SOUTHLAKE, Texas–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Aug. 10, 2006–From Kauai’s
soaring sea cliffs to the Big Island’s lava-baked landscape, each
island offers a myriad of experiences in Hawaii making it hard to
choose only one. One in four travelers opts to explore more than one
island, according to Travelocity’s data. It also shows that the
majority of folks visit Oahu and Maui most often. But with such
diversity comprising Hawaii, Travelocity set out to clarify why
travelers might want to select a particular Hawaiian haven.
Travelocity’s editors have Hawaii’s big season in mind with this
latest destination information, as it’s not too early to start
planning with winter peak season around the corner. So as the summer
season starts to quiet, maybe you want to take a quiet fall vacation
on the beaches. The famous Hana Maui black sands may beckon some while
others will be swept-up by the thought of the surf in the North Shore.
Read on to learn more:
Oahu: The Gathering Place: It’s hard to pin down Hawaii’s most
populous island, where a short drive can take you from the
plumeria-scented metropolis of Honolulu to the big-wave beaches of the
North Shore. Jam-packed with diversions, from golf courses to
nightclubs to the world’s largest outdoor shopping center, Oahu is
ideal if you want your tropical retreat laced with life in the fast
lane. Highlights include:
-- Hanauma Bay: This calm, crescent-shaped bay on the southeastern tip of Oahu can get crowded, but the dozens of species of tropical fish don't seem to mind -- and where there are fish, there are satisfied snorkelers and scuba divers. The bay is open every day except Tuesdays. Go early to avoid the crowds (and get a parking spot). -- Pearl Harbor: It's hard to imagine one of the greatest turning points in American history taking place on this peaceful island in the middle of the Pacific, but a visit to the USS Arizona Memorial puts the Japanese bombing of Pearl Harbor into dramatic perspective. A visit to this site is a must -- just be sure to get there early to avoid long lines. -- The North Shore: Waikiki Beach suddenly feels very far behind as you cut through the pineapple plantations on Kamehameha Highway towards the North Shore. Stop in the town of Haleiwa for a shaved ice, then continue up the coast to the world's most famous big-wave beaches: Waimea Bay, Banzai Pipeline, and Sunset Beach.
Maui: The Valley Isle: Funky towns, fields of sugarcane, volcanic
beaches, and bumpy roads through misty rainforests make Maui a bona
fide jack of all trades. Everyone from world-class windsurfers to
septuagenarian whale watchers loves the Valley Isle — and that makes
for a great mix of company over a round of Mai Tais as the sun goes
down over Lahaina Town. Highlights include:
-- Haleakala Crater: At more than 10,000 feet above sea level, this enormous dormant crater lays claim to one of the most legendary sunrises on Earth. It's worth the 3 a.m. wake-up call to make it to the top for dawn. If you're still feeling groggy after sunrise, get your adrenaline pumping on a bike tour from the top of the crater and down to sea level. -- The Road to Hana: This 50-mile stretch of topsy-turvy road gives credo to the old saying that it's not the destination, but getting there that counts. Top off your gas tank, fasten your seatbelt, and set off for an eye-popping adventure along Maui's verdant northeastern coast. -- Whale watching: From the shore or by sea, there's nothing quite like seeing the humpback whales on their annual migration to the waters off the coast of Maui. Visit during the winter or early spring (January to April) for the best viewing opportunities.
Kauai: The Garden Isle: There’s a spot on Kauai that gets an
average of 444 inches of rain each year — but don’t let that stop you
from packing your swimsuit and sunscreen. Kauai’s lush foliage gives
way to golden sands on the north and south shores. Just don’t be
surprised if you’re tempted to leave the beach behind and discover the
Garden Isle’s wild side — by foot, kayak, or even helicopter.
-- Kayaking the Na Pali Coast: During the summer, when the conditions are just right, adventurous visitors glide past the emerald cliffs of the Na Pali Coast in sea kayaks. Tours are strenuous, and last a full day. But if you know how to swim, and you're physically fit, it's the experience of a lifetime. -- Hanalei Bay: Even with Hawaii's overload of picture-perfect beaches, this one stands out. On Kauai's north coast, the long stretch of Hanalei Bay is calm and inviting for swimmers, snorkelers, and divers in the summer, and seductive for surfers in the winter. -- Waimea Canyon: If the Grand Canyon had a mini-me, this would be it. At one mile wide, 10 miles long, and 3,500 feet deep, Waimea Canyon is one of the greatest natural wonders of the Pacific. Hike in for a close-up view, or see it by helicopter.
The Island of Hawaii: The Big Island: Nature’s been a bit reckless
on the Big Island, giving it a dash of just about everything under the
sun: towering cliffs to the north, smoldering volcano vents to the
south, misty jungles to the east, and lava-baked deserts to the west.
If you’re coming for a tropical escape, then much of the Big Island
might leave you high and dry. But if you’re the type to find beauty in
a variety of climates and terrains, the Big Island may be for you.
-- Kohala Coast: This perennially sunny stretch on the northwest shore is dotted with some of the island's top accommodations, including the legendary Mauna Kea Resort, built by Laurance Rockefeller back in 1965. Even if you're not a guest at the Mauna Kea, stop by to see the tasteful Pacific and Asian art collection or test your skill on the Robert Trent Jones, Sr. golf course -- home to the most famous Par 3 in the Pacific. -- Hawaii Volcanoes National Park: If you feel like the Big Island is growing on you, you're right in more sense than one. Due to volcanic activity the island is growing in land mass every year -- and you can be an eye witness to the geographic expansion on a visit to Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. -- Parker Ranch: One of the largest working cattle ranches in the United States, Parker Ranch gives new meaning to the phrase, "way out West." Throw on a pair of boots and explore the 175,000-acre ranch by horseback, wagon ride, or ATV.
Travelocity editor-at-large Amy Ziff also notes that some of the
best deals to Hawaii can be found for the fall. Sample deals are
available at www.travelocity.com/aloha.
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before, during and after the trip, and guarantees everything about a
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