Trailblazing travelers can stay in cozy cabins at Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. // © 2018 Volcano House
Feature image (above): At Island Art Party, a mix of creativity and cocktails results in a unique Maui memory. // © 2018 Island Art Party
In Hawaii, the unexpected awaits even the most seasoned travelers. Whether visitors want to get hands-on or offbeat, the islands respond with extraordinary options to delight them.
Here are four ways to engage clients who are looking to step outside the box on their next Hawaii vacation.
Camp Near a Hawaii Volcano
For off-the-beaten-path visitor accommodations on Hawaii Island, check out Namakanipaio Campground. Set in Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, it features three types of camping coordinated by the park’s historic hotel, Volcano House.
Clients can book a 200-square-foot cabin sleeping four people, supplied with bed linens, towels and electricity. Option two involves tent and equipment rentals, where staffers handle the setup and takedown of the tent, mattress, linens, cooler, lantern and camping chairs. Meanwhile, truly independent visitors can bring their own tent.
In all cases, Namakanipaio campers have access to a community bathroom with hot showers, soap, toilets and toilet paper. It’s a safe, one-of-a-kind way to become one with Hawaii’s volcanic landscape.
Channel Your Creativity at a Hawaii Painting Party
Hawaii Island Art Parties and Island Art Party on Maui are encouraging visitors to tap their inner Picasso through social painting, complete with drinks. Led by talented instructors, guests work on paintings based on a common Hawaii theme, from sunsets and whales to flowers and waterfalls. A bar stands ready with beverages to lighten the mood, and participants can take home their finished product.
Hotels also are embracing the art party concept by presenting on-property painting events for guests. On Kauai, for instance, The Westin Princeville Ocean Resort Villas currently hosts the weekly MimosArt, where clients come together to make their personal, island-inspired, acrylic masterpieces while sipping guava mimosas.
Fashion Your Own Hawaiian Chocolate
Hawaii is the only state in the U.S. whose climate is conducive to growing cacao. As a result, several island farms are cultivating the crop in order to make uniquely Hawaiian chocolate. Clients with a sweet tooth are invited to follow the process from bean to bar and discover firsthand how to concoct their own tropical confections.
Three local companies — Kuaiwi Farm on Hawaii Island, Madre Chocolate on Oahu and Sweet Paradise Chocolatier on Maui — share tricks of the trade during chocolate-making classes. Visitors don aprons and learn about crafting bars, truffles and other indulgences derived from Hawaii-sourced cacao. Farm tours and tastings enhance the experience.
Get Up Close to Hawaii Film Sites
Hawaii’s natural good looks have landed it a leading role in scores of movies and television shows. Fans can feel more intimate with the stars and storylines by booking a film-site tour. As vans drive to various production venues, guests watch video clips for context.
Hawaii Jeep & Specialty Tours appeals to “Hawaii Five-0” aficionados by stopping at exclusive Oahu filming sites such as McGarrett’s house, the Five-0 headquarters and Koko Head Park. At Kualoa, an attraction on the island’s windward side, tours take clients to familiar landmarks from blockbusters including “Jurassic Park” and “Lost.”
On Kauai, Hawaii Movie Tours by Roberts Hawaii whisks folks to immediately-recognizable locations such as Wailua Falls (“Fantasy Island”) and Anahola (“Raiders of the Lost Ark”).