X

United States

Hawaii

About

For some, the mere thought of Hawaii is enough to warm the skin and conjure up the sound of crashing waves. This tropical paradise in the middle of the Pacific attracts visitors looking for relaxation, adventure, and a Mai Tai or two. Each of Hawaii's islands has its own charm, so it's a good idea to get to know a little about each to pick those best suited to your vacation mood. On Oahu, Honolulu delivers high-density paradise in the form of a thriving city with urban amenities and beautiful coastline. Nearby Waikiki Beach concentrates resorts along a busy stretch of beach that has been a favorite for decades. Along the Waianae Coast, visitors can find a quieter side to Oahu. Maui offers both the upscale experience with perfect sand beaches and elegant resorts, and a more laid-back experience in the small towns along the famed Road to Hana. Maui is also the jumping off point for the smaller islands of Molokai and Lanai. The Big Island has two sides with distinct characteristics. The Hilo side on the east side is a tropical paradise complete with rainforests, waterfalls, and plenty of rainbows. On the west, the Kona side of the Big Island delivers calm waters, sandy beaches, and luxurious resorts. With its stunning scenery and less-developed coastline, Kauai attracts independent travelers looking to get outdoors or just get away from it all. Visitors can find flights to Hawaii from departure points around the country.

When To Go

Year-round tropical weather and sparkling beaches make Hawaii a top destination for tourists. The most popular time is the summer, when schools are on vacation and the weather is dry. The islands also get a little crowded during the holiday season at the end of December. The spring and fall see fewer crowds and cheaper prices.

high season: June to August, lateDecember to early-January
low season: mid-January to March
shoulder season: mid-March to May, September to November

Weather Information

Hawaii experiences sunny and pleasant temperatures throughout most of the year. Summer brings the warmest weather, with temperatures averaging between 75 and 88 degrees, while winter sees averages between 68 and 80 degrees. The wet season from November through March may make things a little damp, but rarely disrupts outdoor activities. Hurricane season is from June through November, but it's uncommon to see big storms.

Crowd Information

Summer is the most popular time to visit, mainly due to an increase in vacationing families and students. Annual events can cause high traffic, including the Ironman Triathlon in October on the Big Island, the Honolulu Marathon in December, the Merrie Monarch Hula Festival in March or April in Hilo. Honolulu sees a rise in the number of visitors from Japan in April and May, when that country's Golden Week holidays take place . Maui can also be quite busy during Halloween.

Closure Information

Hotels, shops, and restaurants stay open throughout the year, but some beaches may close, disappear underwater, or post "swim at your own risk" signs during winter.

When to Save

Typically, hotel rates are the greatest tourist expenditure on the islands. However, planning to go in the shoulder or low seasons can help save on expenses. Airlines offer discount fares in the spring and fall in an attempt to boost tourism. Reduced hotel rates are available from September through November. During the winter holidays, cruise prices, hotel rates, and airline prices are higher. From June through August, room rates rise due to an increase in demand.

When to Book

Booking three months in advance for air travel and accommodations will offer additional choices and economical prices, especially during peak travel periods. Last-minute rooms are available on all of the islands, but are rarely located in desirable areas or offered at desirable prices. Book your interisland flights at the same time you make your other travel arrangements. Interisland travel is on the rise, so availability is limited. For the best rates and to ensure availability, rental cars should be booked at least one to two weeks in advance.

Information provided by the Hawaii Visitors and Convention Bureau