Pacific. Lucky me, I had this idyllic day this past March in Maui.
About Jody Robbins: Jody Robbins is an award-winning travel and lifestyles writer based in Calgary, Canada. Follow along on her adventures on her blog Travels with Baggage, cited as one of the top Canadian Travel Blogs and Influential Mom Blogs. You can check out what Jody’s up to on Twitter, see for yourself on Instagram or check out what inspires her on Pinterest.