A stay in Hawaii is on almost everyone’s bucket list. It’s warm, there’s lots of things to do, it’s warm, the culture and history is fascinating, it’s warm — you get the picture. If sandcastles, a visit to the only royal palace in the United States, numerous active volcanoes and waterfalls are on your travel itinerary, give us a call at GetAway Travel. We can chat and plan your warm weather getaway, to Hawaii or some place else you’ve been yearning to visit.
Location, location, location
Each island has its own personality and attractions. Deciding to travel to Hawaii and just staying on The Big Island would be a mistake. Depending on your interests, the other islands have attractions you shouldn’t miss. GetAway travel advisors can help with tickets to attractions and reservations for specific events and tours so you can pack as much into your vacation as you like. You don’t want to miss out on a hula lesson, a luau, a tour of the royal palace or a chance of a glimpse of an active volcano.
Hawaii, Maui, Kauai and Oahu are the most visited of the chain of islands, but there are actually eight large islands and more than 130 minor islands, islets, offshore islands and seamounts that make up the Hawaiian Islands.
Hawaii is the largest island, hence its nickname, the Big Island. It has four unique climate zones — a visit to the mountain top means a jacket and snow and you can also find rain forests and volcanic activity. The second largest island is Maui and it is renowned for its beaches and fabulous sunsets. Oahu is the third largest and the capital of Hawaii, Honolulu is on Oahu. Kauai, or the Garden Island, is a wild explosion of scenic experiences from jagged cliffs to lush valleys and waterfalls with some active volcanos thrown in to complete the picture.
Maui — sand, scenery and shopping
Maui is the second largest island and is nicknamed the Valley Isle. It is the island to visit if you want to relax on red and black sandy beaches, go on scenic bike trips and take some pretty epic driving adventures. The Kaanapali Beach is a three-mile stretch of lovely soft, white sand that also fronts luxury hotels, resorts, restaurants and shops. It is on virtually every “best beaches” list that ever was!
You can arrange transportation for you and a bike to the top of Haleakala, the dormant volcano that makes up 3/4 of the island. The ride down takes you on 21 switchbacks and through a variety of different ecological zones. Do some shopping in the gallery shops in Paia. Pick up a few bottles of Pau Maui Vodka. It is distilled from pineapples and you can tour the distillery in the heart of the Maui pineapple region and do some tasting. Paia has a sort of Old West vibe and you may see Willie Nelson who frequents one of the downtown saloons.
Kaua’i — laid-back natural beauty
Nicknamed the Garden Isle, Kaua’i is full of drop-dead gorgeous scenery. There are waterfalls, long stretches of beaches and the Nāpali Coast State Wilderness Park, renowned as having some of the most beautiful wilderness areas in the world. Wailua Falls is a 173-foot wall of water that is spectacular any time of year.
The 16-mile coastline park has cliffs and deep narrow valleys where waterfalls drop into the sea. Reservations and permits are required for park activities due to high volumes of foot traffic.
Hanakapi’ai Beach is along the coast and a two-mile hike from the beach takes you to Hanakapiai Falls where the water drops 300 feet. The hike is listed as intermediate to challenging in some hiking books.
Oahu — home of the capital of Hawaii
Oahu is the third largest island and nicknamed The Gathering Place. It is where most visitors to the islands land to start their visit, part of the reason for the nickname, but it also has the highest population — 72% of the islands’ residents live on Oahu. Visit the iconic Waikiki Beach and take a whale-watching or dolphin-watching tour.
The Pearl Harbor, USS Arizona Memorial is a short distance from Honolulu, Hawaii’s capital. The USS Arizona Memorial also includes the battleship USS Missouri and USS Utah memorials. Visiting is a solemn, reverent and awe-inspiring experience.
Honolulu has the only royal palace in the United States, Iolani Palace. Influenced by European architectural styles, the palace has the first electric lights and flush toilets as well as “house phones” in Hawaii. You can tour the palace throne room, reception and dining area and the living quarters of the royal family. Collections housed in the basement include weapons, jewelry and other items associated with Hawaiian royalty. The famous statue of King Kamehameha I is a short walk from the palace.
Hawaii — the Big Island
Hawaii is home to Hawaii Volcanoes National Park and the continuously active volcano, Mount Kilauea as well as the world’s largest volcano, Mauna Loa. There are hiking trails throughout the park and the park also features the Thomas Jagger Museum, the Volcano Art Center and the Puna Ka’u Historic Archeological district. The Jagger Museum schools visitors on volcano science as well as Hawaiian culture. Nearly 300 Hawaiian artists have their work on display in the Volcano Art Center and their work concentrates on Kilauea which is home to Pele, the Hawaiian goddess of the volcano, creativity and fire.
Mauna Kea is a dormant volcano and it is a dominant feature of Hawaii’s landscape. It is the world’s tallest mountain measuring the from the sea flow to it’s summit. The summit is a perfect place for star-gazing. Take a tour, rent a car or a 4 x 4 to get to the stop. Stop at the Visitors Center or the Onizuka Center for International Astronomy on the way up.
These are just some of the fabulous experiences that await you in the paradise that is the Hawaiian Islands. At GetAway Travel, we can tailor your vacation to pack in all the tours and experiences you’ve been dreaming about. Or, how about a destination wedding or family reunion? Give us a call (262) 538-2140, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com