I just got back and a friend who is taking the exact same cruise and is also cost conscious asked me to give him all my lessons learned. I figured you all might benefit even if some of this information isn't strictly about cruising. I'm going to ask my travel companions to review it (first time in Hawaii and first time cruising) to see if they have anything to add.
Getting There And Getting Around Air Fare
With Southwest now offering tickets to Hawaii, I expect the competitive market to drop prices across the board but unless you are fortunate enough to live on the west coast in a city with flights that fly direct, air fare can be pricey. I had to get 4 people there round-trip (2 from rural Maine, 1 from Louisville Kentucky and 1 from the Baltimore/D.C. area). I ended up signing up for the Chase Sapphire credit card (annual fee waived for the first year) and the Alaska Airlines credit card that gave me a buy one/take one sign up offer. My total air fare cost was $2400. Besides the credit card, there was no secret other than monitoring the prices as far in advance as possible to see what typical prices are and then striking when there was a decent sale. I would also mention following Scott's Cheap Flights
on the off chance a deal becomes available for when you were already planning on traveling. Ground Transportation
We flew into Waikiki on Tuesday (cruise started on Saturday) so I got a rental car through Autoslash
. The total cost for a mid-size for 4 days was $176 and ended up being from Alamo. While I feel this was a good deal as I had four people, if you're not 100% sure you will need it - you can probably get by with an Uber, taxi or even a hop on/off bus (see excursions later). Many excursions had an option for hotel pickup/drop-off.
Probably the best deal I found was Star Taxi
which only charged $25 for up to 4 people one-way to/from the cruise terminal and not much more for other locations. Call 1 hour before you need the service. Parking
Parking is EXPENSIVE
so be sure to do a lot of research if you plan on renting a vehicle.
In your mind, you have this idea of what Hawaii is going to be like. Oahu (specifically Honolulu/Waikiki) is not it. It is very over developed and crowded. Many places are run-down because investors have purchased the property but have chosen to wait until conditions are more favorable to develop. There is a very large homeless population in Hawaii overall but I was shocked by the number of shanty towns and abandoned vehicles doubling as homes I saw on Oahu. Excursions
- Snorkel-Cruise-Swim-Dolphins-Turtles - highly recommended (hint: This excursion may be cheaper directly with the vendor Dolphins And You - if you buy the photos, you will have to go to their Waikiki office later to pick them up and they will offer you a 10% discount on merchandise at that time).
- Shark Dive - Unfortunately, this tour got canceled due to weather so I can't comment on it. Since it is on the north shore, the plan was to do an early morning adventure (when the water is calmest) and then spend the rest of the time exploring the beaches and surfers. (hints: You may be able to get this cheaper directly with the vendor North Shore Shark Adventures and if you drive, take one way to get there and another way to get back so you can experience more of the island).
- Sunset Cruise & Show - The people I was going with had never cruised before so this was to get their feet wet so to speak. It was nice but not spectacular. You may be able to get it cheaper directly through the vendor Star Of Honolulu. On Fridays, they offer an extra hour for a nominal fee upgrade which includes fireworks. I didn't see the fireworks myself but several people I talked to said they are put on by a hotel and aren't anything special. (hint: If you drive, they will validate your parking ticket and parking will only be $4 instead of $18).
- Waikiki Trolley Hop-On Hop-Off You can trade time for money and if you have time, this would be a much more cost effective solution to getting around and is very configurable (how many days of use, how many different lines, etc.)
- Polynesian Culture Center - I had the Ambassador Luau Package With Circle Island Tour of Oahu. Pickup was at 8:30 in the morning and drop off wasn't until after 10 PM so it is a long day. If you do this one I have several recommendations. First, take it early in the trip because it includes a multi-day pass so you can go back at no charge for 3 more days and the Circle Island tour allows you to see some areas you may want to explore on your own. Second, you don't get food until 6 PM so be sure to eat breakfast first and plan the rest of the time accordingly (bring snacks for instance). The only thing I was disappointed in was the Diamond Head didn't actually drive up to the crater. Update After the initial post, I was reminded by mashel2811 of a few things. The PCC is Mormon owned/operated which has pros/cons. On the downside, there is no alcohol on-site and things overall tend on the conservative side. Not that I have an issue with that but if you're looking for authenticity then this would represent Polynesia post Christian missionaries. On the upside, it is a huge facility that truly will allow you to experience many of the cultures besides just Hawaii. Also, regardless of how you feel about religion, the money taken in from PCC helps to sponsor many students education from all over Polynesia. I had nothing to compare the luau to but I have heard from several other people that there are much better options (the luau at PCC is optional). The Breath Of Life was awesome.
- Pearl Harbor (see the end of the cruise excursions)
- You probably want a beach other than Waikiki due to the number of people - Hanauma Bay looked awesome. If you do decide to stay in Waikiki, walking the coastline towards Diamond Head is a better choice for the beach instead of around all the hotels. This is because in Hawaii, beach access and water is considered a public service (free)
- What is and isn't expensive didn't make any sense. Eggs imported from the mainland were cheaper than eggs from Hawaii despite chickens EVERYWHERE but I was able to get a large jar of peanut butter for $1.89. The best place I found for groceries was Don Quijote and it had a free parking garage.
