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Hawaii - Maui or Kauai for non honeymooners? Also need overall help

Hawaii - Maui or Kauai for non honeymooners? Also need overall help

Jun 9th, 2011, 02:40 PM
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Join Date: Jan 2003
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Hawaii - Maui or Kauai for non honeymooners? Also need overall help

My sister and I are tagging along on a biz trip with our father to Honolulu. We are in our 30's and have never been to Hawaii.

We would like to see some of Honolulu since we have to be there anyway and then pick another island to stay a few nights. Any advice on places to explore/things to do in Honolulu or its surroundings?

For the next leg, I prefer a lesser developed area and I've heard Kauai is the most beautiful but it seems to be primarily a honeymoon destination.
We want beautiful beaches, great restaurants (a luau would be fun too), volcano, good shopping and waterfalls.

Any advice on:
where to go
hotel on/near beach
best way to get from Honolulu to the island we chose (what airline if plane)

Any advice would be greatly appreciated!
JES is offline  
Jun 9th, 2011, 03:12 PM
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I suggest you get ahold of a guidebook about Hawaii.

No island is restricted entirely to honeymooners. Can't really give you any advise until you give us some information to work with.

1. When would you be doing this?
2. How many nights in total do you have for this trip?
3. Are you both over 21?
4. Are you able to drive and rent a car?
5. What is your budget for accomodations?
6. Where will you be flying from? (it impacts how much jet lag you might have)
Placename is offline  
Jun 9th, 2011, 03:13 PM
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Ok, forget #3.
Placename is offline  
Jun 9th, 2011, 03:21 PM
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Kauai is definitely NOT just a honeymoon destination! We've been 3 or 4 times, and never on our honeymoon. You'll see plenty of families, couples, and other combinations! It's a beautiful, and very low-key environment. Don't go there if you're interested in nightlife!
sf7307 is offline  
Jun 9th, 2011, 05:42 PM
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I think of Maui as more for honeymooners than Kaua'i, we went to both on our honeymoon. That said who cares, there are tons of people and families going to all the islands for all sorts of reasons! My parents are going tomorrow to Maui for their anniversary, but are going with friends as well.

What sf7307 said about Kauai is right on.
amelie is offline  
Jun 9th, 2011, 09:48 PM
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if you want to see an active volcano you will have to go to the island of Hawai`i, called the "Big Island".
aloha is offline  
Jun 10th, 2011, 08:57 AM
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Thanks all for the responses. Ok so if honeymooners aren't an issue, where is the vote to go if we only go to one (outside of Honolulu)?

We don't care so much about nightlife other than good restaurants.
We're going in October, we're leaving from NY and we have 5-7 nights total for the trip. I'm not worried about jetlag b/c we'll be in Honolulu for the first couple of days.

We are able to rent a car. Should we? Is that the only way to get around? Is it needed on the smaller islands?

budget for hotel around $300 nt.

What's the best way to get from Honolulu to the other islands?

JES is offline  
Jun 10th, 2011, 09:05 AM
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Yes get a car.
amelie is offline  
Jun 10th, 2011, 09:14 AM
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Actually, if you're only going for 5-7 nights total, I'd stay on Oahu the whole time -- I'd stay in Waikiki, have a car, and spend my days either at the beach, the pool, or driving to other parts of the island (Haleiwa, the north shore beaches, Kailua/Lanikai, Diamond Head, the Pali Highway, etc.) Waikiki/Honolulu is very developed, but the rest of the island is not, and parts of it are gorgeous, with great beaches, nice towns, good restaurants, etc.
sf7307 is offline  
Jun 10th, 2011, 11:00 AM
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I agree with sf7307--if you travel to another island--that's at least two half days (if not more) that you will lose from you 5-7 days, i.d., get to airport, through security, fly to another island, get car, check in at hotel. Then do the same coming back to Oahu. ( I assume you are departing to the mainland from Honolulu).
martym is offline  
Jun 10th, 2011, 11:10 AM
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Of all the islands we visited, we thought Kauai was the most beautiful. The Na Pali coast is gorgeous. We did a helicopter tour, and it's one of our favorite vacation memories ever. There are also beautiful waterfalls to visit. That being said, I'd say that Maui has better restaurants. To me, it's kind of a tradeoff.
volcanogirl is offline  
Jun 10th, 2011, 11:11 AM
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I'd also agree with staying on Oahu if you have less than a week, but if you have to go to another island, Kauai is lovely that time of year and yes you need a rental car, the public transporation is next to non-existent and does not go to all the places you would want to go to anyway.

