Best Hawaiian Islands To Visit

Which Hawaiian Island is Best for You?

Peaceful Beaches on Ohau.

Which Hawaiian Island is Best for You?

I’ve recently been helping a friend with her and her husband’s trip to Hawaii. They haven’t been before, and were searching for advice on what island(s) to visit during their stay. While I’m not sure I added a ton of value, I hope I was able to give them some advice to help them decide which was right for them. I think this is a common question when planning a trip to Hawaii, and figured a blog post might be a good option to help.

First, I think it is important to recognize that it is highly unlikely you will get to/ want to see all the islands in one trip. You’d need to take some significant time off in order to accomplish that, plus I think there is something to be said for going to one or two islands and getting a really good feel for the offerings on that island and get to know what makes it unique and special.

My usual rule of thumb is no less than 3 full days at any one place. This doesn’t include any travel days. So, generally, I’ll stick to 2 islands for a typical 7 to 10 day trip. You can certainly include more, if you desired. For me, this timeline seems to allow me to see everything I want to see without feeling rushed or like I spent too much time in one spot.

Oahu “Totally Hawaiian”
This island is the largest in terms of population, and 3rd largest in terms of land size. There are a number of unique things that make Oahu special and I think, in general, this island gets a reputation based solely on Honolulu when there is so much more to it. The North Shore offers quaint little surf towns along the beach with some of the largest waves you’ll see on any island.Waikiki - What more could you want? s, anywhere. Within the city, you’ll also get your fill of history, culture and arts that you’d expect from any great American city. Finally, you’ll be able to get your hike on at Diamond Head, an arid environment with a spectacular look out over Waikiki. Oahu is a great option for your visit, and really is an island that can suit pretty much anyone.

Looking for History? How about visiting the Iolani Palace?

Maui “The Best of Both Worlds”
Maui is much less crowded than Oahu, but still offers the “resort-y” feel you’d want to have with some “cityish” activities. The area I’ve stayed at twice is the Kaanapali Beach area. It is about a 45 minute drive from the main airport, although the drive is quite scenic, so you probably won’t mind it. The town on Lahina is quite popular with “Front Street” as the main drag for shopping and dining. A member from Fleetwood mac even has his own restaurant/ bar so it must be good!?

The resorts on Maui are pretty big, allowing their patrons to really never feel the need to leave the property if they didn’t want to. Blackrock is a nearby landmark known for snorkeling and sea life. In the evening there are usually a few cliff divers as well which can be quite entertaining. To get your sport on, you can find plenty of activities to fill your craving for physical activity. These include biking, hiking, zip-lining whale watching, scuba diving. etc.

Fields of Bamboo on Maui Or how about Pearl Harbor? Black Sand Beach along the road to Hana. Spectacular views from Haleakala National Park on Maui

Visit the neighbor islands

by virtualtourettes

Partying, food and drink and nightlife are probably the best on Oahu, but for the beach, watersports and sampling the remnants of Hawaiian culture I would recommend either Maui or Kauai.
If you get to Kauai, I'll buy you a drink, but you can check out all the islands here:

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