- Souvenirs were much cheaper on other islands
- It rains - almost daily - but not for long - don't let it fool you - WEAR sunscreen of at least SP50
- Hydrate more than usual - especially if you're drinking beer like me
- Updates From original post below
- You can get insanely discounted Pearl Harbor tickets from recreation.gov but they sell out in 5 minutes. Exactly 7am Hawaii time they sell tickets for the next day or for 2 months out. Nothing in between. I recommend having 2-3 people trying it simultaneous for different time slots. The early tickets sell faster. Then the bus ride anywhere is $2.50 each. When you board the bus ask for a transfer ticket. The transfer ticket is good for two more rides for the next 2.5 hours. If you get out of PH within the time slot you can ride back for free.
- There's a stand near Breakout Waikiki that is a hard sell timeshare sales pitch (couples only). If you're willing to sit through it, they give you $150 towards an excursion or a free meal and a $120 Visa gift card (as of March 2019). If you want the exact location, message me.
- You may think being a Costco member will help you out on expenses and you're probably right but know that the busiest Costco in the world is on Oahu and they claim 1 in 4 people have membership so plan accordingly (think shopping for the latest toy on Christmas Eve)
Pride Of America
I have to be honest, this was hands down the most expensive cruise I have taken and it was the worst cruise ship. I had a great time but there was a lot left to be desired.
- Entertainment was very underwhelming - I believe unlike other mass-market cruise lines, NCL's entertainers are on multi-month contracts just like other staff. This tends to be bad for entertainers like comedians (how many different sets can they have prepared) but should be better for magicians (you shouldn't have to rely on the suitcase you get through security at the airport). I have seen a Vegas quality magic show on NCL before (Norwegian Spirit last November) but this act was honestly no better than a birthday party. I could go on but I will summarize it as this: On Carnival, I struggle deciding what I am going to do because of so many good things where as on this ship, I struggled to find anything I actually wanted to do.
- Beer prices were outrageous and included a mandatory 20% gratuity and since you spend a LOT of time in port, taxes too. In each port, I found a better selection of beer right off the ship for at least 20 - 30% cheaper than on the ship. If you do drink on the ship however, I highly recommend the Gold Rush Saloon as it has a couple of beers on tap you can't get anywhere else. It has a self-serve popcorn machine and is adjacent to the buffet so you can get self-serve ice cream too.
- The food was mediocre (main dining quality was about the same as the buffet which was good but not great). I didn't spend the money to try any of the specialty dining.
: One thing that really stood out as being a good thing is that the room had 3 US standard outlets
!!! Why Does It Cost So Much
- There is no casino to subsidize the fare cost
- It is a US Flag cruise ship which means it has to abide by US labor laws (this is an indirect result of the Jones Act as it doesn't travel to any foreign ports)
- Hawaii not only has a sales tax but a tourist imposed General Excise Tax which of course NCL passes on to you
- Exclusivity - unless you want an extremely sea day intense cruise from California, around Hawaii, to Mexico and then back to California (or similar) cruise - they're the only show in town
Hint: You should get the NCL Mobile App
. It includes dinner reservations, account charges, dinner reservations, deck plans, passenger to passenger chat for an additional fee ($10 vs Carnival's $5) and other nifty features. Observations
I was astounded by the number of first time cruisers I saw (based on their ship card color). Because so many of the employees were American, I was also surprised by how many told me that they were on their first contract and wouldn't be back. The people (both employees and passengers) were incredibly friendly and most everyone seemed to be having a good time. I didn't see long lines at guest services. I mentioned earlier how this was the worst ship I had been on - and, while true, shouldn't give you the impression that I didn't have a great time. For my traveling companions, they had nothing to compare it to and other than the entertainment - they had no complaints at all and loved it.
Day 1 & 2 Maui (overnight)
If you have ever been on a Caribbean cruise and you didn't feel like paying for an expensive excursion you could always just walk off the ship and go to a beach or a shopping district or a friendly bar - something. This is not the case in Maui. Where the Pride Of America docks there is absolutely nothing (it took 10 minutes to walk out of the port with chained link fence on both sides only to end up about another 10 minutes away from a strip mall). I do want to point out that the strip mall did have a few artisans selling things out on the sidewalk but this was far from what you will be used to at other locations. So what to do instead?
- Rent a car if you want to go on your own - day rentals are common and you will be in port overnight. You will have to do your own research as to what to do as I booked excursions for both days
- Go up to Haleakala Crater for sunset or sunrise. I went for sunset as sunrise required leaving the ship at 3 AM. I can't stress how amazing this sunset was at nearly 2 miles above sea level. If you go, take plenty of warm (think Maine winter) cold. It was 44 degrees without the windchill when we arrived at around 5 PM (still sunny) and the temperature dropped significantly by the end of the sunset (around 6:40 for us but varies based on time of year).
- Road To Hana - I didn't take this excursion but it is extremely popular. Most guests I spoke with said they absolutely loved it though a few called it the road to hell (it's an all day excursion)
- Maui Northshore & Waterfall Walk - This is the one I took because it was rated as "easy" and one of my traveling companions has mobility issues. There is an alternative called Waterfall Hike that you may want to consider. This was a great excursion which took you into a historical town for lunch (delicious) and gave you some free time to explore the artisans (glass blowing, jewelry making, etc.) before taking you to the private access Wailele Farm. The waterfalls you can walk to (as opposed to hike to) were not breathtaking but overall the plants and flowers here were amazing. You will get an opportunity to eat many of the things you encounter so if you're feeling adventures, give it a try.
