It’s hard to believe that a destination so remote, so exotic and so magnificent could be part of the United States. But Hawaii is all of that, and so much more. When you picture a perfect paradise in your imagination, chances are it looks a lot like Hawaii. Its waters are so blue, they seem other-worldly. Its beaches are pristine, you feel as if you could be the first human who ever stepped foot onto the smooth glimmering sand. Its forests are so lush, they shine like a newly cut emerald. Its sunsets are so brilliant, the sky seems ablaze with fire. Its volcanoes are so imposing, you can only stand back and stare in awe at the wonders of nature.
People who have traveled to Hawaii save a piece of it in their hearts. Honeymooners cherish the golden days of unbridled romance. Families treasure the days of welcoming bliss under a shining sun. Adventurers thrill at the thought of catching the perfect wave. With extraordinary natural beauty, fascinating culture, rich history, and endless activities, Hawaii can be all things to all people – or something unforgettable just for you.
Hawaii’s Big Island
Hawaii’s Big Island has a variety of geography that makes for an unforgettable holiday. Thrill at the island’s volcanoes, where you’ll experience nature's might first-hand with active craters and the unearthly glow of molten lava flows. Hike up the trails of Mauna Kea, where improbable snowcaps tower over a sultry tropical paradise.
The beaches of this magnificent island run the range from white to black – and are all bounded by beautiful emerald seas that offer a full variety of watersports. Visiting Kona requires bringing a sense of play and an active imagination – whether diving into the deep blue sea, dancing a festive hula, or feasting on a traditional luau.
Tranquil and steeped in a sense of quiet majesty, the luxuriant island of Kauai is a portrait of lush vegetation, dazzling surf, and inviting alabaster beaches. Small and secluded coves dot the shoreline, where the incandescent waters reflect the rays of yet another brilliant sunset.
Also known as the Garden Isle, Kauai is infused with an abundance of natural wonders that thrive in the tropical air. And with the absence of hustle and bustle, you can relax in perfect tranquility where the only footprints you see may be your own.
For breathtaking vistas, explore dramatic Waimea Canyon, the Grand Canyon of the Pacific. Cruise along the Na Pali coast, where greenness dominates as far as the eye can see. And relax by the peaceful waters of Hanalei Bay, where serenity is as common as the grains of velvety sand.
One of the smaller islands in the Hawaiian chain, Lanai is like a perfect pearl set amidst the sapphire blue seas of the Pacific Ocean. Fostered in an exclusive culture of quiet elegance and romantic seclusion, this magnificent island lets you feel as far away from civilization as you can get. Stroll along the silky-smooth sand on deserted beaches, float lazily through azure waters, and behold sunsets that set the standard for all others. For those with the need to do more, you can play on championship golf courses, witness humpback whales and spinner dolphins frolic in the surf, and hike along trails that take you past ancient petroglyphs thousands of years old. Lanai is one of the most remote spots on earth. And therein lies its greatest charm.
Maui The Magic Isles Hawaii. It’s hard to describe Maui as anything short of the stuff that dreams are made of. This tropical treasure is one of the most sought-after vacation destinations in the world – and rightly so. Its emerald green lushness beckons discerning travelers with a sensual island draw. In Maui, romantics fall in love, adventurers become energized and all visitors leave with a sense of having experienced perfection. The magnificent volcano, Mt. Haleakala, dominates the island from over 10,000 feet. Its lush slopes are home to some of the rarest wildlife and exotic birds on the planet. But it’s the island’s rewarding balance of seclusion and sophistication that steal your heart. The crystal clear waters have their allure as well, with surfers and watersport enthusiasts coming from all across the globe. Maui’s culture also delivers great delights, with museums, galleries, delectable dining, and rich history. Be sure to visit Lahaina, a quaint 19th-century whaling village that illuminates one of the most inspiring periods in the island’s history.
Although many adventurers choose Oahu for the luminous beaches and shimmering waters, there’s a wide array of attractions on this island wonder. Brushed by sultry breezes and infused with the scent of exotic flowers, this lush hideaway will kindle the romantic passions within you. Hike to the crest of the world-famous Diamond Head to watch a blazing sunset over Waikiki Beach. There are endless rainforests and mountains to explore. Catch glimpses of cascading waterfalls, rare birds, and the explosive colors of wild orchids. Surfers come from around the world to catch the swells at Waimea Bay, the gentle break at Sunset Beach, and the spine-tingling Bonzai Pipeline. Other water diversions thrill as well, including jet skiing, sailing, and kayaking. Honolulu is a bustling city, overflowing with incredible shopping, unequaled dining, and energetic nightlife. And no trip to Oahu is complete without a visit to the stirring museum honoring those who died at Pearl Harbor.
