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BI itinerary help

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N. Indiana
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BI itinerary help

Aloha fellow TA Members:

My wife and I will be on the BI 1/22/14 - 2/1. We've been to all the other islands, even close to the Forbidden Island. I love to plan out vacations far ahead of time. Ok, full disclosure, I'm ridiculously OC about planning vacations. I know it is a bad character flaw, and I'm working on a cure.

Till now, every vacation has been simple to plan. Piece of cake. But for some odd reason that I can't put a finger on, I'm really struggling with our BI itinerary. I've read the excellent Top Q's and checked out a copy of Reviled ... now put those stones down, I WON'T be bringing it, and Lonely Planet's Discover Hawai'i the Big Island. I've also lived in the TA forums for a week, but I just can't seem to get a handle on the best way to do it all. If you don't mind helping, here is what we would like to do:

Snorkel and hike as much as possible. Do VNP. Do some good cultural studies. Considering getting trained to do manta ray dive. Considering outside possibility of going on early am boat ride to see lava in ocean.

We're spending a fortune on car rental, so I want to make great use of the car. Mahalo!


Nor Cal
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11. Re: BI itinerary help

Why "No" on the lava boat tours? I've heard you should see the lava at night but do not want to go on a helicopter. Thanks.

ON, Canada
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12. Re: BI itinerary help

The Lava Boat tours are dangerous - but it's a non-issue right now because there isn't lava flowing into the ocean. www.nps.gov/havo/planyourvisit/lava2.htm

Port Austin
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13. Re: BI itinerary help

My wife and I considered double booking an overnight room in the volcano area, but instead we booked a full day tour. Hawaii Forest and Trail "Twilight Volcano Tour" leaves Kona in the morning and returns home after dark the same day. You travel on a 10-12 passenger tour bus which was comfortable. You have the advantage of a great guide. Meals are included. You'll see things you would probably miss on your own. With this tour you have no need of booking a room for overnight use since you'll return to Kona that evening. Worth it! Check out Hawaii Forest and Trail for their available tours and reviews.

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14. Re: BI itinerary help

Steven beat to the advice I was going to give you and I want to back up the suggestion. I agree with using Hawaiian Forest and Trail. We had a great experience. We got to spend all of our time in our wonderful condo and didn't have the hassle of relocating. We felt 100% safe on the drive back because our guide knew the roads. Our guide pointed out so many things we would have missed. As a matter of fact, we drove last year on the same road to and didn't feel as impressed with what we were seeng without the guide. We had Big Island Revealed and still didn't see it the same way we did this year on the tour.

A side note: Maui Revealed was all we needed in Maui to find all of the hidden gems and tour the island. For some reason Big Island Revealed just overwhelmed and confused me. It was worthless on Big Island to me.

This was our second trip. Last year everything went as planned. The weather cooperated, the ocean cooperated, and we were able to get reservations. This year we struggled. I had everything planned. Specifically, the ocean didn't cooperate. Two days in a row our morning plans didn't work out because the beach was closed. The beaches without lifeguards were open but we really didn't think that was a good idea. We didn't go to the Captain Cook monument as planned because we figured if Kona Boys cancelled their tours we had no business being there. So, we tried to move to plan B but the tours we wanted were full. Sometimes we honestly had to come up with plan D. We had a great time but it wasn't was simple as last year. I am only pointing this out so that you take the time to pencil in plan B. Luckily, I wrote down "if there is time" ideas that ended up working well for plan B. Just wanted to mention this to you to help you plan. Rainy day ideas, ocean swells days, too much sun yesterday days, and chillin' days are a good idea.

I got overwhelmed planning our Big Island trips also. I am not sure why it was harder but it has proven to be the most challenging of all of our trips to get a grasp on. It had been well worth the effort though!

Big Island, Hawaii
Destination Expert
for Island of Hawaii
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15. Re: BI itinerary help

While I like the HFT option for many people, and am glad it got suggested here, it does have significant downsides. There is the inability to enjoy many of the hikes in VNP, the incredible beauty of the place in the very early morning, and also an overnight gives you the opportunity to take the Hamakua Coast route here or back and take in those sites so you don't have to make two trips east during your trip.

16. Re: BI itinerary help

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