Hawaii trip mainly consists of the 6 most visited islands with several other smaller atolls and islets offering wonderful sites and rare experiences. Every island in Hawaii has a different vibe, culture and some really exciting things to explore. The island is a big melting pot of diverse ethnicities that introduce their own element to the island’s culinary tradition, art, entertainment, and language.Hawaii trip mainly consists of the 6 most visited islands with several other smaller atolls and islets offering wonderful sites and rare experiences. Every island in Hawaii has a different vibe, culture and some really exciting things to explore. The island is a big melting pot of diverse ethnicities that introduce their own element to the island’s culinary tradition, art, entertainment, and language.
Despite so many unique experiences, there is definitely a list of to-do things and must-visit places while holidaying in Hawaii.
SNORKELING AND DOLPHIN WATCHING TOURS FOR FAMILIES
The No. 1 activity for visitors in Hawaii is undoubtedly snorkeling. The island is full of beautiful technicolor reefs and thronging shoals that's ideal for dolphin watching, snorkeling and sailing with the turtles.
Two-Hour Snorkeling Tour with the Sharks - Oahu
Unlike all other tours, guests snorkel here with the sharks without a cage and go right where the sharks live. You must be a strong swimmer and children must be accompanied by 2 adults.
Snorkeling, Ecoadventure and Manta Ray Night Dive - The Big Island
The tour leaves from Kona to spot hundreds of rays waving and rolling in search of plankton within inches from the snorkelers. You can also spot gentle giant whales averaging a wingspan of 12 feet.
Molokini Snorkeling Adventure - Maui
Molokini is a Prime spot for snorkelers and divers. Down in the crystal waters off Molokini cliffs, lies a volcanic crater with more than 250 marine species and tropical fish everywhere. The two-hour tour leaves from near Kealia Pond National Wildlife Refuge. The site is safe so younger children are allowed on private charters.
North Shore Beach Tour - Oahu
The all-day sun and surf adventure leads to the most famous surf spots in the world, Banzai Pipeline, and Waimea Bay.
There are clear water bottoms tours that let you look at the hidden treasures in the blue water. Take a plunge from the huge rocks and swim, snorkel, and scuba dive with the sea turtles and also try paddleboarding and shave ice.
Snorkeling and Sailing Adventure (with Buffet Lunch) - Maui
Maui’s west coastline has fabulous swarms of fishes including Hawaii’s state fish, abundant warm water sea life and some endangered Hawaiian green sea turtle.
Dolphins and Snorkeling Cruise - Lanai
Visitors love to look for spinner dolphins in their natural environment and marvel at the marine life from a glass-bottom boat. Start on a catamaran cruise to Lanai and enjoy $2 beers and mai tais after snorkeling.
Dolphin Watching & Snorkeling - Waianae
Cruise on-board to get a great all-round view and watch the spinner dolphins play and swim in carpet formations and humpback whales spouting on the surface between December and May. Snorkel excursion at 2 of the best snorkel sites in Oahu is quite popular.
Kalihiwai Beach - Kauai
Kalihiwai sits just past Kapaa is famous for its tiny cove, two beautiful cliffs, and a freshwater lagoon that kids will love.
Wailea Beach - Maui
Its cobalt water is gentle enough for kids and this beach is near some of the most impressive resorts like the Four Seasons Maui at Wailea, the Andaz Wailea, and the Grand Wailea that face the beach. You can spot a few celebrities too here.
A picture-perfect vacation beach is also one of the top reasons why people visit Hawaii. Lazing in the day basking under the glorious Hawaiian sunshine and returning home with a golden suntan is what Hawaii is best known for.
A tourist spot well-known for its beaches, world-class hotels, restaurants, a re-imagined international market place, and upscale retail shops; Waikiki is a must-visit for all. Waikiki is highly famous for its beach and continues to pull a huge influx of tourists. Exhibition shows like the Honolulu Biennial should not be missed if in time. It's a visual arts festival showcasing diverse art and culture ideas from international artists.
Polihua Beach - Lanai
Perfect place for a little privacy, long walks, and to spot humpback whales in the winters, and the Honu (green sea turtles) year-round.
