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1st time in Honolulu...Need some Itenerary suggestions

1st time in Honolulu...Need some Itenerary suggestions

Mar 25th, 2007, 11:07 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 114
1st time in Honolulu...Need some Itenerary suggestions

Hi Guys
I will be making my 1st ever trip to Honolulu next Tuesday. I will be staying in Oahu at The Equus an Aqua Boutique Hotel on Ala Moana Blvd. I'm staying 5 nights and this is what my Itenary looks like at the moment:

Tuesday: Leave LAX at 6pm, Arrive in Honolulu at 8:55pm. Probably arrive at hotel around 9:30pm.
Activities: TBA

Wednesday: 2 hour Welcome Breakfast Orientation set up through Expedia.com at 7:30am
Afternoon activities: TBA
Evening: Paradise Cove Luau pre-paid through Expedia

Thursday: Grand Circle Island Tour pre-paid through Expedia (8 hours starting at 7:30am)
Evening Activities: TBA

Friday: Entire day TBA

Saturday: Entire day TBA

Sunday: Morning/Afternoon: TBA
Leave for airport around 3:30 or 4pm
Fly back home at 7:05pm

A couple things I would like to do is visit Pearl Harbor and see the Arizona and I would also like to spend a few hours in Honolulu Chinatown.

Obviiously I have a few holes in my Itenary I would like to fill with some interesting activities. Just to let you know I don't surf or like to swim in Ocean water. Do you guys have any suggestions?

DonJ1973 is offline  
Mar 26th, 2007, 01:47 AM
Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 3,025
If I were you, I would skip the orientation breakfast. All they will do is try to get you to purchase expesive tours/attractions.

Lots of Oahu info:

dusty56438 is offline  
Mar 26th, 2007, 06:37 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 91,374
As above, I also would skip the "orientation breakfast". I think they are a waste of time (like timeshare sales pitches).

Even if you don't want to surf or swim in the ocean, wouldn't you want to spend a little bit of time at the beach?

Places of historic interest include the Bishop Museum and Iolani Place, among others. Hiking DiamondHead another possible activity.

suze is online now  
Mar 26th, 2007, 10:17 AM
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Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 114
Thanks Guys
Lots of great information on that older thread. Also, yes I will definitely spend some time on the beach even though I don't enjoy swimming in Ocean water.
DonJ1973 is offline  
Mar 26th, 2007, 12:18 PM
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 579
Dusty it sounds like he already booked a couple of tours as far as the breakfast goes you could eat an excuse yourself if you wake up hungary. Also I'm not sure about Chinatown but isn't Pearl Harbor included in the circle island tour. You can check out the concert schedules for local artists on mele.com and there is a hula show on Kuhio Beach in the evening.
hulajake is offline  
Mar 26th, 2007, 12:29 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 5,158
when you say "next tuesday" do you mean April 3? If so, you may want to check out Chinatown on Friday night. Start early...maybe go to Brassierie Du Vin at 4-ish for cocktails then make your way around the art walk.
MelissaHI is offline  
Mar 26th, 2007, 12:31 PM
Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 3,025

Some of the circle island tours include USS Arizona Memorial. Some do not.

As far as the breakfast, take it or leave it. There are many places in Waikiki for breakfast for less than $5.

I don't think I would spend my time at one of the orientation breakfasts because I would probably sign up for some of the tours only to find out later, I could have done the same thing on my own or found it cheaper somewhere else. I also think they are somewhat like timeshare pitches, but not near as stressful or hard sell.

For Don:

Here are some sites with tours/attractions. You can browse them & have an idea of what you can get them for if you don't do some of them on your own.



dusty56438 is offline  
Mar 26th, 2007, 07:46 PM
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Yes, I am leaving next Tuesday April 3rd. Your Chinatown suggestion definitely sounds like a great option.

In retrospect, I don't know why I enrolled in the Orientation breakfast, It was a free add-on and the funny thing is my hotel package already comes with breakfast so food is definitely not an incentive. So, the coupons and the presentation are a waste of time? Good to know. I was actually holding off on signing up for too many pre-paid tours on expedia because they would probably be cheaper on the Island.

As far as I know, the Island tour doesn't include Pearl Harbor:

Other attractions along the tour include a close-up view of a seawater eruption and a visit to Hawaii's own Old Faithful, known as the "Blow Hole," where you'll witness oceanside water play at full force. After a stop at Sandy Beach—a favorite among body surfers—you'll venture to the most celebrated surfing zones in the world, including Waimea Bay, Sunset Beach, and the spectacular Banzai Pipeline. In colorful contrast to the brilliant blue of the waters, you'll also find emerald fields of pineapple and sugar cane waving gently in the breeze. Take a glimpse into the Hawaii of long ago as you pass by remnants of old homesteads on your return to Waikiki. Be sure to bring your camera to record the marvels that make Hawaii synonymous with paradise.
8.5 hours
Departure time:
7:30 AM
Return time:
3:45 PM
Departure location:
Foyer of select Oahu hotels

Roundtrip transportation from select hotels
Supplied by:
Diamond Head Vacations
A lunch stop will be made at Helemano Plantation. Prices range from $5 to $10 per person. Children ages 2 or younger are admitted free of charge when accompanied by a paid adult, provided they do not occupy a seat in the vehicle.

