As the holidays approach, the islands of Hawaii are gearing up for a slew of events to help travelers feel a little holiday cheer on their vacation. Travel Agent breaks down a host of Hawaii holiday festivals and events to tell clients about.
Santa’s German Gingerbread Village
Visit the 14-foot tall and 24-foot wide Santa’s German Gingerbread Village at the Sheraton Princess Kaiulani from November 23 – January 2. Executive Chef Ralf Bauer and his team of culinary architects will spend more than 750 hours designing the sweet masterpiece using 225 gallons of icing, 140 pounds of dark chocolate, 50 pounds of white chocolate and 70 sheets of gingerbread. Visit www.princess-kaiulani.com
Hyatt Regency Waikiki Beach Resort and Spa Lighting Ceremony
The Hyatt Regency Waikiki Beach Resort and Spa will host a Lighting Ceremony on Nov. 28 to celebrate the beginning of the holiday season and to present a charitable donation to the Make-A-Wish foundation. This ceremony, which will be open to the public, will commemorate the 30th anniversary of Make-A-Wish in Hawaii. Highlights include a magical moment when the Great Hall will fill up with bubbles – reminiscent of snow – and a special performance from local musicians, who will perform a selection of holiday favorites. Visit www.waikiki.hyatt.com
Honolulu City Lights Opening Night
The City and County of Honolulu presents the Honolulu City Lights Opening Night. The month-long celebration kicks off on December 1 with the lighting of a 50-foot Christmas tree on the Honolulu Hale lawn, live entertainment and an electric light parade. Visit www.honolulucitylights.org.
Christmas in Polynesia
Fall marks the return of Polynesian Cultural Center’s “Christmas in Polynesia,” a 25-minute canoe ride that winds through a live production of “The Littlest Star." Elaborate Christmas lights, decorations and musical performances— with actors, animals and props — accentuate the production. Rides will be offered starting at 6:30 p.m. every Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday from Dec. 7-15. Visit www.polynesia.com.
Santa Visit Outrigger Waikiki on the Beach
Santa arrives by outrigger canoe on the beach in front of the Outrigger Waikiki on the Beach on Dec. 8. The 9 a.m. arrival will be followed by complimentary photo taking with Santa in the hotel lobby. Santa returns on Dec. 18 and 19 for a special breakfast. Enjoy a delicious buffet breakfast, picture taking, balloon art, and face painting. Visit www.outrigger.com.
The Old Wailuku Inn at Ulupono's Holiday Celebration
The sixth consecutive year of the Inn's signature holiday event, Lei of Aloha 6, takes place on Saturday, December 1 from 1 - 4 p.m., tickets $25. This year's theme is "Hawaiian White Christmas." The open house and benefit for Hokulani Holt's halau hula, Pau O Hiiaka, includes a house tour of Maui's award-winning bed & breakfast inn, music, hula, poetry readings, light snacks and beverages; and, new this year, a Hawaiian Country Store with gift items for purchase. Visit www.mauiinn.com.
Skating by the Sea, a Kaanapali Holiday
A first among Hawaii resorts, the Westin Kaanapali Ocean Resort Villas presents a timeless holiday tradition with ice skating in the tropics. The four-diamond resort on pristine Kaanapali North Beach will transform its outdoor ocean lawn into a holiday escape complete with a 1,000 square-foot hybrid ice skating rink offering magnificent views of the warm Pacific and humpback whales. In addition to Skate & Stay room package, holiday makers can reserve private parties or indulge in Skate Into The New Year revelry. Open to resort guests and non-guests, skate rental is available. Visit www.westinkaanapali.com.
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