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First time in HI - 7 days

First time in HI - 7 days

Old Jan 8, 11, 3:46 pm
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First time in HI - 7 days

My parents are planning their first trip to Hawaii for the end of Feb. They're flying into HNL noon time and departing, again from HNL shortly before midnight a week later.
It seems that there's not that much to do in Oahu, it's better to go out to one or two of the other islands. But the choice is too great.
The main thing they are interested in is natural beauty. Night life, restaurants and beaches really have no attraction. However, they would like luxirous accomodation, 4 star or up.
So the q's:

        Thanks for all the help. Am really hoping this will be a great (much-needed) vacation for them.
        sds1493 is offline  
        Old Jan 8, 11, 6:18 pm
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        Originally Posted by sds1493 View Post
        My parents are planning their first trip to Hawaii for the end of Feb. They're flying into HNL noon time and departing, again from HNL shortly before midnight a week later.
        It seems that there's not that much to do in Oahu, it's better to go out to one or two of the other islands. But the choice is too great.
        The main thing they are interested in is natural beauty. Night life, restaurants and beaches really have no attraction. However, they would like luxirous accomodation, 4 star or up.
        So the q's:

              Thanks for all the help. Am really hoping this will be a great (much-needed) vacation for them.
              Hope they have a ball. . . here's some of MHO from a frequent visitor of 13 years now. . .

              * lots to do on Oahu for a first timer that includes lots of natural beauty. But, if they don't give hoot about any nightlife, or the history of Oahu, etc. . . have them head to any of the other islands for most of the time. It is all paradise.

              * car rental on Oahu not necessary if they want to do the multitude of escorted tours available or use public trans. But, a car can be fun. Other islands. Yes, necessary.

              * "luxurious" 4 star or higher hotel/resorts will be almost impossible to find for $150-200 a night on any island. But, there are some lower end options, hotels, rentals -- everywhere in that range.

              * Yes, you might get a better price for air/hotel/car if you bundle with a package through an airline, broker or travel booking site.

              Aloha!
              davesam12 is offline  
              Old Jan 9, 11, 4:07 pm
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              waikiki area

              just adding to this thread...
              which is the best location to get around or to be in the centre of things..(limited mobility) is the beach area the place to be..and is there some hotels where they are close to beach shops restaurants and nightlife clustered together..flying into hnl
              any hotel suggestions..its a 5 night stay.. wanting to do trump or similar 2 nights and somewhere a lot more modest for 3 nights..are there perhaps 2 areas to consider?? is a lua worth doing?? and what is weather like mid march thanks
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              Old Jan 9, 11, 6:05 pm
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              Originally Posted by sds1493 View Post
              My parents are planning their first trip to Hawaii for the end of Feb. They're flying into HNL noon time and departing, again from HNL shortly before midnight a week later.
              It seems that there's not that much to do in Oahu, it's better to go out to one or two of the other islands. But the choice is too great.
              The main thing they are interested in is natural beauty. Night life, restaurants and beaches really have no attraction. However, they would like luxirous accomodation, 4 star or up.
              So the q's:

                    Thanks for all the help. Am really hoping this will be a great (much-needed) vacation for them.
                    Look up www.tripadvisor.com for reviews and quoting tools. Read each hotel and user comments and hopefully you can select the type of hotel preferred, and prices. www.perfectescapes.com may provide same price and an upgrade/free breakfast.. so try that website out as well.

                    There are condo reviews for each specific unit on www.tripadvisor.com.. so check that out as well.
                    Ancien Maestro is offline  
                    Old Jan 14, 11, 6:40 am
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                    Originally Posted by sds1493 View Post
                    My parents are planning their first trip to Hawaii for the end of Feb. They're flying into HNL noon time and departing, again from HNL shortly before midnight a week later.
                    It seems that there's not that much to do in Oahu, it's better to go out to one or two of the other islands. But the choice is too great.
                    The main thing they are interested in is natural beauty. Night life, restaurants and beaches really have no attraction. However, they would like luxirous accomodation, 4 star or up.
                    So the q's:

                          Thanks for all the help. Am really hoping this will be a great (much-needed) vacation for them.
                          Any more advice?
                          What about interlining bags. They're coming in on ANA and departing on US.
                          sds1493 is offline  
                          Old Jan 14, 11, 9:55 am
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                          It would help to know their age, fitness level, and interests - then we can help plan a suitable itinerary.
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                          Old Jan 15, 11, 5:48 pm
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                          Originally Posted by bocastephen View Post
                          It would help to know their age, fitness level, and interests - then we can help plan a suitable itinerary.
                          Age is late 40's. They're in decent shape, and really enjoy walking etc, but nothing too strenuous.
                          Interests are really to see the amazing natural beauty in HI. It is likely this will be their only time there, and they would like to get the most out of it. I guess the goal is to see what's different, but really just to appreciate nature.
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                          Old Jan 15, 11, 5:52 pm
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                          Originally Posted by davesam12 View Post
                          Hope they have a ball. . . here's some of MHO from a frequent visitor of 13 years now. . .

