questionshave you ever been to hawaii?

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My wife and I went a few years back, and we stayed in Maui. Be prepared to spend a lot on everything (I payed like $4 for a can of soup at the store).

Some of the main highlights that I would recommend:

1) Snorkeling - Absolutely beautiful in Hawaii (May want a disposable underwater camera)
2) Whale Watching - October is probably one of the best months to do it there
3) Sunset Dinner Cruise - Especially if you are on your honeymoon
4) See A Luau
5) Try the Hula Pie

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Congrats on getting married! October's a great month, that's when we got married just over a year ago!

I was there once this summer on a layover. Worst. Layover. Ever! :p

I wish I would've had time for the Polynesian Cultural Center is pretty famous, I wish I would have had more time for that.

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I lived there for 5 years. Definitely hit up Kauai and Maui if you can. They're both loads better than Oahu. Hanauma Bay for snorkeling. Skip the Polynesian Cultural Center, it's way overpriced. You're better off doing a luau on the beach somewhere else. There's loads available for a good price. Oahu has a really nice art museum if you're into art. The aquarium is not huge but it's actually pretty nice and worth the price of admission. Eat at L&L Drive in. The price is right, portions are large and the food is good. Make sure you get the mac salad. Hit the North Shore and go to Kua Aina in Haleiwa for burgers (teriyaki is ono) and super thin cut fries. It's probably going to be raining and windy so pack a rain jacket. While you're up there head to Waimea Bay, it's a nice beach. Don't go in the water if you're not a good swimmer. People get destroyed in the shore break. Broken necks and the whole deal. Body surfing is good stuff if you know what you're doing but the waves don't forgive.

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congrats to you both!

i've been to hawaii quite a few times. been to Oahu, Kauai, Maui and the big island. if you go to the big island, i'd highly recommend doing the crater rim drive at the Volcanoes National Park. (see here for more info: http://www.nps.gov/havo/planyourvisit/craterdr.htm)

If you're on Maui, I'd recommend doing the road to Hana. it will take an entire day, but the scenery is absolutely gorgeous and the drive is awesome. more info here: http://www.frommers.com/destinations/maui/0015020319.html

on Kauai, it's more of a laid back setting. i can't think of any must do activities except lounging in the sun and in the pool. but, if you must do something, here's some ideas: http://www.kauai-hawaii.com/sites.php. also, if it interests you, there's a huge Hindu temple with some very cool architecture and statues. (http://www.himalayanacademy.com/visit/come-on-a-tour) just note, shorts are not allowed, but i think they give you a wrap if you have them on.

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Congrats!! I am sure you are going to have a wonderful time on your honeymoon! I went to Hawaii in 2009 for a 9 day/8 nights vacation and it was awesome. We too stayed on Oahu. Our hotel was in Waikiki right on the beach, the Moana Surfrider. The location was perfect and the hotel was beautiful, I would recommend it to anyone. We were able to walk to the zoo, and there was a huge market across the street we visited frequently. We did everything by foot for the first 4 days we were there and then on the 5th day we rented a car and drove around the entire island. I would highly recommend that to anyone. There is so much to see if you get out of the city. We also hiked Diamond Head, an incredible dormant volcano which we could see from the beach. And of course we went to Pearl Harbor. We had such a wonderful time we are talking about going back this year and maybe staying on the Big Island instead. Have a great time!!

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i forgot Oahu. i'm not a huge fan of waikiki beaches, but the cultural stuff and museums are really interesting. where are you staying in Oahu? we stayed in Kapolei and i was pretty content just staying there. except i had to constantly venture out to some random place that had the best Poke (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Poke_(Hawaii)) i've ever had in my life.

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Highly recommend Volcanoes National Park on the Big Island. Go early to avoid the crowds, spend the day.

On Oahu, I had a awesome, fun time on the Bike Hawaii "O`AHU BIKE, HIKE, SAIL & SNORKEL
Our Full-Day Rainforest to the Reef Adventure". Got a bit of a discount buying through Tom's Barefoot Tours' website.

Edit to add: Probably in the minority here, but I did not enjoy the USS Arizona memorial. Have to get there super early for free tix, then wait and wait and wait for your chance to boat over. Once you're there, there's not much to do except read the names, then mill around until it's time to go back. No disrespect intended; it just wasn't for me.

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Shoots blalah! Congrats :) Never been, but choke wanna go. Garans ball-barans you'll have a good time

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We had a great time just hoping on the highway and driving around the island. Since it's small, you can pretty much make the whole trip in half a day with breaks to look at cool stuff along the way.

Also, the Polynesian Cultural Center on Oahu was fantastic and included an evening Luau.

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We went to Hawaii many years ago before we had children, when we still had money. Only saw Oahu and Maui but it was all lovely. Hanauma Bay for snorkeling is a must. Luau is practically mandatory. (Is Germaine's Luau still around?) Haleakala bike tour on Maui if you can handle the biking, otherwise be sure to see the volcano, regardless. We went to lots of beaches and every one was different. Not the sand that we are used to seeing on the Gulf Coast. Congratulations and best wishes! Have fun!

