On our last night in Hawaii, we stayed at the hotel for a few hours, then left there and flew home on QF 4 at 12:30am on the 1st of June.

We arrived in Sydney at 6:25am on the 2nd of June - we'd skipped a whole day!

Mr Cartan picked us up at the airport and brought us home.  After driving on the wrong side of the road for five weeks, it was very strange to be back in Australia.  Several times during the drive home I thought Mr Cartan was turning down the wrong side of an intersection!

Since we arrived home so early and were already up and ready, we went to school that day!  Everyone thought we were very strange.  But we were still pretty excited from the trip, so didn't really have any jet lag.

Mum added up the costs of the whole trip - it came to around $9000 for the five weeks.  On the mainland, we travelled 5500 miles in the hire car.  Mum and Dad took around eight hundred photos!

For me, it was the most amazing and memorable holiday I've ever been on!

Day 32 - Hawaii

Edgewater Hotel
Edgewater Hotel

Today we went to the Kodak Hula Show to see some Hawaiian and Tahitian style dancing.  We found out that the type of skirts I'd always thought of as "Hawaiian" - the grass skirts - are actually Tahitian.  Hawaiian skirts use large green leaves.  We also had our photos taken with the "king" of Hawaii.  David and I got presented with another lei at this show.

Royal Hawaiian girls and Hawaiian king
Royal Hawaiian girls and Hawaiian king

Kodak Hula Show
Kodak Hula Show

Kodak Hula Show
Kodak Hula Show

Hawaii sign at Kodak Hula show
Hawaii sign at Kodak Hula show

Kodak Hula Show, Hawaii
Kodak Hula Show, Hawaii

Tahitian dancers - Kodah Hula Show
Tahitian dancers - Kodah Hula Show

Kodak Hula Show
Kodak Hula Show

Kodak Hula Show
Kodak Hula Show

Kodak Hula Show
Kodak Hula Show

Kodak Hula Show
Kodak Hula Show

Kodak Hula Show
Kodak Hula Show

Kodak Hula Show
Kodak Hula Show

Family at Kodak Hula Show
Family at Kodak Hula Show

Family at the Kodak Hula Show
Family at the Kodak Hula Show

Karen and David and Hawaiian king
Karen and David and Hawaiian "king"

David and me with the king of Hawaii
David and me with the king of Hawaii

Kodak Hula Show
Kodak Hula Show

Kodak Hula Show
Kodak Hula Show

Kodak Hula Show
Kodak Hula Show

Kodak Hula Show
Kodak Hula Show

Waikiki from cemetery
Waikiki from cemetery

Punchbowl Cemetery
Punchbowl Cemetery

Punchbowl Cemetery
Punchbowl Cemetery

In the afternoon we swam at Waikiki, but it wasn't very good.  The sand is covered in bits of old broken coral, which makes it not very nice to walk on.  I think Cronulla is better than Hawaii's beaches (at least the two we tried).

David took this photo of Mum and Dad at Waikiki
David took this photo of Mum and Dad at Waikiki

Waikiki, Oahu
Waikiki, Oahu

Diamond Head from Waikiki
Diamond Head from Waikiki

David and me on the beach at Waikiki
David and me on the beach at Waikiki

Cascades in shopping plaza at Waikiki Hilton
Cascades in shopping plaza at Waikiki Hilton

David and me on our last evening in Hawaii
David and me on our last evening in Hawaii

Day 31 - Hawaii

This morning we went up Diamond Head to look back on Waikiki from the top.

Palm trees at Waikiki
Palm trees at Waikiki

Waikiki from Diamond Head
Waikiki from Diamond Head

Waikiki
Waikiki

Diamond Head crater from top of Diamond Head, looking towards Koko Head
Diamond Head crater from top of Diamond Head, looking towards Koko Head

View from top of Diamond Head
View from top of Diamond Head

Me in Diamond Head crater
Me in Diamond Head crater

Diamond Head from Koko Head
Diamond Head from Koko Head

Then we continued driving around the island of Oahu.  We stopped at a few pretty places.

Bay near Blow Hole
Bay near Blow Hole

Sea Life Park from Makupuu Point
Sea Life Park from Makupuu Point

Mountain Range, Oahu
Mountain Range, Oahu

At the top of the island is Sunset Beach, which gets super huge waves at some times of the year, and surfers from all over the world come here.  But it was pretty normal today, so we went for a swim.  But to our amazement, the base of the beach is concrete, with a bit of sand on top.  Weird!

