mzi.oqqukgws.225x225-75Where to stay in Hawaii seems to be a question posed by many travelers on various blogs, internet forums, etc. What I noticed when looking at some of these sources of information is that the responses are often very biased, though not intentionally. Other travelers are expressing their advice, experience, and information based upon their own personal preferences. At Leilani Bed and Breakfast, we advise our travelers to use a reputable source of information about the islands like the series Hawaii – The Big Island Revealed, Maui Revealed, Oahu Revealed, etc. and the Lonely Planet, which is particularly apropos for exploring the natural diversity here. All these books give a great overview of each island, its size, ease of travel, points of interest, activities, places to stay, etc. Once you have that, we suggest the next step is to make a list of what you want to see and do based on your own personal preferences and interests, and then  prioritize them. Then organize the list by island, and see if it makes sense for the amount of total time you have. Early morning or late day inter island flights will maximize the time you have, allowing more activities after arrival or before departure on flight days.

Next, you can make an itinerary for each, or the one, island you chose based on your travel preferences. Some people like to have one home base and make day trips. They dislike packing and unpacking every day, like a particular accommodation or location, or have a family that is harder to orchestrate for frequent changing of locations. Your prioritized list combined with travel distances from your guide and the type of accommodations you prefer will help you select the best spot for that. This type of travel appeals to many people, especially when travelling on the smaller islands. On the Big Island, it is also common for the same reasons. But, because of its size, we have other types of travel preferences as well. Others like to minimize their driving as much as possible, and want to circumnavigate the island and stay in a different place every night. We find this especially appeals to people who aren’t use to driving much at home. Again, your list of points of interest will help you determine where to spend each night. Many choose two or three places to base them self around the island, with a little redundant driving, but fewer moves. And some try to do the impossible of seeing the whole island in one day, and still have a great time knowing they can’t do it all, but that’s all the time they have!

When do you use the advice from other travelers? When you know where you are going and what you want to do for activities and are looking for a recommendation of a particularly good place to stay or activity provider. The social outlets for that are really good, like TripAdvisor, because you get to see a variety of  input on a single place to get a really good feel for it. Throw out the best and worse comments and the remainder are probably a pretty good average of what an establishment is really like.

Have fun planning your trip.