Hawaii Vacation Help!


Mar 1st, 2013, 12:16 PM
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Hawaii Vacation Help!

I am in the beginning process of planning a 12th anniversary vacation for myself and my husband. We will be flying out of DFW on March 7th, 2014 in the late afternoon or evening hours and we will be flying back to DFW on March 15, 2014 in the early morning hours. I am interested in a relaxing vacation, however we are interested in a little adventure. We have a budget of $6000 which will include airfare, hotel etc... Which island do you suggest would be best for first timers like ourselves who want to relax on the beach, enjoy some good food, and have a little adventure. I am wanting to avoid the tourist "traps" if that is possible. I want to avoid huge crowded beaches as well. Also if you can please suggest things to do on the island you suggest. I have been looking at things on but I just can't seem to make up my mind, and with this being sort of a surprise I can't really go into a whole bunch of detail with my husband.
MrsW2002 is offline  
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Mar 1st, 2013, 01:43 PM
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What kind of adventure are you seeking - great hikes? kayaking? ziplines? Surfing?

It sounds like you would prefer Kauai over the more developed islands (Oahu and Maui). Kauai is physically lush and beautiful although mid-March probably isn't a good time to stay on the more lush and beautiful north shore (although it's fine to visit then, just not fine to go in the ocean). The south shore has some very good eateries.
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Mar 1st, 2013, 02:11 PM
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I also think Kauai sounds most like what you are describing. But even on Oahu and Maui there are plenty of beautiful areas that are awy from huge crowds and tourist traps.

Honestly (imo) any of the islands could fit what you describe. I'd look at some guidebooks (especially for the photographs) and see if any one grabs you more than others.

Another consideration might be ease of nonstop flights to get to each island (depending where you are coming from you might or might not be forced to go thru Honolulu).
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Mar 1st, 2013, 03:54 PM
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My Q's are: What does your husband like to do and do you want to kick back in one place - or visit a 2nd island which would be my preference for a first time.

Since you get there in the afternoon - you could spend a couple/three days on Oahu and then get to an outer island.

Our favorites are Kauai (the most lush vegetation - aka "Garden Island") - and Big Island/Hawaii - which probably has the most things to do - but we also love Maui and Oahu.

You really can't go wrong.
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Mar 3rd, 2013, 10:35 AM
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I totally agree with Kauai. Although I am not a big fan of Oahu, for your first time to the Islands, I would recommend taking a couple of days and visiting the Arizona Memorial and the Dole Pineapple Plantation before going over to Kauai.
You will love Kauai. Make sure to eat at Duke's on the property of the Marriott Lihue. It is beautiful and has fantastic views. Get there early for the best seat.
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Mar 3rd, 2013, 12:43 PM
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Sounds like Kauai would be a good match for you. That time of year I would stay south. Are you looking for a hotel or condo? There are some very nice condos, look at Kiahuna Plantation or Poipu Kapili. Be sure and see the free hula show and torch lighting ceremony at the Grand Hyatt on Tuesdays, Fridays and Saturdays. You can have a nice relaxing drink there at the Ilima Terrace. I have used these folks for car rentals, they are wholesalers and will only rent from the majors:
jamie99 is offline  
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Mar 4th, 2013, 04:38 PM
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I'm older, but on Oahu I think seeing Iolani Palace, hiking up Diamond Head, driving up to the Pali and Punchbowl National Cemetery, and driving around the island to see the gorgeous scenery and beaches are lots more interesting than the Dole Pineapple Plantation. Agree with seeing Pearl Harbor.
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Mar 5th, 2013, 04:07 AM
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Also would recommend snorkeling at Hanauma Bay - 20 minutes south of Honolulu.

Go early to beat the crowds and for the best visibility - and then you can continue driving around to Kailua - and up to the North Shore if you want to complete the circling the island drive, or head back from Kailua to Honolulu if you decide to drive the North Shore another time.

Look at a map to get a better idea.
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Mar 5th, 2013, 07:11 AM
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I don't think you could go wrong with any island you choose. We just returned after 5 weeks in paradise. We spent a week on Kauai and enjoyed it and 4 weeks on the Big Island and loved it. The Big Island is the newest island and miles and miles of lava fields. We rented a condo in Kona and fell in love with that little town. It is an ocean front town loaded with restaurants and botique stores and a downtown market that we shopped at at least every other day gathering fresh papaya, mango and pineapple, yummmmm. I could recommend the Royal Kona which is walking distance to the little town and a beautiful place. It has a small sand beach and a lovely oceanfront pool. We often had drinks at Don the Beachcomer during happy hour as it faces the ocean and sunsets. The food there is also very good as is their luau!
The Big Island is built on lava rock but you can drive north to some great sand beaches. Hapuna is a wonderful State Park and swimming beach. Anaehoornalu is a nice beach with a great restaurant Lava Lava on the beach. You can go for lunch on the beach at Fairmont Orchid, wear you suit under a cover up and lounge on a great sandy beach. Of course you can stay at any of these resorts that are beautiful but expensive. Mauna Kea is another beautiful resort with sandy beach. We had drinks on the beach at all the resorts. But again, my favorite was the little town of Kailua Kona and more reasonable in price. They have a nice snorkel beach named Kahaluu with snorkel equipment available to rent.
One of our best adventures was a snorkel trip with Hula Kai They give you breakfast and lunch and both were really good. The snorkeling at Captain Cook monument was the best! The whales were really active and we saw lots of them! Worth the price.
YOu can drive to Valcano's National Park and spend time hiking the Thursdon Lava Tube. We spent one night in Hilo and went to Akaka Falls which is beautiful.
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