Hawaii is preceded by its reputation, and for superb reasons. When you close your eyes and hear “Hawaii,” your mind immediately flashes with images of crystal blue waters and vast beaches, luaus with dancers spinning flamed staffs while roasted pig with caramelized skin whets the appetites of guests adorned in leis. That is Hawaii. But then again, it’s not completely Hawaii.
Hawaii is also Polynesian culture, it’s local oceans that humpback whales call home, it’s green canyons and waterfalls that dwarf skyscrapers, it’s forest reserves and sugarcane plantations, and it is sea caves and lava tubes. It’s a diverse ecosystem, landscape and society beyond the beaches. And with Carnival Cruises, you’ll have the chance to experience the full scope of this island state during your 15 days in Hawaii.
With eight days designated at sea, you will depart from San Diego on the Carnival Miracle. During your journey to the Hawaiian Islands, guests can enjoy a wide variety of activities for adults and kids. Children of all ages can have a splash at WaterWorks, Carnival’s onboard waterpark. Or for a bit of fantasy straight from the pages of children’s books, young passengers can participate in Seuss at Sea: fun activities, story time, a parade and arts & crafts all based on Dr. Seuss’ timeless tales. There’s also Camp Ocean, incorporating the best elements of summer camp with the convenience of a Carnival cruise, with children assigned by age-based groups and cool marine-life names: Penguins (2 to 5 years), Stingrays (6 to 8 years) and Sharks (9 to 11 years).
For the adults, you can enjoy the solace of Miracle’s Serenity Adult Only Retreat: a separate deck of comfortable lounge furniture, sea breeze, panoramic ocean views, and a nearby bar. Catch up on that book you always wanted to finish, take a nap or have a great conversation over drinks. Later, continue the adult fun at the RedFrog Rum Bar for live music, cocktails and vibrant times. The BlueIguana Tequila Bar can also craft some equally joyous times as you order the perfect margarita or ice-cold Mexican cerveza.
As for dining options, you can enjoy the delectable culinary dishes of the Chef’s Table, with a multicourse dinner hosted by a Master Executive Chef; or for more informal dining, enjoy a slice on the high seas at Pizza Pirate. Miracle also has the Steakhouse, which takes the concept of a juicy steak to a whole new dimension: premium cuts of beef cooked to your preference, with fresh seafood, gourmet appetizers, a wine list endorsed by Wine Spectator and a dining atmosphere that complements your meal.
These are just a few of the ways to enjoy your time on Miracle, but at the dawn of your sixth day, you should fully prepare for the wonders of Hawaii.
Maui offers the quintessential Hawaiian experience with a luau, heralded by the bellowing sound of conch shells and the pageantry of hula and fire dancers. What better way to start off your Hawaiian arrival than with a traditional feast? Maui’s local waters are also a place for romance — not just for you, but for the humpback whales that swim hundreds of miles for … “l’amour.” Take a tour to see these magnificent marine mammals. Like a monolithic crown, the island also has the largest dormant volcano in the world: Haleakala Crater descends 3,000 feet and its summit reaches 9,740 feet. Its surrounding territory resembles a Martian landscape.
On your ninth day, now that you’ve experienced Hawaii from above, discover its mysteries below with a tour of sea caves and lava tubes, and dive into underwater sanctuaries. Speaking of underwater sanctuaries, experience the world of seahorses at the Seahorse Farm Tour in Kailua, Kona — the only seahorse farm in the United States. After your visit, enjoy a cup of famous Kona coffee and hear from locals how the rich Hawaii soil plays a role in the cultivation of this aromatic brew.
During your 10th day, acquaint yourself with the surreal beauty of Hilo. Ride through Banyan Drive and touch the contours of banyan trees, with limbs that stretch like tentacles and a trunk that resembles the Hydra from Greek mythology — multiple segments, coiled and bound as one. Or walk along the charred, blackened rock of Volcano National Park, where swirls of cooked stone resemble the surface of a giant roasted marshmallow, but with lava below rather than a gooey treat. For a more benign beauty, arrive at the Japanese Gardens, the tropical rainforest zoo or Akaka Falls, which spills into a dormant volcano.
On the 15th day of your voyage, after several days at sea, you’ll arrive at Ensenada, Mexico, a port city on the Baja Peninsula. During your brief afternoon at this “Cinderella of the Pacific,” named as such due to its raw beauty and emerging potential, you’ll delight in the city’s local shopping, entertaining bars and famous statues — from Aztec warriors to Mexican leaders such as Venustiano Carranza.
Complete your journey to the Hawaiian Islands with a return to San Diego on the 16th day, with the knowledge that Hawaii is luaus, hulas and roasted pigs, but also much, much more.
To learn more about the many cruise options you can choose from, contact a Nexion travel agent today.