Author Topic: 5 day Kauai/Maui Trip Report with 4 month old and maneuvering tznius issues  (Read 13670 times)

Offline kivabb

  • Dansdeals Platinum Elite + Lifetime Silver Elite
  • *****
  • Join Date: Mar 2010
  • Posts: 748
  • Total likes: 13
  • DansDeals.com Hat Tips 0
    • View Profile
I know many trip reports here are about how someone flew some premium class flight for the minimum amount of points or some glitch where they basically got paid for going, but I wanted to share my experience as it might interest those who have very tight times of when they can travel, canít find availability or want to know how crazy it is to go with a baby. I also wanted to share my perspective as someone who wonít go to a beach, pool, poolside or snorkeling during normal times when other people are around.

I just went on a 5 day trip with my wife and 5 month old to Kauai/Maui. This was our second trip to Kauai with a baby. Our first trip was during a major storm with the only part of the island seemingly dry was the Grand Hyatt and Polihole Beach. Even Waimeu Canyon was under clouds for 4 days. Even with all that rain, that first trip was awesome and just hanging around the GHK was amazing. But with all that we heard about the island we decided to adventure out 3 years later and try it again.

Flights: We flew Hawaiin Air JFK-HNL-LIH, LIH-OGG, OGG-HNL-JFK. Biz seats were not available with points, so we took economy (20K each way) and paid $100 each for Extra Comfort seats. No, it was nothing compared to when we flew United or AA from JFK to LAX last time in biz, but the travel time was short, the customer service was great, and the Extra Comfort Seats gave us loads of legroom and allowed us to put baby to sleep on floor with room to spare. Itís together with first class section so more quiet as well.

Lounges: We checked out the IASS lounge in HNL with Priority Pass. No bathroom, No AC, but free drinks and wi-fi so okay if you come in with low expectations.

Hotels: We stayed 2 nights in the Grand Hyatt Kauai (44K Chase points) and 2 nights in the Andaz in Maui (2 free nights for opening Chase Hyatt card). They upgraded us in GHK to room with beautiful views of pools and ocean. No upgrade in Andaz so we had ďGardenĒ view.

Food: For breakfast Ė My wife made these healthy muffins and we brought several Nugo Bars to start the day. We kept the muffins frozen in the cooler until the day we needed. For lunch Ė We brought both cold cuts in individual vacuum sealed packages as well as prepared tuna fish in Ĺ pound containers and alternated having that with crackers, Matza, or wraps. For Dinner - We brought a 4 quart slow cooker along with those Meal Mart meals they sell in Costco which we froze and kept in Polar Cooler which keeps frozen for 24 hours. http://www.amazon.com/Polar-Bear-Coolers-Pack-Cooler/dp/B001PCNXFG/ref=sr_1_4?ie=UTF8&qid=1421772458&sr=8-4&keywords=polar+cooler+bag. In the morning we would pop 2 meals of brisket or stuffed cabbage or whatever and keep it on low and when we would come back to room at night we had hot food waiting. I bought the one that had clamps http://www.amazon.com/Crock-Pot-SCCPVL400-R-4-Quart-Cooker-Stainless/dp/B008S6ZJ6S/ref=sr_1_1?s=home-garden&ie=UTF8&qid=1421772847&sr=1-1&keywords=crock+pot+4+quart++Cook+and+Carry and I put in a oven cooking bag which I knotted inside to not only simplify clean up, but to make a second seal. On the days when we couldnít do the crock pot because of flights, my wife had made dark breaded schnitzel and froze it in cooler. We took out 4-5 hours before we needed and worked out great.  And of course, lots of snacks  :) .

Baby: This is BEĒH #8 for us and all kids are different, but in our experience before 12 months itís worth the gamble and 13-24 months itís not. At least not for an escapade with just my wife and I. When we travel with the family itís anyways a circus so doesnít make a difference then. We brought one of these Ergo Baby carriers like 10 years ago: http://www.amazon.com/Ergobaby-Original-Baby-Carrier-Black/dp/B001JZU8O8/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1421774582&sr=8-1&keywords=ergo+baby Iím sure we could have done cheaper but we have put many miles on it and worked well for us but nothing to compare it to since itís really the only one we ever had.

Weather: When you come for 1-2 weeks you can afford rainy days, but when you do a short marathon, the rainy days can ruin your trip. Well BĒH unlike our first trip, the weather was perfect every day.

