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Activities to book BEFORE arriving

San Jose, California
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Activities to book BEFORE arriving

Now that I have our air and hotel booked for our upcoming stay in May, the next thing on my mind are the activities for the family (2 adults + 6 & 8 year old).

What are some of the activities that we might find all booked up by the time we arrive?

We don't have a lot of ambitious things to do. Mostly relax, do some snorkeling along the beach, hit up a luau, see Haleakala, maybe Hana, and drop by the pineapple farms. The only activity I'm thinking of booking is the luau.

washington
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for Maui
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15 reviews
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1. Re: Activities to book BEFORE arriving

May is a slower, quieter month so you should be just fine booking when you arrive. To be honest, with kids that age, I would just hit the free hula shows that are offered all over the island.

When planning Hana or Haleakala keep in mind you will have 2 little ones in car seats...do they get car sick? There are nearly 600 turns on the RTH. How will they handle the altittude on Haleakala? 10,000 + feet?

San Jose, California
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2. Re: Activities to book BEFORE arriving

Free hula shows sound great! I thought we had to do a luau to catch that. I still would like to take the kids to a luau so they can see pork being cooked in the ground. Plus some hula and fire dancers would be exciting for them too. Our last trip to Maui was over 15 years ago so we won't mind experiencing it ourselves again too.

Valid point about the RTH. That's why I said "maybe". We'll probably make a trek out that way so they can see a rainforest and a waterfall. Then likely turn around and head back. I too doubt they will be able to make it all the way to Hana and back in 1 day. They've never been car sick locally but then again we don't have roads like the one to Hana.

Thanks for the advice!

Edited: 27 January 2012, 03:52
San Jose, California
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3. Re: Activities to book BEFORE arriving

I also think there is no need to book anything before your arrival. We usually visit Maui during high season (holiday week and summer), and we have never pre-booked anything other than our hotel and car. We never had problems booking any activities. May is nice slow season, so you should have no problem booking a luau and other activities when you are on the island.

If your kids enjoy road trips or can tolerate long drives, there is no reason not to take them to Hana or Haleakala. Our kids are 8 and 11, and we have been taking them to Hana and Haleakala since they were younger than yours. We have enjoyed both trips multiple times. And there were plenty of other families with kids at both sites.

Broadbeach...
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106 posts
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4. Re: Activities to book BEFORE arriving

depends on what you like doing on your holiday. I prefer to pre book everything I can.

Some may look at this a being restrictive however it saves on the following;

Discussing what tours you want to go on. working out which tour group to go on. For example there are 5 companies that zip line, 5 that bike tour the volcano and 7 different helicopter tours. wouldn't you prefer to work out which one is better, know where they are located.

You can be more effective with your days. Book 2 tours that are close together, hit that restraunt on the way back that you want to try.

This sounds dumb but the best way to relax is to have nothing to worry about, and to me that means not trying to work through all the details for a tour I am doing tomorrow.

Also most tour let you pre book, making it easier to budget as most things will be paid for.

Kapaa, Hawaii
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for Maui, Hana, Oahu
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5. Re: Activities to book BEFORE arriving

Just make sure the luau you do go to does have a fire knife dancer. They don't have them at the Old Lahaina Luau because it's very authentic and fire dancing is Samoan, not Hawaiian!! I took my 3 year old granddaughter to the Drums of the Pacific at the Hyatt, she had a blast, and they have the best fire knife dancer on the island.

Florence, Oregon
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for Oregon Coast
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6. Re: Activities to book BEFORE arriving

As a GENERAL rule of thumb, I try and book the activities that I KNOW I must absolutely do, ahead of time and save the rest for when I'm on island. The reason I do it this way is because I'm never totally sure what we (DW and I) will be up for on any given day and I don't want her or I to feel we HAVE to do something because we've already booked and paid for it.

Just my three cents short of a nickel.

Chicago
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7. Re: Activities to book BEFORE arriving

I'm in the same position, coming in May with hotel/car/air booked. I was wondering, is it cheaper to book on the spot rather than book in advance?

San Jose, California
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8. Re: Activities to book BEFORE arriving

Good info people. Didn't realize May was a down time but then again, that's when I found the best air fares for us. Generally we are not the type to book activities in advance because I don't like having our money held hostage. Reservations are fine but just don't want to prepay for it.

My experience also leads me to think we can get better deals once we are on the island. Many years ago my wife and I booked a honeymoon package through a touring company and signed up for a handful of activities. Turns out we could have booked the same activities after we got there for much less.

Maui
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for Ka'anapali, Haleakala National Park, Maui
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9. Re: Activities to book BEFORE arriving

Aloha,

Booking through a third party is often more expensive than booking direct with the actual owner/company. If it is cheaper, it often has restrictions ref refunds, changes, or cancellations. Some charge a "service fee" for changes or cancellations. Others will sell you things like afternoon snorkel trips......but you may think you are getting a morning one until you hit the last button. And of course, there are the timeshare scams-oops, "bargains".

Book activities online, with the company itself, e.g Trilogy's website for their trips, OLL for their luau, Hyatt for theirs, etc.

Whistler, British...
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10. Re: Activities to book BEFORE arriving

We didn't have any car sick issues with our 4 and 6 yo. On the RTH. Just needed to make MANY stops :). Plan time accordingly.

Didn't pre-book anything and found prices to be competitive.

Edited: 29 January 2012, 07:29