Choose Your Island Well
Each of the four major islands in Hawaii have something unique to offer visitors. If you're only able to visit one island consider some of the aspects that make each island unique, so that you choose the island best suited to your personality. Oahu is known as the "gathering place." It's the most populated island in the chain, but still has plenty to see and do. It is the home of famed Waikiki beach famous for surfing and nightlife and there are plenty of museums and shopping nearby. The Arizona Memorial is also located on Oahu and in the winter time, Oahu is home to the major surf competitions. Kauai is referred to as the "garden isle" and is one of the more remote islands. Kauai is home to Waimea Valley and numerous waterfalls and jagged coastline. For those looking for a quiet time in the islands, Kauai is a great place to go. Hawaii is known as the "Big Island" due to its sheer size. It is still growing and visitors can see active volcano and lava flow there. The island has two big mountains one of which you can even ski down whilst still offering some of the best snorkeling and black sand beaches in the islands. Maui is less crowded than Oahu but less remote than the Big Island or Kauai. It has a little bit of everything, with great snorkeling, black sand beaches, some lava devastation (though no active flow) and is also the best place in the islands to see the migrating Humpback whales during the winter time.
If you want to visit several of the islands at once, a good option is to take a cruise of the islands. One company offering week-long island cruises is Norwegian's cruise liner Pride of America. Pride of America begins and ends on Oahu and makes stops in Hilo, Kahului, Kona and Nawiliwili. While a day at each port isn't enough to see all that the islands have to offer, it does allow a unique way for visitors to view the islands. If you really enjoy taking a cruise, you could even decide to take a cruise that begins on the mainland like the 14 night Hawaiian island cruise from Los Angeles which is offered by Princess.
For divers the waters in Hawaii offer some unique attributes such as the fish life which are endemic to the islands. Other unique wildlife to look for are the green sea turtles, Hawaiian monk seals and manta rays. While all the islands offer great diving opportunities, Kona has some of the best waters in the state. Consider booking a Hawaiian dive vacation through a company that specializes in dive vacation packages. That way you'll have instant dive buddies to go with and you can let the dive shop choose the best shore or boat dives for the area.
Article Written By Shiromi Nassreen
Shiromi Nassreen has been writing professionally since 2005. She specializes in travel and outdoor topics, and her articles have appeared in various print and online publications, including "DISfunkshion Magazine" and Matador Travel. Nassreen holds a Bachelor of Arts in theatre studies from Rose Bruford College of Speech & Drama.