Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Two Hawaii Beaches Listed On Top 10 Beaches 2015 by Dr. Beach

Dr. Stephen P. Leatherman, also known as "Dr. Beach", a professor at Florida International University has been selecting Top 10 Beaches in the United States annually for the past 25 years since 1991. This year two of our Hawaii beaches have made its place on the Top 10 List.  Waimanalo Bay Beach Park was listed as the number one beach for this year along with Hamoa Beach Park in fourth place.

Waimanalo Bay Beach Park
Photo Creditor: TripAdvisor

Waimanalo Bay Beach Park is located in the northeastern corner of Oahu and is often missed as tourist drive through the small village. Waimanalo Bay is Oahu's longest beach which extends for more than five miles; This white sand beach is great for walking and the wind always blows onshore due to Trade Winds. It is also known sometimes for strong currents so keep a look out for the lifeguard tower for safer swimming. There are restrooms and showers along with some shaded areas. It's also a good place for body boarding due to the shallow sandbar.

Hamoa Beach Park, Maui, HI
Photo Creditor: Aloha-hawaii.com
 Hamoa Beach Park is located on the east side of Maui in Hana and is listed number four on Beach's list. It is rimmed by cliffs, palm trees, and flowering greenery. This crescent shaped beach is a mixture of coral and lava sand and is the most famous of Maui's Hana beaches. Getting to this remote beach will take you a little over two hours to drive on a long windy road on some high cliffs and few guardrails, not to mention 50 one-way bridges along with waterfalls.  It was listed at number five on last year's 2014 list.  It also appeared in the national list in 2010, ranking nine.

Top 10 Beaches 2015

  1. Waimanalo Bay Beach Park, Oahu, HI
  2. Barefoot Beach, Bonita Springs, FL
  3. St. George Island State Park, FL
  4. Hamoa Beach Park, Maui, HI
  5. Cape Hatteras, Outer Banks of NC
  6. Cape Florida State Park, Key Biscayne, FL
  7. Coast Guard Beach , Cape Cod MA
  8. Beachwalker Park, Kiawah Is., SC
  9. Delnor-Wiggins Pass State Park, Naples, FL
  10. East Beach, Santa Barbara, CA

National beaches that make it to the Top are then retired and listed on the website to giving other beaches a chance for first place. Fifty criteria are used to evaluate these beaches, which includes views, water, sand quality, as well as safety management.

Some of Hawaii's past winners that have been archived are:

Fleming Park Beach, Maui, Hawaii
Hanalei Bay Beach, Kauai, Hawaii
Hanauma Bay, Oahu, Hawaii
Hapuna Beach State Recreational Area, Big Island, Hawaii
Hulopoe Beach, Lanai, Hawaii
Kaanapali, Maui, Hawaii
Kailua Beach Park, Oahu, Hawaii
Kapalua Bay Beach, Maui, Hawaii
Kaunaoa Beach, Big Island, Hawaii
Lanikai Beach, Oahu, Hawaii
Poipu Beach, Kauai, Hawaii
Wailea Beach, Maui, Hawaii

More emphasis is being placed on environmental management as well as safety. Bonus points are awarded for prohibition of smoking on beaches. Both Maui and Oahu have recently been leading the way as smoking is prohibited in all county parks, beaches, and recreational facilities.

More information on the 50 criteria used and also past beaches archived may be seen on Dr. Beach's website at:  www.drbeach.org

Thursday, May 7, 2015

Heading to Hawaii? Don’t miss this Oahu Summer Special!

Travel professionals who sell Hawaii now have a unique, one-of-a-kind way to give their Oahu-bound clients an experiential touring activity.  Introducing TourTalk-Oahu…the island’s only award-winning audio driving tour, now your clients can completely circumnavigate the island at their own time, own pace, and in the comfort of their rental car.  Recipient of both an international award (AXIEM) for its production and a Hawaii Tourism Award – Keep It Hawaii – for the perpetuation of Hawaii’s rich culture and people this stand-alone tour has edutained thousands. 
 Formatted on 2 audio CDs, this island tour is complemented by a 73-page full color booklet filled with photos, factoids, maps and more.  While enjoying the beauty of the island, listeners will learn about core cultural concepts such as the “deeper meaning of Aloha”, the traditions of hula and lei, the Hawaiian ohana (family), and connection to the aina (land/environment).  They'll hear stories about the two great battles that changed the face of Hawaii forever:  the Battle of the Nu`uanu Pali for unification of the islands under King Kamehameha and the surprise Attack on Pearl Harbor.  Also included is wonderful slack key music from one of Hawaii’s “kihoalu masters” and 2 poignant mele (songs) written by a local troubadour.

