Hawaiian Kombis, Part II

23 12 2013

The Volkswagen kombi seems to have a firm place in the Hawaii tourist folklore, with toy buses with glued-on surfboards lined up in every souvenir shop. But today’s surfers drive pick-up trucks, four-wheel-drives and SUVs, no more kombis on the beaches. Good to see that at least some of them have survived and are still in use. Below is another one: Found this green metallic beauty in the eastern part of Maui. It’s a 1974 Westfalia camper with 1.8L engine, interior rebuilt in bamboo wood, including the floor and the panels for the walls and doors. Cool battery of switches under the dashboard to operate an LED and laser light show all over the inside ceiling of the van. Originally fitted front spare wheel holder has been removed and the holes were carefully closed for a simple and clean look.







The winding coastal roads with lots of one-way bridges, the surfer beaches and the beautiful warm and sunny weather reminded me a lot of New Zealand’s South Island and Australia’s Great Ocean Road. The small size of the island of Maui and its remote beaches and bays look ideal for a kombi holiday. I searched the web and found two rental companies that offer VW buses: Aloha Campers has a range of T3 Westfalia campervans, and Maui Camper Rentals rents out T5 Westfalias. Drawback seems to be that there is not really a great camp site infrastructure, and wild camping is unusual or even illegal. Interesting discussion thread on The Samba.com if you want to read up more on this topic.

Beach near Kihei on Maui, Hawaii.

Beach near Kihei on Maui, Hawaii.

Hookipa surfer beach northeast of Kahului, Maui, Hawaii.

Hookipa surfer beach northeast of Kahului, Maui, Hawaii.

Sun set on Hookipa  beach .

Sun set on Hookipa beach .