Many questions float my way as you plan your trip and while we sail. So, before you step on board, here are answers to some:
Which charter vessel is appropriate for our request? Kaikiwiis available for day-sailing up to six passengers and multi-day sailing for up to four adults. Multi-day/overnight charters are not appropriate for children. If your group numbers more than six, larger vessels are available for day-sailing only.
What does “Kaikiwi” mean? “kai” in Hawaiian means “salt water”. “kiwi”… enough said (unless you are unfamiliar with the global nickname for a New Zealander). Salt water kiwi sums it up perfectly :-).
What type of boat is Kaikiwi? She is a year 2000 42 ft Beneteau 411. Sloop rig.
What kind of weather can we expect? Our local weather man boasts “the best weather on the planet”. That may be well true! Facts: winter is our rainy season and is obviously cooler but a comfortable temperature especially if you are escaping from mainland snow and ice. Summer: we are one of the coolest states in the union because of our consistent trade wind flow. Highs in summer can be 88 F. Hawaii year-round is windy, sometimes very windy with trade winds from the north east.
Are there life jackets and other safety equipment on board? Your safety and comfort are our number one concern: whether you are sailing on Kaikiwi or on the catamaran, both meet all U.S. Coast Guard inspection requirements. Safety first, fun second.
Do you accept credit cards? Yes, all major credit cards including American Express. A pre-deposited personal check or cash are also acceptable means of payment.
How do we make a reservation? Once you have decided your schedule, call me with your credit card details and you will be booked. If you live Down Under or where making a phone call is a hassle, I have an alternative secure plan to get you booked, explained in the email reply to your inquiry.
What can you expect if you have booked a day-sail or sunset cruise on Kaikiwi or the catamaran?
Where are we going? We sail from Oahu’s south (protected) shore, not far from Waikiki, past beautiful coastline in the cobalt blue blue waters of our Pacific. Wildlife such as green sea turtles/ honu, dolphins/ nai’a, humpback whales/ kohola (in winter season only), and flying fish/ malolo are some of the critters we may see as we sail. This is not destination sailing…Destination is sailing …it’s more about the experience of being out on the water than getting somewhere.
Can we sail to the north shore, the sandbar, or another island? Distances while sailing are significant. Consider sailing 100 miles at 7 mph. This makes the north shore , the Kaneohe sandbar or any outer-island a distance unable to be covered during a day-sail. Fact: circumnavigating Oahu takes minimum 24 hours non-stop. This translates into a 4-day 3-night multi-day charter. Molokai and Lanai are a minimum 5-day charter. Maui is a minimum 7-day charter.
Is the sailing calm or choppy ( I am worried about sea sickness)?If conditions outside Diamond Head are too brisk and bumpy we have a fabulous sailing triangle inside that wind line with wonderful views of Oahu and awesome trade wind sailing. Regarding seasickness: BONINE is available at any drugstore and it is always best to be preventative!
What times do you sail?Our vessels are available 24/7/365 and, because this is custom, private sailing, we can sail any time you want and whatever length of time you wish.
What’s included in the price? Price includes captain, crew (catamaran) and boat. Please bring food/ beverage for your day/evening on the water or catering is available for an extra fee.
What else is provided? sunshine, shade, happiness and a beautiful ocean, sometimes with a passing turtle, dolphin or humpback whales(in season).
Are tips included and if not, are they appropriate? While there is no obligation, gratuities are appreciated and are a lovely way to say that you are very happy with services given.
Can we stop to swim/ snorkel? People sail on Kaikiwi to enjoy the sheer thrill of tradewind sailing and, knowing they can take a swim from the beach any time they want, don’t generally want to waste precious time of their private sail with swimming. That being said, if you do want to swim, let the captain know at time of booking. Swimming is not included in a sunset cruise unless you book a minimum 5-hour charter. Because our coastline has no secluded coves/ lagoons all must be strong swimmers and happens only if weather and ocean conditions are favorable; captain’s call. A stop for snorkeling is offered from the catamaran only, not Kaikiwi.
Do you have a bathroom on board? whether you are sailing on Kaikiwi or the catamaran, bathrooms are available. These are marine toilets and it is very important to follow your captain’r explanation on how to use them.
Do we find our own way to the harbor or is there hotel pick-up?Sorry, the captain will be busy getting your boat ready for you so you will find your own way to Kewalo Basin either by cab or your rental car. Specific directions to the harbor are sent to you upon confirmation of your booking. It is a very short ride to the marina.
What can you expect from a multi-day/ inter-island charter?
Multi-day charters are offered on Kaikiwi. Our larger vessels are day-sailers only. The Hawaiian Islands are beautifully unique. Sailing Hawaii is not comparable to the Caribbean or Mediterranean. Distances between islands are significant and channel crossings can be challenging at best. Secluded coves and anchorages are limited. Our sailing areas are the waters off Oahu, Molokai, Maui and Lanai. We sail day-light hours only and are anchored before sunset daily. For this reason, we do not sail to Kauai or Big Island. All multi-day sailing vacations are appropriate for adults only. For inter-island adventures (as opposed to a multi-day charter around Oahu), a minimum of one week is best. This is a sailing vacation; if substantial land time/ excursions are desired, you will need to consider more than one week for your private exclusive charter. One-way trips are available. Kaikiwi has a full galley, 2 heads, 3 showers, and two double guest rooms, the forward one being en-suite. Email or call me to receive more specific details and talk over options and ideas.
When is whale season?
Our most famous tourists, the humpback whale, migrate from Alaska to Hawaii in northern hemisphere winter months. Best Oahu viewing occurs Feb, March but if you are sailing an inter-island adventure with me we will see plenty in Dec and Jan as well. That being said, the earliest of seen a whale in Oahu waters was Oct 26!!