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nusail

Is this doable from Hilo in 6 hours?

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[COLOR=#333333][FONT="]Our ship docks in Hilo at 9:30 am and we’ll take theshuttle to the airport to pick up our rental car. Realistically it's unlikelywe'll be on the road before 11 am. The current plan is to stop first at Rainbow Falls andthen head up the [/FONT][/COLOR][FONT="]Hamakua Coast Road to the Waipio’o Valley Lookout with short stopsat [URL="https://www.hawaii-aloha.com/blog/2017/07/10/big-island-must-do-visit-the-hawaii-tropical-botanical-garden/"][COLOR=windowtext]HawaiiTropical Botanical Garden[/COLOR][/URL], Akaka Falls and Laupahoehoepoint BeachPark. After Waipio’o Valley we’d drive to Waimea and then circle back to Hilo via Hwy 200.From the mileage and driving time info I’ve found online it looks doable in the6 hour timeframe but I’d appreciate hearing from people with knowledge of theroute and stops. If it seems overambitious, what modifications would yousuggest?[/FONT][FONT="][/FONT]

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It's possibly doable, but will be very rushed (which violates the Hawaii "Hang Loose" spirit!). I'd put both Rainbow Falls and Akaka Falls in the "if there's time" category and concentrate on the Hawaii Tropical Botanical Garden, which takes about 2 hours to do. It has a waterfall which is gorgeous, though maybe not as high as the others. Make sure to take water and mosquito repellent. Then head for the Waipio Valley lookout, but make a quick stop along the way in Honokaa at Tex's Drive-in for malasadas - they're famous all over the islands. I'd also skip Laupahoehoe Point - interesting and pretty, but not much different from what you'll see elsewhere along the route. Then you can still circle back through Waimea. Keep in mind that some of the roads you'll be traveling are 2 lane, where you may get stuck behind slow-moving farm equipment, and are almost always under construction for some reason. The recent hurricane and 34" of rain on the island could have damaged some roads and be reason for more delays.

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Oh I’m so glad you asked this as we had a similar plan. Luckily we dock a little earlier at 8 am. I certainly don’t want hubby stressed out about missing the ship! I also wondered if there was a good place on the route for lunch or shave ice.

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[quote name='Kartgv']It's possibly doable, but will be very rushed (which violates the Hawaii "Hang Loose" spirit!). I'd put both Rainbow Falls and Akaka Falls in the "if there's time" category and concentrate on the Hawaii Tropical Botanical Garden, which takes about 2 hours to do. It has a waterfall which is gorgeous, though maybe not as high as the others. Make sure to take water and mosquito repellent. Then head for the Waipio Valley lookout, but make a quick stop along the way in Honokaa at Tex's Drive-in for malasadas - they're famous all over the islands. I'd also skip Laupahoehoe Point - interesting and pretty, but not much different from what you'll see elsewhere along the route. Then you can still circle back through Waimea. Keep in mind that some of the roads you'll be traveling are 2 lane, where you may get stuck behind slow-moving farm equipment, and are almost always under construction for some reason. The recent hurricane and 34" of rain on the island could have damaged some roads and be reason for more delays.[/quote]

Thanks so much for your feedback. Your suggestions make a lot of sense and we certainly don't want to feel rushed. I'll modify our plans accordingly.

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It's all moot now as Royal just sent an email (48 hours before sailaway, no less) announcing they've cancelled the stop in Hilo due to the closure of VNP. Duh! Surely everyone's know about that for weeks and had made other arrangements. They're substituted an overnight and second day in Lahaina so I guess it's back to the drawing board!

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[quote name='nusail']It's all moot now as Royal just sent an email (48 hours before sailaway, no less) announcing they've cancelled the stop in Hilo due to the closure of VNP. Duh! Surely everyone's know about that for weeks and had made other arrangements. They're substituted an overnight and second day in Lahaina so I guess it's back to the drawing board![/quote]

Oh darn, I was really hoping to hear how it went! Enjoy your cruise!

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