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just a few more days - quick question about boat tours . . .

Healy, Alaska
Destination Expert
for Denali National Park and Preserve, Alaska
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just a few more days - quick question about boat tours . . .

Aloha friends!

I arrive in 3 days and am so very excited! It has been 6 years since I have been to Kauai and I have been planning this trip for a couple of years . . . hard to calm the excitement butterflies at this point.

Okay - a question regarding boat tours. I have never been on a boat tour of the Napali coast and I am determined to do one this time BUT I am only interested on those that leave from the north shore. I would love to hear your favorites of those - and if you have used different companies, what those differences were and what you preferred. I do not care about lunch or lunch quality or that type of thing - more concerned with the company and the overall trip experience. I don't get seasick either, if that helps. I think over all, I have read more positive things about Holo Holo Charters, but I think I have been reading & researching too much and feel I am a bit overloaded with info, so hence why I posted the question. Mahalo! :)

Moorpark, California
Destination Expert
for Kauai, Catalina Island
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1. Re: just a few more days - quick question about boat tours . . .

jebett went on the Holo Holo power zodiac in May and loved it! Hopefully, she'll chime in. We're going to try The Southern Star next summer but they leave from Port Allen.

Edited: 10 July 2012, 22:42
Phoenix, Arizona
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2. Re: just a few more days - quick question about boat tours . . .

do a zodiak, we took one from the southside twice and loved it, they go in the sea caves and are wild. We used Captain Andy's both times but now I see that Holo has a zodiak that goes out of the northside. Have also done Holo Holo and it was okay.

California
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3. Re: just a few more days - quick question about boat tours . . .

http://www.napalicatamaran.com/

We've used this company three times and highly recommend. We go on the morning tour. We've always seen dolphins and have always been able to go into the caves in July.

Riverside, CA
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678 posts
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4. Re: just a few more days - quick question about boat tours . . .

The zodiac can be a problem if you have a bad back or get really seasick.

I did Holo Holo out of port allen and did the dinner cruise and highly recomend it.

California
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5. Re: just a few more days - quick question about boat tours . . .

I have done Holo Holo, Napali Cat, the zodiac and Capt Andys. I loved, loved, loved Holo Holo. The zodiac I would NEVER do again. The ONLY thing I didn't like was the wait to get on theHolo Holo boat. The dingys only hold so many and it makes it a long wait. It was spectacular but we did have the most ideal conditions that day. Its a small boat, the Capt and first mate were so nice and we did go inside the caves which is a huge plus to me. I know you don't care about the lunch, but it was fine. A turkey sandwich always tastes better after snorkeling. Napali Cat was a similar experience, but since I did that so many years ago, the HH experience is fresher.

When we went to Kauai one July 6 years ago, I didn't make a reservation for Napali Catamaran and when I called, they laughed at me. They said they were booked the entire month of July. So I guess what I am saying is you might get what you get. Maybe they have a wait list. I think going out of the North Shore is a big plus.

I can't wait for your reports. I am almost as excited as you.....

Happy 25 times 2 !!!!

Healy, Alaska
Destination Expert
for Denali National Park and Preserve, Alaska
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6. Re: just a few more days - quick question about boat tours . . .

Thank you for all the helpful replies! Much appreciated. :)

Tucson, Arizona
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for Tucson
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7. Re: just a few more days - quick question about boat tours . . .

Agree with jebett. If you don't already have something booked, you may be stuck with whatever you can get. We liked Na Pali Catamaran - only 16 people on board and it was small enough to go into the sea caves, but large enough to be very stable in the rougher waters on the way back. When we were there last month my SUP instructor told me they also have a new, smaller boat - looked like it might hold 8-10 people.

California
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8. Re: just a few more days - quick question about boat tours . . .

The rigid inflatable I took with Holo Holo holds about 18-20. If you want to sit under the canopy (I did to be out of the sun) do not be the last to board.

Trabuco Canyon...
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9. Re: just a few more days - quick question about boat tours . . .

<<SUP instructor told me they also have a new, smaller boat - looked like it might hold 8-10 people.>>

From Na Pali Catamaran's web site "We have you check in at your tour time , then we have you shuttled 3 blocks to the Hanalei Bay where you are then boarded on our 8 passenger outrigger canoe, this will transport you to our 34 ft powered catamaran… 14 passengers max…"

I am booked with them In September and have had discussions about the Boat, They have not made one reference to having a new boat, In fact I asked them the age of there boat in our conversations

So not sure the Instructor was informed or not, I will ask them and post back if they have a newer smaller boat

Portland, Oregon
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10. Re: just a few more days - quick question about boat tours . . .

Thanks for asking the question, coalminer. We'll be on island 3 weeks from today, and I'm still undecided as to which tour company to use. And, what time of day. Is there a big difference in ocean conditions between morning and afternoon? I'm asking because I think the afternoon sun on the Napali might make for better photographs (but maybe that's not true?).