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Polynesian Cultural center-is it worth the drive ? Any other suggestions for Oahu(or Kauai)

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Mar 12th, 2001, 08:49 PM
  #1
Melanie
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Polynesian Cultural center-is it worth the drive ? Any other suggestions for Oahu(or Kauai)

Hello!We will be in Oahu for 3 nights in May before departing to Kauai for 7 more and are considering renting a car and spending the day at the Polynesian Cultural Center. Is it worth the trip and time? We will only have two full days to spend on Oahu as we will essentially lose the first and last day there with flights and all. Also, if you have any other suggestions on must sees and dos including hikes to beautiful places on both Oahu and/or Kauai it would be much welcome!Thanks!(By the way, these message boards and the people that respond are just great- so helpful reading the posts as this we be our first time in Hawaii!)
 
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Mar 12th, 2001, 09:41 PM
  #2
Lisa
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Hi Melanie,

the Polynesian Cultural Center is nice, lots of history and interesting stuff... but also quite touristy. If you can look past that, then you will be okay. Personally, what I think you might enjoy is really just driving around the whole island, stopping off on the North Shore for some serious wave action and a little hang ten - there will always be surfers to watch, and they are quite amazing. Bonzai beach is home to some extremely talented surfers, and some of the largest waves in North America. Stop off at little roadside stands and villages. Also, snorkeling at Hanauma Bay is always fun (although this too can be quite crowded - go early). If you plan to snorkel in Kauai, then you might pass on doing it on Oahu. Many people decry Oahu as overcrowded with tourists, and to be sure it does have more than enough, but they mostly congregate in Waikiki, and to be honest, it can be fun just walking along Kalakaua Blvd. in Waikiki and just enjoying being the "cheesy" tourist You'll have a great time no matter what you do!
 
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Mar 13th, 2001, 05:33 AM
  #3
Frank
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I completely agree with Lisa's comments and would more strongly urge you not to spend your precious vacation time at the Polynesian Cultural Center. PCC is really nothing more than a touristy theme park, staffed by local college students who attempt to recreate Polynesian village life by reenacting corny skits. Stear clear of PCC!!!
Instead, explore the island by car, not only to "escape" the congestion of Waikiki but also to discover the beauty of the north coast. Enjoy!
 
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Mar 13th, 2001, 06:30 AM
  #4
Melanie
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Thanks Lisa and Frank for the insight! We are not in to overly touristy things to do, so we will probably skip the Cultural center. The north shore and watching the surfers sounds much more our speed! Thanks
 
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Mar 13th, 2001, 06:33 AM
  #5
Julie
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I agree with the above posts, but we still enjoyed it. We had 9 days on Oahu so there was plenty extra time and doing this touristy thing was prety relaxing and fun.

However, regarding your question about the drive, it is rather far for Waikiki. We took the public bus to save money and it took us 1 and 1/2 hours to get there. But it didn't cost us anything since we already had the 4 day bus pass which we bought for $10. Pretty cheap for a 1/2 circle island tour!
 
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Mar 13th, 2001, 12:02 PM
  #6
Jill
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I like the Polynesian Cultural Center - I enjoy watching the various dances - especially Tahitian and New Zealand. My kids (10 and 12) like participating in learning to dance and the stick throwing (can't remember what's it called) from New Zealand. The college kids are actually from those islands. I'd skip the dinner/show. To get to the Cultural center you should drive there via around the island. The surfing on the north shore won't be so great since the really big waves are in the winter. Other interesting things to do:
Climb to the top of Diamond Head
Go to the Pali
Hanauma Bay - definitely one of the most beautiful spots
 
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Mar 13th, 2001, 12:39 PM
  #7
Melanie
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Thanks Jill and Julie for responding! We definitely plan on visiting Hanauma Bay. Can't wait to go! All I can think about is Hawaii! Melanie
 
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Mar 13th, 2001, 03:17 PM
  #8
buck
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Be sure to see the Pearl Harbor Memorial, take the navy launch, it is free instead of paying for a ride out there. It is a very sobering experience. Much like the Vietiam Memorial in DC. Be prepared to shed a few. You will have a wonderful time. Buck
 
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Mar 13th, 2001, 06:45 PM
  #9
melanie
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Buck- thanks for replying! We are stilll trying to decide exactly what activities and sights would most interest us being that our time is short. Pearl Harbor is definitely on the list of possibilities. Have a wonderful day! Melanie
 
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Mar 13th, 2001, 10:33 PM
  #10
Mel
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Melanie, it isn't just the North Shore that's beautiful. Almost the ENTIRE island is very beautiful, especially the drive along the EAST coast on your way UP to the North Shore!! Stop at the Turtle Bay Hilton for a "break" and then continue driving around. And yes, I would even say you should drive along Kalakaua Ave. straight through Waikiki as well, for a first time visitor. It's a BLAST!!
 
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