For family reunions, Regina Tait recommends spending at least seven nights on Oahu. // © 2015 Regina Tait
Feature image (above): Tait often suggests Turtle Bay Resort to traveling families. // © 2015 Creative Commons user rolandpernter
Regina Tait traces her love of travel back to her globetrotting grandmother, who returned from each of her trips with exotic stories and unusual gifts. She was particularly in awe when her grandmother traveled to Hawaii and even lived there for a couple of years.
Today, Tait is the owner of Travelcom Corporation in Huntington Beach, Calif., and it seems only fitting that half of her business comes from Hawaii bookings. Fresh from a trip to Oahu with her daughter and goddaughter, she shared her thoughts about the island’s particular appeal for family reunions.
What makes Oahu conducive to family reunions?
Oahu is such a diverse island, from the action of Waikiki to the laid-back North Shore. It has loads of beautiful hotels and beaches and a wide range of dining and shopping options. It offers countless activities for kids and adults, plus plenty of Hawaiian culture and history. It truly has something for everyone.
How many days should clients set aside for an Oahu family reunion, and why?
Families should plan on spending at least seven nights. The first and last days are sort of wasted on traveling. The group will want a couple of days to hang around the towns and beaches and a few days for tours and activities. The more time on Oahu, the better!
What are some specific Oahu activities that you like to recommend for family reunions?
Family groups could spend an entire day visiting Pearl Harbor, home of the Arizona Memorial, Battleship Missouri Memorial, USS Bowfin Submarine Museum & Park and Pacific Aviation Museum. They could spend another full day at Kualoa Ranch, with its zipline, ATVs, horseback riding, movie and ranch tours and beautiful private beach.
I also recommend Polynesian Cultural Center, a great place for all ages to learn about Pacific island culture and history.
What are your favorite Oahu hotels for family reunions?
Hyatt Regency Waikiki Beach Resort and Spa’s rooms are very spacious, and rates often come with buffet breakfast.
For family reunions in a quieter spot, The Kahala Hotel & Resort is a great option. Kids love its dolphin lagoon and beach activities, while adults enjoy the spa, quiet beach, fine dining and luxury accommodations.
On the North Shore, Turtle Bay Resort is an ideal setting for family reunions. It has a wealth of activities right on property, such as golf, watersports and Segway tours.
What advice do you have for travel agents selling family reunion travel to Oahu?
Try to finalize everything in advance, including activities and dinner reservations. Tours can be booked through your favorite wholesaler, and hotel concierges are a great help for special requests.
Oahu Visitors Bureau is an excellent source of maps and additional information for your clients.