Dad sitting on Sunset Beach
Dad sitting on Sunset Beach

Beach, southwest Oahu
Beach, southwest Oahu

Our hire car on Western Coastline (Datsun Sentra AVC-074)
Our hire car on Western Coastline (Datsun Sentra AVC-074)

View from Aloha Tower
View from Aloha Tower

Diamond Head from Waikiki
Diamond Head from Waikiki

Sunset at Waikiki
Sunset at Waikiki

Waikiki sunset
Waikiki sunset

Waikiki sunset
Waikiki sunset

Honolulu at night
Honolulu at night

Day 30 - Hawaii

Family in Edgewater Hotel
Family in Edgewater Hotel

David and me at Waikiki
David and me at Waikiki

Waikiki beach
Waikiki beach

Waikiki beach
Waikiki beach

Today we went to Pearl Harbour and went to the USS Arizona Memorial.  You can still see one of the gun turrets which is above water.  The memorial is placed across the sunken hull of the Arizona but it's really only from the air that you can see the outline of the ship (as we saw in postcards).

Me and David at the Arizona Memorial
Me and David at the Arizona Memorial

Arizona Memorial Park
Arizona Memorial Park

USS Arizona Memorial, Pearl Harbour
USS Arizona Memorial, Pearl Harbour

USS Arizona Memorial, Pearl Harbour
USS Arizona Memorial, Pearl Harbour

Gun turret - USS Arizona
Gun turret - USS Arizona

Arizona Memorial
Arizona Memorial

Arizona Memorial
Arizona Memorial

After that was an audio tour which you listened to on these telephone-style handsets.

USS Bowfin
USS Bowfin

USS Bowfin submarine at Pearl Harbour with us listening to the audio tour
USS Bowfin submarine at Pearl Harbour with us listening to the audio tour

In the afternoon we did a bit of shopping, and I got a nice Hawaii tshirt.

Wai Canal, Honolulu
Wai Canal, Honolulu

Lawns in Honolulu
Lawns in Honolulu

Iolani Palace
Iolani Palace

Honolulu skyscrapers
Honolulu skyscrapers

Today we went up to Hollywood.

Lincoln Boulevard, Hollywood
Lincoln Boulevard at Rose Avenue, Venice.  Look at the petrol prices - $1.16 and $1.24/gallon!

Stars at Hollywood and Vine (we should have found someone we'd actually heard of! This was Joanne Dru)
Stars at Hollywood and Vine (we should have found someone we'd actually heard of! This was Joanne Dru)

We went to the Mann's Chinese Theatre, went and saw the Hollywood Sign, and did a tour of NBC Studios.

Mann's Chinese Theatre
Mann's Chinese Theatre

Dad and me next to Julie Andrews' hand and foot prints at Mann's Chinese Theatre
Dad and me next to Julie Andrews' hand and foot prints at Mann's Chinese Theatre

King Kong at Mann's Chinese Theatre
King Kong at Mann's Chinese Theatre

Mann's Chinese Theatre
Mann's Chinese Theatre

Mann's Chinese Theatre
Mann's Chinese Theatre

Hollywood sign
Hollywood sign

NBC TV news camera at NBC Studio
NBC TV news camera at NBC Studio

At 9pm we left LA on QF 12 and headed for Hawaii.  This flight I was able to work through the activity book from the beginning with no interruptions.

We arrived quite late at night, and were presented with leis at the airport!

Family on arrival at Honolulu Airport
Family on arrival at Honolulu Airport

Then to our hotel, the Edgewater, in Waikiki.  Mum didn't like it very much - cheap and nasty basically.

Today we drove down to San Diego and went to Sea World.

Swan pool, Sea World
Swan pool, Sea World

David and me with a killer whale
David and me with a killer whale

Flamingos at Sea World San Diego
Flamingos at Sea World San Diego

Flamingos
Flamingos

David and me with sea lions
David and me with sea lions

Patting a sea lion
Patting a sea lion

Dolphin show at Sea World
Dolphin show at Sea World

Dolphins jumping
Dolphins jumping

Seal and Otter show
Seal and Otter show

Sea lion diving
Sea lion diving

Seal and Otter show - the reading of Uncle Smedley's will
Seal and Otter show - the reading of Uncle Smedley's will

Walrus spitting
Walrus spitting

Feeding a dolphin
Feeding a dolphin

They had a couple of good shows, but the best was the killer whale show with Shamu and Candu.

Shamu
Shamu

Shamu giving the trainer a ride
Shamu giving the trainer a ride

Killer whale show
Killer whale show

Shamu and Candu jumping
Shamu and Candu jumping

Shamu and Candu jumping
Shamu and Candu jumping

Shamu and Candu jumping
Shamu and Candu jumping

Killer whale show
Killer whale show

Shamu jumping 22 feet
Shamu jumping 22 feet

Killer whale show
Killer whale show

Killer whale show
Killer whale show

They also had the biggest and best ball pit ever!

In the best ball pit I've ever been in!
In the best ball pit I've ever been in!

