Fast and Straightforward Information to the Greatest Hawaiian Islands
Hawaii is without a doubt a paradise on earth. An archipelago of seven beautiful islands, but only six can be visited. Ni’ihau, “The Forbidden Isle,” is generally prohibited to all but the island owners’ relatives, US Navy personnel, government officials, and invited guests. But don’t worry, there are six breathtaking islands that will greet you with open arms and take your breath away. We will help you choose the perfect island for your unique vacation!
Best Hawaiian Islands | How to choose an island
Kauai: Kauai is called “The Garden Island” and is the oldest and northernmost island in the island chain. It’s adorned with dramatic, natural beauty.
Here you will find the lush, green, towering cliffs of the Na Pali coast, where you can hike or kayak to Kalalau Beach, a beautiful secluded beach.
Outdoor adventure and romantic escapades thrive on Kauai. Visit the colorful and impressive Waimea Canyon, the “Grand Canyon of the Pacific”. Kauai has more beaches per mile of coast than any other Hawaiian island.
Oahu: Oahu is home to the state capital and the majority of the Hawaiian population and a major luau. It has great restaurants and a lively nightlife, as well as white sandy beaches and razor-sharp mountain ranges.
On Oahu, watch professional surfers challenge the great winter waves of the iconic north coast, relive American history at the monuments and museums of Pearl Harbor, or soak up the sun and take a surfing lesson on Waikiki Beach.
Molokai: Molokai is the least modified and most relaxed of the islands. Molokai is an island that has nearly half the population of Native Hawaiian descent. She has kept her connection to the past and her love for nature.
Come to Molokai to ride a mule down a cliff to the Kalaupapa Peninsula and experience plenty of tranquility at the Kamakou Preserve, a 2,774 acre nature reserve.
Travel back in time to the sleepy town of Kaunakakai, admire the verdant flora in the Halawa Valley, and learn about the works of Saint Damien at Kalaupapa National Historical Park.
Lanai: Without a single traffic light, Lanai is a perfect island getaway for luxury, romance and privacy away from the crowds.
Get away from it all at Lanai’s upscale resorts in Hulopoe Bay and Lanai City, see the otherworldly barren landscape in Keahiakawelo, snorkel at the island’s best spot, Hulopoe Bay, or take a ride Four wheel drive between the pine trees along the Munro Trail.
Maui: Lots of people say Maui is the best, the best, the best. The second largest island has the best beaches in the world. The waters off Maui are also some of the best places in the world for whale watching each winter.
Maui is the most diverse Hawaiian island, perfect for families with different interests. Wake up early to see the Haleakala sunrise, stroll through the historic hot spot of Lahaina town, or take the long and winding road to Hana to take in breathtaking scenery. Believe it or not, there are Maui condominiums now very affordable. Just think you could sit on the beach and admire the sights.
Big Island: Hawaii Island or Hawaii, the Big Island, is larger than all the other islands combined and has space for 11 of the 13 climatic zones in the world – from sandy beaches to snow-capped mountains. The Big Island has two faces guarded by the snow-capped Mauna Kea and the steaming Mauna Loa.
See waterfalls, rainforests, lush flower farms, and botanical gardens in Hilo, explore the calm and clear waters of Kona, or see Kilauea, one of the world’s most active volcanoes, in Hawaii Volcanoes National Park.
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Best island in Hawaii for warm water and soft sand
Kauai has 50 miles of stunning white sand beaches that are great for swimming, snorkeling and sunbathing. Many of these beaches offer an intimate atmosphere away from the crowds.
Hanalei Bay Beach Park is the best beach on the island. Located east of Princeville in the city of Hanalei, Hanalei Bay is a perfect, curving bay of incredible beauty, known for the Hanalei Pier.
Poipu Beach Park is one of Kauai’s most popular beaches. With crystal clear turquoise waters and the occasional appearance of Hawaiian monk seals, Poipu also has a natural wading pool for young swimmers.
Best island in Hawaii for diving and snorkeling
Maui is definitely a snorkeler’s dream! The island’s Molokini crater is just two miles off the coast of Maui. The water around Molokini is amazingly clear so visibility is excellent, often more than 150 feet. Molokini is a thriving coral reef, where the shallow coral reef is teeming with a variety of colorful and fascinating fish and marine life, including over 200 species of fish unique to Hawaii.
