Soldier to Soldier Hawaii

A Day in Paradise! Kailua-KONA!

In this Episode, it’s the Big Island part 3. We take a cruise to Kona,  and I’ll show you the best plate lunch in Hawaii. You ready? Welcome to Japan Dream. We start this episode in my Airbnb in Kona.

I love staying at hotels in Hawaii,  but when I’m on a budget, this is the way to go. This room came with a really comfortable sofa bed, a pull-out desk, and a mini kitchen too. A bathroom with a hotel-like shower. Lots of storage space. With taxes, it cost me about $120 a night.

Great deal. We drive down to Kailua-Kona, surprised to hear my group Vance K Band on the radio.

Mahalo, KAPA FM.  This is unreal! I can’t believe it!

“Hilo Boy” is playing on KAPA FM. Wow. This was Kona’s main airport from 1948 to 1970.  We’re driving on the actual runway; it almost feels like we could take off.  This area is also called Old A’s, which is Old Kona Airport for short.

Kona is known for many great surf spots; Old A’s is one of them.  Mahalo Mark Yamanaka, at Aiona Car Sales for this awesome rental. Close by is one of Kona’s most popular shopping centers, Kona Commons. It’s home to many shops and restaurants.  My favorite store, Office Max, is here too,  and across the street, you’ll find Longs Drugs and Target.

We move on to Kailua-Kona’s famous Ali’i Drive. On the right, the legendary King Kamehameha Hotel.  If you need some drinks, snacks, or omiyage, there’s an ABC Store on the first floor.

On the side of the hotel, there’s a beautiful white sand beach.  Kona Kai ‘Opua Canoe Club keeps their canoes here.

 Kailua-Kona is also famous for the Ironman triathlon. Walking on Ali’i Drive under blue Kona skies, priceless.  Nearby is the Hulihe‘e Palace, built in 1838. This was once the vacation home for Hawaiian royalty;  today, it’s a museum. We make our way along Ali’i Drive to Kona Inn Shopping Village.

  This historic open-air mall features boutiques, galleries, and shops.  Kona Inn Restaurant offers great food and an impressive display of world record catches.  Let’s go check out the backyard of Kona Inn Shopping Village.  This is a great place to relax;  it’s also one of the best areas in Kona to watch the sunset.

Up ahead, the Royal Kona Resort, once known as the Kona Hilton.

  The Kona branch of the radio station I used to work at is here, KBIG FM. KAPA FM is next door.  On the side of the hotel, a saltwater pool and relaxing views of the Kona Coast. We drive by Kona’s most famous surf spot, Banyans.  Novice surfers to pros surf here; surfing legend Shane Dorian grew up in Kailua-Kona;  this is one of his favorite surf spots.

Back in the ’80s, I remember watching a teenage Shane Dorian win almost every contest he entered here. No waves today, just having fun with friends. Coming up next, I’ll take you to Kona’s most popular beach. And, I’ll take you to the place that sells  the best plate lunch in Hawaii. But before that, Mahalo to the sponsor of this episode,  Pure Hawaiian Water.

It’s pure water that comes from Hawaii. You’ve seen their bottles on flights  from Hawaii, and now you can get them online. Servers are available too for your home or  office.

A Day in Paradise! Kailua-KONA!

Click the links below for more info and check out their Instagram too. Mahalo.

We continue our cruise on Ali’i Drive.  La’aloa Beach, also known as Magic Sands or Disappearing Sands.  The beach got this cool nickname because a few times a year, the sand disappears with big storms.  A great beach for bodyboarding, but it can get dangerous in high surge,  so always check with a lifeguard if you have questions, and don’t forget your suntan lotion. Our last stop in Kona is Ali’i Gardens Marketplace.

  This is a beautiful open-air market filled with lots of unique shops.  Want to send a postcard from here? How about by coconut? We finally head to the place that I’ve been talking about in my last four videos.  To me, this is the home of the best plate lunches in Hawaii, Ali’i Poke, and Shave Ice.

  My good friend Ryoji runs this food stand; he lived in Japan for many years and has  a famous Hawaiian restaurant in Tokyo called Ogo Ono Loa Hawaii.

What’s up Vance! Long time no see! Surprise to you, knock on the door. So Ryoji, how are things going here?

Pretty busy because the whole thing is, we’re supposed to open three food  outlets. This being the first. They have a food truck sitting right up there, and we  have a restaurant bar that’s already outfitted called Aloha Vibes in Kona Inn Shopping Village. One of their many hot sellers is this ahi katsu plate. Ono-licious (super delicious)!

My partner CJ, we have three boats you know. We get our fishes fresh,  We’ve been slamming, like 80 orders today. The poke is always good; we sold out of poke like two hours ago already.

Please leave a message to our viewers in English and Japanese. Check me out, man.

I’ve been in Hawaii for a few years. Ogo customers in Japan , Please come down,  come visit me. I’m in Kona. Ali’i Poke and Shave Ice, Kailua-Kona, Hawaii. Come and join us.

Mahalo, Ryoji and CJ. I hope you enjoyed our trip to Kona. In the next episode, Ukulele Picnic.  It’s one of the biggest ukulele festivals in the world.  Then after that, it’s the Big Island part four.

We’re going back to my hometown of Hilo.  If you enjoy the video, please like and subscribe.

I really appreciate the support! Mahalo so much. I’m Vance K; see you again soon on Japan Dream.

Read More: America’s wettest city: Hilo – Big Island, HAWAII (+ Mauna Loa and Mauna Kea)

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