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Advice on how to divide stay between Oahu and Kauai

England
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Advice on how to divide stay between Oahu and Kauai

My boyfriend and I have just booked flights to Honolulu for September. We will have 16 nights (15 days) which we plan to split between Kauai and Oahu.

We arrive on 12th September at 21.40 (flying United from London Heathrow with a connection in San Francisco) so not considering this a day really as we will crash in the hotel straight away. We leave on 28th September at 6.30am (ouch!) and return via LAX.

Originally we wanted to split the time evenly with Oahu first, but seeing as we have to return to Oahu for our flight I was thinking of putting Kauai at the middle of the stay with time in Oahu either side. Do you think it makes sense to split the time evenly or should we spend longer in one place?

We haven't researched much into Oahu/Waikiki yet as we have been concentrating on figuring out the best 2nd island for us. How early should we secure hotel bookings as we have been advised to book quite soon for Kauai?

Thanks in advance!

Los Angeles, CA
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1. Re: Advice on how to divide stay between Oahu and Kauai

Split your time evenly: 8 nights on each island. Do not put Kauai in between and split Oahu on both sides. Go to Oahu then Kauai.

We go every year to these two islands during September. It's a great month to go, you'll love it! I usually see Fall hotel specials come out early summer. You have time to start deciding where to stay and price those places. September is low season.

California
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for Oahu
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2. Re: Advice on how to divide stay between Oahu and Kauai

I see what you mean. Get a hotel relatively close to the airport in Honolulu for your first night. Then fly to Kauai in the morning. Spend 7 or 8 nights there ... and then return to Honolulu.

Dallas
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3. Re: Advice on how to divide stay between Oahu and Kauai

Personally, we got really bored on Kauai. The island is beautiful and it is probably the most tropical of the islands. But after about 3 days we just got bored.

We go to Hawaii every year and after several trips to Kauai we don't go there anymore. We stay for 2 weeks and stay on Oahu now for the most part. Once every 4 or 5 years, we might go to Maui for a few days. But not Kauai.

Make sure that is where you want to go. Much more activity on Maui than on Kauai and you never run of of things to do on Oahu.

I do think you should go to Maui or Kauai first, then on to Oahu. That way you are not having to try to make an inter-island flight and match it up with your departure home from Hawaii.

If you are interested in no night life, not much shopping, not many restaurant choices, and beautiful surroundings then go to Kauai. If you want a little more action and stuff to do, then go to Maui.

Hope you have a great trip.

Aloha

Healy, Alaska
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4. Re: Advice on how to divide stay between Oahu and Kauai

Gee - I have spent over 2 weeks on Kauai and never gotten bored, but I guess like everything, it is subject to opinion and what you personally want to do. I know you have already researched these islands and I am sure you will be fine with your islands of choice.

Unless you have some really difficult flight times, I would do as scorchestra recommends - split the time evenly, and save Kauai for last. :)

La Mirada...
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5. Re: Advice on how to divide stay between Oahu and Kauai

I can't imagine being bored on Kaua‘i either......but if everyone loved Kaua‘i as I do, it would be way too crowded, lol. Doing absolutely NOTHING is my idea of vacation!

Agree 100% with scorchestra - go to Oahu first, then to Kaua‘i. How many days on each? Depends on what you want to do. We have 22 nights this Aug-Sept. We're breaking it up like this:

3 nights Waikiki, Oahu (go, go, go itinerary)

5 nights Hau‘ula, Oahu (1/2 go itinerary - 1/2 chill itinerary)

14 nights Kilauea, Kaua‘i (all chill)

England
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6. Re: Advice on how to divide stay between Oahu and Kauai

We have been researching non stop and are definitely set on Kauai- we have a super long list of things to do so shouldn't get bored. We aren't really beach bum types but plan to get out and see everywhere during the day and relax in the evenings with a few beach days thrown in the middle.

Lots of different opinions on which way to do things- but everyone seems to agree not to split Oahu in the middle. I will wait to see a few more replies before we decide on the order- what are the reasons to do one before the other, if any?

Healy, Alaska
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7. Re: Advice on how to divide stay between Oahu and Kauai

I am not sure why scorchestra likes to go to Oahu first and Kauai last, but I am very Kauai biased and I'll tell you my opinion - Kauai is so stunningly beautiful that every other place dims after that . .. as well, it is the ultimate of relaxation - and I like to come home with that relaxed aloha spirit fresh in me. You will have to come and see for yourself. :)

Los Angeles, CA
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8. Re: Advice on how to divide stay between Oahu and Kauai

<<Kauai is so stunningly beautiful that every other place dims after that >>

That is my reason too! I always end with Kauai!

California
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9. Re: Advice on how to divide stay between Oahu and Kauai

Split them 50-50. Do not bookend Kauai days with Oahu days because this would mean trips to the airport/other hassles are messing up days you could be enjoying Hawaii.

I would do as BL suggested: Just lay my head on Oahu for one night before jumping on a plane to Kauai the next morning. Unfortunately, a hotel near Honolulu airport won't be a very luxurious stay -- they're bare bones and not well-regarded. But this itinerary will let you make the most of your time. If you can't bear a lower-rated hotel, there are options like Hawaii Prince Hotel and The Modern that are really in Waikiki but they're on the airport side of Waikiki, which would make for an shorter cab ride.

Re when to book in Waikiki: September is a great month for rates, but they don't go down this early in the year. So if I were you, I would go ahead and book a hotel fully refundable now (read the fine print to make sure it's fully refundable!) then you can continue to research hotels and shop for better deals. (P.S. My favorite place on Oahu is Hilton Hawaiian Village- huge beach!) That's the best way to land a good deal without sweating whether they'll be all booked.

Los Angeles, CA
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10. Re: Advice on how to divide stay between Oahu and Kauai

I would not stay the first night on Oahu. I'd just continue on to Kauai. What a bummer it would be to get to your hotel to settle in just to pack up again the next day and travel some more. Get to your destination and the next morning you are up early and ready to begin your vacation!