Activities:
ē   Day 1 Ė Arrived in LIH in the early evening. By the time we got to the hotel, we decided to try to go to sleep by 9PM and get early start on next day.
ē   Day 2 Ė Woke up like 7AM, took a walk around pool area, grounds of GHK before if got busy. Left to Waimeu Canyon at around 8 AM. Did the lookouts recommended in Kauai revealed book. Hiked Awa'awapuhi Trail (6.5 miled RT) and had lunch overlooking the valley. Shortly after did the Canyon Trail (3.6 miles RT) which book recommends as well. Nu'alolo Cliffs Trail was closed with pretty mean signs on it, so with a 4 month old in tow and 7 kids at home, I didnít think risking my life was worth it. Changing diapers and nursing every few hours definitely takes more time, but baby was able to fall asleep with me holding him in carrier. We could barely walk the next day after doing over 10 miles, but the views were unforgettable. We were going to do sunset in Polihole beach but since we spent time there on our last trip and we were tired (and hungry), we headed back to catch sunset by GHK. Sleeping by 9 PM
ē   Day 3 Ė We were going to get up early and go up North to Hanalei, and Keíe Beach (our last trip we visited St Regis in Priceville) but we were so sore and my wife was having such a great time at GHK that we spent the morning chilling out there. We had 2 PM helicopter ride with Blue Hawaiin which was awesome. When we finished we went straight to airport where we caught 4:30 flight LIH-OGG flight. Arrived at Andaz, checked in, unpacked and went to sleep by 9 PM.
ē   Day 4 Ė We were woken up at 5:45 AM by a fire alarm sounding in our room with announcement that they were evacuating hotel. For most people it would have been a nightmare but it got me free parking at checkout and more importantly it allowed us to start our Road to Hana trip at 7:15 AM. No it wasnít me who pulled it and it was cancelled 10 minutes later so we didnít even have to leave the floor. Road to Hana was amazing. The Revealed book gave me places to stop where everyone else seemed to keep driving. Yes, we drove all the way around and it was a beautiful day. We didnít get back to hotel until 7 PM. We had dinner waiting, explored the hotel a bit, packed and again went to bed by 9 PM.
ē   Day 5 Ė I had told my wife we had to leave hotel by 10:15 AM. We were up early and had a nice time walking the grounds, watching the Ocean, getting some morning sun. We checked out and I surprised my wife with a massage at this place which had great ratings and was 3 minutes from hotel : http://www.tripadvisor.com/Attraction_Review-g60632-d1957591-Reviews-Wailea_Massage_and_Body_Care-Kihei_Maui_Hawaii.html It was less than half the price of hotel and my wife said actual massage was on par to what she had in GHK last time around. Then off to catch a 2 PM flight OGG-HNL-JFK.

Tznius Issues: From the sounds of it, Iím one of the few people who have gone to Hawaii and wonít go snorkeling period, hang out in the beach or in the ocean or go swimming in pools during normal hours. Honestly I would have loved to go snorkeling, but couldnít figure out how to do any of the above for religious reasons. So my choices were either not to go, or do what I can do and make best of it. Iím not trying to encourage those who feel itís inappropriate to go. My intention is help those who have the travel bug and feel they will have to compromise since they think it's not possible to do the Kosher way. Iíll share my experience and hopefully it will be helpful for others who share or have similar views to mine.
ē   Kauai
1.   Hotel - Our experience at GHK was that if you hit the grounds early (out before 9:30-10 AM) or come back 30 minutes before sunset, then you can enjoy the beauty of the property. That doesnít mean you wonít see some people inappropriately dressed and youíll need to look away, but itís in no way worse than Miami where everyone is flocking to. If anything, itís much better. Thereís many nooks and crannies which gives you many places to explore and less probability of running into trouble. We probably could have gone swimming early morning or at night if my wife would have brought appropriate clothing but we didnít.
2.   Activities Ė Lots of safe stuff to do. Waimeu Canyon for sure all day activity. Polihole you can find empty beach and beautiful sunset. Helicopter ride. Drive up North to Hanilei, waterfalls and more. Check out St Regis. Beautiful hike right next to GHK along coast and golf course on other side.
3.   My Bottom line Ė With some brains and preparation, Kauai can definitely be done without compromising your standards and itís so beautiful. Anyways they know youíre Jewish, so no reason feeling uncomfortable sticking out and wearing Jewish clothing.
ē   Maui
1.   Hotel Ė The Andaz at least when I was there was a whole different story. The staff wears real low cut uniforms and the guests were young, cool and trying to play and dress the part. Even at night we had trouble navigating the grounds without pumping into Speedos or the like. The early morning was much better at pool area, but beach even at 8:30 AM had lots of joggers dressing in bathing suit or low exercise tops. I had a guest ask me at the hotel if there was a religious convention going on there because he had seen so many religious Jews. Not sure if best place for religious convention.
2.   Activities Ė We only we did Road to Hana. At 1 waterfall there were some ladies in bathing suits so we took detour. At Red Sand and Black Sand beach we had to turn around since there were too many bathing suits. Even 7 Sacred Pools which is one of the biggest attractions on RTH we had to leave since we were there at 3 PM and place was packed with bathing suits. But most of it was not an issue and many places to chill by the coast and watch the water or waterfalls and have them all to yourself.
3.   I would have loved to do Sunrise on Crater, but feared altitude change with baby. Could be thereís many other safe activities but just sharing what I did.
4.   My Bottom Line Ė The hotel was beautiful and RTH was awesome, but having done that already, I probably wouldnít return to Maui. It could be the other Hyatt attracts a whole different crowd which would have been better and I should have known better what would be at beach sites and should have just avoided those sites. Unlike in Kauai, I felt I was having to look away more times than not. Maybe it was just my experience or mazel when I was there, but again just sharing.

