Tag Archives: Hawaii

Vacations Offering Unexpected Ways to Explore Nature’s Top Lava Volcanic Destinations

These vacations offer unexpected ways to explore nature’s top magma shows 

Iceland is one of the most volcanically active areas on the planet. Volcanic activity is a fact of life in Iceland where people have learned to live with the drawbacks and the advantages. After all, that constant geological activity is the reason the island has so much natural beauty to see from geothermal pools to incredible mountains. © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com


Iceland is one of the most volcanically active areas on the planet, with 130 volcanoes. Last week the fifth eruption since December at the Sundhnjukar mountain ridge sent lava 150 feet into the air, but locals and tourists stayed safe while flights continued to operate. Volcanic activity is a fact of life in Iceland, where people have learned to live with the drawbacks and the advantages. After all, that constant geological activity is the reason the island has so much natural beauty to see from geothermal pools to incredible mountains. 

The unexpected way to observe Iceland’s volcanoesby sea. 

The land of fire and ice and the midnight sun is an island, so the best way to experience it is to sail around it. Small ship line Windstar Cruises circumnavigates Iceland on a 7-dayAround Iceland cruise with just 312 guests on board, visiting five towns on the island in addition to the capital of Reykjavik. These small towns are easy to explore and have opportunities for scenic outdoor adventures (like treks to waterfalls). And the bonus of being on a ship if/when a volcano erupts nearby? You sail somewhere else. 

Mount Etna in Sicily 

Mount Etna is one of Europe’s most active volcanoes, recently making headlines for puffing volcanic vortex rings into the sky. You can hike up the slopes of this volcano, or observe it easily from a distance, Aperol spritz in hand.  

The unexpected way to view Mount Etna: on a bike. 

VBT offers Sicilian guided biking tours, with additional highlights like biking past volcanic coastlines, staying in an 18th century palace, and joining Sicilian truffle hunters on a search for the culinary prize

Kīlauea and Mauna Loa in Hawaii 

Kīlauea and Mauna Loa are two of the world’s most active volcanoes and are located in Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park on the island of Hawaii (aka the Big Island). There are 150 miles of trails within the park through craters and lava tubes, making up-close volcanic exploration possible. 

The unexpected way to engage with Hawaii’s volcanoes: on a multi-island itinerary. 

Holiday Vacations offers a Hawaii Four Island Holiday that spends time in Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park but also includes inter-island flights and accommodations on Kauai, Maui, and Oahu, with their own volcanoes to explore as well. 

Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming 

Yellowstone is a volcano, and the magma chamber under the park influences its natural features including all those famous geysers and hot springs. In fact, the park has the world’s largest collection of hydrothermal features with more than 500 geysers – that’s half of the world’s total.

The unexpected way to experience it: by snowcoach. 

Winter is the park’s quietest season, but it’s one of the best times to visit. The park’s interior is accessible only by commercial over-snow transportation, and Yellowstone’s snowcoaches are essentially the ultimate 21st-century (heated) sleigh. Some of the best geyser viewing and photography opportunities arise in the dead of winter, when the snow-white landscape provides the contrast that makes thermal wonders appear even more dramatic. Stay at one of the resort’s wintertime lodges to fully experience the winter magic. 

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AdventureSmith Explorations Outlines Benefits of Visiting Hawaiian Islands by 36-Guest Yacht

Instead of flying from Hawaiian island to island, AdventureSmith Explorations suggests a multi-day small ship cruise.

TRUCKEE, CA – The experts in small-ship expedition cruising have a few tips for experiencing the diverse cultures, landscapes and ecosystems of the Hawaiian Islands: Instead of flying from island to island, AdventureSmith Explorations suggests a multi-day small ship cruise that allows visitors to:

  • Explore four islands by accessing secluded anchorages via the water instead of flying into one airport after another, a process that devours precious vacation time waiting in lines at airport counters, gates and baggage claim
  • Escape the ever-present throngs of land-based visitors
  • Unpack just once for the entire week
  • Visit coveted, remote beaches with far-fewer sun-worshipers present
  • View coastlines inaccessible by land
  • Witness epic sunsets from the water every night (maybe even the “green flash”?)
  • Enjoy the leisurely pace that a yacht allows, keeping with Hawaii’s true laid-back nature

The cruise that AdventureSmith Explorations highly recommends is the 8-day Hawaiian Seascapes itinerary aboard the 36-guest motor yacht, Safari Explorer. And to reward travelers for new reservations made by Jan. 31, 2019, on departures from now through April 2019, guests will enjoy $100 off the beginning rate of $3,995 per person double. Through April 2019 this includes complimentary premium beer and spirits (and the privilege of enjoying an on-board wine library and piano bar), plus a massage. Right on the yacht is all of the gear needed to enjoy water sports and guided activities: hiking, kayaking, stand-up paddleboarding, yoga and snorkeling (including a night snorkel excursion to look for giant Pacific manta rays). Guests are served by an attentive 15-member crew.

Included in the island-hopping itinerary are Moloka’i and Lana’i, islands that most visitors to the region never see. The adventure begins over a champagne toast in Moloka’i where there are no stop lights nor high rises but just the new-found harmony of hiking to a towering waterfall in Halawa’s cathedral valley, one of the island’s most historic places, and celebrating a life far removed from the maddening crowd over a pa’ina (feast), complete with a home-style Hawaiian jam session.