- Choose another of NCL's Excursions
- Choose something from Viator
Day 3 Hilo Hawaii
This is the first of two days on the island of Hawaii and it is on the eastern (very wet) side of the island. Normally doing two excursions in one day is a not recommended. I would make an exception here because the Botanical Gardens are not to be missed. It is a short excursion (2.5 hours), is relatively inexpensive (you can even do it on your own) and is offered at multiple times allowing you to get another excursion in. Recommendations
Day 4 Kona Hawaii
The other side of the island is a stark contrast to Hilo as it is dry/desert climate. It is the only tender port on the cruise. Unfortunately, we didn't fare very well here on excursions but shopping and beer was good.
It has been on my bucket list to be in a real submarine and go over 100 feet to below the surface to the ocean floor. That's what 3 of us did here in Kona and while I am glad that I can now say I have done it (105'), the experience itself was underwhelming. To not interfere with the wildlife, the sub doesn't use any artificial lights nor does anything to attract the fish to your windows. This means almost everything is a monochrome blue (the color red doesn't exist at this depth for instance). It's also nearly impossible to get nice photos out the windows even though they are clear enough - just not the right conditions. Now, I met a guest back on the ship that said he had a phenomenal time on a sub that wasn't sponsored through NCL but I'm not sure what it was.
The other guest in my party decided to go on the Gold Coast & Cloud Forest excursion and was also not impressed. The gold supposedly comes from the Hawaii state fish (yellow trigger fish also known as humuhumunukunukuāpuaʻa) but apparently they haven't been plentiful enough to turn the coast gold for years. She also said if she was a coffee drinker, she probably would have enjoyed it more (they are famous for their coffee). Recommendations
- If you would like to buy coffee at a discount, a tour guide let me in on a little secret. To be called Kona Coffee it has to indicate what percentage is from Kona (i.e. 100%). Well, geography being what it is, the line between Kona and the region to south is arbitrary (created by humans) so buying coffee labeled just across the boarder (I forget the name of the place - I don't drink coffee) is 25% cheaper
- If you want to see the pretty coral and reefs, consider a glass bottom boat ride. The bartender I chatted with told me that she used to work on the sub and a much more beautiful experience was the glass bottom boats.
- Normally, the closer to port you are the more expensive things are - like souvenirs. That may in fact be the case in Kona but I found the prices at Whalers General Store to be very competitively priced. Many of the same items I saw at stops before here were at least 20% cheaper.
- Have a drink or 6 at Paradise Brewing Company. I was fed up with the prices on the ship so I checked this place out (there was another one further up the street with a fairly large beer menu as well but they weren't very friendly so I moved on. I sat in here for hours (was one of the last tender boats back to the ship). It was extremely friendly - the beer was good, the food was good - I would definitely recommend.
- Take an NCL excursion
- Take a Viator option
Day 5 & 6 Kauai (Overnight)
Remember how I said you have this ideal image in your head of what Hawaii is and Oahu doesn't meet it. Kauai exceeds it - I fell in love and if I ever go back, I will just fly directly here and stay on this island - it is that good
I am not going to suggest you do anything other than exactly what I did because I couldn't possibly imagine having a better time. Recommendations
- Day 1 - Best Of Kauai. I have no idea if a similar excursion can be booked elsewhere because it included 5 stops (Waimea canyon, Spouting Horn Park, Keoki's Paradise for lunch, Opaekaa Falls and Wailua River Fern Grotto). If you want to "build your own", just go to Waimea canyon and dine at Keoki's Paradise as they were the highlights of the day. If you are into photography and have gotten tired of lugging all of your lenses around, today is the day to have it all at the ready.
- Day 2 - Mokihana Helicopter - There are no words to describe how amazing this was. I did discover that can get it substantially cheaper directly with Blue Hawaiian Helicopter Tours.
Now, there's more to the story than just these two excursions. First, since you're overnight you can stay out as late as you want. I asked our tour guide where an affordable place to get good beer close to the ship was. She recommended The Nawiliwili Tavern (or just the Tavern). It happens to be a 2 minute walk from one of the free shuttle stops and they have great pizza, beer and pool. Secret
I learned this is also where a lot of the crew from the ship hang out after they get off at 9PM so if you want to have a real conversation and ask real questions - this is the place to do it. Once the bartender realized I was into craft beer and trying all they had, she told me about a brew pub not too far up the road that I really wanted to try but ran out of time.
Napali Coast (still day 6)
The cruise ship leaves port early (circa 2PM) and instead of heading to Honolulu backtracks around Kauai. There is a portion of the island that's only reachable by air (helicopter) or by sea (cruise ship) and I was fortunate enough to do both. Actually, our pilot said that a few of the beaches can be reached by a hiking 11+ miles but it isn't an easy hike. In any event, this is where the opening scenes of Jurassic Park were filmed if I remember correctly - utterly gorgeous. My pilot also let me in on a little secret - that the captain times the cruise ship to sunset when the coast is all lit up in spectacular colors so be out on deck with camera ready.