DonJ1973 is offline  
Mar 26th, 2007, 08:50 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 5,158
Hey, you might even want to have lunch at Aloha Tower Marketplace first, go up the tower for free (open till 5) and then go check out downtown. Make a day of it.
MelissaHI is offline  
Mar 26th, 2007, 09:27 PM
Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 130
* Pearl Harbor - make sure you go early or late. It can get very crowded and you could waste a lot of time in line.

* Try and get away from the tourist scene. Oahu has wonderful beaches and hiking spots that mostly only locals go to.

* Try a local plate lunch (not at your hotel). Find a L&L or some dive in a strip-mall to get some real kalua pork or mocos locos. If you like it, Oahu has tons of these places and they're dirt cheap (my favorite was a lunch truck run by Christian powerlifters). If you don't like it, it will at least be a travel memory and a peek at local life.

* Go to the North Shore and see some surfers. Or try it yourself at Waikiki.

* Eat shaved ice! The best is Waiola Shave Ice on Kapahulu Blvd in Waikiki. There's also some can't-miss Oahu classic food spots there, like malasadas at Leonard's Bakery.

fakemark is offline  
Mar 26th, 2007, 10:41 PM
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 805
I would cancel the Grand Circle Island Tour, rent a car instead and drive around the island at your own pace. The best time to be at Sunset Beach is -- go figure -- at sunset, and you'll be back at your hotel by 3:30 if you take the tour. Also, there are are great places to stop along the way to the north shore, like Lanikai beach, that the tour will miss.

Definitely go to Pearl Harbor, and don't miss the Missouri and the Bowfin submarine when you're there. If memory serves, I left the hotel around 10 a.m., took the bus to the memorial and found no line at the ticket counter. Had to wait about an hour-and-a-half or two hours before getting into the memorial, but it was easy to kill the time at the submarine and by taking pictures. After doing all that and the memorial, head to the Missouri.

I highly recommend taking the bus to Hanauma Bay, whether you're into snorkeling or not. It's one of the most spectacular beaches I've seen. And the walk up Diamondhead is another must-do.
andrews98682 is offline  
Mar 28th, 2007, 09:52 AM
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 280
We visited Oahu for the first time (hopefully not the last!) last January and had a wonderful time.

If I may be so bold, you may want to read my trip report (click on my name to find it) as it lists many things that a non-beach person may enjoy.

Have a wonderful time!

Cadgirl is offline  
Mar 28th, 2007, 12:16 PM
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 579
Melissa I see you weren't joking about plugging the Aloha Tower when you get a chance. Don if you get a loco moco be close to somewhere you can take a nap. You can price most of the other tours on the net and many offer a discount for booking on the websites directly.
hulajake is offline  
Mar 28th, 2007, 08:25 PM
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Posts: 114
Thanks so much for all the fantastic input. I'm so stoked for next Tuesday and I'm really looking forward to my 5 days of rest and relaxation. Just out of curiosity, how's the weather in Honolulu in April? I was planning to bring mostly shorts and maybe 2 pairs of pants. Also, as far as cash goes, I was planning to bring $200 for food and small purchases and 1 credit card for any large purchases and maybe to book another tour. Do you all think I'm set?

DonJ1973 is offline  
Mar 30th, 2007, 09:15 PM
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 805
Personally, I would bring a few credit cards and keep one or two in the hotel safe in case the wallet gets stolen. That's happened to me on vacation and, as you could imagine, it's not fun. The extra cards certainly would come in handy if that happens.
andrews98682 is offline  
Mar 31st, 2007, 06:39 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 91,374
The weather will likely be beautiful. Sometimes it rains a bit now and then but it's not cold. 1-2 pair of long pants would be plenty (you may not even wear them). Shorts and sandals or sneakers are good.
suze is online now  
Mar 31st, 2007, 08:31 AM
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 16
I have visited Hawaii about 9 times now and I must admit I now used Oahu only for changing plnes to get to Maui (day trips are cheap for the island hopping option). But if you are there - the Arizona tour is something everyone should do once. if you want to experience the more tranquil paradise image of Hawaii you will need to get outside Honolulu which is more of a Miami atmosphere - you can go up to the North Shore - enjoy great beaches, take a glider ride over the surfers and see more of the true hawaii. If you want the Hawaii big city tourist expereince - Honolulu has the whole Karoke, Charo, Don Ho thing going. A visit to the international market is a fun afternoon of haggling with vendors over pricing - a great day buying souveniers and trinkets - they are very negotiable. If you do hop to Maui - head for Lahana.
landrover is offline  

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