There was so much to do at Aulani A Disney Resort & Spa that we had no desire to leave the resort. No, really. (Well, blushing, Uncle Carlo (known as "Uncle Carlo" by every cast member at Aulani) did organize a Nightime Happy Hour with his new friends at Just Tacos (I was with JD in the room—I told Uncle Carlo if he woke us up at some insane hour I would go czy on his a*s. He did not. He's seen CrazyChrissy. She is not fun.)
Between the character breakfast, Aunty’s Beach House, Starlit Hui (we got to sit in the front row!), Fireside Mo’olelo (campfire story-time), Ohana Disney Movie Night (Uncle Carlo and JD watched The Lion King) we were always busy and entertained. (You can read more about entertainment here.) However, there was one place we had to visit and the cast members at Aulani were happy to look into our trip and suggest transportation. My family and I were visiting Hawaii for the first time, so we appreciated the concierge providing us with information on Pearl Harbor.
My late grandfathers Michael Agnello and Domenic Coppa (JD’s middle name is Domenic) both fought in WWII. My Great Uncle Gianni Zambrano died at the Battle of the Bulge in Germany and there is a park in North NJ named after him that JD plays at often. Pearl Harbor was a very emotional experience for Carlo and me—the equivalent of visiting the 9/11 Memorial. JD was fascinated by the battle ships, cannons, missiles and bombs—he was so excited to get a dog tag with "JDC" on it. He said “Whoa!” about 500 times. Visiting Hawaii? Plan your visit to Pearl Harbor here.
TIP: I do recommend traveling with snacks and a beverage for your child. You can also visit the snack bar, like we did. JD promptly had an I’m-starving-meltdown as soon as we entered the memorial—hot dogs, chips and juice all around. Uncle Carlo was a little miffed that we had to stop and eat, but as I explained to him 900X in Hawaii: JD is 4. He needs to rest, eat, drink milk and have quiet time. Just because you're on vacation doesn't mean your kiddo is in party-mode 24/7. Read my Single Parent Travel Tips.
Have you been to Pearl Harbor?
Full disclosure: I was not compensated to write about Pearl Harbor. Uncle Carlo treated us to the day trip. Thanks, Uncle Car!