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harveyjkah Nov 5th, 2007 01:43 PM

Hawaii - First Timer
I'd like to take my wife and 2 kids to Hawaii in June of 2008 and would appreciate advice on which islands to stay. The children are 15 and 11. I will be using Marriott points, hopefully.

We like resorts, beach activity and sight-seeing but don't want to be caught in the tourist trap areas.

Ideally, we'd fly from Atlanta to one of the islands and then visit one more.

Any suggestions of which two islands to visit and for how long? Would we need to depart back to Atlanta from the same airport?



Pildredge Nov 5th, 2007 02:06 PM

For me I wanted to go to Pearl Harbor the first time I went.
We enjoyed Oahu very much overall and I think there would be alot of kid activities.

crefloors Nov 5th, 2007 02:22 PM

I love Oahu and have been to the Islands many many times. You can be as touristy or not as you choose. It's a beautiful island to drive around, many quiet peaceful places and then the hussle and bustle of Waikiki if you want a bit of that. There is just so much to do on Oahu. There are many threads and web links to check. Try a search. There is a poster named Dusty who has posted well over 100 links I think of "what to do's and where to go's on Oahu.

I think with kids, it gives something for everyone. Yes, the other Islands are wonderful too, but when I first went to Hawaii I was 18, and if I'd been "stuck" on Maui or Kauai, I would have NOT been happy. As an adult, and many time visitor, I'm looking for more quiet and laid back, but..I STILL always like Oahu.

trippinkpj Nov 5th, 2007 02:43 PM

My children in the 10 to 15 years old range enjoyed Big Island and Maui over Oahu. I'd start researching, and Dusty's posts also have links to other islands sites.

dusty56438 Nov 5th, 2007 03:29 PM

More to see & do on Oahu than any other island.

Lots of info including sites with free brochures for all islands:;tid=34812564

egret Nov 5th, 2007 03:57 PM

I would pick Maui in a minute.

Kerry392 Nov 5th, 2007 04:16 PM

The Wailea Beach Marriott is an incredible resort. We stayed there with points this summer and loved it. The pool area is beautiful and there are 2 beaches close by (Wailea and another). The grounds are very nice. There is also some shopping within walking distance.
I think there would be plenty to do with kids. They would probably like Lahaina. Also, don't miss the sunrise on Haleakala- you will never forget it! Then, you can do some hiking in the park.

I also think Oahu would be a great place with kids. There are many beautiful beaches and plenty to keep the kids entertained! Do not miss Pearl Harbor and the Punch Bowl. Also, snorkelling at Hanuma Bay is a must!!!

Be aware that the Marriott Ilhilani is a beautiful resort but it is very far away from all of the attractions and even restaurants! All of the restaurants at the hotel are expensive. Next time, I would stay at the Waikiki Marriott.

Kauai is the most beautiful of the islands but I am not sure if there would be enough to entertain the kids. If they love to hike, it is the perfect place for them. The Kauai Marriott has the biggest pool in the state. The grounds are absolutely amazing.

Hawaii is the most incredible place. I am sure your whole family will love it!

volcanogirl Nov 5th, 2007 04:38 PM

We've been to the BI, Maui, and Kauai. I think Kauai might be a bit too slow for teens, although we thought it was beautiful. Maui and the BI would be a good combination. Old Lahaina Luau, Haleakala, Road to Hana, Molokini, great beaches and then Volcanoes National Park, Akaka Falls, Hapuna Beach, Kealakekua Bay snorkeling, etc. We haven't been to Oahu yet so can't comment on that one.

Gellers Nov 5th, 2007 04:56 PM

I would pick Maui for a first-time visit to Hawaii, and agree with the Wailea suggestion.

margyb Nov 5th, 2007 06:43 PM

Hi Jeff,

I've been trying to use our Marriott points in Hawaii, but haven't been successful. There were a few dates available (I gave a date range of March through September), but only at hotels and I was hoping for one of the beach resorts. We're gold members, so I contacted the gold customer service reps and they told me that it was very tough to ever get any of the beach resorts with points. Anyways...I'd advise contacting them soon to see what's available.

Good luck!


dmlove Nov 5th, 2007 07:14 PM

If you have a ton of Marriott points, the Wailea seems to be available in June for "stay anytime" awards, which is double the "usual" number of points.

elsiemoo Nov 5th, 2007 09:54 PM

harvey, I would choose Oahu and the Big Island, wth kids the age of yours. All the islands are great ... but those two would be my choice.

CaliNurse Nov 5th, 2007 10:41 PM

Aloha Harveyjkah,

Did you say HOW LONG you'll be there? This might affect your choice. If trip is less than a week, I'd say defintitely one island only
Can you use Marriott points at Marriott Ko Olina in SW oahu? It has pools, hot tubs, and WONDERFUL beach area (lagoons). It also has a super-fun luau called Fia Fia, led by an incredible Samoan chief and fantastic entertainer, on the grounds; it's much better than some large commercial ones, IMHO.
There's also a nearby town (5 mins away) where you can buy groceries, and eat cheaply, etc, as all Ko Olina's rooms have some cooking area.

If you can't use points, do look into the Marriott Vacation Club specials. YOu nca get some great deals, of you can be stoic about a 90 minute low-pressure timeshare presentation.

While it is relatively easy, and if i recall, quicker to get to the beautiful North Shore of Oahu from Ko Olina than if you stay in Honolulu, it IS about a 30 min drive to central Honolulu and Waikiki, if you avoid the rush hour traffic. If you and the kids want to be in the midst of Waikiki, Ko Olina would NOT be
a good choice.

My suggestions would be Oahu for sure--if you have over a week I'd add Kauai. I've been there with kids at ages 11 and 15, and they were NEVER bored!

infamous82 Nov 6th, 2007 11:32 AM

take the kids on a zipline. fun fun stuff there.i did mine in Kauai with Kauai backcountry adventures.
You will most probably have to fly out of HNL(Honolulu airport) to get back to the mainland.

kauai_aka Nov 6th, 2007 01:35 PM

kids must be 12 for ziplines.

kauai_aka Nov 6th, 2007 01:38 PM

minimal weight is 100. unless it's obvious, they don't check.

MelissaHI Nov 6th, 2007 06:33 PM

I've never done the zip line, but now I know that I am too obvious to check.

Seriously, though...the Waikiki Beach Marriott is a great hotel; unfortunately, it's in Waikiki, the great tourist mecca. It's a good location, though, and if you decided to stay on Oahu you should get a car and get out to sightsee from there. If you stay a the Marriott at Ko Olina, it's a nice property but too way out in the boonies to satisfy your kids.

kauai_aka Nov 6th, 2007 10:14 PM

mel (tee hee)

i shoulda said they won't check if the kid is under 12 unless it's - oh you know what i mean...

MelissaHI Nov 6th, 2007 11:17 PM

Wha...too late! Tooooooooo late. I'm going to drown my sorrows in as many $2 tacos as I can find!!!


harveyjkah Nov 7th, 2007 05:01 PM

Thanks to all!! A lot of great suggestions. Let's see what Marriott can do.

Thanks for the advice...truly appreciated!!!

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