Day 7 - Honolulu (Pearl Harbor & City Tour)
I made a big mistake here. I booked a late flight so I could go to Pearl Harbor and then get dropped off at the airport. We had already done the Circle Island Tour and none of the other offerings were of interest. This was a mistake for two reasons. Reason 1: Exhaustion
After having spent 5ish days in Waikiki and then taking a 7 day cruise, we were wiped out and really didn't have the stamina to really take it all in. Recommendations
Reason 2: Airport
- Eat a big breakfast as this tour didn't include food
- Bring food for the tour and possibly the airport (see airport notes below)
- The cheapest place to get hot dogs at the time was at the Missouri ($6 as of March 2019)
- If you are using your phone as a camera, practice taking photos against the bus window as the city tour took you to some neat places but they didn't stop to let you off
- The tour includes the Missouri and the Arizona - everything else is additional
- At the time of this writing, the Arizona was still under repair so you only took a boat close. You will be watching a very emotionally moving video before the boat ride so sit as close to the exit doors (front left) as you can so that when it's over you can pick one of the corners of the boat to get unobstructed photos from - they don't allow you to stand up and they don't play. Oh, and if you are sensitive to loud noises - when the bomb actually drops on the Arizona it is about 10 times louder than the rest of the film so be prepared
- Our guide got tickets for the Arizona at 2:15 PM, helped us navigate the shuttle over to the Missouri and told us he would see us at the bus 3:30 PM. If you're not comfortable navigating on your own then this is probably not the tour for you
- It's only 5 minutes from the airport so if you want to stay longer because of a late flight it would be fast/cheap to go on your own - just ask to get your luggage off the bus
If you have a late flight home, I'm sorry. All of your checked bags have to be screened by agriculture (certain plants are not allowed to leave the state) which is airline specific and unless that airline is running flights all day (looking at you Alaska), then you will have to wait for them to open before you can even check in. While you wait, there is essentially no place to eat (Starbucks and a bar that serves hot dogs for $12.50 - yes, $12.50). I recommend you keep some food with you for this reason. They do offer a baggage hold service but the prices were ridiculous (4 checked bags for 24 hours was $100). Sorry if it seems like I am whining - it was the end of a long trip and I was returning to reality.
In this post, I have provided a number of links to NCL's excursions, directly to the vendor and also to Viator. Viator is part of Tripadvisor and generally speaking, you can trust the reviews. On most of the bookings, you can cancel for a full refund up to 24 hours in advance. They are competitively priced and you can usually get a discount. For instance, new customers will get offered a 10% discount off their first purchase. Companies like Ebates and TopCashBack will offer an additional 3 to 6% cash back as well. Use a credit card that gives back 2-4% on travel and it can really reduce the price. I haven't had too much trouble figuring out what vendor was being used through Viator so you could just book with them direct too and just use them as a way to find fun things to do and use the reviews to distinguish between what's good and what's not.
Disclaimer: All the following information is from both Honolulu Magazine & Honolulu Family, however, feel free to add / correct / update...WHATEVERS! Because this thread is for you, the fine users of /Oahu
. If you go to any of them, please post pics and reviews...you've got to be tired of seeing me posting all'a the time, so go for it! I'd also advise checking the websites and/or calling to make sure the events are still on and that the information hasn't changed. From Honolulu Magazine: Hitchcocktober at Consolidated Theatres OCT. 3–31
Nothing says Halloween like rewatching some of Alfred Hitchcock’s most iconic films. (Psycho still makes us nervous in the shower.) Consolidated Theatres will be showing special screenings of North by Northwest, Notorious, Vertigo, Rebecca and Psycho every Tuesday at Kāhala Mall throughout October, with a double screening of Psycho at Kāhala and ‘Ōlino Theatres on Halloween. Talk about a fright night.
Kāhala: 4211 Wai‘alae Ave.; ‘Ōlino: 91-5431 Kapolei Parkway, #600, Kapolei (Kapolei on Halloween night only); $10, Tuesdays at 7 p.m., consolidatedtheatres.com/oahu Ghouls ’N’ Gamblin’ OCT. 20
Feelin’ lucky? Come in character to the Elite Parking Foundation’s casino night for your chance to win $500 in the costume contest, a trip for two to Las Vegas in the prize drawing and more. This year, proceeds from entrance tickets, casino and alcohol sales will benefit the Special Olympics of Hawai‘i and the Boys & Girls Club of Hawai‘i.
Pōmaika‘i Ballrooms, 735 ‘Iwilei Road, $25 presale, $35 at the door, 6–11 p.m., eventbrite.com Tim Burton Film Festival OCT. 20–22
Tim Burton’s films don’t all take place around Halloween, but they’re still creepy enough to get you in the spooky mood. Here’s your chance to see Beetlejuice, Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, Edward Scissorhands and Corpse Bride on the big screen in a (supposedly) haunted theater.
Hawai‘i Theatre, $7–$12, hawaiitheatre.com The Rocky Horror Picture Show – Hosted by Tita Tisling and Cast OCT. 26–31
Let’s do the time-warp again! Instead of watching The Rocky Horror Picture Show at home for the billionth time, experience the cult classic on a monster-size movie screen. This fully interactive show is accompanied by a full cast of characters and gives you the chance to shout and dance in your seats (and even dress up as your favorite characters. Dibs on Frank N. Furter!). Doors open an hour before start time for cocktails, movie snacks, props and more.
The Arts at Marks Garage, 1159 Nu‘uanu Ave., Oct. 26 and 27 at 8 p.m., Oct. 28 at 7 p.m. and midnight, October 31 at 8 p.m., $20 advance tickets, $25 at the door, eventbrite.com Art After Dark: Kings & Queens OCT. 27
Calling all scream queens and kings of horror: Come spend the evening with Halloween royalty at the Halloween edition of Honolulu Museum of Art’s Art After Dark. Get down to spooky sounds from King DJ Revise and Queen DJ Tittahbyte, sip on frightfully good cocktails at the iichiko bar and enter the costume contest for your chance to be officially crowned king or queen of the Halloween ball.