                          * lots to do on Oahu for a first timer that includes lots of natural beauty. But, if they don't give hoot about any nightlife, or the history of Oahu, etc. . . have them head to any of the other islands for most of the time. It is all paradise.

                          * car rental on Oahu not necessary if they want to do the multitude of escorted tours available or use public trans. But, a car can be fun. Other islands. Yes, necessary.

                          * "luxurious" 4 star or higher hotel/resorts will be almost impossible to find for $150-200 a night on any island. But, there are some lower end options, hotels, rentals -- everywhere in that range.

                          * Yes, you might get a better price for air/hotel/car if you bundle with a package through an airline, broker or travel booking site.

                          Aloha!
                          Oahu sounds great, but it seems like the other islands are even better. But thanks for confirming the necessity of a car elsewhere.
                          Assuming they'll be in one place for 3/4 nights, what is the best sort of accommodation? Hotels, resorts, condos?
                          sds1493 is offline  
                          Old Jan 17, 11, 11:00 pm
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                          Originally Posted by sds1493 View Post
                          Age is late 40's. They're in decent shape, and really enjoy walking etc, but nothing too strenuous.
                          Interests are really to see the amazing natural beauty in HI. It is likely this will be their only time there, and they would like to get the most out of it. I guess the goal is to see what's different, but really just to appreciate nature.
                          If they are really into nature and would enjoy hiking, I'll suggest they only stay 3 days/2 nights on O'ahu for sightseeing, dining and shopping. Personally, I would suggest tacking O'ahu at the end of the trip, not at the beginning.

                          That really limits the time available for other islands - but I would suggest adding at least the Big Island to the itinerary. On the Big Island they can do lots of hiking, see the lava flows (check the lava viewing thread for my recent tour info), sunset from Mauna Kea, the Green Sand Beach, snorkeling with dolphins (not on their own or with a commercial tour - I'll hook them up with a private guide if they want to go), and spending time on the Hilo side to see waterfalls.

                          If they arrive HNL at noon, they can make a connection right away to KOA, enjoy the balance of the day/evening there, and stay there for 4 full days (not including the arrival day) before returning to HNL for the balance of the trip.

                          If the airfare to HNL is already booked, you have a couple choices:

                          Go to hawaiianairlines.com and look at their inter-island package deals departing from HNL to KOA including hotel and car.

                          Or, educate yourself on the better hotels and their locations and use Priceline (biddingfortravel.com can help) to get the hotels and rental cars. I would suggest a car on both O'ahu and the Big Island.
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                          Old Jan 20, 11, 12:16 pm
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                          I'd stick to one other island and that island would be Kauai. 5-6 days is too short to spend a lot of time in airports hopping from one island to another.

                          IMHO, I thought Oahu was terribly overrated. The north shore was great, but otherwise it's one giant tropical tourist trap.

                          My two cents....
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                          Old Jan 20, 11, 2:26 pm
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                          Originally Posted by bocastephen View Post
                          That really limits the time available for other islands - but I would suggest adding at least the Big Island to the itinerary.
                          If they are really into seeing the natural beauty of Hawaii, I'd second the Big Island. There is perhaps no more geographically diverse island in the entire world as the Big Island. From touring an active volcano, driving/hiking through rain forests and deserts, star gazing on Mauna Kea and hiking along the coast, there will be plenty to keep them going for up to a week (and much more, if they could swing it).
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                          Old Feb 1, 11, 5:36 am
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                          Originally Posted by sds1493 View Post
                          My parents are planning their first trip to Hawaii for the end of Feb. They're flying into HNL noon time and departing, again from HNL shortly before midnight a week later.
                          It seems that there's not that much to do in Oahu, it's better to go out to one or two of the other islands. But the choice is too great.
                          The main thing they are interested in is natural beauty. Night life, restaurants and beaches really have no attraction. However, they would like luxirous accomodation, 4 star or up.
                          So the q's:

                                Thanks for all the help. Am really hoping this will be a great (much-needed) vacation for them.
                                Since they are not into nightlife, in Oahu I would suggest they stay at the ilihilani resort.. (i hope I'm not butchering the name) but that is one of the five stars on priceline so it can be had for a reasonable price, and it's quite nice, but I would suggest a car rental to get there since it's not anywhere close to the airport.

