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Exclusive Cultural Experiences Await American Safari Cruises’ Guests in Hawaiian Islands

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36-guest Safari Explorer Sails in Hawaii from November 2011-May 2012

Photo courtesy of American Safari Cruises

Seattle, WA. – Close relationships developed with local families on Moloka’i afford guests aboard American Safari Cruises’ yacht Safari Explorer exclusive authentic experiences while sailing among the Hawaiian Islands. From guided hikes learning how to “listen to the land” to joining a local family repairing ancient taro terraces, shoreside tours offer a unique opportunity to experience true Hawaiian culture.

Sailing weeklong or 10-night active, adventure un-cruises between Maui and the Big Island from November 2011 through May 2012, the upscale 36-guest Safari Explorer visits Moloka’i, Lana’i and Molokini.

“Our guests like to immerse themselves in the destination, learn about local culture and history from the people who live there and actively explore the environment,” said Tim Jacox, executive vice president of sales and marketing.  “We’ve connected with the community on Moloka’i to help create an authentic experience with opportunities to visit residents on their land and in their homes.”

As the only overnight yacht or passenger ship currently visiting Moloka’i, guests aboard the Safari Explorer can choose from exclusive included tours highlighting the local culture created especially for their visit.

Lawrence, a 50th generation of his Hawaiian Halau lineage, will guide the group to a hideaway waterfall in the pristine Hālawa Valley. Along the way, guests spend time with Lawrence and his family “talking story,” listening to the land and absorbing the spirit of the natural world and ancient cultural practices passed down through generations of native Hawaiians. Another guided walk through the valley focuses on history and archaeology of this ancient homeland.

Others may choose to join Lawrence’s Uncle (Anakala) and his ‘ohana (extended family) on a walk through his family’s ancient taro terraces. After a refreshing lunch, the group will set about helping to restore the terraces, farmed by ancestors for 13 centuries until they were wiped out by a tsunami in the mid-twentieth century. Guests may harvest a bit of taro and help pound it into poi, a paste made from the root of the taro plant, for the evening’s pa’ina. There’s also an opportunity to explore the Ali’i ancient fish pond with Uncle Herb in the early evening.

The day culminates in a private, authentic Hawaiian pa’ina, a celebration and feast so named by early Hawaiians.  The feast takes place just shoreside of an ancient fish pond that has been restored by the locals on Moloka’i. Guests will dine on locally sourced cuisine including fresh fish and poi, seaweed, Moloka’i sweet potatoes and pork from the imu (underground oven), all staples of the Hawaiian diet. A homestyle Hawaiian music jam session is sure to be a highlight.

During the two-day visit in Moloka’i, guests may also hike the switchbacks of the Kalaupapa Trail, enjoy a mule ride (optional tour), bike on the island, or join a guided hike to the rain forest.

Flexible yacht itineraries focus on the leeward side of the eastern-most Hawaiian Islands. Guests can be as active as they like and explore secluded coves and isolated beaches by foot, kayak, paddle board, sailboat, mountain bike and motorized skiff excursions.  The unstructured itinerary allows time for seeking wildlife. Known as one of the world’s most important habitats for humpback whales, each year from winter through mid-May, two-thirds of the population migrates to Hawaii from Alaska for breeding, calving and nursing.

Guided snorkeling tours are a highlight throughout the trip. In Lana’i, the yacht anchors near ancient volcanic plugs which snorkelers can explore. Off Molokini, guests have a rare opportunity for night snorkeling and scuba diving (optional) to see many varieties of fish and possibly sharks.  Off the Big Island, a snorkeling tour in Kealakekua Bay—where Captain Cook died in battle—reveals colorful corals, sponges, tropical fish and often sea turtles.  Guests may also swim with Great Pacific Manta Rays on the Kohala Coast.

Fares start at $4,995 for the seven-night cruise and $6,495 for the 10-night cruise, both per person, double occupancy. Itineraries feature exclusive excursions and include all from-the-yacht activities and equipment; transfers; exquisite meals; fine wine, premium spirits and microbrews; and all port charges, taxes and fees. An all-American crew has a guest-crew ratio of 2 to 1 and includes Hawaii residents who have personal knowledge of the islands. To book a Hawaiian yachting adventure or to request additional information, contact your travel agent or American Safari Cruises at 888-862-8881 or email [email protected].

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