Exceptional snorkeling on Maui isn’t limited to just Molokini. Another incredible place to snorkel in Maui is Turtle Town, where you will have the chance to swim with the amazing Hawaiian Green Sea Turtles.
Best island in Hawaii for golfing
If you are looking for quality golf, Lanai is your destination. Lanai features The Experience at Koele, an 18-hole championship course designed by legends Greg Norman and Ted Robinson. The signature 17th hole slopes down magnificently into a valley more than 200 feet below the tee.
Along the south coast, Jack Nicklaus created one of his most famous masterpieces, The Challenge at Manele. This goal-style course sits on the cliffs of the ocean and offers unmatched views of the Pacific.
These two golf courses are consistently among the best in the world according to travel guides and publications.
Best island in Hawaii for night life
Honolulu, Oahu, is the largest city in Hawaii and has great restaurants and nightlife. Because of Waikiki, a neighborhood in Honolulu that is where most of the visitors to Oahu stay, it’s no surprise that there are a multitude of nightlife options to explore.
Fine dining and live music can be found at hotels and resorts across Waikiki. Club and bar venues such as RumFire in the Sheraton Waikiki or The Yard House in the Waikiki Beach Walk and The Shack Waikiki are popular with locals and visitors alike.
Best island in Hawaii to keep active
On Maui, you have many opportunities to experience a variety of outdoor adventures like never before. Watch your first humpback spout while whale watching from Kaanapali Beach. Snorkel the unforgettable sights in Molokini’s crystal clear waters and schools of fish. Or feel the rush of your first surf lesson off the shores of historic Lahaina.
Horseback riding at Haleakala, Maui’s highest peak. You can even take your first helicopter ride for breathtaking views of Maui’s pristine valleys and waterfalls. Or try Maui’s newest and longest zip line course, Flyin Hawaiian Zipline. This brand new course features eight zip line experiences including the longest and most amazing ride in Hawaii on its grand final line, a breathtaking 300 meters!
Best Hawaiian Islands for a cheap stay
If you don’t mind not staying on the beach, the Big Island has plenty of lodges and guest houses to help you keep costs down. There are even hundreds of condos in Kailua-Kona.
Oahu is also a great option if you are a budget traveler. Since it is the most visited island, there are many options to choose from, from hostels to guest houses and rentals.
Best Hawaiian Islands for Luxury Travel
Kauai’s award-winning resorts offer total indulgence in a tropical paradise. Kauai hotels and resorts offer fine dining, world-class amenities, and numerous opportunities for rejuvenation and wellbeing.
Luxury resort areas include the Princeville area on the north coast, the Poipu area on the south coast, and various resorts along the Lihue / Kalapaki area and the Coconut Coast. Kauai’s luxury resorts are just minutes from the island’s best beaches. Here you will also find the perfect location for your wedding or honeymoon.
Lanai also offers world class luxury resorts. In fact, Lanai has two top-notch resorts, the Four Seasons Resort Lanai in Manele Bay overlooking the beautiful Hulopoe Bay and the rustic Four Seasons Resort Lanai, the lodge in Koele near Lanai City. These two beautiful luxury resorts are the perfect location for your wedding or vow renewal.
Best island in Hawaii for your honeymoon
Maui is known as the perfect honeymoon destination. With Maui abundant in things to do and with both luxury resorts and lower-priced condominiums, Maui is the best tropical getaway, even if you and the love of your life don’t share interests.
Maui will give you both one lasting memory after another. Hike Haleakala, Maui’s tallest peak, to watch the sun rise above the clouds. Drive the road to Hana and count the waterfalls together on this breathtaking scenic journey. Savor Maui’s sumptuous cuisine and stroll hand in hand on a moonlit night on Maui’s serene white sand beaches.
Best island in Hawaii for great food
Maui is the best Hawaiian island again if you want an incredible dining experience. Maui emerged as a gastronomic force in the mid-1990s, the birthplace of Hawaiian regional cuisine, and many of the original chefs involved in the movement still run their own restaurants on the island.
Indulge in Maui’s famous cuisine, made with produce picked directly from the farms and fish freshly caught from the sea. You can also try a traditional Hawaiian meal at sunset in Luau or off the beaten path to try some local favorites in small towns like Wailuku and Paia.
Whichever island you choose, you will without a doubt have the best trip of your life and you will return to learn more. Hawaii is a safe destination for families and couples, but it is also a super fun destination. You will return home with no regrets, only with amazingly good memories!