I don’t drive. I don’t own a car, I don’t rent cars, and I have no desire to operate one in the slightest. That being said, I love to travel, and after planes and trains, automobiles are often in the mix to facilitate exploration. When I go somewhere that requires covering a lot of ground, I immediately begin seeking out alternate forms of transportation. One of the greatest places to do this is in Hawaii, where year-round mild temperatures and beautiful landscape offer up ample opportunities to hit the road in all formats.
Hawaii is known for its premier hiking and mountain biking, but for getting around the islands in order to see as much as possible, motorized transport is the best choice. After popping in to a favorite hotel like the Aqua Waikiki Wave, my Hawaii vacations are always bookended with reservations for the most fun you can have on two wheels – scooters! Safe, cheap, quick and easy to handle, scooters and mopeds also give you a relatively intimate feel for the islands and allow you to fully take in the gorgeous scenery. There are numerous rental spots like Hawaii Style Renters and Tours, which also offer expert guided tours around the islands.
Powered by Pedals
Nothing beats a good ole reliable bicycle for daily travel in places like Honolulu or Hilo. These cities are compact, flat, and bike-friendly, and you’ll never have to worry about parking. In addition to seeing small details of the city you might otherwise miss in a car, you can easily pull over whenever something catches your eye, and you can take in all the sounds and scents of a new city. If you are a regular cyclist, consider tagging along on one of the more serious bike tours such as a mountain bike trek on the windward side of Oahu.
High-Tail It Through History
As the ultimate throwback to old-school travel, jump in the saddle of one of the many Hawaiian horseback tours! This is perfect in places like Maui, where Alaka’I (guides) take you on a historical and cultural ride through ancient unspoiled landscape as part of the Kipahulu horseback tour. The Alaka’I are the real deal, too—Hawaiian natives who can trace their family roots back for centuries. Of course, history lessons don’t necessarily have to be a part of the equine experience. Mountain and beach riding tours are available virtually all over Hawaii.
Get Your Feet Wet
You’ve swum, snorkeled and surfed the Pacific, and now you’re ready to take it up a notch and truly cover some waves. Jet skis are one of the most pure forms of fun you can experience. Have you ever seen an unhappy person on a jet ski? No. It’s impossible. Riding off the Big Island is one of my favorite places to skim along the cerulean waves and take in the view. If you’ve never ridden before, fear not. Jet skis are propelled by a stream of water rather than a propeller, so the risk of injury is far slimmer. Plus, steering a jet ski is a lot like steering a bike, only more fun!