Going to the Big Island, Hawaii can feel like you are even further away than traveling from America to Europe. The energy, the air, the water, the feeling of being there is in many ways more exotic.
1. Carry-On Bag
Save yourself the money, you don't need to check a bag. You can scale down and fit everything into a carry-on and a small backpack. This will also decrease the headache of having your luggage get lost and you will get to skip the long waits at baggage claim.
2. How to Get There
There are now a number of direct flights that fly non-stop to Hilo International Airport and Kona International Airport from the U.S. mainland. Mandatory stopovers in Honolulu to arrive on the Big Island are no longer required. Hawaiian Airlines, Alaska Airlines, United Airlines and American Airlines all offer direct travel options at very competitive rates.
By taking a direct flight you can cut down on travel time. Be sure to have easy access to a warm weather outfit you can change into upon landing. On your last day of your retreat you should know most flights usually leave late in the day and hotel checkout is usually early in the day. Plan to use this time to enjoy one more excursion and pack your travel clothes for later.
3. What to Wear On the Big Island
Hawaii is very casual; skirt, shorts and flip-flops can be worn almost everywhere on the island. Breezy clothing that can be multi-functional is ideal. For instance, a dress that you can wear as a bathing suit cover-up, as well as over your yoga outfit for dinner.
Bring half as many outfits as you think you need because you don’t need to worry about wearing the same outfit more than once. And be sure to pack extra layers from tank top to a long-sleeve top to a light jacket. The breeze off the ocean in early mornings and in the evening requires light layers of warmth.
You also want to pack some technical fabrics as rain/moisture protection. Also, keep in mind that you will be walking in more natural surroundings, so fancy shoes or heels won't provide you the best comfort. Instead, pack a pair of water shoes and closed hiking shoes or sneakers. If you plan to surf, bring the specific clothing like rash guards and board shorts as well.
Ask the retreat center in advance if you will be required to use eco shampoo and conditioner so you can plan accordingly. Be sure to bring your SPF minimum of 30, and girls, even if you don't need them, bring feminine products.
5. Respect the Ocean
Never turn your back on the water. The ocean is more powerful than what you think. And always go around with a filled water bottle in order to stay hydrated. Make time to enjoy the warm ponds, go snorkeling, swim amongst hundreds of species of tropical fish, do some whale/dolphin watching and go surfing. And plan a visit to the Rain Forest too to visit beautiful waterfalls.
6. Visit Hawaii Volcanoes National Park
Make time to visit the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park and hike Crater Rim Trail; get down the Puna and walk a lava beach like Coconut Beach. Do a nighttime hike to see the lava flow and be sure to wear closed-toe shoes. Flip-flops won’t be appropriate!
7. Embrace The Aloha Spirit
Leave everything just as you found it. Respect the land and people by learning more about the culture and climate on Big Island. Educate yourself about the 11 of the 13 microclimates that exist in close proximity to one another. In about thirty minutes you can go from the beach at sea-level, to the high land of Waimea at an elevation of more than 2,500 feet! Travel another 30 minutes and you’ll find yourself in a lush rainforest; and in no time you can be up on the snow-capped Mauna Kea.
Packing List Essentials
- Airline tickets, boarding pass or electronic versions
- Picture ID
- Water bottle
- Some cash
- Emergency phone numbers
- Contact numbers to report credit cards lost
- Toiletries like toothbrush, toothpaste, deodorant, hairbrush, comb, feminine hygiene supplies, aspirin, sunscreen
- Medications, prescriptions, eyeglasses, contact lenses supplies
- Tech stuff like power cords, chargers, camera, cell, mobile device, extra film or memory card. If you don’t use the same electrical outlets as North America, make sure you bring a power plug adapter.
- Misc. stuff like book light, headlamp, notebook, batteries
- Proper preparation will make all the difference in getting your adventure kicked-off in the right way. Love yourself, love your day, love your life!
Want to escape to an island on a yoga retreat? Go to BookYogaRetreats.com and search among thousands of yoga holidays on the web!