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Best Hawaiian Islands to Visit

Sheetal Mandora Sep 28, 2019
A dream vacation for many, finding the 'right' island to visit is the first thing you need to do before you plan ahead. Read to learn about the different islands in Hawaii, and finalize a spot.
With 1,500 miles of 8 major islands, underwater seamounts, several small islets (islands), and numerous islands of coral that encircle the lagoons to choose from, Hawaii offers something different for everyone.
It all depends on what you want out of your Hawaii vacation, and the activities provided at the island. Although there are several islands in Hawaii, not all of them are open for tourists. So why not take a look at the magnificent islands, and make your trip to Hawaii an experience you'll never forget.

Breathtaking Hawaiian Islands to Visit

Get ready for some 'wow' experience as you get some detailed information about each of the Hawaiian islands. Once you read what each of these islands have to offer you, you can decide which is the best island for your next vacation.

Big Island

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The biggest island in Hawaii which is also nicknamed as "The Big Island", Hawaiʻi is the youngest of all the islands around and it's still growing.
There are 11 different climate zones that contributes to the lush rainforests, black sand beaches, waterless deserts, and snow-crested mountains.

Things to do on the Big Island:

  • Visitors can witness molten lava flowing at the Kīlauea volcano that has been flowing for over 20 years in the Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park.

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  • Take a hike in a tropical paradise of Waipiʻo Valley which is often referred to as the "Valley of the Kings".

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  • Discover the biggest ancient Hawaiian temple Puʻukoholā Heiau or "Hill of the Whale" open to tourists, which is probably one of the last sacred structures left in Hawaii. You can also spot some humpback whales there in the spring and winter months.
  • Remember the snow-crested mountains? Enjoy playing in the snow on Mauna Kea, the world's tallest mountain from the sea floor.

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  • Hilo and the sunny Kona coast offer brilliant cultural sites, cuisines, galleries, shops, restaurants, diving, spotting dolphins, snorkeling, boating, swimming with Manta rays, and deep sea fishing for giant Pacific Blue Marlin.


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O'ahu or The Gathering Place, is the most populous and busiest island in Hawaii and comprises 70 percent of the population. It homes the state's capital Honolulu, Waikiki beach and has tons of attractions for tourists.

Things to do on O'ahu:

  • Want to learn surfing? Then your wish can be fulfilled at the Waikiki beach. And if you feel you can't really get it right, sit back at the beach and watch world-class surfers tame huge waves.
  • Looking for a gorgeous night in the town? O'ahu offers the most happening downtown nightlife, five-star restaurants, lush mountains and some of the most amazing art galleries.
  • Don't forget to visit the world famous USS Arizona Memorial at Pearl Harbor.
  • Did you know that O'ahu has been featured in tons of movies and TV shows? Perhaps you might remember some: LOST, 50 First Dates, Jurassic Park movies, Pearl Harbor, Forgetting Sarah Marshall, Hawaii Five-O, From Here to Eternity, The Karate Kid II, and many more.


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If you're wondering which island to select when traveling with kids, then it's Maui. There are 4 islands in Maui, the main island of Maui, Moloka'i, Kaho'olawe and Lānaʻi.

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Best places to visit are Haleakalā National Park, Lāhainā and the Hāna Highway. Maui has 13 volcanoes, 9 hiking points, 11 beaches, 4 kayaking points, 8 historical spots, 8 deep-sea and local fishing spots, 10 different places for family fun (zoos and aquariums), 15 gold locations, 10 National and State Parks, 11 locations for whale watching and snorkeling.

Other Things To Do In Maui

  • Take a trip to spot the humpback whales.
  • Take a helicopter ride to the Haleakalā Crater to watch the beautiful sunrise. Perfect for couples and families.
  • Drive on the 53-mile long Hāna Highway and enjoy the scenes.


Kauaʻi is also known as "The Garden Isle" because of its lavish tropical vegetation. Perhaps you remember Kauaʻi from the movie Jurassic Park? Take a look at some beautiful Kauaʻi beaches.

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Things to do in Kauaʻi:

  • Hike on the valley and enjoy some excellent sites.
  • Visit Waimea Valley, the grand canyon of Pacific coast or Nā PaliValley that has huge waterfalls and mountains (only accessible by boats or helicopters).
  • Have fun kayaking on the Wailuā River.


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Niʻihau or "The Forbidden Isle" is privately owned and is off limits to tourists. If you like adventure, there are a few ideas. You can take a helicopter ride or sail along the secluded coast where there's a break in the peninsula up north.
You can spend the day snorkeling, scuba diving, spot schools of beautiful fish and dolphins, Hawaiian monk seals, and humpback whales. You can get more information from the island of Kauaʻiwhere these excursions start from.
Hawaii gives you long, lazy days at sea, grand waterfalls, crystal clear waters, stunning sea cliffs and much more. It's difficult to describe all in one read what the islands have to offer. No matter which island you choose, you won't be disappointed. Instead of searching for the best island, why not treat your family and yourself to a tropical paradise?