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Location: Maui and Kona, Hawaii
Trip Faculty Member: Dr. Laurance Doyle
Dates: February 11–20, 2018
Cost:  $5,068/person for a double-occupancy (shared) room | $7,155 for single occupancy (Sold Out)
Trip Capacity: 30 minimum, 44 maximum
Final Payment Deadline: December 1, 2017

Trip Overview

Whether you’re eager to explore historic sites, learn more about whales, volcanos, and stars, or experience breathtaking natural beauty, this Hawaii tour with Dr. Laurance Doyle is guaranteed to be full of adventure.

Stroll through Maui’s quaint, historic town of Lāhainā, with its many art galleries and shops. Stand in awe as you admire Kīlauea Crater in Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. Did you know this prolific volcano produces 250,000–650,000 cubic yards of lava per day? Marvel also at Haleakalā National Park, site of the huge volcanic Haleakalā Crater.

We will drive to the lush 'Iao Valley to see the 'Iao Needle, a spectacular volcano spire. On the “Big Island,” we will drive to Hawaii Volcanoes National Park and visit the Jaggar Museum. We will also meet Dr. Fred Sharpe, a research biologist with the Alaska Whale Foundation, for a lecture and whale-watching excursion. One evening, you’ll have the opportunity to join a sunset manta ray snorkeling adventure. Another night, at a festive luau, you’ll learn to hula, try traditional Hawaiian specialties like poi, and see captivating Polynesian musicians and dancers. You will have the option to enjoy whale-watching on a spacious catamaran with Dr. Sean Hanser, a whale researcher with the U.S. Navy and a Principia alum. On our final evening together, we will drive to the peak of the Mauna Kea Summit, Hawaii’s most sacred mountain, for a sensational sunset amidst Mauna Kea’s world-class array of telescopes.

The trip includes the following:

  • Accommodations for a total of 9 nights at The Westin Maui Resort & Spa, Ka'anapali and Marriott Courtyard King Kamenhameha's Kona Beach Hotel
  • Meals mentioned in the itinerary (9 breakfasts, 2 lunches, 3 group dinners)
  • Lectures from Dr. Laurance Doyle as well as talks by Dr. Sean Hanser and Dr. Fred Sharpe
  • Sightseeing as outlined in the itinerary and with local guides where applicable
  • Services of a professional tour director
  • Fully air-conditioned motor coaches while touring
  • One individual airport transfer on arrival and one group airport transfer on departure

The following are not included:

  • Airfare, taxes, and fuel surcharges
  • Checked baggage fees imposed by the airlines
  • Meals not mentioned in the itinerary
  • Gratuities for local guides. Guests may tip guides as they wish.
  • Optional pre-paid gratuities for the tour director and coach driver ($120/person)
  • Optional travel insurance (available for $289/person through Trip Mates)
  • Optional excursions, upgrades, supplements, and personal expenses
  • Pre- or post-trip accommodations

Meet Your Trip Faculty Member

Astrophysicist Dr. Laurance Doyle is a research scientist at SETI Institute and the Director of Principia College's Institute for the Metaphysics of Physics. Doyle partnered with the Alaska Whale Foundation (AWF) to study humpback whale communication and looks forward to sharing his knowledge and research as we explore the coast together in search of the pod of whales that lives in Juneau, Alaska, during the summer and off the coast of Maui in the winter. Doyle will also lecture on Polynesian navigation, animal communication and SETI, extrasolar planet detection, and modern navigation.

Meet Your Featured Speaker

Dr. Fred Sharpe’s work with bubble-netting humpbacks has been a centerpiece of the Alaska Whale Foundation’s research program since the organization’s inception in 1996. Tenacious in his research, he has spent more time in the field observing the social behaviors of humpbacks than most could fathom. In 2001 he was awarded a doctorate from Simon Fraser University for his efforts. Sharpe's research has attracted some of AWF’s more eclectic collaborators, including the SETI Institute and National Geographic Society’s Crittercam team. When Sharpe takes a break from whale research, he enjoys wandering the hills and forests of the Pacific Northwest collecting plant specimens and recording bird calls. His handiwork can be seen in his books Birding in the San Juan Islands and Wild Plants of the San Juan Islands.