The fresh, floral air energizes you. The warm, tranquil waters refresh you. The breathtaking, natural beauty renews you. There’s no place on earth like Hawaii. Whether you’re a new visitor or returning, the six unique islands offer distinct experiences that will entice any traveler. Home to one of the world’s most active volcanoes and the world’s tallest sea mountain. Birthplace of surfing and the hula. Former seat of a royal kingdom. Hawaii is one of the youngest geological formations in the world and the youngest state of the union. But perhaps Hawaii’s most unique feature is its Aloha Spirit: the warmth of the people of Hawaii that wonderfully complements the Islands’ perfect temperatures and pristine beaches.
Beautifully balmy best describes Hawaii’s weather. Plenty of sun and cooling trade winds combine for year-round comfy conditions. Short, intermittent showers are “blessings.” Sometimes you barely feel drops, and when you look around, you see a rainbow. Average temperatures: April- November: 75°-88° F. December- March: 68°-80° F. Average water temperature: 74° F.
How to Dress:
In the daytime shorts, sandals or some good walking shoes, short sleeve shirts, hats, sunglasses, and swimsuits for the beach. In the evening casual pants and shirts for both men and women, dresses for women, a sport coat (if you plan to visit a fine dining restaurant), and a light jacket or sweater.
What Can I Bring:
Many plants and animals from elsewhere in the world can be harmful to Hawaii’s unique environment, agriculture, and communities. Aboard your flight you will be required by state law to fill out an agriculture declaration form and items may be inspected. If you are traveling with animals, you must declare them and all animals must be turned in to the airport’s Animal Quarantine Holding Facility by the airline.
Getting Married in Hawaii?
Hawaii is a beautiful place and a marriage here is an ideal way for a couple to start a life together. For any person to lawfully marry in the State of Hawaii, a license for that purpose must be obtained from an authorized agent. Once the license has been issued, there is no waiting period before the marriage can take place. Blood tests are not required. The legal age to marry is 18 years for both males and females. Proof of age is required. A certified copy of a birth certificate must be presented to anyone 18 years of age or under. A valid I.D. or driver’s license may be presented for anyone 19 years of age or over. For more information check on the Hawaii State Dept. of Health’s website.
Avoid wearing shoes, clothing, and jewelry that contain metal. Refrain from bringing wrapped presents. Carry-on baggage is limited to one carry-on bag plus one personal item. Personal items include laptops, purses, small backpacks, briefcases, or camera cases. All gels and liquids must be in 3oz containers or less and placed in a clear plastic zip-top one-quart bag. One zip-top bag per person. Keep the plastic zip-top baggie out of your hand-carried bag, as you will need to place it in a security bin for screening. Exemptions are larger amounts of required medications, baby formula, and diabetic glucose treatment, which must be declared to security officers at the entrance to the checkpoint for screening.
Security Screening Tips:
Recommended times for passengers to check in before scheduled departure is 120 minutes. Only passengers holding a boarding pass will be allowed through the security checkpoint to their departure gate. All passengers will need to provide a valid state or federal government-issued picture identification at the time of check-in and are required at security checkpoints. Knives and other cutting instruments, club-like items such as baseball bats, golf clubs, and pool cues, are prohibited beyond the security checkpoint. If your bag is selected for secondary screening, it may be opened and examined on a table in your presence. Passengers are required to take off their shoes before going through a metal detector.
While in Transit
During your flight:
Chew on gum, yawn, or suck on hard candies to help relieve the pressure that builds in your ears. Drink plenty of water. Do light stretching exercises. The relatively low humidity in the cabin can increase allergy or asthma symptoms. Take preventative measures as necessary.
To combat jet lag:
Reset your watch to the destination's time as soon as you get on the plane. Eat before you get on the plane so hunger does not prevent you from sleeping on the flight. If you’re using a blanket, buckle your seat belt over the blanket. That way, a flight attendant checking seat belts won’t awaken you. If it’s daytime when you arrive but nighttime at home, don’t sleep. Instead, try doing some light exercise, like walking, to help revive your body and stop it from producing sleep-inducing hormones.
Flying during pregnancy:
It is generally recommended that women not fly at all during their last six weeks of pregnancy. Some airlines require pregnant passengers to provide a doctor’s statement and women should always consult their obstetricians before traveling.
Traveling with Children:
Consider a red-eye flight. This increases the chance that your youngster will be able to sleep through the majority of the trip. While any child under two is not required to have a seat, they may be happier if they do. If you do use a car seat, make sure it has been certified for air travel. Bring toys the children have never used, the newness will hold their attention longer. Bring plenty of juice. Finger foods are a great distraction. When traveling with your baby, give him or her a bottle or pacifier to suck on during takeoff and landing. This will help normalize pressure on the ears and keep your baby comfortable.
Travelers with Special Needs:
Please advise your airline in advance to arrange any special services to ensure assistance. Most airlines transport personal wheelchairs including folding, collapsible, or non-folding manual wheelchairs, electric/battery-powered wheelchairs, and electric-powered carts.
