Hawaii is like an artist’s sun-kissed pallet: rain forests adorned in the deepest greens; lush fruits and flowers of vibrant reds, yellows and pinks; all set on the canvas of an azure-blue ocean. Mark Twain, the famous American writer/humorist who visited in the late 19th century described the Aloha state as the “The loveliest fleet of islands that lies anchored in any ocean,” an apt description then and one that continues to be true today.
A visit to Hawaii blends dramatic volcanic landscapes, tropical climate, luxury resorts and the islands’ unique Polynesian culture into a vacation experience that is unrivaled anywhere in the world. Hawaii offers warm weather, broad sandy beaches, lush tropical vegetation, water sports and a slower pace to the day’s events than we experience at home. Hawaii is a place to relax while experiencing the countless ways to enjoy your vacation in paradise.
The Hawaiian Islands attract seven million visitors per year. The majority of guests arrive from the western United States, followed in rank order by visitors from the eastern United States, Japan, Australia, the United Kingdom and Korea. For most travelers it takes a long plane ride to get there, but visiting Hawaii is worth the effort.
Hawaii has six destination islands 0ahu, Maui, the Big Island (named Hawaii), Kauai, Lanai and Molokai. Of the visitors to the Aloha state, two-thirds visit only one island and almost fifty percent of all visitors make that island Oahu, lured by Waikiki, Honolulu and the famous surfing beaches of the North Shore. Oahu is an incredible vacation destination, but we hope to persuade you to sample the “other” Hawaii as well. Maui, the Big Island, Kauai and Lanai all have distinctly different flavors and are attractive vacation destinations. We do not cover Molokai, perhaps the least developed island of the Hawaiian chain.
While we are focused on where people visit, we should mention that the peak travel period is Christmas to Easter, although July and August comprise a secondary peak.
Once you land upon her shores, Hawaii will captivate you with the scent of tropical flowers carried by soft, warm breezes. Year round, the daytime temperature ranges between 75º and 85º and is perfect for enjoying a day of water sports, golf, sightseeing or just laying at the beach. Something wonderful seems to happen during vacations in Hawaii. Maybe its the tropics, or the distance away from the “real world” back home, but everything other than vacationing and having fun seems to melt away with the suntan lotion.
Hawaii’s leading resorts often bill themselves as “a complete vacation” and, we think, this is an apt description of many of the resorts in Hawaii. There is often no compelling reason to leave the larger properties, since everything you might want is likely to be supplied there. But trust us; you will finally get tired of relaxing and lazing about at the pool or the beach and want to head out for something , well, different – and Hawaii excels at providing unique experiences.
While Hawaii is a place to relax and get away from it all, it’s not one of those boring vacation spots where there is “nothing to do” buy sit in the sun. If you get tired of soaking up the rays, you will find that Hawaii offers excellent surfing, diving, golfing, hiking, biking, windsailing and paragliding. If you are an adventurer, you already know that the Hawaiian Islands owe their existence to volcanoes. If you are among the brave at heart, the Volcanoes National Park on the Big Island can provide an incredible adventure. Haleakala on Maui also can provide exceptional adventure for those interested in trekking. If you are really capable, you can learn to Hula - it is harder than it looks and more fun than you can imagine.
The uniqueness of the Islands includes the Hawaiian culture. Although most often seen by tourist as the luau and Hawaiian print clothing, the Hawaiian people have an interesting history. Their’s is a complex culture that includes wonderful lore and important links between the Hawaiians and the earth. It is our belief that the closer you get to Hawaiian culture, the more you will enjoy your trip to the Islands.
For those interested in twentieth century history, there are dramatic memorials commemorating the deaths resulting from the December 7, 1941 attack on Pearl Harbor by Japan, an act that caused a state of war to exist between the present day allies. Although war memorials are not of interest to everyone, visiting the USS Arizona Memorial in Pearl Harbor is, for many, an important part of the Hawaiian experience.
In our Hawaii Guide, we explore Hawaii, its islands and the best places to visit. If you read along with us, we think that your next vacation might just find you saying “Aloha”. We have arranged our descriptions of the islands to cover Oahu, Maui, the Big Island, Kauai and Lanai (we do not cover Molokai). Oahu is the island with the most to do and the number and types of activities decline as the islands decrease in size and population.
Hawaii is a tropical paradise and most people travel there to take some time to rest and relax in the tropics. If you are looking for a non-stop action packed adventure, Hawaii may not be the right place for you. If you are looking for great weather, fantastic beaches, excellent water sports and an interesting cultural environment, then read about the wonder of Hawaii.