Read what other Viator.com travelers think about the Big Island Day Trip: Grand Circle Island from Oahu. What they loved, what they liked and what they think could be improved, it's all here to help you make the most of your next trip.
Tour guide was extremely knowledgeable and highly entertaining. This tour does have a very early start from Oahu (3 am pickup) so expect to be completely wiped out by the time your plane returns. We had the 8 pm flight as was totally sleeping in the airport by the end. Another gotcha.. 2 pina colado drinks at the big island airport will run you $30 so beware.
Very enjoyable day. Excellent tour guides.Well organised. Visited so many interresting places, like the black sands with sun bathing turtles,well worth the money.
Everything was so organized to the letter!!! Drivers were prompt, friendly and very knowlegeable about their state. It was very enjoyable, at times we wished for more time but on the flip side we did need to catch our flight back so time limit was understood. Had a blast and looking forward to a return visit.
This is a very long, but very worthwhile trip from Honolulu. Not only is the scenery spectacular, but the tour is designed to show the variety of the scenery, from barren lava flows, to active volcanoes, lush forest, waterfalls and lava tubes. We also saw turtles coming ashore at the black sand beach. The trip also gave insights into the economy with stops at a Kona coffee plantation and later at a Macadamia nut cooperative, as well as insights into the importance of cattle ranching The guide was extremely informative about the history,
geology and agriculture of the island.
Despite the early start this is an amazing tour, well organised, although it would have been appreciated if fellow travelers had been a little more considerate and arrived back at the coach on time. You see many different types of terrain, walking through a lava tube, how often will you get the chance to do that! Sightseeing interspersed with a lunch stop as well as visits to both sweet and macadamia nut factories, delicious!
Although the day is a long one (3:30am pick up in Oahu to the airport) it was fun to visit the Big Island! We got to see most of the island, including volcanos (no lava) -- and we were kept well informed on the history by our tour bus driver, Sal. We were a little bummed because we got to the airport to fly back to Oahu only about 12 minutes before the plane took off - and this was after being driven for what seemed like hours at night time to drop off folks staying on the island at their hotels. A good tour though and glad we did it!
Early start (4:30 a.m.) but everything was organized perfectly. I had never used Viator before and was nervous especially about this large group of 7 people and the details surrounding getting us where we needed to be. The pick up bus was a little late, but other than that, everything worked great and we enjoyed our day tour of the big island. The tour guide/bus driver was very entertaining and knowledgeable. I would suggest reminding people in advance to tip the driver well. We hadn't thought about this until later in the day and did not have much cash left.
It was a nice trip that let you feel of the wonderful naturals seens
A very long bus ride, but you get to see the whole island with all of its' vast diversity.
Tour guide was knowledgeable and entertaining. The trip to the volcano and surrounding areas were wonderful. Could have done without the stops to the stores though.
I took this tour with Polynesian Adventures. They are a fantastic company. To meet my group on the Big Island, I had to fly from Honolulu to Kona on Hawai'i (the Big Island). I was a sole traveller for this portion of the day and there was always somebody to meet me and guide me to the next step of my journey (exactly the same on the way back). Their arrangements all went like clockwork, timing/punctuality is excellent and the Tour Guide (Harry) on Hawai'i was always courteous and made it a priority to look after us. He gave us advice about the best spots to get photos, how to avoid queues or get the best view or understanding of something - he was really great. They all make you feel like they really care about your safety, your enjoyment and your knowledge about what you are seeing. Being a full day tour, this is a long day - it is an entire circuit of Hawai'i, but the island is so diverse, everything is fascinating. We saw the remains of centuries of lava flows and volcanic activity, black sand beaches, walked through huge lava tubes, stood at the edge of the mightly Kilauea crater, then watched as the seismographs monitored and recorded every single movement in the Earth's crust nearby. We went to Hilo, saw Rainbow Falls, indulged in the marvellous Kona Coffee and Island Macadamias - it was a great day out. The orchid farm is no longer on the itinerary though. A really good and interesting trip.
This is such an excellent tour, even though we did not have much time at each stop but it covered lots of great information and breathtaking view. Our driver Jan is very professional, talks in a beautiful voice. If you do not have a few days to spend on Big Island but wish to learn much about it I strongly recommend this tour, but please keep in mind it is such a long 16 hours trip.