Waimea Bay Beach Park - Oahu
One of the island’s most famous big-wave surfing beaches that draws pro riders during the winter swell and plays a host to top surfing competition. Stay at the nearby Turtle Bay Resort which is near to the center of the action.
Polihale State Park - Kauai
Located at the remote windswept western shore of Kauai requires some effort to reach but quite worthwhile. Its ethereal stretch includes landmarks like the Napali cliffs and Niihau, Hawaii’s forbidden island.
Kalapaki Beach - Kauai
A lovely harbor along Kauai’s eastern coast is the best fun site for all ages. Kids can try some boogie boarding and surfing, and adults can try their hand at sailing, canoeing, volleyball. There are several seaside restaurants for a great lunch option.
Makena Beach - Maui
Also called the “Big Beach,” in Maui, this beach is one of the tourists’ favorite beaches. Tote along a towel and sunscreen, lie on the sand and enjoy an impressive view of the island of Molokini.
Hapuna Beach - Hawaii
The half-mile beach of Hapuna, on the Kona-Kohala Coast, is one of several white-sand beaches in the Big Island and is one of the most scenic beaches.
ACTIVITIES & TOURS
Pearl Harbor Full-Day Tour
Pearl Harbor is the no. 1 visited site in Hawaii. A full-day tour covers all 4 historic sites including USS Arizona, USS Bowfin Submarine Museum and Park, the deck of the Battleship Missouri where Japan surrendered, and the Pearl Harbor Aviation Museum.
Na Pali Sunset and Dinner Sail - Kauai
Na Pali sunset is an excellent choice for a romantic evening. The catamaran sails feature dramatic views of the rugged Na Pali Coast, jagged cliffs, spinner dolphins in the sea followed by a romantic dinner and cocktail.
Kona Coffee Farm Tour - Big Island
One of the must-try is a guided tour of the 5-acre organic Kuaiwi Farms that raises an organic, sustainable coffee plantation. Planted alongside the coffee berries are macadamias, cacao, pineapples, bananas, and more. Visitors can learn the intricacies of the coffee-making process or take a chocolate-making class. They also get to taste their award-winning coffees, macadamia nuts, and jams.
Hilo Farmers Market - Big Island
Hilo Farmers Market is one of the best markets in the US with 200 vendors selling local fruits, veggies, and flowers. This is a fantastic opportunity to buy specialty food - Thai food, sushi, Kona coffees, Peruvian tamales, and baked goods. The Farmers Market is open year-round every Wednesday and Saturday (6 am – 2 pm).
Maui Brewing Company
The largest craft brewery Hawaii famous for its tasting room and brewery tours.
Dole Plantation Tour
The best for pineapple ice cream and lunch at Tsue’s Farm best for all ages.
Kauai Island Brewing Company popular for local beers, as food and cocktails served on the boat after departure.
There are a host of incredible hikes, ranging from easy trail walks of Kalalau Trail and the Haiku Stairs; arguably the most famous ones, to challenging long excursions like a full-day tour of Road to Hana. No matter what your skill and stamina levels are, or what size is your group, there are many exciting hiking opportunities for everyone in Hawaii.
Diamond Head Crater Adventure
This is one of the best-known hiking sites in Hawaii leading to the summit of the famed crater from where visitors can get a panoramic view of the Waikiki and the turquoise waters stretched out below. Do not forget to collect your “ I Climbed Diamond Head’ certificate.
Helicopter Ride over Maui
Absolutely worth the money, the ride can give you a glimpse of many areas including the areal view of the Road to Hana that takes just an hour rather than driving all day.
Touring the ‘Jurassic Park’ From a Helicopter
The helicopter lands at the base of the 400-foot tall Manawaiopuna Falls also referred to as “Jurassic Falls”. This is where the movie was filmed and the theme music through your headset will complete the reminiscence.
You can take a 15-minute walk at the base of the fall and feel the mist and the power of the fall. Many tours complete after a sortie to the legendary Na Pali Coast, which has the world’s most dramatic coastlines.
Open-Door Helicopter Tour Over Oahu
Fly in the same helicopter as seen on television's Magnum PI. The ride covers all the must-see attractions of Oahu like the Hanauma Bay, Honolulu Harbor, Pearl Harbor, the Halona Blowhole, Sandy Beach, Dole Plantation, and the USS 'Arizona' Memorial.