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Other than the week I stayed there, most of my Hawaii knowledge comes from the Brady Bunch. So avoid picking up strange Tikis that could make strong tabu.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Bq5oOaaYRc

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Thank you all! These suggestions are great!
I should say, we are deciding on Oahu, because there are a lot of things to do. Also, being a Wootizen, I found a great deal on a condo, with a full kitchen. The view isn't great, but I'm not going to Hawaii to look at the view from my condo. If anyone has suggestions of other places to stay, with a full kitchen, I am open to suggestions =] Nothing has been booked yet! But I'm planning on booking this week.

@luvche21, I can't imagine having a layover there! That really would stink! I would want to go and enjoy the islands!

@zuiquan, Thanks for the food suggestions! We'll be sure to check them out!

@carl669, the crater rim drive sounds really cool! But it sounds like some of it is closed. I'll have to do some more research! I've also heard good things about the road to Hana. We'll check it out if we make it that way =]

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I have not but I think I will bookmark this thread just in case it ever happens. :)

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@craigster38: conditions can change daily, so you never quite know what will happen. but, that shouldn't be a deterrent. plus, the big island is just cool. when you land at the airport, it almost looks like you're landing on another planet due to all the volcanic rock.

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@craigster38: We went to Big Island a little over a year ago. It was amazing and there were too many things to do in just one week!!! The one place I loved the most of all was the seahorse farm. It was sooo neat to see so many seahorses and learn about them and even touch some. http://www.seahorse.com/
Also, you should try snooba it is a mix of snorkeling and scuba where you breath from a tank on a raft and you are able to swim down 20 feet or so and they take to see really cool places and it doesn't require the training of scuba diving.
I bought an underwater digital camera for the trip and trust me you won't regret it if you do! I have some amazing pictures of coral, a sea turtle that swam with us, tons of fish, plus it is just great to not have to worry when you are taking pictures on a beach/boat/by the pool.
My brother got the condo we stayed at but I believe he told me it was a groupon or living social deal.

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Oh yeah, a tip, if you are planning on doing whale watching tours or things of that nature make reservations before you get there. There were a couple things we wanted to do but by the time we were there it was all filled up.

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Been several times.
I definitely agree with the crowd -- get off of Oahu (out of Honolulu.)
Kauai is definitely laid back, very relaxing. If you go, you have to eat at Duane's Ono Charburger in Anahola. Take the Fern Grotto cruise. Visit the botanical garden.
On Maui, the Road to Hana gets a lot of press and good reviews, but the road is not for the faint of heart -- very narrow windy road. I'd visit the Maui Ocean Center and Lahaina Town. If you decide on Maui, MAKE SURE you're NOT going during the Maui Invitational Basketball Tourney. The island is a madhouse during that time.
Big Island you have to visit the Volcanoes Park. Maybe a helicopter or boat tour to go see the active lava flow. I'd stay on the Hilo side as the Kona side is kinda wasteland-y.
If you must stay on Oahu, I really enjoyed the Polynesian Cultural Center. Sure's it's a bit expensive and tourist trap-y but it was interesting. Hanauma Bay is good if you're a snorkeler.

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@wootferret: On Big Island KONA is the nice side HILO is the run down side.

Also, if you are renting a car make sure to do it well in advance and if your flight gets delayed call and make sure they hold your car!

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@belyndag: Germaine's is still around. That was the place to go to when I lived there. Good food and a good show. I only went two or three times, usually when guests would come to visit but they were never disappointed.

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Be sure and try Loco Moco. Congrats as well!

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@zuiquan: Great! I remember hearing about Germaine's and thinking that it sounded lame, mostly because, well, how authentic can a luau be if it's called "Germaine's?" We had a blast! The food was really quite good, the show was great, and somewhere there is a video of me on stage TRYING to learn the hula. No one needs to see that, but I just found this on the wall in our den. Note the Germaine's Luau ticket in the corner, but please ignore the ancient hair styles.

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@chellemonkey: Hilo side may be a little run down. It felt small-town America to me. I enjoyed the Japanese garden. The Kona side just reminded me too much of home (desert SW). It wasn't anything to look at (until you get to your condo/hotel) unless you have a thing for old lava flows.

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1.) Congrats on getting married! We just got married this last September -- Oct would be cool too!
2.) Yes, I've been to Hawaii (with my family a couple of years ago -- going to have to take the wife sometime...)
3.) So many cool things to do, and the island is perfect for it. A few suggestions:
- Polynesian Cultural Center (PCC)
- Snorkeling in Hanauma Bay (bring an underwater cam -- it's awesome!)
- Climb Diamond Head (Volcano)
- Visit the Rainforest (there's an awesome golf course (super hard!) if you're into that sort of thing -- kind of pricey, but super fun.
- Visit the Dole Plantation -- learn tons about Pineapple, and try Pineapple Ice Cream!