Ship-goers will be on the lookout for humpback whales off Maui enroute to the next stop at the “private island” of Lana’i where 1,000-foot sea cliffs plunge into the Pacific that once surrounded an ancient princess and her sugarcane fields. Here guests snorkel among coral gardens near a sea turtle habitat. The Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary adjacent to Lana’i, Moloka’i and Maui provides front-row seats through marine breeding grounds while searching for dolphins, whales and other marine life.

Then it’s on to the Big Island of Hawaii where a morning on coconut palm-fringed Honomalino Bay offers snorkeling, stand-up paddleboarding and kayaking surrounded by colorful corals, sponges and tropical fish. Guests explore tunnels known as lava tubes, and on the water go by kayak and skiff to pay calls on marine animals and to sail into Kealakekua Bay where Captain Cook fell to the hands of the natives in 1779. Later guests stroll through the historic town of Kailua-Kona.

For details on all AdventureSmith’s small ship cruises worldwide, day-to-day itineraries, availability and reservations, phone: 866-575-2875 toll-free or visit www.adventuresmithexplorations.com.

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Turtle Bay Resort, Oahu to Host Visual Artist Louie Schwartzberg for New Wonder & Wellness Workshop

Turtle Bay Resort on Oahu’s fabled North Shore will host Louie Schwartzberg, a celebrated cinematographer, director and producer, as part of its new Wonder & Wellness workshop series from November 13-16, 2014. This is the first time Schwartzberg has been accessible to visual

artists, photographers and nature lovers in such an intimate and interactive format. Highlights of his visit will include a brand-new visually stunning presentation with limited seating open to the public, a small group photography excursion, and VIP access at once-in-a-lifetime creative learning events.

Schwartzberg, who captures breathtaking images that celebrate life, will take a deeper look at art and how it can be used to break barriers, connect with audiences, and tell stories that reveal the mysteries and wisdom of nature, people and places. Schwartzberg is an award-winning expert in time-lapse, high-speed and macro cinematography techniques, with a career spanning more than three decades.

His recent theatrical releases include the 3D IMAX film “Mysteries of the Unseen World” with National Geographic, narrated by Forest Whitaker, and the Disneynature feature “Wings of Life,” narrated by Meryl Streep. “Mysteries” is a journey into invisible worlds that are too slow, too fast, too small and too vast for the human eye to see. Designed to inspire, educate and perhaps even evolve our perspective on the world, Schwartzberg also creates and curates unique Moving Art™ content, which is used in venues and technologies throughout the world. Two of his most recent TEDx Talks, “Nature. Beauty. Gratitude” and “The Hidden Beauty of Pollination” are often cited as the top TEDx views of all time.

“I hope my films inspire and open people’s hearts,” Schwartzberg said. “Beauty is nature’s tool for survival – you protect what you love. If we can move enough people on an emotional level, I hope we can achieve the shift in consciousness we need to sustain and celebrate life.”

The three-night Wonder & Wellness Exclusive Limited Package includes an intimate immersion in Schwartzberg’s work, with special events led by the artist. Newly renovated epic accommodations and partial meals are included. Check www.TurtleBayResort for pricing on three-night packages. The package includes:

  • 3 nights in brand-new epic accommodations at Turtle Bay Resort, including resort fee
  • Welcome reception with Schwartzberg
  • Meals, including daily breakfast at the new farm-to-table North Shore Kula Grille; a picnic lunch at Kawela Bay with Schwartzberg and a Hawaii cultural teacher; and dinner with Schwartzberg at the new sea-to-table Pa‘akai restaurant
  • $75 activity credit at Kawela Bay to explore on stand-up paddleboards, a guided kayak tour, snorkeling and more
  • VIP admission, reception and seating at a special presentation of “Saving Our Planet: Nature’s Mysteries Revealed Through the Lens” at Surfer, The Bar
  • VIP admission and seating at Talk Story gathering with Schwartzberg at Surfer, The Bar
  • Morning visual guided meditation led by Schwartzberg, followed by a Hawaiian blessing
  • 60-minute massage at the new Nalu Kinetic Spa and two fitness class passes
  • $100 resort credit for restaurants; spa; retail or activities

An exclusive limited12-person excursion for experienced photographers led by Schwartzberg at pre-scouted locations throughout Turtle Bay’s 840 acres is available for an additional supplement. Call (808) 293-6000 at Turtle Bay Resort for additional information and reservations.

“I will talk about some basic creative photography tips like adjusting depth of field, focus, composition and lighting – but more importantly how to capture the emotion you feel at the decisive moment of squeezing the trigger,” Schwartzberg said of the photography excursion. “Finding images that connect with universal rhythms and the deepest part of your soul. How your mind and the sensor need to be open to anything, without judgment, waiting in the dark for light to strike, always in a state of readiness.”

Call 808-293-6000 or visit www.turtlebayresort.com/oahu_events for more.

To discover the destination and stay up to date on the Turtle Bay experience, check out Oahusfablednorthshore.com.


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