Hawaii: nature, no crowds?

woodsygirlNovember 16, 2002

Where is the best place in Hawaii for outdoor recreation, absorbing nature, local flavor (i.e., no chain hotels or restaurants)? Which island? We are thinking about going in late spring, and we'd like to stay at a B&B or cottage. We don't necessarily need the amenities of a city, but we don't want to drive more than 4 hours from the airport. Mid- to upper price range.

I would like ideas or recommendations from people who have been there. Thanks.

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plantladyco

Just got back from Hawaii(Big Island) I know places to get away, but need to know what you like to do when on vacation.

    Bookmark   November 18, 2002 at 10:28AM
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lpolk

Molokai will have the most remote feel. It used to be a leper colony (still has one?) so it was not known for tourism. That is changing though. There are lodges/cottages there and lots of local flavor, no major malls.
Kauai has the reputed most beautiful nature, where all the movies are filmed - South Pacific, Jurassic Park, and probably have some remote cottages. I have heard that you have to watch where you explore on your own because of the large drug crops there however. I'm sure if you stay in a rentable cottage they will give you the rundown. It has a rainy side that is more remote/beautiful, but alas, rainy.

    Bookmark   November 18, 2002 at 3:09PM
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dolfannat

I'm partial to Kauai since I lived there for 5 years.I lived on the south side Poipu Beach area.I worked for the Hyatt Regency Kaui which I think is the nicest on the island.But is pricy.There are many b&b's.There is a book that you can get at any Borders or Barnes and Noble.Its called The Ultimate Kauai Guide book.It is written by locals who give their unbiased opinion on evertyhing from activities and lodging.

The North shore is where they filmed all the movies and is a must see,but it rains alot.South side you get the most sunny days and the west side is HOT!!!!

Other than maybe getting lost in a cane field trying to get to the exclusive Mahalapu Beach,never heard of "finding drugs" accidently while touring.Yea I'm sure its there but the locals wouldn't have it where any haeole may come across it.

Spring is my favorite season there.Have a great time.

Natalie

    Bookmark   November 25, 2002 at 6:30PM
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marikoitoh

id agree with dolfannat that kauai is a good choice. lots of different things to see and do, not too remote, nice laid back feel.
molokai though very remote, doesnt offer much to see or do other than donkey rides and golf. the cottages at kaluakoi are nice and homey. Lanai is just as remote with less to see and do.
i would also consider hawaii(the big island) simply because kilauea is still erupting(be sure to check before you make plans.) and to my knowlege im sure its the only place in the world you can see, get ridiculously close to active flowing lava, which eventually empties into the ocean. you can actually get as close to the lava as you can stand. dont worry. the lava moves very slowly, and theres no danger of the volcano exploding like St.helens. the landscape around the crater is also amazing, like youre on another planet, sulfur and everything. then you can go up to mauna kea and do some snowboarding!(again check to see if theres enough snow when you go) the downside is that there is a fair amount of driving as the island is larger as all the islands combined and mauna kea is the largest,tallest mountain on earth. theres also neat things like the kona coast, coffee farms, sacred sites,etc. to see.
Oahu and maui are definitely touristy. though maui has mt haleakala which has the most breathtaking sunrise in the world and oahu has the most, best beaches anywhere. if youre the beach type theres always surf somewhere, places to windsurf, scuba, hangout, etc.
if you couldnt already tell, yes im a local. and id say now is a pretty good time to come here since we are totally dependant :: on tourism and since 9/11 you can imagine the drop off. also recently the airfares here have gone down and they have been advertising 'kamaaina'(local) reduced rates for hotel rooms and getaway packages. which means they are desperate so you can shop around for the best rates. hope this helps,:)

    Bookmark   December 6, 2002 at 5:44AM
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bbolts

My hands down vote goes to Kauai. I have been to Maui and Oahu (Honolulu) and Kauai, and Kauai is by far the most beautiful and spititual place I have ever set foot. I was lucky enough to have a friend with family there and stayed for a month. There is much to do if your idea of fun is NOT malls, tourist-traps, and dancing all night long. However if you want to experience nature, lovely beaches, eat some great food and meet people who are actually nice to you (must be the result of living in such splendor, or possibly they are grateful for the tourist dollar, but hey, the locals I all met were very warm people)
Natalie is correct about Poipu being a great place to stay. Great weather. Nice sunny beach!
(Natalie, maybe you know Claire, daughters Dawn & Tiara....)
Please have a wonderful time where ever you go!
Brenda

    Bookmark   December 12, 2002 at 11:57PM
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artemiss

Try Kona Village on the Big Island. We spent 10 days there, in one of their private cottages. No phone, radio or tv...but the ultimate in luxury and beauty. It remains the most memorable vacation I've ever had. The Big Island has many other attractions: waterfalls, rainforests, black sand beaches, I could go on and on. I've recommended Kona Village many times since I've been there, and everyone who has gone has absolutely loved it. Wish I could go again!

    Bookmark   December 22, 2002 at 6:49PM
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