David swinging on a rope in Capt'n Kid's Playground
David swinging on a rope in Capt'n Kid's Playground

Sea World, Dan Diego
Sea World, Dan Diego

Day 27 - Long Beach

A much quieter day today.

We went down to Long Beach to see the Queen Mary, but we didn't get to go on it.  We also saw the hanger for the Spruce Goose, but didn't get to go in and see it.

Queen Mary
Queen Mary

I thought it was very strange to have oil pumps pumping for oil right on the beaches.

Oil pumps, Long Beach
Oil pumps, Long Beach

Also went to Redondo Beach before heading back to the hotel and having a swim in the indoor-outdoor pool.

In the outdoor part of the pool at the Marriott Hotel
In the outdoor part of the pool at the Marriott Hotel

In the indoor part of the pool at the Marriott Hotel
In the indoor part of the pool at the Marriott Hotel

Day 26 - Disneyland

Outside the Marriott near the tram which took us to Disneyland
Outside the Marriott near the tram which took us to Disneyland

Today we went to Disneyland!

Entrance to Disneyland
Entrance to Disneyland

Sleeping Beauty's Castle
Sleeping Beauty's Castle

My parents had been told before we left that we should do Knott's Berry Farm first, and then Disneyland, and not the other way around.  Because otherwise we could be disappointed in Knott's Berry Farm.  So that's what we did, and that's why we went to Knott's Berry Farm yesterday.  As it turned out, that was incredibly fortunate, because today they reopened Fantasyland after an eighteen month long renovation, and the park was open til late.  If we'd been yesterday we would have missed out!

So we spent all day and half the night at Disneyland.  We got to go on most of the rides.  We didn't do Pirates of the Caribbean, and we didn't do some of the ones inside the castle because we didn't actually realise they were rides - we thought they were just shops.

Submarine Base at Disneyland
Submarine Base at Disneyland

Submarine and Matterhorn at Disneyland
Submarine and Matterhorn at Disneyland

Motor boat cruise
Motor boat cruise

Sleeping Beauty's Castle
Sleeping Beauty's Castle

Rocket ride and Space Mountain from Gondola
Rocket ride and Space Mountain from Gondola

Cups and Saucers ride and Storybook Land from Gondola
Cups and Saucers ride and Storybook Land from Gondola

Fantasyland
Fantasyland

Fantasyland
Fantasyland

Fantasyland
Fantasyland

Fantasyland - Disneyland
Fantasyland - Disneyland

David and me with Pinocchio
David and me with Pinocchio

Small World
Small World

Small World, Disneyland
Small World, Disneyland

Can Can dancers, Small World
Can Can dancers, Small World

Hippopotomus, Small World
Hippopotomus, Small World

Native American scene, Small World
Native American scene, Small World

Kangaroo, Small World
Kangaroo, Small World

Small World
Small World

David and me outside Small World
David and me outside Small World

David and me with Donald Duck
David and me with Donald Duck

Santa's workshop
Santa's workshop

Big Thunder Mountain Railroad
Big Thunder Mountain Railroad

Big Thunder Mountain Railroad
Big Thunder Mountain Railroad

Mark Twain riverboat
Mark Twain riverboat

Mark Twain riverboat
Mark Twain riverboat

Storybook Land from boat
Storybook Land from boat

Storybook Land from boat
Storybook Land from boat

Storybook Land from boat
Storybook Land from boat

Suspension bridge on Tom Sawyer's Island
Suspension bridge on Tom Sawyer's Island

Native American Village from Mark Twain River Cruise
Native American Village from Mark Twain River Cruise

Ferry wharf - New Orleans Square
Ferry wharf - New Orleans Square

Scene of giraffes and zebras from Jungle Boat
Scene of giraffes and zebras from Jungle Boat

Scene from Jungle Boat, Frontierland
Scene from Jungle Boat, Frontierland

My favourite ride was Space Mountain - it's a roller coaster in the dark!  Big Thunder Mountain Railroad was also good.  And the haunted mansion was crazy and freaky.  Like the ghost that came and sat between David and me - spooky!  How'd they do that!?  Mum decided we had to go on the Cup and Saucers, because she'd been wanting to do that since she was a kid. We also got to put some pennies in the machines in the Penny Arcade to see things like movies that you play by scrolling a while which flicks through a whole stack of photos.

Penny Arcade
Penny Arcade

At the end of the night, mum said it truly was a magic kingdom.

Today we went to Knott's Berry Farm.  This was a nice little amusement park, and it wasn't too crowded.  We had a great day there.  Our favourite ride was Montezooma's Revenge.  You get shot out of the station, around a vertical loop and up a dead end ramp.  Then you roll back down the ramp, backwards around the loop, backwards through the station, and backwards up another dead end ramp.  Then roll back down into the station.  This was so much fun and David and I went on it lots of times.  They wouldn't let us stay on it, but we could run around and get on it for the next go.