TourTalk-Oahu is the one tour your clients can take home with them to relive time and againand it’s offered to you, the travel professional, for only $10 U.S. per copy plus $3.95 shipping and handling.  It makes an amazing Thank You amenity for your traveler(s) or can be upsold and combined with a car rental!  If you order 10 or more, the shipping fees are waived.
 Show your clients just how much you care about their Oahu vacation! Visit our website at www.tourtalkhawaii.com to listen to sound samples and discover all of the extras this tour offers.  You’ll be glad you did…and so will your clients!

Friday, May 1, 2015

May Day Is Lei Day In Hawaii

Today, May 1st, is May Day. In the state of Hawaii it is known as Lei Day in Hawaii. It's a day that celebrates Hawaiian culture and focuses on the of a lei (flower wreath) as a symbol of aloha. It is a remembrance of the old spirit of Hawaii, the love for color, flowers, fragrance, and hospitality.

Lei Day was created in 1928  by a writer and poet, Don Blanding, who wrote an article to the local paper suggesting that a holiday be created focusing on the Hawaiian custom of making and wearing of the lei. It was Grace Tower Warren who gave the idea of the holiday being set on May 1.  She was also the one who came up with the saying "May Day is Lei Day."  On this day, everyone is encouraged to wear a lei. Festivities are held with hula, music, lei making demonstrations and contests.

May 1, 1929 was the first official holiday for the territory. In Oahu, this celebration is held at the Queen Kapiolani Park in Waikiki. As a tradition, dozens of entries are placed in the Royal Mausoleum the next morning.

Today, it is the 88th annual celebration. The celebration is held in Oahu at Queen Kapiolani Park in Waikiki.  The Royal Hawaiian Band, hula, and the Hawaiian Steel Guitar Association will perform in the lei exhibit.

On Maui, celebrations are at the Bailey House Museum. There are free museum tours, arts and craft workshops, special exhibitions, cultural demonstrations, food, and a lei contest.

On the Big Island, the Hilo Lei Day Festival is held at the Kalakaua Park. There is music, the Lei Day Queen, hula, food, and lei making demonstrations.

Kauai Museum is celebrating with music, hula, cultural demonstrations, food, crafts, and a silent auction.

Lanai celebrates this occasion with entertainment from Lanai High School & Elementary school.

Molokai celebrates also with music, entertainment, lei making and exchanging, not to mention food.

Schools across the state will be celebrating May Day with a presentation of the Hawaiian court, hula, entertainment, music, food, and the traditional lei making contest. Parents and families will be able to watch their kids perform in the activities.

No matter which island you are on, Mayday is one of the first festive holidays that was celebrated. It is filled with ancient spirituality, and culture.  It's also one of the only places where old Hawaii is combined with modern day Hawaii.  Enjoy the festivities. "May Day is Lei Day in Hawaii."

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Lahaina Banyan Tree Oldest Tree In Hawaii

This past weekend, April 20-21, 2015 was the celebration of Lahaina Banyan Tree's 140th birthday. It has been here for many years. Not only is it the oldest tree in Hawaii, but one of the oldest trees in the United States.

The tree originated from India and was brought here by missionaries.  Sheriff William Owen Smith planted it to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the first protestant mission to Lahaina.

From when the tree was planted until now, it has grown over 60 feet tall covering and estimated two-thirds of an acre with a dozen main trunks.  People have enjoyed its shade, children have climbed its limbs, artists have used it as a place to sell their artwork and crafts. Others have used it for photo opportunities, not to mention events.

The celebration consisted of live music.   A magic show, clowns, a kids birthday card contest took place. Various artists displayed their artwork. There was silent auction, and birthday cake for those that came by.

So, next time you are in Lahaina check out the Banyan Tree on Front Street. Feel free to enjoy the sounds of the Mynah birds and check out art exhibits and crafts displayed by our local artists.  It is landmark to the locals and Historical site for all.

Written by:  Jalynn Nobriga

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Indian Weddings In Hawaii

-A Growing Niche In Destination Weddings

Destination weddings have been growing in popularity for decades, and more recently amongst East Asian and Indian couples.  Hawaii, a long time haven for destination weddings, has noticed an increase in Hindu and Sikh weddings for the past few years.

Maui Indian Weddings and Bollywood Parties is a wedding planning and event entertainment company, based in Maui, Hawaii.  It was founded in 2012 by wedding and event coordinator Everly Brophy.  Her sister company Maui Mobil Spa has been specializing in wedding henna tattoo art, hair, makeup and nails for Indian brides since 2010.

"Brides kept booking their henna parties, and would ask my suggestions on everything from wedding venues, catering, entertainment, places to stay.  The light bulb went on after seeing the trend for Hindu and Sikh weddings on Maui increase.  I had already been working with my mother coordinating weddings for years, and we were and still are, really the only vendors for everything Indian wedding related on Maui.  Our philosophy is about providing authentic Hindu or Sikh ceremonials, while simultaneously highlighting the destination Hawaiian wedding experience."