The Longest Zipline in Hawaii
The 2.5 miles long Flyin Hawaiian Zipline is an 8-track course near Koloa. It is known to be one of the top ziplines in the world and the longest, fastest and highest zipline on the island. A 3,600-foot behemoth dip will set your heart pounding as the guide points out the local spots.
HIKING & SIGHTSEEING
Road to Hana - MauiThe Road to Hana is a must for every Maui trip!
Hana Highway runs is popular for its winding road of switchback and blind curves leading into a one-lane bridge. The landscape is also quite dramatic and features bamboo forests, green ferns, bordered by waterfalls, and an ancient lava rock temple.
It’s a great family trip with dozens of stops along the way like the Wai’anapanapa State Park that has a black sand beach, hiking trail, and a lava tube; Wailua Falls’ that has a short hike to the waterfall and plunge pool; and Nahiku Marketplace popular for food vendors and roadside shacks.
Waimea Canyon - Kauai
Nicknamed the Grand Canyon of the Pacific, Waimea Canyon is 3300 feet deep and roughly ten miles long with Breathtaking views from the rim. The Canyon Road leads directly to the state park, and further up to the Kokee State Park with several hiking trails along the rim or through the rainforest. Waimea cannon Tour makes a great activity for active families or couples.
Catching the Sunset on Mauna Kea
Located at a height of 13,800 feet, Mauna Kea is the highest peak in Hawaii. The place is clean and relaxing and a perfect location for the largest array of high-powered telescopes in the world. There’s a friendly visitors center here. And, you can get a glimpse of the lifetime watching the giant red sun fire down slowly.
Sunrise at Haleakala on Maui Nui
The 10,023-foot summit of the dormant volcano Haleakala takes some effort to climb but when there, it is a pure magic moment sipping coffee and watching the sun peak out from the cloud. It requires a reservation for sunrise viewings so better book early.
The Lava Flow at Volcanoes National Park
Out of 5 active volcanoes, 4 are on the Big Island. The one to watch is Kilauea Volcano which has been erupting continuously since 1983 and it is one of the most active volcanoes in the world. A drive to the Crater Rim, 11-miles atop gives a good view of the creator.
NIGHTLIFE & LUAUS
Polynesian Cultural Center Luau - Oahu
The expansive 42-acre Polynesian Cultural Center is home to one of Oahu's best luau programs. It features interactive villages showcasing the traditions of Hawaii, Tonga, Samoa, cultural demonstrations and more. It serves a roasted pig unearthed from an underground oven, however, as since it is run by the Church, alcoholic drinks are not served.
Smith Family Garden Luau - Kauai
The Smith Family Luau held at the family's 30-acre garden along the Wailua River is constantly voted as one of Hawaii's best luaus.
“The Rhythm of Aloha” held in an open-air, torch-lit amphitheater, complete with erupting volcano showcases and colorful, authentic performances from Hawaii, Tahiti, Samoa, Philippines, and even New Zealand, China, and Japan is followed by a traditional feast.
Old Lahaina Luau - Maui
A genuine reflection of Hawaii’s rich history, the luau is held at the private luau grounds behind the Cannery Mall, Lahaina at the backdrop of ocean view and Hawaiian sunset. The authentic Hawaiian luau features traditional Hawaiian cuisine, music, cultural dances, and local crafts.
Drums of the Pacific Lu'au - Lahaina
A beautiful blend of storytelling thru song and dance, this luau showcases pretty & handsome cast and great music from the live Hawaiian band. Overall, a beautifully crafted show in colorful costumes with a generous buffet makes for an unforgettable Hawaiian vacation.
Germaine's Luau – Oahu
Germaine's Luau features Polynesia's as well as other cultural traditions and includes fire-knife-dancing. The hula also features an exotic buffet including local cuisines and ends with an opportunity to dance on stage with talented performers.
Planning a holiday in Hawaii? You are at the right place!
Flightstohawaii.org gets the best of Hawaii and a plethora of activities and places to visit in our all-inclusive packages. We also offer highly flexible packages for Hawaii so you can add or remove anything from the itinerary.