Kicking it underwater
In almost a decade living on the Pacific coast, Hawaii is a place I have only dreamed of. Especially from Italy, it is seen as the quintessential exotic place to visit. So beautiful and so remote. And yet so easy to get to now.
Finally we resolved to go visit the Big Island in February. As it turns out, it a great month to visit Hawaii. The weather is mild, the surf is great.
But before going, we prepared by taking scuba lessons. So much of the beauty of the islands lays hidden under a feet of salty water, and I was not going to let that escape. Not after all the work I put in my ShaderToy project from a couple of years back.
The Big Island has a lot to offer. Several volcanoes, that you couldn't tell from the shore, but they are almost 14.000 feet in height. Almost as high as the tallest mountain in the Alps, the Mont Blanc.
We ended up settling in Kona for a few days, and drive around from there. The place is notorious for the coffee plantations on the volcano side, also the only place in the US that has the right climate to grow it.
Hawaii has their own endemic nuts: the Macadamias - also one of the tastiest and fattiest nuts in the world. The ideal treat to bring back to the continent and nibble on for weeks.
The sharp, porous volcanic rock turned, after millennia, into beautiful black sand beaches. Those become the theater for the birth of sea turtles, who travel to the Big Island to lay their eggs.