Aloha from Hawai‘i: Escape to the Islands
Extraordinary adventures are yours to experience in Hawai‘i — from snorkeling with manta rays and hiking up a dormant volcano to flying over magnificent scenery
Waterfall along the wall of Waimea Canyon, Waimea, Kauai | Photo: Hawaii Tourism Authority (HTA)/Tor Johnson
Hawai‘i, the Big Island
Epic moments await on Hawai‘i’s largest island. Nothing beats the Manta Ray Night Snorkel with Jack’s Diving Locker. Enjoy a late afternoon boat ride along the Kona coast, then slip into the water with your snorkel guide and gear. Be amazed as you witness majestic manta rays somersault, glide, and pivot as they feed on plankton while illuminated by the underwater lights. Elsewhere, Hawai‘i Forest & Trail is your guide to pristine scenery on their Kohala Waterfalls Adventure. The day features an off-road trip in a six-wheel-drive Pinzgauer to a private trailhead, a walk through a private nature reserve, relaxation under one of seven cascading waterfalls, an excursion through a restored ancient Hawaiian agricultural site, and vistas of towering sea cliffs and remote valleys.
History, urban wonders, and tropical beauty make up O‘ahu’s unique attractions. Blue Hawaiian Helicopter’s Pali Makani tour is a captivating bird’s-eye view of O‘ahu. The flight takes you over Honolulu Harbor and Aloha Tower; downtown Honolulu and the famous ‘Iolani Palace; Punchbowl, the National Cemetery of the Pacific; Magic Island and Ala Moana Beach Park; Waikīkī Beach and Diamond Head; plus historic Pearl Harbor and the USS Arizona Memorial. Back on land, amazing adventures can be found in Kualoa, a 4,000-acre working cattle ranch and nature preserve spanning mountains, valleys, and the shoreline. The Treetop Canopy Zipline Tour starts at the top of Ka‘a‘awa Valley and features seven exciting tandem sections, two suspension bridges, and three short nature trails. Soar and hike while learning about Hawaiian traditions and experiencing the valley’s beauty.
Hawai‘i’s oldest island offers enthralling escapes. Outfitters Kauai’s Waimea Canyon Bike Downhill Tour is your chance to experience the mile-wide, 14-mile-long “Grand Canyon of the Pacific.” The easy downhill bike cruise goes from 3,600 feet to sea level with stops to admire views of canyon cliffs, forests, and the ocean. Equally stunning is Kaua‘i’s Nā Pali Coast, 17 miles of rugged sea cliffs and valleys that are all but inaccessible except by sea and air. Captain Andy’s Sailing Adventures’ Na Pali Raft Cave Patrol is a thrilling way to explore the sea caves on a custom 24-foot rigid-hull craft. You’ll dart in and out of caves, plunge under waterfalls, and take in dramatic cliff and valley views.
Dreamy Maui abounds in outdoor adventures. Maui Hiking Safaris specializes in small-group hiking tours of the island’s wilderness areas. The Haleakalā Waterfall Hike (half or full day) follows a meandering stream along this dormant volcano’s slopes, starting at 500 feet elevation. Climb by groves of guava, koa, mountain apple, bamboo, and waterfalls up to 60 feet high. Cool off by several clear waterfall pools along the trail. Enjoy two magnificent snorkel locations on the Discover Molokini adventure with Sail Trilogy. First, you’ll visit Molokini —a crescent-shaped, partially submerged volcanic crater 2.5 miles off Maui, where the waters are filled with 250 species of fish, coral, and other marine wildlife. Then, snorkel Turtle Town or the backside of Molokini. Either way, it’s a memorable day.