Take Your Best Shot: Hawaii

From a Waikiki rainbow to a wedding on Waimanalo Beach, here are some of our favorite Hawaii shots from the Travel Channel community.

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Encore at Wynn Las Vegas
Encore at Wynn Las Vegas

Encore at Wynn Las Vegas

Opened in December 2008, the 2,034-room Encore is all about pure opulence, including the gorgeous European Pool. The classically elegant pool surrounds a unique outdoor casino. 960 1280

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Mondrian Los Angeles

Mondrian Los Angeles

This ornately designed Sunset Strip hotel has an exclusive pool and poolside lounge, and more scene than even the Sunset Marquis. The Mondrian Los Angeles’ white walls and hanging potted plants gives this pool a beachy feel -- despite it being several stories above bustling Sunset Boulevard. 960 1280

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La Reunion Golf Resort & Residences

La Reunion Golf Resort & Residences

La Reunion Antigua Golf Resort is an outstanding luxury pick, located in the shadow of 4 volcanoes -- 2 of them active -- about 30 minutes from the colonial city of Antigua, Guatemala. Rooms have private patios with infinity-edge swimming pools, but the resort also has a main pool as well as a separate kiddy pool. These gorgeous volcanic views are hard to beat. 960 1280

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Gansevoort Turks and Caicos

Gansevoort Turks and Caicos

The Gansevoort Turks and Caicos is without a doubt the sexiest resort on Grace Bay, and a large part of its appeal is thanks to its stunning pool surrounded by palm trees. The pool features 4 hard-decked islands. 960 1280

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The Joule

The Joule

The Joule is one of the coolest -- and most luxurious -- hotels in Downtown Dallas. And it features one of the most talked about pools in the states. The Joule's cantilevered pool juts out over Main Street, so swimmers can get a glimpse of pedestrians below. 960 1280

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Biltmore Coral Gables

Biltmore Coral Gables

Built in 1926, the iconic Biltmore, a national landmark, brings timeless luxury to Miami’s hotel scene. Though far from any beaches, it offers -- among many other luxuries -- an amazing pool. This 22,000-square-foot pool is the largest in the continental U.S. Actor Johnny Weissmuller, better known as Tarzan, was a swimming instructor at the pool many years ago. 960 1280

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Gansevoort Park Avenue

Gansevoort Park Avenue

This 249-room hotel with flashy decor, lots of bars, and an outdoor pool is the uptown sister to the original, once wildly popular Hotel Gansevoort. The Gansevoort chain knows how to do their pools. One of only a handful of rooftop pools in New York, this is the only one that features a sexy pin-up mural. Plus, the pool has an underwater sound system and is a popular scene during the summertime. 960 1280

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Ventana Inn & Spa

Ventana Inn & Spa

Situated on more than 200 acres of picturesque land -- in Big Sur, CA -- , the Ventana Inn & Spa looks like a rustic cabin nestled in the woods -- yet it features a long list of on-site amenities, including 2 pools. This pool is in a secluded spot for a reason -- it's the resort's clothing-optional pool. So forget your bathing suit and enjoy a dip au naturel. 960 1280

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Grand Wailea Resort Hotel and Spa

Grand Wailea Resort Hotel and Spa

The beautifully designed, 780-room Grand Wailea has one of the top US spas, a prime location on one of the best US beaches, and 9 pools -- including arguably the best one in Hawaii. The massive main pool has several fun features, including volleyball nets, a waterslide, and a rope swing. Dive in! 960 1280

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Four Seasons Maui

Four Seasons Maui

An immaculate, art-filled property fronting Wailea beach, the Four Seasons Miami stands at the pinnacle of the area's resorts, offering spacious rooms, a top-notch staff and a slew of amenities, including three high-design pools. The poolside cabana staff refills guests' free glasses of ice water, and employees patrol the lounge chairs with cold towels and spray-bottles of Evian to spritz guests' faces. 960 1280

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Royal Corin Resort

Royal Corin Resort

For Costa Rica’s Royal Corin Resort & Loto Spa, this 54-room boutique hotel has a lot to offer, including great views of Arenal volcano, a lovely spa, a bar with an outdoor terrace, an on-site restaurant and a beautiful pool. This hot springs pool features natural thermal waters that help guests relax and take in the scenery. 960 1280

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The Raleigh Hotel

The Raleigh Hotel

Some things at the Raleigh Hotel are vintage-bordering-on-dated, but not the stunning free-form pool. This pool became a Miami landmark when former swimmer and movie star Esther Williams leapt from its waterfall diving board in a sequined bathing cap. 960 1280