Desert scene from train at Knott's Berry Farm
Desert scene from train at Knott's Berry Farm

Robber on train at Knott's Berry Farm
Robber on train at Knott's Berry Farm

Steam train at Knott's Berry Farm
Steam train at Knott's Berry Farm

Cave inside mine train ride at Knott's Berry Farm
Cave inside mine train ride at Knott's Berry Farm

Corkscrew ride at Knott's Berry Farm from Parachute
Corkscrew ride at Knott's Berry Farm from Parachute

Corkscrew
Corkscrew

Knott's Berry Farm from Parachute showing Montezooma's Revenge and Log Ride
Knott's Berry Farm from Parachute showing Montezooma's Revenge and Log Ride

Knott's Berry Farm
Knott's Berry Farm

Knott's Berry Farm from Sky Cabin showing Soap Box Derby, Dragon Swing and other rides
Knott's Berry Farm from Sky Cabin showing Soap Box Derby, Dragon Swing and other rides

Log Ride at Knott's Berry Farm
Log Ride at Knott's Berry Farm

Sky Cabin and Sky Jump, Knott's Berry Farm
Sky Cabin and Sky Jump, Knott's Berry Farm

Sky Jump
Sky Jump

David and me in Dragon Swing at Knott's Berry Farm
David and me in Dragon Swing at Knott's Berry Farm

Montezooma's Revenge, Knott's Berry Farm
Montezooma's Revenge, Knott's Berry Farm

Tijuana Taxi
Tijuana Taxi

David and me with Snoopy at Knott's Berry Farm
David and me with Snoopy at Knott's Berry Farm

Family at Knott's Berry Farm
Family at Knott's Berry Farm

Another great day, then back to the Marriott Hotel.

Family in our hotel room at the Marriott (room 814)
Family in our hotel room at the Marriott (room 814)

Today we went to Universal Studios, and went on the backlot tour.  This was another very cool day, getting to see sets from movies, as well as seeing how they do things like using a blue screen (which is actually green) to make movie magic.  

Part of the tour was going through some of the sound stages, and they wanted volunteers to do different things.  Dad got taken away, and we met up with him a room or two later - he was seated on the side of a wall playing cards!  The cards were magnetic and he had to make it look like it was perfectly normal.

Another really great day.

Space machine
Space machine

Battle cruiser
Battle cruiser

Burning house which never actually burns down!
Burning house which never actually burns down!

Collapsing bridge
Collapsing bridge

Me in the stocks
Me in the stocks

David in stocks (with Dad's hands)
David in stocks (with Dad's hands)

Mum lifting a van
Mum lifting a van

Me lifting a van (not really - it was too heavy for me, so it was a controlled drop)
Me lifting a van (not really - it was too heavy for me, so it was a controlled drop)

Family in a vintage car.  The background moved around on a roll so it looked like you were moving on a video
Family in a vintage car. The background moved around on a roll so it looked like you were moving on a video

David and me behind bars
David and me behind bars

David and me on a stagecoach
David and me on a stagecoach

Old town set
Old town set

Flash flood in the old town set
Flash flood in the old town set

McHale's Navy set
McHale's Navy set

Ships and rain made to order
Ships and rain made to order

Me and David with Jaws
Me and David with Jaws

City Hall and shop set fronts
City Hall and shop set fronts

Colonial mansion that is just a front
Colonial mansion that is just a front

Parting waters set
Parting waters set

Amity Island
Amity Island

Shark pool
Shark pool

Jaws!
Jaws!

Jaws about to eat David - look at him cringe!
Jaws about to eat David - look at him cringe!

Runaway train
Runaway train

Runaway train at Universal Studios
Runaway train at Universal Studios

Flying kids from ET
Flying kids from ET

Suburban street set
Suburban street set

Psycho house
Psycho house

Castle set
Castle set

Tower of London
Tower of London

Cockatoo
Cockatoo

Stunt show
Stunt show

Stunt fight show.  This guy drowned in quicksand
Stunt fight show. This guy "drowned" in quicksand

Stunt show
Stunt show

Stunt fight show - this man was shot off the top of a building
Stunt fight show - this man was "shot" off the top of a building

Stunt fight show - this man did a lovely dive off the top of the building when he was shot
Stunt fight show - this man did a lovely dive off the top of the building when he was shot

Stunt show
Stunt show

The theme of the day was ET, and I got a mug and booklet at the end.

David and me with Andy Panda at Universal Studios
David and me with Andy Panda at Universal Studios

Drove on to Anaheim, where we got to stay in the Marriott Hotel.  We got a super awesome deal with Qantas - five nights for only $80!