No doubt about it! Health and Wellness Vacationing is the travel darling of the decade, with a rapidly growing clientele among older people in the developed world. Those fortunate to be physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually in fine shape know that it takes increasing effort to stay that way as a person ages; those not so blessed with good health and peace of mind are even more highly motivated to search for better balance and quality of life in their remaining decades. Hawaii may well provide that elusive balance between a stimulating vacation and some personal fine-tuning to keep the human engine tuned up for a few more years!
Have you browsed our Hawaii Wellness Vacations page for a comprehensive overview of what is available in these lovely islands? You will also find on that page a listing of the best web resources to help you fully research your holiday dreams and transform them into a real vacation.
A not-for-profit Native Hawaiian Center and Clinic, the mission of Ka Leo `O Na Kahuna Lapa`au `O Hawai`i is to restore, protect, develop and advance the healing arts and science of Hawaii’s traditional people. Programs and services support that goal in a collective effort to create healing, consciousness, harmony, love, laughter, happiness, light and a sense of oneness on the planet, among native peoples and all mankind. While staying on the Hilo side of the Big Island, visitors may take advantage of authentic Hawaiian lomi lomi massage services and occasional planned retreats as well as workshops to learn about Hawaiian culture, history and healing techniques. This organization’s ultimate passion and focus of work is the connection of the heart, hand, and soul which comes from the source of all life, embodied in lomi lomi. www.kahunahaleolono.org or phone (808) 961-3118.
Center healer and visionary, Leina`ala Brown-Dombrigues, explains the Hawaiian cultural and spiritual connection with the sea. Alison Gardner
Fringing the largely unvisited yet dramatic southeast coast of the Big Island, Kalani Oceanside Retreat is an educational nonprofit organization, celebrating Hawaii, nature, culture and wellness for the past 25 years. Vacations and workshops balance holiday fun and transformative experiences while encouraging health and wellness strategies to last a lifetime.
Reflecting a wide range of body, mind and spiritual expertise, the dedicated staff and guest practitioners offer something for all ages and stages of life. Abundant healthy cuisine is mainly vegetarian with fish and poultry options, and accommodations are simple and comfortable, with no televisions or phones [on purpose!]. A limited number of resident volunteer positions are available for longer stays. Men and women are equally represented among the clientele, with about 25% older adults. www.kalani.com or phone 1-800-800-6886 or (808) 965-0468.
Watsu massage water therapy. Kalani Oceanside Retreat
Hosting up to 30 guests in various accommodations from low budget to wilderness luxury, the Yoga Oasis is a secluded 26-acre sanctuary, definitely off the beaten path in lush east coast rainforest. The property supports a large organic garden, coconut palms, papaya, banana, mango, avocado and macadamia nut trees and a vast array of colorful, fragrant flowering plants. Much of this profusion finds its way into sumptuous vegetarian cuisine. Offerings include daily yoga classes, detox and fasting programs, massage, ecotours of the region, cooking and painting classes, watsu workshops and more. It is also possible to serve as a volunteer at Yoga Oasis and stay longer than your travel budget would normally allow. About 80% of guests are women. www.yogaoasis.org or phone (800) 274-4446 or (808) 965-8460.
Eco Spiritual Healing Retreat on Hawaii’s Big Island In May and October, enjoy Dolphins and Turtles & Volcanoes in Hawaii with sunset meditations & Full Moon walks at Kona’s culturally and spiritually powerful “Place of Refuge”. Connect with dolphins and sea turtles in their natural environments and re-awaken your energy & your Spirit. Visit http://spiritualtravelers.com/dolphin-swim for details.
Horse whisperer, Franklin Levinson (right), has created the Maui Horse Whisperer Experience for those who want to learn more about horses and themselves while enjoying his spectacularly situated horse farm. This full or half day adventure of playing, dancing, and interacting with one of nature’s most exquisite and revered species, offers participants a rare opportunity to talk, walk, whisper, ride (optional), develop confidence, listening skills, and emotional and physical well being while joining with horses in one of the most wonderful days they could ever have. www.mauihorses.com or phone (808) 572-6211. Also check Franklin’s Way of the Horse website, www.wayofthehorse.org, for other North American opportunities to sample similar enrichment programs.
Under the stewardship of wellness educator and facilitator, Dr. Debra Greene, HeartPath clients quickly identify their own stumbling blocks to a satisfying life and some effective skills for overcoming them. Through her deep understanding and practice of Transformational Kinesiology, Debra expertly guides a discovery process that helps individuals transform hidden negative self-talk through using muscle testing (applied kinesiology) into freedom to make desired life changes. Wearing a different hat as a PAIRS [Practical Application of Intimate Relationship Skills] specialist, she teaches clients the necessary skills to maintain satisfying, healthy relationships through a combination of education, demonstration and practice in a relaxed and safe way that makes significant progress easy. www.HeartPath.org or phone (808) 874-6441.
On Maui’s remote east side, Nancy Plenty runs the Luana Spa Retreat, located in the small town of Hana, one of few truly Hawaiian places remaining in the islands. Equally dedicated to presenting a wide range of high quality spa services and to the perpetuation of Hawaiian culture, this wellness retreat is strongly influenced by the natural beauty and peaceful environment of the Hana coast. You may also stay on the Retreat property in Nancy’s unusual vacation rental overlooking Hana Bay. It is a cozy yurt-style cottage with attractive furnishings. www.luanaspa.com or phone 1-888-898-2772 or (808) 248-8855.
Yurt accommodation at Luana Spa Retreat.