The baggage claim area of the Honolulu International Airport is located on the lower level of the Main Terminal. You can get there on the free Wiki-Wiki (Hawaiian word for speedy) Shuttle, or by walking and following the signs. It’s less than a 10-minute stroll if you want to stretch your legs. For other islands directions to baggage claim areas are posted. To get to the inter-island or commuter terminal at Honolulu International Airport the free Wiki-Wiki Shuttle will take you otherwise it is a ten to fifteen-minute walk.
We do offer rental cars on the islands of Oahu, Kauai, Hawaii, Maui, and Molokai and are suggested, as public transportation is limited (except if you are staying in Waikiki). Oahu does have “The Bus” which is a public bus that goes around the entire island for only a couple of dollars. We can provide airport transfers in Oahu, Maui, Kauai, and Hawaii. Oahu has a lot more to offer than just Waikiki, so you may want to consider a daily car rental to do some exploring on the North Shore or Kailua Beach on the east side.
What you can’t take:
All baggage from Hawaii to the U.S. Mainland is subject to pre-flight inspection by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Restrictions on fruits, plants, and other items from Hawaii to the Mainland are enforced to prevent the spread of fruit flies and other hazardous plant insects and diseases. Non-certified fruits, vegetables, flowers, or plants cannot be taken in your checked or carry-on baggage. Non-inspected agricultural items will be confiscated. Once you have checked in for your flight you will be required to go through a security screening process. Keep your boarding pass and picture identification card readily accessible.
Getting to the Airport:
Allow plenty of time. If you’re driving a rental car be sure to leave yourself enough time to fill the gas tank, get the car turned in, and transit to the departure terminal. Plan to arrive at the airport at least 2 hours before departure for inter-island flights and three hours before flights to the U.S. Mainland.
The Hawaiian Islands offer a diverse range of travel experiences that combine stunning natural landscapes, rich cultural heritage, and a welcoming aloha spirit. Here are some notable types of travel experiences that the Hawaiian Islands are particularly well-suited for:
- Beaches and Water Activities: Hawaii is renowned for its world-class beaches with golden sands and crystal-clear waters. Travelers can relax on the shores, swim, snorkel, and engage in water activities such as surfing, stand-up paddleboarding, kayaking, and scuba diving. The islands also offer excellent opportunities for whale watching and swimming with dolphins.
- Volcano Exploration: Hawaii is home to active volcanoes, particularly on the Big Island (Hawai'i Island). Visitors can explore Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, witness the power of Kilauea Volcano, hike through lava fields, and even witness the sight of molten lava flowing into the ocean.
- Hiking and Nature Trails: The Hawaiian Islands boast diverse landscapes and numerous hiking trails. Travelers can embark on hikes that lead to breathtaking vistas, lush rainforests, majestic waterfalls, and scenic coastal cliffs. Iconic hikes include the Na Pali Coast in Kauai, Haleakala Crater in Maui, and the Kalalau Trail in Kauai.
- Cultural Immersion: Hawaii has a rich indigenous culture deeply rooted in Hawaiian traditions. Visitors can experience the aloha spirit, learn about the customs and history of the islands, and attend cultural events such as hula performances, traditional ceremonies, and festivals like the Merrie Monarch Hula Festival.
- Luau and Polynesian Shows: Attending a traditional Hawaiian luau is a must-do experience. Travelers can enjoy a feast of traditional Hawaiian cuisine, witness captivating Polynesian performances, including hula dancing and fire dancing, and learn about the cultural significance of these art forms.
- Waterfalls and Natural Wonders: The Hawaiian Islands are home to spectacular waterfalls, lush valleys, and dramatic cliffs. Visitors can explore iconic natural wonders like Waimea Canyon in Kauai, the Road to Hana in Maui, and the Wailua River in Kauai, where they can witness the stunning Fern Grotto.
- Golfing: Hawaii offers world-class golf courses in breathtaking settings. Golf enthusiasts can tee off in picturesque locations surrounded by ocean views, volcanic landscapes, and tropical greenery. Maui and Oahu are particularly known for their golf resorts and courses.
- Relaxation and Wellness: The Hawaiian Islands provide opportunities for relaxation and rejuvenation. Visitors can unwind on serene beaches, indulge in luxurious spa treatments, practice yoga and meditation in tranquil settings, or enjoy wellness retreats that incorporate Hawaiian healing practices.
It's important to note that each Hawaiian island has its own unique offerings and characteristics, catering to different travel preferences. The islands include Oahu, Maui, Kauai, Hawaii (also known as the Big Island), Molokai, and Lanai, each with its own distinct attractions and experiences.
Important Things to Know:
Passport Requirement: No
Visa Requirement: No
Recommended Vaccinations: None
This Destination is Best For: See Above.
Is This a Family-Friendly Destination: Yes
Best Time To Travel to This Destination: April to October (Year-Round Destination)