Hawaiian Cruise: Boarding the Ship and Maui

Okay, I’m back recapping our Hawaiian Spring Break Vacation from 2020.  If you missed the first couple days, be sure to catch up from this postShay and I took our families to Ko Olina on Oahu for three nights to chill, relax, enjoy the gorgeous beaches of Hawaii, and get well acquainted with the new time zone before boarding Norwegian’s Pride of America to set sail for seven days.  Today, Shay and I are sharing the first couple days on the ship.  Be sure to check out Shay’s post as well because we’re sharing the same things just from different perspectives.

Saturday morning, I was sad to say goodbye to these gorgeous views.  We loaded up our bags and made our way downstairs where the van was waiting to take us the Pride of America.

On this particular ship in order to sleep all six in each family, we found a concierge suite was the better option versus two staterooms per family so we gave it a try.  And now we might be spoiled.  😉  There were so many perks to cruising concierge level…the first being our own line at check-in to board early where there wasn’t a wait.

The area had snacks and drinks as we all got checked in.

We happened to board this ship with swimsuits and cover-ups on knowing we’d quickly the hit the pool.

Can you sense the excitement in this blurry pic?

Another perk to the concierge level staterooms…this dining room was just for concierge guests.  We got to eat here every morning for breakfast as well as every lunch.  The waiters got to know us and made not only dinners {like we’ve experienced on all other cruises} but also breakfasts and lunches extra special.

We were pumped to be in Hawaii about to set sail.

Let me share our stateroom with you…when you walked in the hallway this was the view…bed on the right and on the left was a pull out sleeper as well as another pull down bed.  

The patio was extra-large with two loungers and two tables.

With views of the pool…I actually loved this!  You could hear music during the day and see games being played but you had your own space as well.

This girly is growing up right before my eyes.  In daily life often I miss seeing how much they’ve grown but pictures like this remind me they’re only little for a short time.

This bed was super comfy…I still remember waking up and thinking THAT was a good night’s sleep.

The Pride of America has a pool with a deep end {a little up in the right corner} and then this more shallow pool option in the main pool area.  It was great for the kids.

We brought the party on the Pride of America in March.  We spent our first day checking out the ship, enjoying the pool, and getting acquainted with sea life.

For dinner every night, we’d get all cleaned up and since the Shull’s stateroom was right next door we usually all congregated on the patios.

When we arrived at dinner they split us up, six and six.  This combination looks really quiet…doesn’t it?

These two got to join the adult table.  {Britt’s romper came from Amazon and is still available!  It’s blue tropical.}

Day two we woke up in MAUI!!  I was excited about getting a look at this popular spot.  Does this crew look ready to whale watch or what?

We signed up for Norwegian’s whale watching/Lahaina tour for the day.

First we hopped on a bus…

These two thought they were big stuff in their own seats.

The PERFECT bag for a Hawaiian cruise.  It held sunscreen, my wallet, water, and much much more.

One of the most popular things to see in Lahaina is hands-down the banyan trees.  The shuttle bus dropped us in Lahaina to shop around for a bit before getting on the boat.

Tab couldn’t get enough…he probably would have stayed in this one spot for an hour just observing.

We shopped around the town and found lots of great souvenirs.

We happened upon the world’s cutest lemonade stand.

Check out those gorgeous flower necklaces.

An absolutely perfect morning…a gorgeous day, gorgeous views, and the cutest streets to shop around.

We often joke that Shay cannot say, “No”, to Bowen.  There were several years where he was the baby and the only one at that so Bowen/Mrs. Shay connection is extra sweet and here is proof that she can’t tell that boy, “no”…Bowen walks out of the souvenir shop with a ukulele.  

We were waiting patiently to board and we all took turns attempting a little tune.  Based on the the expressions this is what I think was happening..
Me-“Smile for a picture!”
{Tab and Smith clearly not hearing me.}
Tab-“Smith, do you recognize this song?”
Smith-{struggling to pick out a song resembling Tab’s string picking}-“Uh-not really”.

Just a bit later all of us got on board {including the ukulele}.

The boat ride began with EVEYRONE on board getting SUPER excited about barely spotting a whale off in the distance.  I’m gonna show you the progression…all eyes on the wave out in the water.

We spot it getting closer.

And all of a sudden the mama and baby whale were right beside us putting on the biggest show.

I have a video on my phone that’s super cool.  I’ll be sure to post on my IG.

We got the most up close look at this huge whale and her baby.

 Right after this, the captain of the ship could have turned us right around and driven back to the dock.  I’m not sure you can have a better whale watching experience.

A WHALE of a success is what we’d call that boat ride. 😉

When we got off the boat, everyone was starving!  We made our way to the cutest little waterfront restaurant serving the freshest seafood.

This was one of my favorite food stops of the entire trip!

She often uses this side-eye in everyday life so I’m glad we captured it on camera.

What’s better than a little ice cream treat after lunch?

Ice cream with Bowen after lunch.  🙂

Our bus took us back to the ship right after our stroll…the PERFECT excursion day!

And then check out these cuties!  Shay and I had shopped together one day in Dallas and found the cutest dresses for the girls to wear.

These eight were looking GOOD!

These two were being dramatic while we waited for dinner…can you tell?

Check out my handsome boys…all of the Americana decor on the ship was their favorite.

Our ship stayed docked in Maui over night so we woke up to the same gorgeous views as the day before.  After contemplating what to do, since the day was shorter {we had to be back to the ship earlier for departure time} we decided to have a chill day after our busy day before.  The kids swam, some kids played games, and…

We put that sports’ court to good use.

Another night, another delicious dinner.  

Slaughters are already looking forward to the next fun idea Shay and I come up with.  Hawaii will be hard to top!

The two sweetest little faces.

That wraps up the first couple days onboard the Pride of America!  Remember if you missed the recap of the first part of our trip, you can read it in this post.
Also, Shay and I covered our entire Hawaiian vacation on Episode One this season of the Bestie Breakdown.  We also answered many travel questions in Episode Two.

Thanks for reading today, friends!

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  1. 6.16.21
    Elspeth Mizner said:

    So glad you are sharing about your trip! Sounds like a blast!

  2. 6.16.21
    Mix and Match Mama said:

    You did a MUCH better job taking pics on the ship than I did! I have 5000 pictures of whales but zero pictures of our cabin. Hahahaha!

  3. 6.16.21
    Sheaffer {Pinterest Told Me To} said:

    I mean, I bet you want to go back NOW!

  4. 6.16.21
    Julie Bradford said:

    soo fun!!! brings back ALL the memories and I wanna go back ASAP!!! the Hawaiian cruise is our favorite vacay to date!!!!!

  5. 6.16.21
    Jenny said:

    I love Maui!! One of my favorite things about going to Hawaii is receiving my lei as I step off the plane. Love reading your recap!

  6. 6.16.21
    Andrea - Momfessionals said:

    Ummm… your cabin looks AWESOME!!! And it's blowing my mind how much your kids have grown in just a year!