We enjoyed this tour and were particularly impressed with the fact that we had booked it from Australia, yet all the connections and details were exactly as promised.
I would not recommend this trip if you are not currently on the big island. The tour is nearly 12 hrs. long and if you have to fly over, it's even longer. You do not see much of the volcano from a ground view. The island was interesting and there are many things to see, but not what I expected.
This was a very good tour. It is about an 18hr day from Hawaii, well worth doing. However I have recently had spinal surgery (3 weeks ago) and they are a couple of stops that I could not do. The tour guide was funny and very informative. Enjoyable but a long day.
Tour guide was excellent. Saw a fair bit of the Big Island. Did think we would get closer to the volcanoes. But still a great day.
This is a a very long day as it is an early start from the airport, very good flights both ways, on time and no issues at all, good help to get on the gates.
After the flight to big island you then you start to pick up other tourists and then start the tour.
( a later flight would be better and then picked up from the airport to pick up the bus after it was full would have been much better).
The tour guide then brings you update and informs you you are due for a 300mile drive stopping for lunch at 11:00 and tells you will not see any lava today (only if you take a helicopter flight can you see any), that dampened the spirit a bit.
The guide Milo, was very informative during the whole tour although repetition of phrases used drove some people to earphones. The weather on the north side of the island is tropical and half of the drive was in terrential rain, no pre advice about rain mac etc although ponchos and umbrellas are available to buy on route.
On the hole the day was long and one of those you were glad it was over, given the choice 2nd time around it would be best to stop one night and see the island over two days and arrange close viewing if lava nearer the south shores of the island.
This tour was very interesting but not exactly what we were expecting. Most of your time is spent on the bus. We had 45 minutes for lunch (cost not included), and only 10-15 mins. at the few stops we made. We were led to believe we would be able to actually see fresh lava, but our tour guide said that could only be done by air and that we had been lied to. He said the same thing about waterfalls. He stopped at one and we "saw" several others as we sped by in the bus. Again, he said we were promised to see waterfalls, not get close enough to touch or get good photos. The majority of the tour you drive by lava fields, coffee trees, and macadamia nut trees. It was a good Island over view with some beautiful scenery, but after returning home to view our photos, many were blurred because they were taken out the window of a moving bus. We would not do this tour again, especially considering the $$ paid. If we knew then what we know now, we would fly over, rent a car, and stay overnight. Anyone could drive to any of the places we stopped themselves with a map for much less cost.
I didn't expect this to be mostly sitting on a bus with only 20 minutes at every stop.
The trip advertises (as you can see by the main image on the left on this rate your trip page too - a trip to the molten lava area). This is false advertisement.
Beware that you will NOT SEE THE MOLTEN LAVA.
If we had known that, we would have rather taken our own car and did the trip.
There is a lot of driving, and a lot of talk about multi-million/billion land deals and who's who on the island.
The tour stops - Coffee company, and the lunch were mediocre at best. The tour operator should co-ordinate with some better restaurants with a wider menu choice. (13$ for a veggie burger and fries).
The drivers at both end (Airport pickup/Drop-off and Mr. John on the main leg) were wonderful.
The tour was too long and it was not what I expected. To be dropped off at airport and to have to wait two hours before our flight back to Waiiki was very disappointing. There was an earlier flight however - we would have had to pay $50 pp extra..This is the first tour that I have booked through Viator that didn't reach our expectations. The tour guide was very annoying spoke the whole time while on the bus and repeated himself two or three times, when he should have gave us rest time.
The fact that you promote this tous by showing a picture with people standing next to a laval stream is far from reality and misleading. No lava is visible during this tour just steam coming out of the ground. Tour was well organised and with good guide. Some walking should be included and not just hopping of the bus each time.
I was very disappointed with this trip. It was not as described. I never even saw lava on the active volcano site. It was a 267 mile bus drive with stops at shops to buy items. It was poorly organized with a 04:30 am start for us, but a 8:30 am start on the trip after picking up all the guests on the big island. We only stopped at 1 waterfall-the others were seen as a "drive by". The information I learned was nothing new. We went on a Sunday, so the factories were not open. I would not suggest this trip