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12 Amazing Pools  12 Photos

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Take a 4-wheel drive about a half an hour north of Lanai City and you will discover Kaiolohia, also known as Shipwreck beach. This windy 8-mile stretch of beach has broken many a ship with its shallow, rocky channel, including a 1940s tanker that lay rusting as a ghostly reminder to mariners to stay away. The rough water also makes for poor swimming, but the views of Molokai and Maui and wide stretch of open sand make this a great place for beachcombing. 960 1280

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Shark's Cove

Shark's Cove

Shark's Cove is not a good place to swim, but you’d be hard pressed to find a beach that is more visually stunning. Iron-rich rocks give the cliffs a deep, red color that contrasts sharply with the turquoise water. The area has strong currents, so we recommend picnics, hikes and sunbathing instead. 960 1280

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Before you head out to snorkel at Hulopoe Beach Park and Marine Preserve, pick up a laminated fish guide at one of the local stores, then get ready for your own version of show and tell. The bay is rich with fish, from striped Moorish idols to our state fish the humuhumunukunukuapuaa. (Try to say that three times.) Once in a while, a friendly green sea turtle might even stop on by to say hello. 960 1280

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For most of the year, Hulopoe Bay, which fronts the Four Seasons Resort Lanai at Manele Bay, is the best place for kayaking, swimming and snorkeling on the island. Rent a kayak or bring your own and soon you'll find yourself torn between paddling and stopping to take photos. 960 1280

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Kaholo Cliffs

Kaholo Cliffs

The sea cliffs of Lanai rise nearly a thousand feet above the Pacific. Visitors can travel along the network of four wheel drive roads that traverse the island and enjoy incredible views all along the rocky coast. 960 1280

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Koele Lookout in Lanai

Koele Lookout in Lanai

A horseback ride is the most adventurous way to access the magnificent views of mountains, valleys, and seascapes that can be enjoyed from Koele Lookout. Koele itself has its own unrivalled landscape, symbolized by its towering Cook Island pines. 960 1280

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mountains and Mouflon sheep

mountains and Mouflon sheep

The mountains and remote valleys of Lanai are home to a remarkable variety of wildlife including wild turkey, quail, pheasant, Axis deer, and Mouflon sheep. The deer and sheep can often be found on the sheer cliffs of the island’s high country. 960 1280

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petroglyphs in Lanai

petroglyphs in Lanai

Hawaiians came to Lanai as early as the 15th Century and left evidence of their existence in rock carvings called petroglyphs. If you like scavenger hunts, Luahiwa Petroglyphs are a challenge to find, but for the determined traveler, they offer a fascinating glimpse into the island’s past. 960 1280

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Pueo

Pueo

The sunlit sky above Lanai is home to the Pueo, or Hawaiian short-eared owl. In the absence of streetlights and neon, Lanai’s crystalline night sky is also home to a galaxy of stars, invisible to most of the outside world. 960 1280

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There are only three ways to get onto the Kalaupapa National Historic Park on the Kalaupapa Peninsula: by mule ride, a hiking tour or a small commuter airplane. This scenic area was once home to Belgian missionary Saint Damien, the selfless priest who devoted his life to caring for exiled victims of Hansen disease. 960 1280

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As you look toward the north coast of Molokai, you can see the Kalaupapa Peninsula in the distance. The peninsula is isolated by towering cliffs that stand up to 3,600 feet high and are the tallest sea cliffs in the world. 960 1280

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Hike into Molokai's East End's classic cathedral valley to see Hawaii back in time. It's believed that ancient Polynesians settled in the lush Halawa Valley as early as 650 A.D. Roughly two miles up the trail is the impressive double-tiered 250-foot Mooula Falls. The one and a half hour drive to the valley from the airport is an adventure in itself, with ancient fishponds, Kumimi Beach and Kaluaaha Church along the way. 960 1280

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Only 38 miles long and 10 miles wide, Molokai has more than enough land to explore by foot, bike or car. Follow the roads along Molokai's rugged coastline and you'll see far more birds than cars, and probably even less people. 960 1280

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Western Molokai features some of Hawaii's largest and least visited beaches. Papohaku Beach Park is three miles long and one mile wide, a perfect crescent of shimmering sand. Kapukahelu Beach is a small sheltered cove. 960 1280

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From the Kalaupapa Peninsula, the North Coast of Molokai presents a stunning vista. 10 years ago we would have reminded you to bring enough film to capture all the gorgeous scenery. Now it's memory cards, which seems a little ironic considering Molokai is the kind of place that makes you happy to escape your electronics. 960 1280