                                If they want to stay somewhere closer to Waikiki, perhaps the prince hotel, since it's not really in the hustle/bustle of the city, and it is reasonably priced for a nice hotel.

                                I too agree with going to the Big Island. Stay in the Kona area in a nice condo timeshare type with noise bylaws. There are many nice ones on golf courses within the budget you stated. This wasn't an issue for me, but some people are bothered by the air quality on the big island from the volcano activity, so if they have asthma or any respiratory issues, they might not want to choose the big island for a vacation. The Big Island is beautiful, but what I didn't like about it is the lack of nightlife, and the lack of big waves (no surfing) but this sounds like it would be perfect for your parents.
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                                Old Feb 2, 11, 2:11 pm
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                                Are they comfortable speaking English? I see they're flying in on ANA. Oahu has more Japanese speakers and most hotels & tourist businesses will be able to accomodate that.
                                If thats not an issue, I would second the Ko'olina resort area. The Marriott Ihilani or the Marriott Beach Club. Its quiet, they can go on snorkeling or whale watching excusions from the marina or drive west to Kaena point for hiking and seeing monk seals and native birds in thier own habitat.
                                They could also check out the Oahu chapter of the Sierra Club. They sponsor hikes every weekend that are guided.
                                Big Island, I would suggest the Prince at Hapuna Beach. You can't beat the views or the beach.
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                                Old Feb 11, 11, 6:24 am
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                                I also agree with Ko Olina - we're going for 2 weeks this summer. I used to live on Oahu, and there is a ton to do! We love snorkeling right at the coves at Ko Olina, trying local restaurants, browsing the flea market (weekends and wednesdays at the stadium), plan on taking the kids to Pearl Harbour, hike Diamond Head, spending a day at Kailua Beach, the list goes on. With 2 full weeks, we may do a day trip to Kauai - it's small, I've been there, and really just want to show the kids Waimea Canyon.

                                On the Big Island, I'd suggest a week. There's so much to see, and Hilo is so different than Kona. We did it flying into Kona and out of Hilo (Kona has huge resorts, for the volcanoes we stayed at a military camp, but they have little hotels and B&B's).

                                If they only have a week, I'd stick to ONE island. You'd take up a day with island hopping.

                                We truly enjoy Oahu, and always have a ton to do. We visit Waikiki a day, but aren't staying there this trip.

                                They can look for a condo at the Marriott Ko Olina. You can book them directly on Marriott's website. They definitely need a rental car there.
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                                Old Feb 14, 11, 5:49 pm
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                                IMO have your parents should read some trip reports on FlyerTalk. Pick one island for the full time. 5-6 days is not enought to waste flying around, transfers, check in out, rent car, pack un pack....etc. All four main islands have plenty to do for people of any age/interest. TripAdvisor is also a good place to check "things to do, island name".

                                While my wife and I have been to the four main islands 10 or more trips, her favorite is the Big Island and mine Kauai. All the islands have beaches (vary in number and quality), diving, whale/dolphin watching, luaus, dinner cruises, parasailing, fishing, shopping, fine dining, first class accommodations, etc. some hightlites on each island to us include:

                                Oahu is great for history. Bishop Museum. Polynesian Cultural Center. Best of the shopping. Plantations, zoo and Aquarium. Night life.

                                Kauai is great for beauty, gardens and hiking. Waimea Canyon-Grnad Canyon of the Pacific. na Pali Coast, Lumanai Beach for beach terrain watching. Kilawea Lighthouse and National Wildlife Refuge. Wailua River, the only navigatable River in the islands. nat. Trop bot. Gardens, Na Aina botanical Gardens (the best garden tour in the islands, reserve before leaving home), Allerton Gardens (perhaps the best self tour garden). Ahonui botanical Gardens, Limahuli Gardens and Pres. Little night life.

                                The Big Island is noted for its ruggedness. The home of continuous lava flows. The home of the nene and the sliversword, both endangered. Wide ranges of altitude and temps. Large ranches. Volcanos Nat. Pk (Kilauea). Akaka Falls St Pk. Waipi'o Valley, Cahin of Craters Road, Parker Ranch. Star Gazing, Kona coffee in Kona, Pacific Tsunami Museum. Lots of driving. Not much night life.

                                Maui is argueably the best place to whale watch (Whale Center of the Pacific). Plently of nightlife. Lots of speciality places to go. Many highend resorts. A bit younger group, a bit more moneyed. Drive to Hana-amazing stops/horrible drive. Haleakala Crater and Mtn. Warren & Annabelle's Magic (reserve before you leave home), and other shows. Biking, zipline, horseback riding. Maui Ocean Center. Art/Crafts.
                                ranles is offline  

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