For inter-island flights, Hawaiian is best but it would take awhile as others have stated, not only coping with the TSA but also most places you cannot check into until 4pm.
jamie99 is offline  
Jun 10th, 2011, 11:14 AM
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1. For a trip of only 5 nights, I'd recommend staying on Oahu. If you can get 7 nights, then I's spend 4 nights on Maui.

2. However, if you want to visit the Hawaiian Volcanoes National Park, you are going to have to go to The Big Island of Hawaii. The volcano is not actively erupting right now and some visitors are disappointed because they have very unrealistic expectations. It's a great park, but not for everyone.

3. You must rent a car on any island other than Oahu (where Honolulu is). To really enjoy Oahu, you will need to rent a car, if you want to visit other than Honolulu/Waikiki. You must reserve a rental car. They sell out fast, and you can be left without a car if you do not reserve during peak travel times.

4. The only way is to fly. Out of the Honolulu airport.

5. Lots of accomodations in that budget, however, you didn't tell us when you would be visiting. That can make a difference if it is peak season.
Placename is offline  
Jun 10th, 2011, 07:34 PM
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So much to do with so little time.

Oahu: Shopping and Great restaurants. Some good activities as paddleboard/surfing lessons in Waikiki, Hiking up Diamond Head (not really hard but need to be in shape), Pali Lookout, Ala Moana Shopping Ctr., Sea Life Park, North Shore Beaches.

Maui: Kind of like a smaller Oahu. Beautiful beaches. Drive to Haleakala Crater to see the sunrise, Maui Ocean Ctr., good restaurants

Kauai: (my island): not just for honeymooners. If you like to do something outdoors, this is the place. Beautiful uncrowded beaches, Kealia bike path, surf/paddleboard, camping, Waimea Canyon (miniature Grand Canyon) 1/2 day, Kilohana Luau, Boat tours to Na Pali Coast (see dolphins, caves, waterfalls), during summer months only...Queen's Bath at Princeville (Lava ocean pool. small hike. waterfall)
Mandatory car rental, bus service is limited. Poipu Hotels, Marriott Resort, Hilton Resort. Eat Local. No volcano...go to Big Island. Nightlife is limited to tourist area. Other places close early. hawaiian style
keiko4hanae is offline  
Jun 12th, 2011, 05:42 AM
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These are all great suggestions, thanks so much! I'll research all of them and will be back for more Q's...
JES is offline  
Jun 12th, 2011, 07:07 AM
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With your limited time I'd just stay on Oahu. You can go around the island to less busy parts. There is plenty to do in Waikiki/Honolulu to fill a week. I personally would not take the time and expense to change island just for "a few nights".

If you want to see a volcano, that means the Big Island. It is possible to do it as a day tour from Honolulu.
You need a car in Kauai for sure. You really don't need one on Oahu if you are primarily staying in Waikiki. But you might like one for a day to do your island circle tour there.
suze is offline  
Jun 12th, 2011, 07:45 AM
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I agree there are no islands 'just for honeymooners'. There might be some specific resorts that cater to that, but not entire islands!
suze is offline  
Jun 12th, 2011, 06:46 PM
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I hear what you're saying about spending the whole time on Oahu, but I'm thinking that I'm going all the way there and may never get the chance to go back. So knowing that, I want to try to see the "best of" Hawaii. Whether or not that is Oahu, I need some imput.
Let me ask...if someone had one place to go in Hawaii and only one time to go, where would you send them? Or where would you say not to miss?
JES is offline  
Jun 12th, 2011, 07:20 PM
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if someone were only going to Hawai`i once, i would send them to the North Shore of Kaua`i. I would recommend they stay in Hanalei or someplace north of there (not in Princeville). I haven't been there for several years, but Hanalei Colony Resort is beachfront and is someplace I would love to return to; aerial photo and link to their website here http://www.wizardpub.com/kauai/krhanaleicol.html

I would recommend going to Ke`e beach in the very early morning, it is just a couple miles from HCR http://www.hawaiiweb.com/kauai/html/...kee_beach.html. also Tunnels beach http://www.hawaiiweb.com/kauai/html/...els_beach.html
Limahuli Garden is also nearby and is beautiful and very informative about native plants and ecology, http://www.ntbg.org/gardens/limahuli.php If you are into hiking, the Na Pali trail starts at Ke`e. Those are things you can do within a 5 minute drive from HCR. the town of Hanalei is a few miles in the other direction and has shopping and restaurants as well as another nice beach.
aloha is offline  
Jun 16th, 2011, 12:23 AM
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With your short time you should probably stay on Oahu. If you want to squeeze in another Island, you must go to Kauai, the most beautiful, and called the Garden Island.
MBnancy is offline  
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