Honolulu Museum of Art, 900 S. Beretania St., free for museum members, $25 general admission, 6–9 p.m., honolulumuseum.org/events/art_after_dark/16501-kings_queens Hallowbaloo 2017 OCT. 28
Honolulu’s Chinatown arts district and historic Downtown will once again transform into a massive spooktacular celebration of music, craft beer, food, art and entertainment. This year’s street festival promises Hawai‘i’s largest Halloween outdoor craft beer experience, food trucks, three stages of music and entertainment and the chance to win $1,000 in a costume contest. Then, walk your wicked self over to the after party at Club Hallowbaloo featuring eight clubs and just one cover charge.
Nu‘uanu Ave., Hotel, Smith and Pauahi streets; street festival: 5–10 p.m.; Club Hallowbaloo: until 2 a.m.; $10–$45, 21 and over (unless accompanied by an adult), eventbrite.com Rock the Block Halloween SpooktaculaThe Creepy Tiki Cruise OCT. 28
Classic cars, pinup girls and … zombies? We can dig it. Put on your favorite poodle skirt, tease and grease up that hair and come on down to Rock the Block in Kaka‘ako for a throwback Halloween party featuring classic cars and bikes, pretty dames, gruesome zombies, street vendors, food trucks, live music by Ooklah, Jimmy Weeks and more.
Cooke and Auahi streets, free, 5–10 p.m., facebook.com Halloween at the Hyatt OCT. 31
Batmen, Wonder Women, this one’s for you: “League Up!” is your chance to suit up as your favorite superhero (or villain) for a night filled with tricks and treats. Fly solo or assemble the squad for the Halloween costume contest and you could win up to $2,000 in cash and prizes. Don’t want the night to end? Head over to the official after party at The District Nightclub and keep the fun going all night long.
Hyatt Regency Waikīkī Beach Resort and Spa, 2424 Kalākaua Ave., $10 general admission, $20 VIP (includes a glow stick, fast pass to skip lines and a candy pouch), 8 p.m., seetickets.us Your Guide to the Scariest Haunted Houses in Honolulu Haunted Plantation
Your worst nightmares come true at the Haunted Plantation in Waipahu. On Friday the 13th, the Hawai‘i Plantation Village transforms into a haunted attraction complete with crazy circus clowns, gross zombies and a hideous pale woman. More than 70 costumed actors are hiding inside the houses in the village, waiting to scare you. The movie-quality special-effects makeup really adds to the extra creepiness factor. What’s even scarier are the stories of real ghosts reported on the site of this former sugar plantation village.
Throw in some spooky music and fog—you’ve got a recipe for a good scare.
Oct. 13–15, 20–22, 27–29, 31, $15 general admission, $20 fast pass, Waipahu Plantation Village, 94-695 Waipahu St., hawaiihauntedplantation.com Skeleton Key Presents Mummy: Curse of the Crypt by Jorge Garcia
You don’t need to take a trip to King Tutankhamun’s tomb in the Valley of the Kings to see mummies—a new haunted house in Kailua is packed with them. Mummy: Curse of the Crypt is Kailua’s newest haunt designed by Hawai‘i Five-O actor Jorge Garcia and produced by Skeleton Key Hawai‘i’s Kevin Keaveney. Your mission is to escape this long-lost Egyptian crypt to survive the mummy’s curse. Be prepared to feel claustrophobic. Tight spaces? You bet. You’ll need to navigate through the dark and winding tunnel with mummies creeping at every turn. Can you make it out alive?
7–11 p.m. on Oct. 6–7, 13–14, 19–21, 26–31 and keiki-friendly days from 5–7 p.m. on Oct. 21, 28–29, $15 general admission, $20 fast pass, 171 A-Hamakua Drive, skeletonkeyhawaii.com Zombie Paintball Massacre
The undead are after you. You’re armed with a paintball gun and only one goal: Save the world. Good luck.
7–11 p.m., Oct. 13–14, 20–21, 27–31, $10 per person for groups of 10 or more, $12 presale, $15 at the door, $20 fast pass (tickets available at all military outlets, Razor Concepts and UH Campus Center), 919 Kekaulike St., scream808.com Honolulu Family's Halloween Events in Hawai‘i-2017 Sunday, Oct. 1 through Oct. 31 Pumpkin Patch at Waimānalo Farm
Saturdays and Sundays, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Weekdays are often for school group visits only. Visit Waimānalo Country Farmsʻ Facebook page for the latest information.
Pick a pumpkin, sip on fresh lemonade and play at the farm at this pumpkin patch on O‘ahuʻs windward side. While youʻre there, stop by the sunflower patch, which will also be open this month.
Waimānalo Country Farms, 41-225 Lupe St., Waimānalo, (808) 306-4381, waimanalocountryfarms.com Tuesday, Oct. 10 Movie Night at Kahuku Library: Ghostbusters
5:30 to 7:30 p.m.
This remake of the classic 1980s movie follows paranormal researcher Abby Yates and physicist Erin Gilbert as their research into modern ghosts proves to be too successful. Soon, they and two other New Yorkers must go to battle when 1,000 mischievous ghouls descend on Times Square. The movie is rated PG-13.
