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Our dream trip

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North Arlington...
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Our dream trip

We've been racking up frequent flier miles and have decided to plan a trip to Hawaii. We have never been and don't know where to even begin. When's the best time? Which island? How long to stay? etc, etc, etc......

ANY info would be greatly appreciated. HELP!!!

Boston, MA
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1. Re: Our dream trip

Definitely pick up some guide books, to start learning up on what each island has to offer. They each have something special. Don't try to do to much or visit too many islands. It's tempting, but each time you do, you lose most of a day in packing, flying, and unpacking. I like the 1 week per island rule-of-thumb.

A fun websites to get you started, which will recommend an island to you:

…about.com/od/…island_scores.htm

Let us know which island wins!

North Arlington...
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2. Re: Our dream trip

Thank you! Can't wait to get started!

Kapaa, Hawaii
Destination Expert
for Maui, Hana, Oahu
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3. Re: Our dream trip

First you have to ask yourself what was it about Hawaii that attracted you in the first place!! We recommend Hawaii for Dummies (don't laugh, I own it), for an all over view of Hawaii. Are you into all things ocean? Historical sites, hiking etc. Are you a busy traveler or do you want to find one island and relax? With 10 days or more you can realistically go to two islands. When is the best time for you to go?

California
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4. Re: Our dream trip

If you can do two weeks or more than a good idea is a week on Oahu and a week on Kauai or Mauai. If you only had a week best pick to pick one island.

Burr Ridge, Illinois
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5. Re: Our dream trip

The best time to go is when you are able to find the free seats based on your travel dates. Anytime of the year is okay in Hawaii, but it can sometimes be difficult getting the free tickets to correlate to times when you can travel.

I believe it is easier to pay for the airline tickets so you have the most flexibility with your flights. However, I know that using points is a good thing. So, see how inventory looks for the dates your considering and which flights and destinations are showing seats available for free tickets.

Always book your free tickets before you book hotels. Last June a person I know planned on using free tickets for part of their trip. Silly as it sounds they bought tickets from SFO to HNL thinking they could use their points to SFO. I had to step in and help buy their tickets from home to SFO because there were no free seats that would allow them to connect.

Research the islands after you determine where your airline flies from your hometown connecting to which island. The more research you do the less stress you will feel.

Have fun planning.

Aloha

pzp
Kauai, Hawaii
Destination Expert
for Kauai, Kapaa
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6. Re: Our dream trip

On the main Hawai`i forum page you'll find Top Questions in the upper right. Lots of good info on all the islands there.

California
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7. Re: Our dream trip

Oahu is a popular choice for a first trip. (And, as has been said, definitely don't try to cram in more than one island a week.)

Cursory overview of each island:

Oahu: a perfect mix of the cosmopolitan, unspoiled nature, and history all within easy reach.

Maui: expansive beaches and lots of very resorty areas like Kaanapali within driving distance of waterfalls, volcano.

Kauai: lush, unspoiled, and home to the breathtaking Napali Coast that can be toured by catamaran or helicopter (or hiking, for the adventurous). Not as beachy as Maui.

Big Island: good for adventure: live volcano/geologic tours, trekking up Mauna Kea mountain (with an astrological outpost halfway up). Not as many beaches but a couple of great ones. Big Island has areas that are just black rock for miles and miles -- moonlike and surreal, but not what many people picture when they think of Hawaii. The other side's lush but rainy.

I've been to all four and the one I fell in love with -- and keep coming back to -- is Oahu.

Whatever your plans, you're going to love Hawaii. It's like no place else.

north carolina
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8. Re: Our dream trip

We havent been yet, but I bought "Maui Revealed" for that island and it is a fabulous guidebook. Written like you were just talking to someone giving you great information. Dont know if the author has other books or not, but really enjoying it for detailed info

San Jose, California
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9. Re: Our dream trip

Oahu, especially Honolulu, is a huge, crowded, busy city. Do not choose. I recommend Maui. Any time of the year will do, summers are busy with kids. 7-10 days is plenty for Maui. I also recommend Maui Revealed book.

Coronado, California
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10. Re: Our dream trip

>>>Oahu, especially Honolulu, is a huge, crowded, busy city. Do not choose. <<<

Sorry, that is just incorrect.

Oahu is an island, not a city, and it has many quiet, uncrowded, lush tropical areas. It is the second most lush island after Kauai, much more tropical and lush than Maui and to me it feels much less touristy than Maui.

If you look at Maui, Oahu and Kauai, you can see how lush or arid each area is.

Where you choose depends on how old you are, what activities you want, if you want nightlife and what kind of shopping and dining options you want.