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Kepuhi Point

Kepuhi Point

On Kepuhi Point off Papohaku Beach you can occasionally catch a wave in front of the Kaluakoi Resort. Although Molokai isn’t known for surfing, you’d be surprised how good it can get. 960 1280

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Avid and novice cyclists alike will enjoy Molokai's lack of traffic. From one end of the island to the other, just follow the roads. But don't look for a convenience store on any corner, because we're proud to say there aren't any. So, bring water, snacks, and a supply of sunscreen to protect your ear-to-ear grin. 960 1280

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It's quiet as you ride on your mule along the 2.9-mile trail to Kalaupapa Peninsula. You'd be speechless too if you were descending from 1,700 feet with steep drops and the Pacific before you. Three miles, 26 switchbacks and 90 minutes of magnificent views later and you're back to sea level in the historic town of Kalaupapa. 960 1280

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As you approach the Halawa Valley, Halawa Beach offers a secluded bay that is great for swimming. However exercise caution during high surf and winter months. If you think it looks picture perfect, that's because it is. 960 1280

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The road to Hana is long and winding, with interesting stops along the way. Four miles into your trip will bring you to the colorful town of Paia where you can get a fish burger at the popular Paia Fishmarket, then head to Hookipa Beach, also known as the windsurfing capital of the world. 960 1280

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Located on the mid-slope of Maui's Haleakala volcano, Makawao has one foot in its plantation past and another in its thriving arts community. It's also the biggest little town in the area known as Upcountry Maui and is famous for its Hawaiian cowboys, known as paniolo. 960 1280

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From the air, the Hana Highway looks like a zigzag line drawn by a three year old. It twists and turns for 52 miles and takes anywhere from two to four hours to traverse depending on how many cars you meet on the one-way bridges. In fact, there are 54 bridges and 600 curves to make sure you're paying attention. And please do, because in addition to the traffic, the flowing waterfalls, plunging pools, scenic rainforests and the town of Hana are well worth the drive. 960 1280

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There are rewards in life that are all the sweeter because of the effort it took to get there. Hana is such a place. Separated from the rest of Maui, you'll feel as if you stumbled upon the land that time forgot. Spend a few nights in Hana and soon you'll have trouble remembering where you came from and wondering why you'd ever go back. 960 1280

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Take a farm-to-table culinary journey at Oo Farms in Upcountry Maui. Located along the slope of Haleakala, the fertile soil of Upcountry is home to some of Maui's finest farmland. Oo Farms is owned and maintained by I'O and Pacific'O restaurants in Lahaina, so their perfect peppers, hearty greens and even local asparagus go straight from harvest to your favorite dish. 960 1280

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Every evening on the northernmost cliffs of Maui's Kaanapali Beach, a cliff diver lights the torches then dives off Puu Kekaa, or Black Rock. This dramatic show is a reenactment of a feat performed by Maui's revered King Kahekili. Surrounded by restaurants, the ceremony also takes on a modern twist, signaling the end of the day and the start of your own private celebration. 960 1280

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Maui has always been a magnet for those who love the sea, from Hawaiian voyagers to whaling ships and modern-day catamarans that glide upon the water. Complete your Maui vacation with a few hours offshore, tacking up and down the coastline with the West Maui Mountains in your view. Add a splash of champagne or a frosty mai tai and there's nothing else like it. 960 1280

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It doesn't matter how old you are'when you walk 'through an ocean,' the little kid in you comes out to play. Fantasy mixes with reality as you come nose to nose with wide-eyed tuna and white-tip reef sharks. Yellow butterfly fishes flutter like leaves around coral, while slick stingrays glide by without a care in the world. 960 1280

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Molokini is a small, crescent moon-shaped atoll off the coast of Maui. It's in a State Marine Life and Bird Conservation District, which means fishing is prohibited, so it's teeming with life. Take a snorkel or scuba tour and you'll be treated to a kaleidoscope of over 250 colorful varieties of tropical fish. Tours are available out of Maalaea Harbor and Lahaina. Insider tip: Early morning is best because the water is clear. 960 1280

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Maui might be for lovers, but it's also for golfers. And if you love golf, that's even better still. There are 14 courses on Maui, with several ranked at or near the top of the 'world's best' list. The PGA TOUR's Hyundai's Tournament of Champions is held here each year, so you never know who you might see on the course. This particular breathtaking beauty is the Makena North Course. Now that's a view that'll challenge your concentration. 960 1280

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