When Is the Best Time for a Hawaii Cruise?

When Is the Best Time for a Hawaii Cruise?
The beautiful state of Hawaii, with its warm weather and laid-back ambiance, welcomes visitors year-round. For those who opt to cruise and visit several islands, there are a few factors to consider in choosing the best time.

Weather Considerations

Peak season for Hawaii is March-April, June-August and holiday sailings. Though some consider June-August too hot, summer months will always be high season because that's when families go on vacation. Though January is cool and wet, it is a great time for whale watching.

Price Considerations

Obviously, rates are lower during low season -- late November, February (except for Valentine's cruises) and May. If you want to sail over the Christmas or New Year's holidays, you'll pay peak rates and will need to book your cruise six months to a year in advance.

Cruise Lines

The only year-round week-long cruises out of Honolulu are offered by Norwegian Cruise Line, which dedicates its Pride of America to that itinerary. Carnival offers two April and two fall sailings, and Royal Caribbean generally has ships in Hawaii once in April and once in September.

Other Options

Many cruise lines -- from small, luxury vessels to megaships with all the bells and whistles -- visit Hawaiian ports during the year, as part of a longer cruise or repositioning to other destinations/itineraries.

Holiday Visit

A Christmas cruise of Hawaii on NCL's Pride of America makes a wonderful family experience, complete with nighttime volcanic lights, instead of decorative house lights, and Santa decked out in a Hawaiian shirt bringing gifts to children on board.

Article Written By Debbie Selinsky

Debbie Selinsky is an award-winning writer based in North Carolina. Selinsky is the former senior editor of "Success Magazine" and deputy director of the Duke University News Service. She has written about travel for many years and specializes in cruise travel, having sailed on more than 100 cruises. Selinsky attended North Greenville University, Oregon Institute of Technology and the Poynter Institute for Journalistic Excellence.

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