Tracing the Roots of American Music
TIKI MUSIC TOUR 2017 – With Paddy Harrisson from Ports of Paradise radio show.
America is currently experiencing a major tiki revival - at a level not seen since the late 1950s. Join us in August 2017, for a two week expedition through the home of Polynesian Americana: Southern California - followed by a week in the tropical island paradise of Hawaii.
You'll be guided by Paddy and accompanied by a crew of tiki enthusiasts - as we seek out the mid-century delights of Los Angeles, San Diego and Palm Springs - including bowling alleys, diners, record stores, drive-in restaurants and movie theatres.
And then there's the tiki bars - both classic survivors and reinvented award-winners. We're not talking about cheesy theme bars ... skilled mixologists are teaming up with a new generation of designers, to recreate some fabulous authentic venues that you won't want to leave!
Our tour highlight will be the world's largest Polynesian pop festival, Tiki Oasis - featuring musical mayhem, educational seminars, an exotic emporium and room parties. And to top it all off, we have it on good authority the line-up will include Swedish exotica ensemble "Ixtahuele" - recreating the exotic and romantic sounds of the late 1950s like no one else can!
After San Diego, we'll explore the modernist architecture and desert environs of Palm Springs, before returning to Los Angeles.
Our three week tour will conclude in the tropical island paradise of Hawaii - where we'll seek adventure, music and relaxation amongst the palm trees of Waikiki Beach and beyond.
The following itinerary details are the core structure, providing a flavour of what to expect. These will continue to be refined as we get closer to the departure date, so check back regularly for updates!
Sat 5 August
AM: Fly Melbourne to Los Angeles. Upon arrival transfer to hotel, then free time to explore neighbourhood. Evening: Early dinner at local restaurant before hitting the hay!
Sun 6 August
After breakfast at a classic Restaurant and Coffee Shop (est. 1958), we partake of some 10-pin bowling at a vintage Bowling Alley. From here we travel to Disneyland - Castle, Jungle Cruise, Mark Twain, Pirates of the Caribbean, Enchanted Tiki Room. Evening: Dinner and drinks at Trader Sam’s Enchanted Tiki Bar (Disneyland)
Mon 7 August
Visit the world’s greatest tiki superstore - Oceanic Arts
Evening: Dinner at an iconic Tiki restaurant.
Tue 8 August
AM: LA Kitsch tour with the Ambassador of Americana.
PM: Free Time
Evening: Meet for dinner at another significant eatery within the Tiki world. Then check out the view from the Griffith Observatory.
Wed 9 August
PM: En route from LA to San Diego (2.5 hours), we stop for lunch at a Laguna Beach landmark, then visit the showroom and museum of the world’s largest tiki mug manufacturer.
Evening: Happy hour at the False Idol (6pm) or Grass Skirt, before an authentic Mexican dinner.
Thu 10 August
AM: Breakfast at another historic Restaurant, then free time to explore.
PM: Register for Tiki Oasis Festival
Evening: Welcome dinner at the spectacular Bali Hai Restaurant (est. 1954)
Fri 11 August
Tiki Oasis - symposiums, stalls, entertainment and room parties
Sat 12 August
Tiki Oasis - symposiums, stalls, entertainment and room parties
Sun 13 August
AM: Final day at Tiki Oasis
PM: DJ Barbara Blaze.
Mon 14 August
AM: Transfer to the desert oasis of Palm Springs (2.5hrs by bus). Check in to your mid-century themed room.
PM: Modernist architecture tour, then chill by the pool (with mid-century soundtrack).
Evening: Dinner in the “secret” tiki room at the famous Tonga Hut.
Tue 15 August
AM: Ascend to a pristine wilderness (with hiking trails) aboard the Aerial Tramway.
PM: Elvis Honeymoon Hideaway. Happy hour at a small but exquisite Tiki bar. Evening: Dinner at suitable venue.
Wed 16 August
AM/PM: Optional day trip into The Joshua Tree National Park.
Evening: Dinner at a newly opened Tiki eatery.
Thu 17 August
AM: Optional self guided Palm Springs bicycle tour / Moorten Botanical Gardens and Cactarium. Or use the city bus siteseeing route.
PM: Returning from Palm Springs to LA (2 hours), we visit the Museum of Pinball.
Evening: Pre-dinner cocktails at another Tiki venue.
Fri 18 August
AM: Breakfast at Canter’s Deli before hitting the world’s largest independent record store Amoeba Records (Hollywood), then on to Poo-Bah Records (Pasadena)
PM: Visit to the eclectic Clifton’s Cafeteria in Downtown LA
Evening: Dinner and drinks at what some say is LA’s best new tiki bar in 50 years.
Sat 19 August
AM: Tour of the iconic Capitol Studios (tbc), Les Baxter star at Hollywood & Vine
PM: Visit the studios of Bamboo Ben in Huntington Beach.
Evening: Dinner and rockabilly/surf band The Hula Girls at Don the Beachcomber
Sun 20 August
AM/PM: Free Time
Evening: Group dinner at a classic LA burger joint!
Mon 21 August
AM: Fly Los Angeles to Honolulu
PM: On arrival, our first priority will be to stock up on holiday attire (e.g. Avanti Shirts, Tin Can Mailman, Bailey’s Antiques and Aloha Shirts)
Evening: Dinner and music under a banyan tree!
Tue 22 August
AM: Hawaiian music and hula workshop at Territorial Airwave.
PM: Balance free time.
Evening: Dinner at Chart House on the Waikiki marina
Wed 23 August
AM: Aloha Stadium Swap Meet
PM: Bishop Museum
Thu 24 August
AM: Free Time
PM: Visit to Gecko’z South Sea Arts (tbc)
Evening: Germaine’s Luau.
Fri 25 August
AM: All-You-Can-Eat Pancakes at Wailana Coffee House
PM: Flight to Hilo The Big Island of Hawaii
Sat 26 August
M/PM: Day trip to Hawaii Volcanoes National Park (4:30pm Lavaland bike and hike tour)
Sun 27 August
AM/PM: Day trip to the Akaka Falls State Park
Mon 28 August
AM/PM: Return Flight to Melbourne
Land only prices
We will offer to introduce people who wish to share, to others with a similar aim. The price is based on an US$/AU$ exchange rate as of March 2016. Until the balance is paid we reserve the right to amend the above cost (up or down) due to changes in the exchange rate. The minimum group size will be 12 and the maximum is 16. Please don't, 'wait and see' if we get the minimum numbers. We need the deposit in to be counted. Your booking, if held back, may be the one the makes it go ahead. Naturally if the tour is not operated a full refund of the deposit is made.
Your tour host - Paddy Harrisson
Who really knows (this far in advance) what flight deals will be for this time. Prices now may not reflect prices later in the year. We will set a designated airline (once minimum numbers are reached) and those that arrive on this can avail themselves of the included transfers. This is likely to be either Qantas, or United.
return flights to Los Angeles only cost less than those that return from Hawaii.
Domestic flight Honolulu to Hilo is approximately US$160
You can book other airlines - some may wish to use frequent flyer points. The start point for those people would then be the first night hotel. You can get an idea of what flights will be by using our web flight enquiry/booking engine. Take the link that says 'Advanced Search' and then enter your Australian city to Los Angeles and the return being Hilo to your home port.
We have noted copies of our personally designed tours appearing elsewhere, yes copying is the highest accolade - but....