Maui Indian Weddings and Bollywood Parties specialize in Hindu and Sikh weddings, but they are also known for their mixed culture weddings(Hindu/Christian, Hindu/Catholic, Sikh/Buddhist ...to date).

Traditionally, Indian weddings are ritual filled ceremonial celebrations that can last for days.  They are often large events with hundreds of guests in attendance!  The different ceremonies or puja's/pooja's, begin as soon as the couple is engaged.  The specific ceremonies differ from state to village or family, but the core rituals have a common thread in all the regions of India.

Maui Indian Weddings and Bollywood Parties coordinate all aspects of the nuptial ceremonies and events. 

They usually start with a Bridal Henna Party 2-3 days before the wedding.  This is where the bride and her closest(usually female) friends and family come together to receive henna temporary tattoo art.  The henna (or mehndi), represents luck, prosperity and beauty, and has been a ritualistic part of weddings for many cultures for thousands of years.

Next there is often a Sangeet...basically a "rehearsal dinner" without the rehearsal.  And it's usually not a sit down dinner at all.  It's more of a festive, dance performance filled extravaganza, with colorful outfits and elaborate jewelry.  The food is more catered "action stations" with a variety of small dishes to nibble on throughout the evening.  

The actual wedding ceremonials are often more somber and ritualistic. Pujas/Poojas (or prayers) can start individually for the bride and the groom first thing in the morning... and they can last till the end of the 1-2 plus hour wedding ceremony.


Because there are so many events involved in Indian weddings, Maui Indian Weddings understands their job is to help couples have an outstanding wedding experience, while working within a budget that can go pretty fast when you are hosting 2-5 events... plus travel fees.  This is why they individually quote each wedding, working closely with vendors to give clients the highest quality service for the best rates.

And with so many beautiful locations to get married on Maui, it's no wonder more couples continue to choose Hawaii as their destination wedding location.  Everly Brophy of Maui Indian Weddings says the most consistent thing she hears from the families and guests is, "They are so happy the couple choose to get married in Hawaii!  That it's so beautiful and relaxing here!  They are always pleased at the effort we put into taking care of details, so they can actually enjoy a vacation amidst the many events scheduled.  It is really important to our couples that their guests have a real vacation!"

Written By:  Everly Brophy

This article was written by Everly Brophy. She is an event and wedding coordinator for Maui Indian Weddings, a company based in Maui, Hawaii that was started in 2012.

Everly and her mother are the only vendors for everything Indian wedding related on Maui. You may find more information on their company and services at their website:

http://www.mauiindianweddings.com or by phone at +1-(808)463-9019. They are available for weddings and events for all the Hawaiian islands.

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Island Railway Tours New Activity

Island Railway Tours is offering an open house and free ride on their brand new activity on March 21, 2015.

The Ewa train will be open to travel agents and others in the travel business. Seating is limited to 200.

Please RSVP before the March 19th. 
Call John at (808)220-2367 for confirmation and directions. 

***Opening day to the public for this activity is April 20, 2015

Check out our website at www.islandrailwaytours.com 

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

New Study Looks at How People Cope with Vog

A new study to examine how people who live downwind of Kīlauea Volcano cope with volcanic gas emissions, or vog, is currently underway. Led by Dr. Claire Horwell, Director of the International Volcanic Health Hazard Network and a researcher at Durham University in the United Kingdom, the study is being conducted in cooperation with the U.S. Geological Survey’s Hawaiian Volcano Observatory. It will reach across multiple agencies, organizations, and communities in the State of Hawaii to help ensure that official advice about living with vog incorporates a wide range of experiences and knowledge.

Vog, the pollution formed from acidic gases and particles released by active volcanoes, is composed primarily of sulfur dioxide gas and its oxidation products, such as sulfate aerosol.  Sulfur dioxide from Kīlauea, now in its 33rd year of nearly continuous eruption, results in vog that continues to challenge communities, agriculture and infrastructure on the Island of Hawai‘i, as well as across the State.

Communities downwind from Kīlauea’s active vents frequently experience vog as a visible haze or as a sulfurous smell or taste. People exposed to vog report a variety of symptoms, such as coughing, wheezing, sore throats, and headaches. The Hawaii State Department of Health and the American Lung Association offer advice on vog protection measures, such as staying indoors and limiting physical activity when vog levels are high.

According to Dr. Horwell, she is investigating how Hawai‘i communities use this advice and if they have developed their own strategies for protecting themselves from vog.  “We’re working with State and county agencies with the end goal of providing consistent online advice, an informative pamphlet on vog exposure and protection, and updated guidance on how to access resources about vog,” she said.  

