Trip Report/Kauai & BI/Survived 2nd Crash

Mar 20th, 2007, 07:31 PM
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Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 318
Trip Report/Kauai & BI/Survived 2nd Crash

My husband and I just returned from Hawaii. We first went to Kauai for 3 days and then went to the Big Island on a business trip. Prior to our leaving, with the help of all of you Fodorites and the Blue Book for Kauai(also recommended on this site which was a great suggestion), we decided we were going to book a helicopter ride with either Jack Harter or Interisland on a helicopter with no doors. I was nervous as it was but I figured I was going to get over it. I had given my husband the choice of going at 12:10 with Interisland for $209 per person or Jack Harter at 11:00 for $249 per person. My husband indicated that he wasn't too concerned about the money he just wanted to go earlier, so on Thursday morning before we left, I booked with Jack Harter. On Thursday afternoon the first helicopter crash happened. After calling Jack Harter with all the safety questions that I got from this site, that I should have asked in the first place, I decided I was still going to go. I figured lightening could not strick twice so soon. So, we arrived in Kauai on Saturday night 3/10 and stayed at the Grand Hyatt in Poipo. It was a beautiful hotel and well located. We had dinner at Tidepools the first night and it was OK, not great. By the way, I saved alot of money by getting the Hyatt Stay Certificate that was recommended on this site. The room would have been $450 per night and the Stay Certificate was $250 per night-great deal. We did rent a convertible at Thrifty, although I didn't spend too much time pricing it around. The next morning on our way to Lihue airport for the 11:00 helicopter ride we had breakfast at Gaylords, which was really charming and good food. The people at Jack Harter were so nice and accomodating, coupled with taking a chill pill, my husband and I had a great ride but most importantly a safe one. After the ride we drove North to have lunch at Cafe Hanalai at the Princeville Hotel. The food was great and the view is amazing. At lunch the waiter said there was another helicopter crash and the company was Jack Harter. I immediuately called Jack Harter's office to be sure it wasn't our pilot and that all was OK. They indicated that the crash was with Interisland at 1:00, which would have been the 12:10 flight we were debating on taking. I guess it just wasn't our time!!! After lunch we continued to drive North and as we were driving we saw 3 guys looking at something over a fence-we asked what they were looking at- it was the crash sight of the 2nd helicopter crash. A news reporter for The Honolulu Advertiser was there and we shared our story with him and he took a picture of us and included us in his article-picture and all. That night we ate at the Beach House which was also great and also a great view. We did not get there early enough to see the sunset but I am sure it would be fabulous as it is right on the beach. The next day we started in Hanapepe. Thought we would find local art to buy but we weren't successful. Very cute town and we had a great breakfast at Hanapepe Cafe. Great breakfast and very friendly people who run it. We drove around and saw the Kilanea Lighthouse and stopped at a few other sites. We had lunch at The Shrimp Shack in Waimea. The food is great. It is literally a hole in the wall but really good food. After we had dessert at Jo-Jo's Shaved Ice- we were not impressed, in fact, we didn't like it at all. On the way back to the hotel we went to the Coffee Museum- a waste of time. We had massages at the hotel which were not great and then ate dinner at Roy's which was great. The next day we were off to the Big Island. We stayed at the Fairmont Orchid. A great hotel and beautiful setting. Since it was a business trip all the meals and activites were arranged for us. Some of the highlights were that we went on a great catamaran ride and we did great snorkeling and saw a ton of whales. We went shopping in Kona which is mostly tourist shops. We did buy a beautiful orchid sculpture made out of clay at CC Whisper and they were all beautiful. It was hard to pick which one to buy. We also tried Kava. It tastes nasty but I am glad we tried it. We did have dinner at the Sushi resturant in the hotel which was very good. We also saw the Icaca Falls which were beautiful. We did go next door to our hotel to visit the Mauna Lani, where we stayed 20 years ago on our honeymoon. It is a bit dated but nostalgic for us. We had a really relaxing trip and were glad to come home alive!!!!
rjbriskin is offline  
Mar 21st, 2007, 03:31 AM
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 1,319
Whew, that was a little unnerving, I'll bet. Thanks for the report. I'm sending it to the top again.
Devonmcj is offline  
Mar 21st, 2007, 05:03 AM
Join Date: Feb 2003
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Mahalo for the T.R.!
Would like to hear more about the great snorkeling
JohnD is offline  
Mar 21st, 2007, 08:01 PM
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JohnD- We saw alot of yellow tangs and we saw a very large eel. Quite frankly the highlight of the trip was seeing all the whales playing around the catamaran. The coral was nothing that spectacular though. It was just a nice day on the water in the sun and getting in to the water to snorkel was refreshing.
rjbriskin is offline  
Mar 22nd, 2007, 07:24 AM
Join Date: Feb 2003
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Reply to rjbriskin, did you do the snorkeling from the catamaran and if so where was the tour, along the Kohala or Kona coast
JohnD is offline  
Mar 22nd, 2007, 11:54 AM
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starrsville is offline  
Mar 23rd, 2007, 11:34 AM
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JohnD- Yes we went off the catamaren and it left off the docks next to the Marriot Hotel. I think that's Kona???
rjbriskin is offline  
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