I hope to hit The Big Island one day.

I hope none of this offended anyone and I apologize if it did as it wasn't my intention at all. Iím just sharing my experiences as someone who loves nature and Gods creations but doesnít want to compromise my standards in doing so. If anyone is still reading this, Iím also full of gratitude to Dan and these forums for the great info in so many areas and hope that at some level Iím giving something back. Please PM me if I can help anyone.

Offline EnEl

  • Dansdeals Silver Elite
  • **
  • Join Date: Dec 2014
  • Posts: 82
  • Total likes: 0
  • DansDeals.com Hat Tips 0
    • View Profile

I hope none of this offended anyone and I apologize if it did as it wasn't my intention at all.


If only there were more people like you. Personally, I don't share the same views, but I can appreciate the time and effort it took to put this together.  And you did all this with a baby?

Offline 12HRS

  • Dansdeals Presidential Platinum Elite
  • ********
  • Join Date: Jun 2013
  • Posts: 4992
  • Total likes: 447
  • DansDeals.com Hat Tips 6
    • View Profile
And you did all this with a baby?

I had the same reaction you did at first. But then I realized he said the baby was #8. So really it was nice to not have the other 7 kids.

Offline @Yehuda

  • Dansdeals Lifetime Presidential Platinum Elite
  • *********
  • Join Date: Oct 2013
  • Posts: 9784
  • Total likes: 152
  • DansDeals.com Hat Tips 5
  • Gender: Male
    • View Profile
Nice TR. Thanks for sharing that perspective - props to you. I personally have wondered what the options were for privacy near pools/beaches.

I don't think it's so practical to go to Hawaii and expect to not swim or sit on a beach. I'm sure the hikes are beautiful, but I wouldn't travel there and miss out on what Hawaii is famous for. I'm sure you had a nice time, but it does seem like you were constantly turning your face away or detouring/missing activities. Doesn't seem like Hawaii can be 'so' enjoyable if trying to avoid the tznius issues to the extent that you did. Meaning, reading your TR seemed like there were more issues than good times, but that's probably because of the angle that you were writing this TR from.

Offline DMYD

  • Dansdeals Presidential Platinum Elite
  • ********
  • Join Date: Jul 2013
  • Posts: 2979
  • Total likes: 0
  • DansDeals.com Hat Tips 1
  • Gender: Male
    • View Profile
  • Location: Brooklyn
Nice TR. Thanks for sharing that perspective - props to you. I personally have wondered what the options were for privacy near pools/beaches.

I don't think it's so practical to go to Hawaii and expect to not swim or sit on a beach. I'm sure the hikes are beautiful, but I wouldn't travel there and miss out on what Hawaii is famous for. I'm sure you had a nice time, but it does seem like you were constantly turning your face away or detouring/missing activities. Doesn't seem like Hawaii can be 'so' enjoyable if trying to avoid the tznius issues to the extent that you did. Meaning, reading your TR seemed like there were more issues than good times, but that's probably because of the angle that you were writing this TR from.
+1 there is no reason to go if your going to act like that, no one is forcing someone to go to Hawaii.

Offline Ergel

  • Dansdeals Lifetime 10K Presidential Platinum Elite
  • *******
  • Join Date: Jun 2010
  • Posts: 11791
  • Total likes: 208
  • DansDeals.com Hat Tips 3
    • View Profile
+1 there is no reason to go if your going to act like that, no one is forcing someone to go to Hawaii.
And no one is forcing you to make decisions for him as to whether or not he should go to Hawaii.