Free. Kahuku Public Library, 56-490 Kamehameha Highway, (808) 293-8935, librarieshawaii.org Saturday, Oct. 14 through Sunday, Oct. 29 Aloun Farms 17th Annual Pumpkin Festival Saturdays and Sundays, 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Pick pumpkins, sweet corn, beans and sunflowers, then go for a free hayride or saddle up for a pony ride at this working farm in Kapolei. There will also be photo stations, carnival games and rides and a free WiFi hotspot. The first weekend, families can try free educational farm activities. Oct. 21 and 22 will have a free obstacle course and Oct. 28 will have costume contests and free carnival games. Bring two trash bags of gently used clothes to get free entry and a chance to win a family four-pack of passes to Wet ‘n’ Wild Hawai‘i. Pumpkins will be priced according to size. Bring cash. No checks or credit cards will be accepted.
$3 admission, kids 2 years and younger are free. Military Appreciation Day is Saturday, Oct. 28 when admission is free with military ID. Aloun Farms, Old Farrington Highway between Kapolei and Waipahu., (808) 677-9516, alounfarms.com Saturday, Oct. 14 Saturday Afternoon at the Movies: The Little Vampire 2 to 3:30 p.m.
Tony is the new kid in a small, remote village in Scotland, making him the target of bullies. He’s also having nightmares about vampires. One night, a young vampire, Rudolph, flies into his room and soon, the two are working together to help the family of vampires regain their humanity. The film is rated PG.
Free. Hawai‘i State Library, 478 S. King St., (808) 586-3520, librarieshawaii.org Felted Fall Pumpkins Workshop 2:30 to 4 p.m.
Make a woolly jack o’lantern with a local fiber artist. Felting needles are sharp so parents may want to stay to help their kids. The minimum age is 8, but 7-year-olds may come with a parent.
$20, 8 years and older. Art Explorium, 1142 Koko Head Ave., (808) 312-4316, artexplorium.org Sunday, Oct. 15 Spooky Scenes Workshop 2:30 to 4 p.m.
Kids will make ghosts, pumpkins, spiders and more from air-dry clay then create a pop-up scene as a backdrop.
$20, 5 years and older. Art Explorium, 1142 Koko Head Ave., (808) 312-4316, artexplorium.org Howl-O-Ween Woof-tacular & Doggie Escape Room 3 to 7 p.m.
Dressed-up dogs can celebrate with a costume contest, doggie limbo and trick contests, a pet photo booth and pumpkin prize pull. Sign up early for the Doggie Escape Room, where you need to find your spare keys to get a candy-stuffed Fido to the veterinarian. The family with the fastest time will win a prize pack of dog goodies. The event is a fundraiser for Assistance Dogs of Hawai‘i. Registration for the escape room begins at noon, a small participation donation fee is requested.
Free. 2961C East Mānoa Road, (808) 783-7390, hawaiidoggiebakery.org/events Monday, Oct. 16 Color Mask: Trick-or-Treat Event 3:30 to 4:30 p.m.
Make a superhero mask and trick-or-treat around the library. Kids in grades kindergarten through sixth grade will be given a nametag, which they will need to trick-or-treat.
Free. Mililani Library, 95-820 Maka‘imo‘imo St., Mililani, (808) 627-7470, librarieshawaii.org Tuesday, Oct. 17 Reading Awakens: This Halloween 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.
Dress up in your favorite Star Wars costume to join games, crafts, snacks and a selfie photo booth.
Free. Kahuku Public Library, 56-490 Kamehameha Highway, (808) 293-8935, librarieshawaii.org Wednesday, Oct. 18 Pumpkin Palooza 6:30 to 7:30 p.m.
Pumpkin stories, crafts, games, pumpkin pie in a cup and other activities will be available for kids. Young keiki must be accompanied by an adult.
Free. Waimānalo Public Library, 41-1320 Kalaniana‘ole Highway, (808) 259-2610, librarieshawaii.org Friday, Oct. 20 Halloween Family Camp at Camp Erdman 3:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 21 through 2 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 22.
The not-so-spooky-themed camp for families includes three days and two nights in cabins with showers and all meals. Activities include a costume contest, arts and crafts, a haunted house, scavenger hunt-style trick-or-treating, swimming and hiking. In the past, arts and crafts included tie dying, candle making and pumpkin carving.
Rates begin at $115 per person for space for a tent to $1,240 for a deluxe cabin that houses up to eight people. Camp Erdman, 69-385 Farrington Highway, Waialua, (808) 637-4615, camperdman.org Tim Burton Film Festival: Beetlejuice 8 p.m.
Arts and crafts, a themed costume contest and entertainment lead into the showing of Tim Burton’s story about two ghosts who test their haunting chops when two over-the-top yuppies threaten to makeover their home in this classic Tim Burton comedy. Alec Baldwin and Geena Davis call on freelance bio-exorcist Beetlejuice to chase the mortals out, but soon find they need to find a way to exorcise the exorcist. This movie is rated PG and runs one hour and 32 minutes.
$12 general admission; $7 for kids 4 to 17 years, seniors and military and students with ID. Kids 3 years and younger are not permitted. Hawai‘i Theatre, 1130 Bethel St., (808) 528-0506, hawaiitheatre.com Saturday, Oct. 21 Pumpkin Picking at Red Barn Farmstand 8 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Pick a locally grown pumpkin at this Hale‘iwa shop and eatery. Pumpkins from Twin Bridge Farm will sell for $5 for medium ones, $10 for larger sizes. Then stick around for a live performance by Uncle Wayne and the Howling Dog Band at the Family Pau Hana. Ten dollar stew, chili or curry bowls as well as Red Barn's hummus dip and veggie plate will be for sale. Kids in costume will receive $1 off an entree.
