Haleakala means House of the Sun and has been a sunrise visitor attraction since Samuel Clemens (aka Mark Twain) wrote “It was the sublimest spectacle I ever witnessed, and I think the memory of it will remain with me always”.
Sunrise and Sunset are extremely popular and beautiful times to visit. A sunrise visit requires a reservation 60 days before you arrive. Sunset does not require reservations. These can also be the busiest times at the park.
The weather is highly unpredictable, especially at Sunrise. Dressing in layers is suggested. When I went, it was the middle of the day, however we did see the temperature change from the base to the summit as we drove.
We enjoyed the drive to the summit, stopping many times to take short hikes/walks and to see the landscape. The summit (over 10,000 feet) was amazing and the view were spectacular! It was mid-afternoon and quite warm on the day in late October, when we visited. Thankfully there was parking, as it can be limited during peak seasons and times.
This is part of the US National Park system and the entrance fees work like many other parks. Typically, it’s a single fee per vehicle. However, the entrance has limited staffing so there are self-pay machines which accept credit card only.
The park typically offers free fee days a couple of time a year! Check the website for more information.
Official National Parks Website: https://www.nps.gov/hale/
There are many tours that include Haleakala such as a Sunrise Bike Tour or Helicopter tour. Your Marvelous Mouse Travels Planner can assist with planning your Hawaii vacation!
Thank you to our Marvelous Mouse agent Karen Fitting for sharing her experience at Haleakala National Park!
Thank you Brittney Lapicki for this fantastic overview of Longboat Key!
Looking for an upscale vacation destination that includes white sandy beaches, beautiful golf courses, incredible restaurants and shops, and luxury resorts? Well I have the place for you! Longboat Key, Florida is located on the West Coast between the Sarasota Bay and the Gulf of Mexico. This beautiful island includes 12 miles of private sandy beaches, the perfect secluded destination!
Stay at the Resort at Longboat Key Club, where you can enjoy majestic views and fine dining! Need to relax? Enjoy time at their spa or out on the water using their Yacht Services! Other resort options include the Zota Beach Resort and Hyatt Regency Sarasota!
If you are looking for something to do away from the beach or pool, enjoy time golfing on the Harborside or Island side courses at the Resorts at Longboat Key Club. Enjoy wildlife and nature by visiting the Mote Marine Aquarium and the Quick Point Nature Reserve. Rent Paddle Boats and Kayaks for the day or enjoy a fishing charter out in the Gulf. Sarasota Bay Explorers can also be perfect for those who love nature tours and cruises.
Restaurants on the Island include: Euphemia Haye, Harry’s Continental Kitchens, Lazy Lobster, Maison Blanche, Blue Dolphin Café, and my personal favorite for a great burger or fish, Dry Dock Waterfront Grill.
Looking to get off the island and enjoy some shopping or time in Sarasota? Then take a quick 10 minute ride and you can enjoy shopping, night life, and a number of other fun adventures. St. Armands Circle, located on Lido Key, on island in route to Sarasota is great for outdoor shopping and dining. Enjoy European cuisine at Cafe L’Europe, snow crabs at Crab & Fin, Cuban sandwiches at Columbia, or Coconut Shrimp at Tommy Bahama, followed by ice cream at Kilwin’s.
Continue to Sarasota where you can find the Van Wezel Performing Arts and John Ringling Museum. Baseball fan? Enjoy watching the Orioles during spring training at the Ed Smith Stadium. Other beautiful sites include the Marie Selby Botanical gardens or the Sarasota Jungle Gardens. Stay active by engaging in the Mangrove Tunnel Kayak Ecotour, Snorkeling & Dolphin Excursion, Paradise Adventures, Sarasota Paddle Board Co., Bike rentals and City sightseeing tours. This is a destination that will give you everything you are looking for!