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  1. #1

    Default Hawaii-New York: Summer 2012


    First I would like to thank the members for all the great info on how to put together a nice road trip :)

    This summer my wife and I went on our second road trip in the states. And it was great! We wanted to combine beaches, nature, culture and city life.

    Stockholm - Oahu
    After a long flight (cirka 24 hours) we landed on one of our favourite Islands, Oahu! We have been there before so we skipped all the "must do"-things (Pearl harbor, Polynesian Culture Center etc) and just hanged out on Waikiki for a couple of days. We stayed at "Park Shore Waikiki an Aqua Hotel". Its a ok hotel close to the beach and the rate is good. Its also close to Waikikis best breakfast place, Lulus! We didnt have a car on Oahu this time but its a good thing to have if it is your first time there.


    Oahu- Big Island
    We arrived at lunch to our hotel in Big Island, Sheraton Keauhou Bay Resort & Spa. It sounds fancier than it is. Its a ugly, big hotel but its cheap and has a great view over the bay. If you stay here, dont try the food!
    After a good nights sleep we took our rental ( a Chevy Aveo from Dollar) to the harbor. We had booked a fishing trip for the whole day and we where convinced we would get a biiiig blue marlin....we didnt :( Not even a bite on the whole day.
    The next day we drove to Hilo on the other side of the Island. Its a really cool landscape to drive through :) When we arrived to Hilo we went to Paradise Helicopters for a tour over the "lava" and waterfalls. I booked the helicopter without the doors, big mistake :/
    I was a bit scared to fall out of the helicopter that I just hold on to whatever I could find (my wifes leg and a small rope). But the trip was really cool! We saw the lava flow and all the waterfalls! A must do if you are there!


    After the tour we went to Akaka Falls state park. They have a short trail (free) through the rain forest that we walked where we saw the waterfalls and all the cool flowers!


    The rest of the time on Big Island we chilled by the pool and regained our powers after the thrilling helicopter tour.


  2. #2


    Big Island - Maui

    After a short trip on a really small airplane we landed in Maui where we picked up our second Aveo from Dollar. The first thing we noticed about Maui is that it is a really windy Island. In Maui we stayed at Royal Lahaina Resort. It was a really nice hotel right on a great beach. They also had a great restaurant where they served my favourite fries, the sweet potato ones :)

    We where still a bit jetlagged after the long trip from Stockholm a week earlier. So we went on our road trip to Hana early in the morning. If you are going to do the "road to Hana"-trip it is a great idea to go as early in the morning as possible. The road is everything but straight and alot of people go to Hana. Another good thing to bring is food, water and a good map with all the sights! And make sure you have a full tank of gas.

    This road is beautiful with all the trees, waterfalls etc. The trip took about 15 hours. A "must do" stop is Haleakala National Park with a great trail up to a big waterfall!





  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Las Vegas, Nevada

    Default Now working: Trees!

    Thanks for the update on your trip, sounds like a great trip!

    I like the Quiet sign for the working trees.


  4. #4


    Hi Mark! Yes i was a great trip :)

    The following day on Maui we went on a traditional Luau! We did the "Old Lahaina Luau". The Luau was really good with tasty traditional polynesian food and a dance show. The Luau is more intimate than the Luau at Polynesian Culture center (and better). We have been to a couple of luaus around the pacific and this is one of the better. A nice thing was that we was seated next to 3 couples who all lived somewhere we where going on this trip. So we got alot of good tips on what to do :)


    We also went on a snuba trip. Snuba is a like a cross over betwen scuba and snorkling. This way you can go deeper into the water without the need for a license. We first went to the Molokini crater. I have seen much better snorkling spot around the world and I was a bit disapointed. But later we got to a "secret" place where the sea turtles lives! It was so cool to swim with this beautiful creatures :) The turtles looked at us and followed us around. Only thing to watch out for is that you are not allowed to tuch them. If you touch them or if they touch you you will get a 10 000 USD fine :/ This is a must do! But skip the Molikini crater.