Free admission. 66-320 Kamehameha Highway, Hale‘iwa, (808) 753-4350, redbarnfarmstand.com 8th Annual Pumpkin Carving Festival 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Watch a master carver turn a 1,200-pound pumpkin into a character from Beauty and the Beast, watch local high school students in a carving challenge. Families can buy a pumpkin-carving kit do make their own for $35. Proceeds benefit Keiki O Ka ‘Aina Family Learning Centers.
Free. $35 pumpkin carving kits include a pumpkin, tools, gloves and stencils. Windward Mall, 46-056 Kamehameha Highway, (808) 945-1005, windwardmall.com The Great Pumpkin Festival 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Pick your favorite from more than 2,500 locally grown pumpkins at the largest patch in East O‘ahu, then create arts and crafts, play games and shop in the country store.
Free admission. Holy Nativity School, 5286 Kalaniana‘ole Highway, (808) 373-3232, holynativityschool.org Halloween Event and Costume Contest at Salt Lake Shopping Center 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Activities, a costume contest and center-wide trick-or-treating will be part of this annual event.
Free. Salt Lake Shopping Center, 848 Liliko‘i St., (808) 735-8822, saltlakeshoppingcenter.com Spook Life Park at Sea Life Park Noon to 4 p.m.
Trick-or-treat through the park, visit a haunted theater, see underwater pumpkin carving, enter the costume contest and play games for a special discounted price. The costume contest is for kids 12 years and younger, with prizes given to the most original in each age group. There will also be a category for costumes using recycled materials.
$13.01 kama‘āina admission with ID, kids 2 years and younger are free. Sea Life Park, 41-202 Kalaniana‘ole Highway #7, Waimānalo, (808) 259-2500, sealifeparkhawaii.com Tim Burton Film Festival: Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children 2 p.m.
Arts and crafts, a themed costume contest and entertainment lead into the showing of Tim Burton’s story about a school for children with special powers. Note, some say this film is a bit scary for younger children. The movie is rated PG-13 and runs two hours and eight minutes.
$12 general admission; $7 for kids 4 to 17 years, seniors and military and students with ID. Kids 3 years and younger are not permitted. Hawai‘i Theatre, 1130 Bethel St., (808) 528-0506, hawaiitheatre.com Sunday, Oct. 22 Pumpkin Picking at Red Barn Farmstand 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Pick a locally grown pumpkin at this Hale‘iwa shop and eatery. Pumpkins from Twin Bridge Farm will sell for $5 for medium ones, $10 for larger sizes.
Free admission. 66-320 Kamehameha Highway, Hale‘iwa, (808) 753-4350, redbarnfarmstand.com Tim Burton Film Festival: Corpse Bride 2 p.m.
Arts and crafts, a themed costume contest and entertainment lead into the showing of Tim Burton’s story about a groom who mistakenly becomes the fiancé of a ghost bride and is taken to the land of the dead. Now it’s up to him to get back to his real-life bride. This film is rated PG and runs one hour and 18 minutes.
$12 general admission; $7 for kids 4 to 17 years, seniors and military and students with ID. Kids 3 years and younger are not permitted. Hawai‘i Theatre, 1130 Bethel St., (808) 528-0506, hawaiitheatre.com Halloween Glow Jars Workshop 2:30 to 4 p.m.
Make glowing glass jars with acrylic paint. Creations can be taken home and illuminated with battery-operated candles.
$15, 5 years and older. Art Explorium, 1142 Koko Head Ave., (808) 312-4316, artexplorium.org Wednesday, Oct. 25 Spooktacular Halloween Party 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.
Kids 12 years and younger can play Halloween-themed carnival games, win prizes and take pictures with Star Wars characters and a roving puppeteer.
Free. Kapolei Public Library, 1020 Manawai St., Kapolei, (808) 693-7050, librarieshawaii.org Saturday, Oct. 28 Gunstock Ranch Fall Fun Day-presale discount 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Spend some time in a petting zoo, enter costume contests, see horses in costume, play lawn games at this Halloween-themed day at the ranch. Kids can also buy script for pony and hay rides, pumpkin chucking, face and horseshoe painting. Lemonade, corn, shave ice and Gunstock Grass-fed beef will be for sale. Bring cash, closed toed shoes, and jogging strollers to help you roll over the sometimes uneven ground. You’ll receive a $3 discount on tickets if purchased online by Sunday, Oct. 15.
$5 admission presale, $8 at the door. Kids 2 years and younger are free. Gunstock Ranch, 56-250 Kamehameha Highway, Kahuku, (808) 293-2026, gunstockranch.com Pre-Halloween Event and Trunk & Treat at ‘Aikahi Park Shopping Center 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Enter a keiki costume contest and go trick-or-treating at participating stores, restaurants and cars.
Free. ‘Aikahi Shopping Center, 25 Kāne‘ohe Bay Drive, Kailua, shopaikahi.com Halloween Spooktacular 10:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Face painting, Halloween Bingo, crafts and games are available. At 1 p.m. families can watch The Addams Family movie. Kids 5 years and younger must be accompanied by an adult. Face painting will be from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Bingo starts at 11 a.m.
Free. Waikīkī-Kapahulu Public Library, 400 Kapahulu Ave., (808) 733-8488, librarieshawaii.org Mililani Backyard Night-Halloween Event 5 to 9 p.m. Check in for the contest is at 5 p.m. Judging begins at 6 p.m. Movie starts at 7 p.m.
