I've camped all over the world - so have some basis for comparison. I had high hopes of having a real "nature" Hawaii experience. I did - but also had a real "down and out" "noisy" ill-mannered camper neighbor experiences - including theft of my cell phone at 7:30 in the morning when the place appeared deserted. Alas, it seems there is an ongoing problem with continual petty thieves roaming the grounds. During my stay, people lost clothes drying on their clotheslines, wet suit stolen from the grass shack clothesline, my cell phone from the "comfort station", CD players and CD's, luggage, money taken from slashed suitcases inside tents... these are a few stories fellow campers shared with me.
Security told me they know who the regular kids are who steal from the campground. Isn't that nice to know? You will find out after the fact that staff knows who takes stuff from campers. What's wrong with this picture?
I was looking so forward to being with nature on the beach - which is hard to come by in Hawaii due to the great numbers of homeless people and druggies who claim the beaches as their own throughout the islands. This campground advertised security. I never saw any patrolling or pro-active security measures. On weekends and holidays the camping circles were filled with LOUD noisy groups, including screaming children beginning at sunrise, radios, bright flood lights, noisy intrusive young men shouting, kids running around with flashlights shining through the walls in your tent til 2 AM and later.... you get the picture. Oh yes, the roosters: First crow around 2 AM, then warming up by 4 AM, then 6 AM and on... non stop. Right outside your tent!
In the camping circles, people start their fire with various lighter fluids - so the whole campground reeks with chemical smells at night. I guess few people know how to make a fire anymore with crumpled newspaper, twigs, and firewood.
The toilets had been condemned.... so there were porta-potties in use. No one likes porta-potties, of course, but the staff did a great job of keeping them clean and supplied with toilet paper.
The handles did not work in the showers... so at best I could get a few moments of warmish water... then it was pot luck if the water was warm to cold - as the mixing valves didn't mix the water temperatures.
The shower areas were also not cleaned... one day I picked up two big bags of old toiletry containers, used diapers, sanitary supplies, used condoms... etc. The owner said they would add that to their daily cleaning list. I wonder what I had to even mention it?
The wifi area worked well during my stay. At night, scroungy characters were hanging around the wifi station. Later, the owner put up a sign telling non-registered people to not use the wifi station.
I do not call this good security, nor a patrolled campground.
Seems the owner is off island a lot - so much is untended. The staff tries their best, but seem untrained in a lot of things. The staff was very friendly and amiable on a personal level.
There is so much potential for this beautiful spot. I would like to see some competent management of the grounds and facilitye - and real security as they advertised on their website.
That said, the experience with the wonderful beach is incredible. You can walk the whole beach down to the State Recreation Area of Malaekahana. On my walks I enjoyed watching the sand crabs scuttle around, and one day a HUGE sea lion laying on the beach.
Two days a week, homeless people stay at the campground when the public beach parks are closed. They do register.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Malaekahana Park at Kahuku is a Public Campground with cabins available. It is a privately managed, Non-Profit Organization. No state permit required to camp. Please visit Staff reorganized December of 2008. ... more less
- Also Known As:
- Malaekahana State Recreation Area Hotel Laie
- Malaekahana State Recreation Area Laie, Oahu, Hawaii