AMERICAN SAFARI CRUISES will launch interisland cruises this December aboard the 36-passenger Safari Explorer. The line said cruises will focus on traditional Hawaiian culture and will enable guests to get to know local residents by visiting their land and their homes. The all-American crew will include Hawaii residents (captains, naturalists) who have knowledge of the area. The yacht, which travels only during the day, will visit Molokai, Lanai, 19th-century Lahaina on Maui, the Big Island and several snorkel/dive sites. American Safari's inaugural Hawaii cruise season starts Dec. 19 and ends on May 9, 2009. The Safari Explorer will return in November 2009 to begin its second season.
THE HAWAII VISITORS & CONVENTION BUREAU has introduced an online travel agent education program that covers Hawaii's history, geography, attractions, activities, destination updates and accommodations. Called the Island Graduate certification program, the self-study course series is offered at www.agents.gohawaii.com.
RESORTQUEST HAWAII is offering a fourth-night-free introductory offer for the Aloha Beach Hotel Kauai. The 190-room hotel is located on 10 acres along the east Kauai coast. Discounted rates, available through Dec. 23, range from $155 for garden view rooms to $259 for cottages. Facilities include an on-site restaurant, poolside dining, a lounge, a fitness room, volleyball and shuffleboard. There is wireless Internet access in public areas. Lydgate State Park is adjacent to the resort. Call (800) 866-774-2924 or visit www.resortquesthawaii.com.
THE TURTLE BAY RESORT has introduced the Stay & Play package. The package, aimed at active travelers, offers a choice of one activity per day. Activities include horseback riding, surf lessons, scuba and hiking tours. A midsize Hertz car rental is included at rates that start at $519 per night, with a four-night minimum. The price does not include resort fee or taxes. Call (808) 293-6000 or visit www.turtlebayresort.com.
WYNDHAM VACATION OWNERSHIP has bought the Royal Garden Hotel and Spa in Waikiki. The 140-room hotel will operate under Wyndham's FairShare Plus resort portfolio after renovations, which are planned to begin in November. Rooms will be converted into studios and one- and two-bedroom units. The timeshare resort will include a swimming pool, a sauna, restaurants and a fitness center.
Hawaii Editor: Allan Seiden
Phone: (808) 734-4677
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