For me, I don't think it's so practical to go to Hawaii and expect to not swim or sit on a beach.
FTFY
Life isn't about checking the boxes. Nobody cares.

Offline EnEl

  • Dansdeals Silver Elite
  • **
  • Join Date: Dec 2014
  • Posts: 82
  • Total likes: 0
  • DansDeals.com Hat Tips 0
    • View Profile
+1 there is no reason to go if your going to act like that, no one is forcing someone to go to Hawaii.

I dunno, it seems like it had worked out for him, so who really minds where he chose to go? Could be because of the weather/views/hiking and airfare/miles worked out that way.

Offline dealfinder85

  • Dansdeals Presidential Platinum Elite
  • ********
  • Join Date: Feb 2013
  • Posts: 3751
  • Total likes: 8
  • DansDeals.com Hat Tips 4
    • View Profile
+1 there is no reason to go if your going to act like that, no one is forcing someone to go to Hawaii.
the guy went, enjoyed, just shared his thoughts about avoiding histaclus issues
he wasnt complaining about going to hawaii
give the guy a break

Offline DMYD

  • Dansdeals Presidential Platinum Elite
  • ********
  • Join Date: Jul 2013
  • Posts: 2979
  • Total likes: 0
  • DansDeals.com Hat Tips 1
  • Gender: Male
    • View Profile
  • Location: Brooklyn
I am happy for him that he enjoyed, because he knew what to expect, but in general when you go to Hawaii.......... 

Offline Ergel

  • Dansdeals Lifetime 10K Presidential Platinum Elite
  • *******
  • Join Date: Jun 2010
  • Posts: 11791
  • Total likes: 208
  • DansDeals.com Hat Tips 3
    • View Profile
I am happy for him that he enjoyed, because he knew what to expect, but in general when you go to Hawaii.......... 
....?
Life isn't about checking the boxes. Nobody cares.

Offline DMYD

  • Dansdeals Presidential Platinum Elite
  • ********
  • Join Date: Jul 2013
  • Posts: 2979
  • Total likes: 0
  • DansDeals.com Hat Tips 1
  • Gender: Male
    • View Profile
  • Location: Brooklyn
....?
The Tznius Issues that he was speaking about.

Offline dealfinder85

  • Dansdeals Presidential Platinum Elite
  • ********
  • Join Date: Feb 2013
  • Posts: 3751
  • Total likes: 8
  • DansDeals.com Hat Tips 4
    • View Profile
The Tznius Issues that he was speaking about.
he went in knowing what he was getting himself into and he isnt complaining
so why are people upset with him

Offline Ergel

  • Dansdeals Lifetime 10K Presidential Platinum Elite
  • *******
  • Join Date: Jun 2010
  • Posts: 11791
  • Total likes: 208
  • DansDeals.com Hat Tips 3
    • View Profile
The Tznius Issues that he was speaking about.
What about them? and why does that mean
+1 there is no reason to go if your going to act like that, no one is forcing someone to go to Hawaii.
Life isn't about checking the boxes. Nobody cares.

Offline Joe4007

  • Dansdeals Presidential Platinum Elite
  • ********
  • Join Date: Feb 2013
  • Posts: 3833
  • Total likes: 58
  • DansDeals.com Hat Tips 11
    • View Profile
  • Location: NY
Thanks for the TR. Not the way I would've structured a Hawaii trip (island hopping like that), but to each his own I suppose.

Tznius Issues:Honestly I would have loved to go snorkeling, but couldnít figure out how to do any of the above for religious reasons. So my choices were either not to go, or do what I can do and make best of it.
On Kauai, we went snorkeling at salt pond beach which is right next to Hanapepe. Being mostly a local town without many tourists meant that we practically had the entire beach to ourselves during the day. Late afternoon started seeing some locals hitting the beach after work. I can't compare it to any other beach as this was our first time snorkeling, but to us it was amazing!
« Last Edit: January 20, 2015, 06:16:46 PM by Joe4007 »

Offline lunatic

  • Dansdeals Presidential Platinum Elite
  • ********
  • Join Date: May 2009
  • Posts: 4273
  • Total likes: 10
  • DansDeals.com Hat Tips 8
    • View Profile
Why is  everyone critical of the OP? He did what he thought correct and reported back to help others. Let's not make this a popcorn thread