Waimea Adventure Park unveils camp facility

HONOLULU -- Waimea Valley and Adventure Park on Oahu's north shore is offering a new adventure: camping.

Camp Waimea, the new site, overlooks botanical gardens and is set against cliffs fronting a stream.

Overnight camping packages are available.

The addition is the latest in the park's move to diversify into more active tourist pursuits in recent years and joins such options as mountain biking, horseback riding, river kayaking and all-terrain vehicle touring.

cliff divingOpened in 1974, the park has botanical collections, including rare specimens; Hawaiian archaeological sites; cliff diving, and hula shows. The park, which is spending more than $1 million on innovations this year, also recently opened a children's area (see sidebar story, below).

According to Ray Greene, the park's general manager, the projects aim to revitalize the park and make it more attractive to visitors and residents. "Our goal is to maintain the park's beauty and tranquillity while providing exciting new things to do,'' he said.

Camp Waimea has tents, showers, lockers, barbecue grills, sinks, picnic tables, rest rooms and 24-hour security. Clients have the choice of basic and deluxe one-night packages, which include admission to the 1,800-acre park and to performances. Also provided in the plan is an escorted night tour.

For those without rental cars, roundtrip transportation from Waikiki also is included in the rates, with pickup times between 11 a.m. and 11:30 a.m., arriving at the park before 1 p.m.

The basic package includes tent accommodations and camp facilities. The price is $55 per person, double (children ages 4 to 12, $40). Optional extras, ranging from sleeping bags and cots to meals, can be purchased (there is a $5 surcharge for those bringing their own food to cook).

The deluxe package covers equipment, including a sleeping cot, a lantern, linen, towels, soap and shampoo. Meals -- a lunch buffet on the first day, dinner (grilled or a picnic basket) and breakfast -- are part of the deal. The package also includes the choice of a river kayak excursion, an all-terrain vehicle trip or a mountain-bike outing.

The deluxe package rate is $180 per person, double (ages 4 to 12, $150). Rates for singles, additional people and groups are available for both packages.

After arriving at the camp, clients attend an orientation briefing, followed by lunch (deluxe package) or free time until dinner at 5:30 p.m.(grill on your own or catered), followed by a night tour through the valley, 7:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Checkout time is 10 a.m. the next day.

Waimea Valley and Adventure Park has been managed since early last year by Atlantis Adventures, which also operates Atlantis Submarines.

It is open daily 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Admission is $24 ($12 for ages 4 to 12), and roundtrip transportation from Waikiki hotels is available for $5.
Atlantis Adventures
Phone: (888) 973-9200

Park installs kids' clubhouse

HONOLULU -- Waimea Valley and Adventure Park opened an attraction aimed at the young and the young at heart.

Called Jungle Trek, it provides an interactive play area.

At a large clubhouse, visitors can slide down the body of an anaconda, climb rope ladders, go through a spinning tunnel or move jungle obstacles. A periscope atop the structure provides views of the bay. Visitors can check driving skills with radio-controlled Junglemobiles along a raceway in an area that also features a jungle maze, a minicave hideout and a sandbox play area.

Earlier this year, sister attraction Sea Life Park in east Oahu opened its version of a family-oriented play area: Pirates' Lagoon.

Visitors here can take aim in a shooting gallery, command a radio-controlled ship in a sea battle, wander through a ship maze or play in a sandbox.

In May, Waimea Valley opened Butterfly Encounter, near its orientation center. Visitors walk through an enclosure, 24 feet by 48 feet, containing more than 500 Hawaii-bred butterflies, including monarchs, swallowtails and cabbage whites. The exhibit is augmented by educational displays.

Both Jungle Trek and Butterfly Encounter are included in the admission price.

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