Come with American Forests as we explore some wild sides of the Big Island rarely seen by most tourists. Witness breathtaking volcanic views; tour a wildlife research facility that is hatching endangered native birds to return to the wild; visit an American Forests restoration project; and help replant a native koa forest and hike through lush tropical rainforests. Experience all this while staying at some of the world’s best and most luxurious accommodations: the Volcano House, with a view of Halema‘uma‘u crater, and the No. 1 rated hotel in the world, the Four Seasons.

American Forests is dedicated to protecting and restoring healthy forests. No forests are in greater peril than those in Hawai‘i, battling unprecedented numbers of non-native and invasive species of plants, insects and animals. You will come away with a deeper understanding of the threats against the forests and their wildlife and the urgency of protecting their habitat.

WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 22, 2014 – DAY 1
Arrive at Hilo International Airport, make your way to the beautiful Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park and get settled at the newly renovated Volcano House with its dramatic vista, perched on the rim of Kilauea Caldera and one of the most active volcanoes in the world!

THURSDAY, OCTOBER 23, 2014 – DAY 2
Wake up to the spectacle of the volcano and enjoy a buffet breakfast before a morning hike and private tour through the Thurston Lava Tube led by a National Park Service ranger. Then, we will venture to Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park, which is planting and restoring native species of trees and plants, and catch a glimpse of the gorgeous birds that call the park home. After our day out, you will have a couple of hours to rest or explore before cocktails and a private dinner with the park’s superintendent.

FRIDAY, OCTOBER 24, 2014 – DAY 3
Celebrate the sunrise with an optional hike on the Kilauea Iki Trail and see how its lava flows are beginning to crack and create the early signs of a new forest. After breakfast at the Volcano House, we will visit a bird sanctuary closed to the public that is hatching chicks of the endangered Hawai‘ian crow — already extinct in the wild — as well as other birds and see the critical role forests play in the species’ surival. On the way back to Volcano House, you’ll be treated to a wine (and tea) tasting at one of the only two vineyards in Hawai‘i before enjoying an evening on your own.

SATURDAY, OCTOBER 25, 2014 – DAY 4
Partake in an optional sunrise hike before breakfast, then we make our way to the Kona side of the island and along the way, enjoy one of the island’s famous private coffee plantations and sample their many varieties of coffee and tea. We will check in to the internationally renowned Four Seasons hotel, rated the No. 1 hotel in the world by Travel & Leisure Magazine. After our day of travel, this evening is left open for you to enjoy this beautiful property with its many amenities and romantic restaurants.

SUNDAY, OCTOBER 26, 2014 – DAY 5
After a leisurely breakfast, our group will visit one of American Forests’ project sites and learn about our reforestation efforts. This project works tirelessly to protect the plantings that are under threat from feral pigs, goats and sheep. Our tour will visit a beautiful facility where local school children learn about their heritage and the importance of forests. We will try to catch sight of the state bird of Hawai‘i, the Nene, which increasingly calls this project site home. Afterwards, we will return to the Four Sea-sons and you will be free to explore for an afternoon and evening, enjoying the beaches or swimming in one of the many pools.

MONDAY, OCTOBER 27, 2014 – DAY 6
Awaken to the sound of the ocean before an optional morning hike through a nearby forest followed by a leisurely breakfast. We will then head out to visit a project in the mountains that has reclaimed thousands of acres of pastureland and is restoring it to forest by planting native koa trees. Each of our guests will help in this effort by planting their own tree. You will receive your tree’s specific GPS coordinates so you can come back and visit it in the years to come or watch it grow online. We will return later to the Four Seasons and spend a leisurely afternoon enjoying the hotel property before our closing night luau on the beach.

TUESDAY, OCTOBER 28, 2014 – DAY 7
Sadly, this is our departure day. Guests must check out of their rooms by 11 a.m., but are free to enjoy the property for the remainder of the day. You may store your luggage and enjoy a shower in the hotel’s facilities before catching your flight home.

 

TRIP PRICING AND OTHER DETAILS

The total cost of this trip is $4,900 $3,600 (per person) for deluxe hotel views and $4,500 $3,400 for standard hotel views. A non-refundable deposit of $1,500 is required when registering, with the balance due September 1, 2014. Single occupancy rooms are slightly higher. Please call for details. The cost of this trip excludes airfare and airport transfers to and from the host hotels.

Trip Includes:

  • 3 nights of accommodations at Volcano House in Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park.
  • 3 nights of accommodations at Four Seasons Resort Hualalai at Historic Ka‘upulehu.
  • Private ground transportation to all American Forests activities during trip.
  • All breakfasts, lunches and dinners at Volcano House; breakfasts, boxed lunches and closing night dinner at Four Seasons.
  • Entrance and activity fees for all scheduled events.
  • Tips for scheduled meals and guides.

Important Notes:

  • This trip is limited to just 26 participants.
  • Single guests are welcome, but a higher rate will apply.
  • This trip is open to American Forests’ members and their guests 18 years and older.
  • This trip is not recommended to anyone with health issues that would limit their ability to hike on moderately rocky trails.
  • The price does not include evening meals on Oct 24, 25 and 26; guests may enjoy one of the resort’s many restaurants on their own.

RSVP Information:

To sign up for this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, download a PDF with our RSVP form by clicking here and return it to Matthew Boyer at mboyer@americanforests.org or 1220 L Street, NW, Suite 750, Washington, DC 20005. To secure your spot over the phone, call Matthew Boyer at 202-370-4513.