Best vacation ever!!!
We (family of four, including two kids, 12 and 17 years old) enjoyed immensely our stay in Denis and Sylvia’s home! First of all, both Denis and Sylvia have an excellent email ethics: any questions you might have would be answered ASAP. What we have also appreciated greatly is Denis’ knowledge of the area and willingness to share it. In fact, his recommendations on local attractions, beaches and restaurants were absolutely spot-on and saved us a great deal of time and nerves. The townhouse itself was absolutely perfect and felt like home the minute we entered. It’s located in a quiet area; very clean, with well-stocked and well-organized kitchen, plenty of towels and pleasantly surprising “free and clear” laundry supplies. The absence of air conditioner was not an issue at all. Electric ceiling fans, installed everywhere including lanai, were sufficient to cool down the place. Much healthier than A/C, plus, with all the fresh air, best sleep we’d had since our pre-kids era! Another pleasant surprise – no bugs. I suspect the property management takes care of them (that or plentiful geckos we’ve seen on the lanai, have been doing an exceptional insect control job!). Next time we visit Big Island - that’s where we will stay! Here’s a couple of tips on what to do on Big Island: 1. First get an iPhone app "Gypsy Big Island tours" 2. Best beach is Hapuna beach. Famous Mahaiula / Makalawena Beachs are not worth the trouble (rocks in the water). Here's how to get there.Take the exit to Kekaha Kai state park and keep driving on unpaved road through the lava rocks to the Mahaiula beach parking lot/facilities. Park and walk right (north) until you see a trail through lava field. It'll take you to Makalawena beach. 3.National Volcano park: an active eruption of Kīlauea is happening now and can be seen from the observation deck of Jaggar museum (best view is after 7 pm). 4. Active lava flow: town of Kalapana. Take an evacuation road (3-9 pm). Bikes are available for rent, but the road is gravel and you will be spending more energy riding a bike than walking. The round-trip hike is 10 miles. There’s a ton of lava “creeks” close to the road. Don't step on silvery “highway” going through the lava field – active lava underneath. 5. Pololu valley is the absolute must and the hike down, although brutal, is well worth it. 6. Saddle road is now open to rental cars! 7. Great snorkeling tour with wild dolphins– “Ocean Encounters”. 8.Hawaian style café in Waimea
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