Introducing Featured Journeys from Five Star Alliance. Each month we're pulling together a luxurious multi-destination itinerary to discover. First up, the Hawaiian Islands. Offering a plethora of landscapes, scenery, and activities, the U.S.A.'s 50th state has much to be discovered.
The Big Island
We recommend starting your journey on the island of Oahu, home of the Honolulu International Airport with nonstop flights arriving daily from around the world. Explore the cosmopolitan city, walk along Waikiki Beach, hike atop Leahi (Diamond Head), and visit the Pearl Harbor Memorial. To experience a laid back surf town, take about a one-hour drive to Haleiwa, on the island's North Shore, where visitors can experience the island's history, dine in restaurants set within former plantation buildings, browse charming art galleries, and shop surfing boutiques. For kayaking, parasailing, windsurfing, and bodyboarding, head to Kailua Beach Park on the Windward Coast. Known for white sand and turquoise water, it's an ideal spot for exploring. Nearby Kailua Town offers a range of restaurants, including Island Snow, serving shave ice treats and frequented by the Obama family.
Here are a few of our top-rated Oahu Hotels:
The Royal Hawaiian
Since opening in 1927, The Royal Hawaiian Resort has provided guests with a luxurious Hawaiian setting, along the shore of Waikiki Beach. Learn to surf, experience a luau, or watch the sunset while sipping a tropical drink at the Mai Tai Bar.
Four Seasons Resort Oahu at Ko Olina
Completely renovated in 2016, the Four Seasons Resort Oahu at Ko Olina is set on a private beach with a four-level Naupaka Spa & Wellness Centre providing Hawaiian-inspired treatments. Plus, the Ko Olina Golf Club, outrigger canoeing, and sport fishing.
Situated along Waikiki Beach, the Halekulani has an iconic, mosaic-bottomed freshwater pool with ocean views. Along with the award-winning, five-star rated Le Mer Restaurant serving French cuisine infused with tropical ingredients in a romantic setting.
Next, hop a flight to the island of Maui. Referred to as the "Valley Isle," Maui offers a taste of the island's locally sourced cuisine, artist communities, and charming towns. The island is also known for whale watching, and it is located withing the Hawaiian Islands Humpack Whale National Marine Sanctuary. From January to April, Lahaina Harbor offers a wide range of whale watching tours, along with historic attractions from the whaling village's past. For a historical and botanical experience, head to the Iao Valley State Park to see the monument where Kamehameha defeated the Maui army in 1790, and walk the Iao Needle Lookout Trail and Ethnobotanical Loop to learn about the flora that Hawaiians brought to the island. For scenic views, Haleakala National Park is home to the island's highest peak, and Kaanapali Beach offers signature Hawaiian sunsets. Don't forget to travel the road to Hana for breathtaking and panoramic scenery.
Here are a few of our top-rated Maui Hotels:
The Four Seasons Maui at Wailea
Fresh off a massive renovation, the Four Seasons Maui at Wailea provides a beachfront setting with a range of activities including tennis fantasy camps, photography tours, Kona Coffee helicopter tours, culinary experiences at Hana Ranch, and whale watch photo excursions.
Montage Kapalua Bay
Featuring a multi-tiered lagoon pool and island-inspired cuisine, the Montage Kapalua Bay is located on 24-acres of oceanfront property in Lahaina. The all-suite property has accommodations with private lanais, luxe bathrooms, and fully equipped kitchens.
Andaz Maui at Wailea
LEED-certified, the Andaz Maui at Wailea is a contemporary beach resort set along a 1.2-mile-long stretch of land along Mokapu Beach. The apothecary-style Awili Spa incorporates locally sourced and destination-inspired ingredients, plus there are three infinity pools, kayak tours, hula, and ukelele lessons.
Finally, travel to Hawaii Island. Known as the "Big Island," it is the largest of the islands and is constantly growing due to magma flows. It offers the most diverse climate of all the islands with snow-capped mountains, black-sand beaches, uplands, and rainforests. Begin by flying into Kona International Airport where you can discover the Kona coffee plantations, historic Kailua Village, and the resorts along the Kohala Coast. Take a day to head south of Kona to the sacred Pu'uhonua O Honaunau National Historic Park, then onto the Punaluu Black Sand Beach. Make sure to allow an entire day to explore Volcanoes National Park, a world heritage site with the Kilauea volcano, lava tubes, and deserts.
Here are a few of our top-rated Big Island Hotels:
The Four Seasons Resort Hualalai
Providing authentic Hawaiian luxury, the Four Seasons Resort Hualalai features accommodations set within two-story bungalows. There are three restaurants, seven swimming pools, kids' club, Jack Nicklaus' signature Hualalai Golf Course, outdoor movie nights, tennis programs, sunrise meditation, and PiYo classes.
Fairmont Orchid Hawaii
Along the Kohala Coast, the Fairmont Orchid Hawaii is set amongst 32 acres of tropical foliage. Offering the Spa Without Wallas, tennis, and an oceanfront swimming pool, guests have access to a variety of activities, including hiking to petroglyph fields, lei making, snorkeling, stand up paddle boarding, and outrigger canoe paddling in the open ocean.
Hilton Waikoloa Village
Spread throughout 62 acres of oceanfront property, the Hilton Waikoloa Village is a destination resort with Polynesian and Asian Artwork. Guests can stroll flagstone pathways, or be transported via air conditioned trams. The on-site Dolphin Quest provides an opportunity to swim with dolphins, and the Legends of Hawaii Luau features traditional island cuisine with hula and fire dancers.
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