My family and I recently took this bus tour of the Road to Hana and thoroughly enjoyed it!
Our driver (I think his name was Charles?) was very knowledgeable about the island and was glad to take questions. His sense of humor was a bit corny, but pleasant enough. He handled the stressful drive VERY WELL...I felt very confident in his driving ability after just a few incidences where we had to squeeze by other traffic on this sometimes narrow road.
The van was clean and the seats were very comfy. The windows were LARGE and CLEAN enough that I actually took some good pics of the outside scenery from inside the van.
Very limited selection of food/drinks, but tasty enough. The breakfast buffet was held at the Dunes (golf course/country club) and it had nice views of the golf course. Overall, it was nothing special.
1) Best benefit of this bus tour is to AVOID the hassle and stress of driving this narrow road by yourself! There's no way I could have driving my family along this road and been able to take in all of the views...also, I wouldn't have known the best places to stop and visit!
2) Knowledgeable, competent driver that was willing to answer all questions about Maui (unless it involved Hawaiian politics).
3) Clean, comfy van.
4) Lunch was tasty (BBQ chicken and salad).
5) Outstanding views!!! The Road to Hana is a MUST-SEE for anyone visiting Maui.
1) We walked to the lobby to be picked up and found the Valley Isle Van waiting on time...only to be told by the driver that another Valley Isle Van would be coming sometime soon to pick us up and that we were not booked on his van. Our van finally arrived about 10 to 15 minutes late. This situation was confusing to me. Why would they send 2 different vans to the same hotel? As it turns out, the vans pick up a few passengers from different hotels until the van is full. I'm not sure why they didn't book all passengers from the same hotel together on the same van, but they didn't for whatever reason. Bottom line is that this is not a big deal, but I wish I would have been told this ahead of time to avoid confusion...and I wish my van would have been on time.
2) We were told by the driver that the weather looked clear/good and we had a ver good chance of going swimming at the Ohea Gulch (aka 7 Sacred Pools). But when we arrived, we were told swimming was not allowed that day due to high water flow (must've rained the night before). This was not the fault of the driver, but it was a LET DOWN to find out we could not swim after being told that we had a very good chance of being able to swim in the pools.
3) Breakfast buffet was very limited and nothing special.
4) VERY PRICEY FOR WHAT YOU GET!!! To be fair, the other bus tours of the Road to Hana are also pricey, so what are you gonna do?
BOTTOM LINE: I'm very glad we booked this bus tour of the Road to Hana...it was a great way to see the sights while avoiding the stress of driving our rental car on this road!!!
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
June 24, 2013
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Mahalo for the review we appreciate this very much.
As far as having more than 1 pickup at a hotel, this does happen, sometimes there are many more than our van will handle at one hotel, other times there is too many hotels and have the drivers make way too many pickups. (More reasons but don’t want to bore you) EVERY guide has the names of the people he/she is to pick up and the names that the other driver is to pickup to avoid confusion. It is unfortunate that both vans were not there at the same time, this is the norm. But we can have delays at pickups ahead of you that are beyond the driver’s control. Charley is the kind of person that won't share that information with you; he does not want to blame the others for the delay.
It is hard to predict when the National Park will close the pools for swimming, it takes about 8 to 12 hours for the water to flow from its source, if it rains hard in the mountains it can flash flood within a few hours, so the rangers are extra careful. There have been people and children who have lost their lives in the past. But the rangers are really good at keeping people safe.
We understand about your view of prices of the tours. Yes we are close in price, but we only carry 12 people, per van, verses 20 or 25. Plus we include a continental breakfast and baked barbeque chicken for lunch. We also don't charge for bottled water, and sodas. So this makes our prices rather reasonable. Plus the cost of fuel, maintenance and state and park fees really add to almost 25% of your costs.
Again, thank you for visiting and the great way you thought out and wrote your review.
Sent from Maui with Aloha
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.