    The next day we just stayed on the beach (and ate sweet potato fries). We where supposed to go to Denver the next day...


    Well..United canceled that flight and told us that we where sooo lucky to get stay one more day in Maui. They gave us a room at "Maui Beach hotel"...Dont stay there.


  5. #5


    The next day we took the flight to Denver! I could not sleep on the flight so I was a bit tired when we picked up our rental 08:00 in the morning. I got the car that I wanted (as a tourist a went for the Mustang cab). The manager at Dollar tried to scam us on the one way fee so we had to argue a bit to get the price we wanted. But soon we finally where on our way to Trail ridge road! The scenery is amazing on this road! After a while we came to the top of the mountain! When I got out of the car I almost fainted because of the thin air :/ We stayed here for lunch and the obligatory purchase of a souvenir magnet :)

    We where supposed to stay at a hotel in Estes park this night but since our flight was cancelled I had to drive the next days leg this day :(

    After a looong day without any sleep we finally arrived at a town called Torrington. Its not the biggest or the most beautiful town I have seen but it had to do. We had a long drive the next day so we ordered pizza and went to sleep :)






  6. #6




    Is it just I who see a teddy bears head in the mountain? :)

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    South of England.

    Default Thanks.

    Hmm, I see a scary Bear !! lol.

    Great report and wonderful photos, Thanks for taking the time to share with us, I look forward to more !


  8. #8


    After a good nights sleep we went to Custer state park and the "wild life loop". We really liked this park where there is a big chance that you will se buffalos! We saw many baffalos, wild donkeys and turkeys :)



    After all the buffalos we went to Mnt Rushmore. On the way there I pointed at a strange looking mountain and said to my wife "doesnt that look like a big indian head?". My wife said that it sure did and wanted to take a closer look. I had talked about Crazy horse with my wife before but she must have forgot :) We went over to the visitors center and watched the film about the history of Crazy horse. It was cool but I wonder if it ever will be finished. It is today the worlds largest stone sculpture.

    After that we REALLY went to Mnt Rushmore. It is strange to visit these landmarks that you only have seen in books and in movies. I had pictured it in my mind to be bigger. But it was a big "bucket list" thing for me to see :) Btw, if you dont have to dont try the food in the cafeteria :/



  9. #9


    Since it was only lunch-time I decided to do some of the next days sightseeing this day. So we headed directly to Deadwood, the town where Wild Bill was killed. I didnt think it was worth the drive :/ The town seems to be a small wild west version of vegas with casinos.


    So we decided to go to this trips biggest "must do"-ting (for me), Devils tower monument!
    Ever since I first saw "close encounters" I have wanted to visit this place. And I must say that I wasnt disappointed :) The mountain/tower/volcano is really magical!



    I was so excited to go there that I forgot to fill up the tank. So when we where 20 min away from the monument the red warning light started to flash. I didnt want to take a chance and go to the monument and find out there was no gas station. So I had to go back :/ On the way back we found a small town called Aladdin (pop 15) with a gas station :)


    After this we where really tired so we decided to go to the hotel in Rapid City. We stayed at Rapid City-Days Inn which was good for the money it cost.

  10. #10


    Since we had not seen any bears (other than the strange "mountain bear") we went to Bear Country! A cool place where you can see all the big American animals up close. First we took our car around the park where we saw mountain lions, goats and bears! The bears was the best! At the end of the park they have a pen with bear cubs :) I recommend this park but its a bit expensive.



    When we felt we had seen enough bears we headed for needles highway. The road is really special with some cool tunnels, beautiful mountains, trees and outlooks! Highly recommend a trip on this road :)


    After Needles highway we rushed to Minute man only to find out that we where there 10 minutes late for the last tour :( This was not a biggie for us but it would have been cool to se the bunker and everything. If you plan to go to minute man make sure you get there early. The tickets are free but they are limited.


    So we went back to Wall drugs to see what all the fuss was about. Wall drugs is not a big thing to see I think. But we had an ice cream and bought a pair of cowboy boots. Always something :)


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