Established in 1987 by Auntie Angeline, a respected elder of the Kauai native community, Angeline’s Mu`olaulani has a traditional Hawaiian atmosphere of relaxation and hospitality from the time you step through the gate of this island-style spa until you reluctantly rejoin the outside world. Either of two 16-foot octagonal redwood and cedar steam rooms are your first stop for the steam, salt scrub and lomi massages that are the signature specialty of the house. After purifying the body with steam and a brisk salt scrub, it’s time for one of three lomi massages – hot stone treatment, a deep tissue lomi or the always-popular double [four-hand] lomi lomi.
One of two redwood and cedar steam and salt scrub rooms at Angeline’s Mu`olaulani. Alison Gardner
Appointments generally last two hours, but you are welcome to enjoy ohana [Hawaiian time] by relaxing on the spacious garden deck as long as you wish or you may request a “gourmet-light” vegetarian meal. www.angelineslomikauai.com or phone (808) 822-3235.Owner of the Body, Mind and Breath Center, Joan Levy is a transformational| psychospiritual therapist. She has developed an effective style of Intensive Therapy for both individuals and couples that integrates the mental, emotional, physical and spiritual aspects of the healing process. Joan is a licensed clinical social worker with 25 years of experience and training in psychotherapy including insight, inner child, self-esteem, grief work, biofeedback, stress management, and Reichian and Middendorf breath therapy. She will also assist in finding accommodation and recommending restaurants in the area. http://wellnesskauai.com/?display&10004 or phone (808) 822-5488.
While visiting the Kauai Center for Holistic Medicine and Research, I experienced the tranquility and tradition of a Japanese tea ceremony and a flower arranging therapy session with respected wellness practitioner, Yasuo Kikuchi, firstname.lastname@example.org. As he encouraged me to take time to select my vase from his colorful collection and my choice of blooms from a large and varied bouquet, he explained that turning your mind fully to the task and listening to how the flowers wish to be arranged promotes mental calmness and connection with nature.
The author’s flower therapy arrangement.
Customized health and fitness vacations for individuals, couples, families and groups of friends are Pure Kauai‘s specialty. Choose from a varied menu of options: indoor and outdoor workouts and adventures including hiking, kayaking, outrigger canoe paddling, swimming, weightlifting, martial arts, yoga, pilates, cycling and surfing; personalized chef services and instruction, accommodating all types of dietary requests; personal coaching services, such as nutritional counselling and value-based goal planning; and many types of massage and bodywork, including traditional Hawaiian Lomi Lomi massage, Structural Integration, Watsu and Reiki. Island-style accommodations range from luxury hotels to quaint bungalows to beach front vacation homes. www.purekauai.com or phone 1-866-457-7873 or
From her base in Kailua, Oahu, fitness specialist, Jayme Newhouse’s Aloha Body Therapy offers personalized instruction, group classes, and consultation that motivate clients to improve physical and mental health. With a BSc in Physical Education as well as extensive training and practice in massage therapy, Pilates, fitness and nutrition, Jayme is a Licensed Massage Therapist, certified for Stott Pilates and LaStone therapy, and a nutrition consultant. Her clientele is made up of all ages and abilities, including seniors and people with disabilities.
If visiting the well-equipped Aloha Body Therapy studio is not your preference, Jayme can and does bring her services to her clients, be they staying in an Oahu vacation rental, looking for a beach massage or requesting her to fly to other Hawaiian Islands. www.pilatestrainingcenterhawaii.com or
phone (808) 261-9519.
Jayme Newhouse of Aloha Body Therapy picks prime settings for a classic beach massage. Alison Gardner
As a certified energy healer and yoga teacher, holistic nurse, and retired nursing university professor, Sacred Path Healing‘s Dr. Ruey Ryburn brings 30 years of experience to her mission of sharing healing techniques that balance human energy fields and create a sense of well-being. Focusing on body, mind and spirit, her integrated Honolulu-based practice combines active energy healing with professional health counselling. While harmonizing with, not discontinuing, other medical treatments, Ruey is frequently able to identify and remove energetic blocks that lead to disease while enhancing the body’s natural healing potential. www.sacredpathhealing.com or phone (808) 737-8859.AS a recent import to the western world from Korea, Dahn Hak has long been a successful method of wellness education in ancient Asia, rediscovered, modernized, and incorporated into the methodology for healing our western society. It is the study of energy and how to use it to achieve mastery of mind and body and illumination of the spirit, a mind/body training program designed to promote the harmonious growth of individuals.
Dahn Hak’s message is “heal yourself”. Dahn Hak & BR Center
Through simple movements and healthy breathing, clients are encouraged to free energy potential while balancing weight and blood pressure, relieving stress and fatigue, enjoying physical fitness and mental clarity, increasing energy and vitality, improving concentration, and developing creativity. All workshops and retreats incorporate different experiences in energy work, eastern-style yoga, energy healing and brain respiration. The essential message of Dahn Hak is to heal yourself. Check out the Honolulu clinic at www.dahnyoga.com/center/center_profile.asp?id=156 or phone (808) 942-0003.
Have you browsed our Hawaii Wellness Vacations page for a comprehensive overview of what is available in these lovely islands? You will also find on that page descriptions of the best web resources to help you fully research your holiday dreams and transform them into a real vacation.
You are also invited to click on the Alternative Hawaii Table of Contents to explore the full collection of pages devoted to the many small-group tours operators, creative accommodations, spectacular bird photography, language and cultural treasures of Oahu, Maui, Kauai, Big Island [Hawaii] and Molokai. This is a discovery collection you won’t want to miss!