Join a keiki costume contest and do activities before watching the free showing of the live-action film, Beauty and the Beast. Prizes will be awarded for Cutest, Most Creative and Scariest in three age categories: 8 years and younger, 9 to 12 years and 13 years and older.
Free, you do need a wristband for entry. Mililani Shopping Center, 95-221 Kipapa Drive and 95-390 Kuahelani Ave., Mililani, mililanishoppingcenter.com Kāhala Mall Costume Contest 5:30 to 8:30 p.m.
Prizes will be given to kids in eight categories including a family or group category.
Free. Kāhala Mall, 4211 Wai‘alae Ave., (808) 732-7736, kahalamallcenter.com Mililani YMCA 5th Annual Trunk & Treat 5:30 to 8 p.m.
Trick-or-treat from car to car at this family event. For a fee, kids can play carnival games and jump in bouncers. Food will also be sold. The costume contest begins at 6 p.m.
Free. Mililani YMCA, 95-1190 Hikikaulia St., Mililani, (808) 275-4626, ymcahonolulu.org Sunday, Oct. 29 Sunday Afternoon at the Movies: Beetlejuice 1 to 3 p.m.
Two ghosts test their haunting chops when two over-the-top yuppies threaten to makeover their home in this classic Tim Burton comedy. Alec Baldwin and Geena Davis call on freelance bio-exorcist Beetlejuice to chase the mortals out, but soon find they need to find a way to exorcise the exorcist. This movie is rated PG and runs one hour and 32 minutes.
Free. Waikīkī-Kapahulu Public Library, 400 Kapahulu Ave., (808) 453-6566, librarieshawaii.org Patterned Pumpkin Paintings Workshop 2:30 to 4 p.m.
Draw and paint a pumpkin while learning about patterns and colors.
$15, 5 years and older. Art Explorium, 1142 Koko Head Ave., (808) 312-4316, artexplorium.org Keiki Halloween Costume Contest and Trick-or-Treat at Royal Hawaiian Center 3 to 10 p.m. Contest begins at 4 p.m. Trick-or-treat begins at 6 p.m.
Kids and families can enter to win prizes in five categories: Cutest for kids 0 to 2 years, Most Creative for kids 3 to 5 years, Most Original for kids 6 to 10 years, Best Parent/Child Costume and Overall Grand Champion. All winners will receive Royal Hawaiian Center gift cards. Trick-or-treating will follow at participating merchants until 10 p.m. Parking will be a $5 flat rate for the day.
Free. Royal Hawaiian Center, 2201 Kalākaua Ave., (808) 922-2299, royalhawaiiancenter.com Keiki Costume Ball at the Hawai‘I Children’s Discovery Center 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.
Trick-or-treat through the center, play games, do Halloween arts and crafts, ride the carousel, take pictures in a photo booth and have pizza and ice cream at this event for families.
$16 for nonmembers, $10 for members. Hawai‘i Children’s Discovery Center, 111 Ohe St., (808) 524-5437, discoverycenterhawaii.org Windward YMCA Mermaids Halloween Show 3 p.m.
Watch the synchronized swimming mermaids. The class is offered every Sunday at the YMCA.
Free. Windward YMCA, 1200 Kailua Road, Kailua, (808) 261-0808, ymcahonolulu.org Monday, Oct. 30 Trick-or-Treat Escape Room: Escape the Vampire’s Lair 3 to 7 p.m.
The clock is ticking. Teenagers have 30 minutes to solve the puzzles and decipher codes before the vampire wakes up to claim another victim. Advance registration is required. Seven people are allowed per session, there are four sessions.
Free. Pearl City Public Library, 1138 Waimano Home Road, (808) 453-6566, librarieshawaii.org Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them 4:30 to 7 p.m.
What happens when a magical creature escapes in New York City in the 1920s? Newt Scamander is returning home from a trip around the world documenting extraordinary beasts when a magical escapee and a suitcase mixup starts a chain of events that could threaten the wizarding and human worlds.
Free. Mililani Public Library, 95-450 Maka‘imo‘imo St., (808) 627-7470, librarieshawaii.org Tuesday, Oct. 31-Trick-or-Treat Spots
Ala Moana Center-5 to 7 p.m. 1450 Ala Moana Boulevard, alamoanacenter.com
International Marketplace-5 to 7 p.m. 2330 Kalākaua Ave., shopinternationalmarketplace.com
Kāhala Mall-5:30 to 7 p.m. 4211 Wai‘alae Ave., kahalamallcenter.com
Ka Makana Ali‘i-5:30 to 7:30 p.m. 91-5431 Kapolei Parkway, Kapolei, kamakanaalii.com
Koko Marina Center-5 to 7 p.m. 7192 Kalani‘anaole Highway, kokomarinacenter.com
Mililani Shopping Center-5 to 7 p.m. 95-221 Kipapa Drive and 95-390 Kuahelani Ave., Mililani, mililanishoppingcenter.com
Royal Hawaiian Center-6 to 10 p.m. 2201 Kalākaua Ave., royalhawaiiancenter.com
Wai‘anae Public Library-2:30 to 4:30 p.m. Non-candy items will be handed out and kids can do crafts and games. 85-625 Farrington Highway, Wai‘anae, librarieshawaii.org
Ward Village-6 to 8 p.m. 1240 Ala Moana Boulevard, wardvillage.com/events
Windward Mall-5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Kids 12 years and younger. 46-056 Kamehameha Highway, Kāne‘ohe, windwardmall.com
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