Travel Weekly's Hawaii E-Letter: February 11, 2002

RAIN, RAIN AND...MORE RAIN. The constant watery assault on Oahu this winter has caused the closure of one of the island's most popular hiking trails, the Manoa Falls trail. The state Department of Land and Natural Resources closed the trail, located in Manoa Valley just a few minutes from Waikiki, due to a land slide. The trail will remain closed indefinitely.

MOOOVE OVER BEACHES. Livestock, orchards, vegetables, foliage and flowers are the subjects of four new Big Island agricultural tourism brochures produced by the Hawaii Island Economic Development Board and the County of Hawaii. The livestock and aquaculture brochure, for example, lists a hog farm, cattle ranch and a honey company in addition to coffee plantations, farmers markets and other gems with maps showing their locations. For a free copy of the brochures, call (808) 966-5416 or visit the Internet at www.hawaiiagtourism.com.

TRAVEL AGENTS on the cheap. The Maui Ocean Center in Ma'alaea has a new travel agent rate of $5 per person, a substantial savings on the regular admission price of $18.50. Agents need to show an IATA identification card to get the rate. The center offers 60 marine exhibits on fish, sharks, turtles, stingrays and other saltwater creatures.

ALOHA, LAS VEGAS. Roberts Hawaii closed its Aloha Las Vegas Revue Show in Waikiki due to a lack of business. The celebrity impersonator show featuring the likes of Elvis and Michael Jackson, saw attendance fall last autumn "and despite many promotional efforts, business did not improve during the 2001 holiday season," according to Roberts.

THE SHORE BIRD Restaurant & Beach Bar in the Outrigger Reef Hotel in Waikiki, where you grill your own slab of fish or meat, finished a $1.3 million renovation. The 10,000 square-foot eatery now has tiered and elevated floors so that everyone in the place has a view of the beach and the surf. The restaurant also serves breakfast and lunch, but not on a grill-your-own basis.

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