Knowledge gained from the study in Hawaii, which has been funded by the British Council, under the Researcher Links initiative, will also be relevant internationally, not only in volcanically active regions but also farther afield, as volcanic gases can travel downwind for many miles.  For example, UK government agencies can draw on the Hawaii study as they prepare for the potential effects of future Icelandic eruptions.

Outcomes of the vog study will eventually be available online through the International Volcanic Health Hazard Network.  IVHHN serves as a clearing house for information on the health impacts of volcanic eruptions and provides detailed information on volcanic gas and particle impacts.
Dr. Horwell is currently meeting with community and agency focus groups on the Island of Hawai’i and, in the coming weeks, will conduct surveys in a number of communities regularly affected by vog, including Volcano, Pāhala, Ocean View and South Kona.

Hawai‘i residents are encouraged to record how they cope with vog on the ‘Vog Talk’ Facebook page established by Dr. Horwell.

Information on when and where community surveys will be conducted between now and the end of March is available on the ‘Vog Talk’ Facebook page or by calling +1-808-967-8809.

For more information about Kīlauea Volcano’s ongoing eruptions, please visit the USGS HVO’s website. Answers to “Frequently Asked Questions about SO2and Vog” are available online

Monday, February 9, 2015

Soul De Cuba Cafe

Check out Soul De Cuba Cafe and enjoy a little taste Cuban. 
Check out Mojitos Tuesdays and enter for a chance to win a trip to Las Vegas!!!

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Hawaii - Pacific Islands: LGBT Tourism and Hospitality Symposium

Community Marketing is inviting members of the Hawaii Travel & Tourism Industry to attend the Hawaii/Pacific Islands: LGBT Tourism & Hospitality Symposium on February 12, 2015  from 1.30pm to 6.30pm at the Lotus Honolulu Hotel.

Presenting a comprehensive research, advertising, marketing, and communications forum that will help you better understand and serve LGBT travelers.Audience: 

Perfect for marketing, advertising and PR executives of the tourism and hospitality industries who want to successfully reach LGBT visitors, and initiate or update effective strategies.Gain practical take-aways and new approaches from our own team, and from key Hawaii strategic partners.

Community Marketing & Insights  Proudly connecting our clients with the LGBT communities since 1992!

Clients include the tourism offices of Los Angeles, Las Vegas, Palm Springs, Fort Lauderdale, San Francisco, Portland, Vancouver, Chicago, New York City, and many more, plus Hawaiian Airlines, Delta, American, Aqua Hotels & Resorts, Hyatt, Starwood, Wyndham, Kimpton and others. Through over two decades of dedicated consumer research, we provide an unparalleled level of insight into the diverse communities that comprise “LGBT,” and assist our clients with results-oriented planning.

Learn, review, update and strategize:

* Review the latest research on LGBT travelers, including our Hawaii study
* Internet and email marketing, social networking, mobile, and other communications technologies
* Exploring regional markets, and how to reach them
* Weddings & honeymoons
* Focus group insights and trends
* Maximizing print ad and PR results
* Direct response marketing outreach
* Proven techniques for measuring, monitoring and improving ROI
* Sponsorship marketing and events, and more!

Symposium runs 1:30pm to 6:30pm, including networking break and wine reception.
1:00-1:30pm Registration, networking.
1:30-3:45pm LGBT Tourism & Hospitality: Research, marketing, case studies and best practices
3:45-4:00pm Networking break
4:00-5:30pm Hawaii/Pacific Islands case studies, marketing channels, connections
5:30-6:30pm Networking wine reception sponsored by Aqua Hotels & Resorts
Registration is available online for this Conference:

* Registration: $45
* Registration by TAG Approved® Hotels and IGLTA members: $25
* Registration by Non-Profit Organizations: $25

Saturday, February 7, 2015

Lunch wagon North Shore, Oahu: Hungry for Peruvian food in Hawaii?

Lunch wagons have been a part of the Oahu food scene for decades, filling laborers, white-collar drones and surfers with local favorites like hamburger steak and chicken katsu. But the mobile kitchen brigade has seen a transformation recently, with people taking cues from the mainland. Today you can get everything from Southern soul food to malasadas from food trucks. This list of the 2015 Top 10 Food Trucks in Hawaii, presented in alphabetical order, will steer you towards the best.

You got to check this one out when visiting the North Shore.
La Concha Fine Peruvian Cuisine De Su Madre.

You find them close to Sharks Cove on the ocean side across Foodland and next to the Fire Station on the North Shore of Oahu.

The food blew my mind.

This was the Ceviche combo  with Peruvian potatoes.
Fresh and mouth-watering, promise !