If paradise on Earth is what you seek, come to Hawaii for a heavenly retreat! The Aloha State is making waves in the tourism industry, and the steady stream of holidaymakers is a testament to the destination’s popularity as a tropical gem. Itching to ditch the urban labyrinth and sail towards the Pacific Islands? Great timing is everything! Know more about the best time to visit Hawaii with our comprehensive guide on recommended activities, holidays & festivals, and Hawaii weather by month.
Visit Hawaii in January
With the spirit of festivities still palpable, tourists hurry to the Hawaiian Islands in January to do last-minute celebrations. The first month of the year marks an opportunity for people to start on the right foot. But, is Hawaii in January ideal for a good beginning?
Hawaii Weather In January
The tropical weather of the Aloha State guarantees a comfortable high temperature throughout the year. Beach areas have an average of 80°F to 85°F, which is consistent throughout the first month. However, since January is part of the winter season, you can expect rain showers in the northern and eastern sections of the Hawaiian Islands. Looking for a dry side? Apparently, there is! Sun worshippers are particularly fond of the Kona and Kohala Coasts on Big Island, and Waikiki and Honolulu on Oahu. Whether it is winter or summer, you can expect strong sunshine in these locations all year round. However, if you fancy a trek through local rainforests or across breathtaking waterfalls, a bit of rainfall will enhance the tropical settings to great effect.
Recommended Hawaii Activities In January
Waiting for the whales? You are in luck! Hawaii’s Whale Season is from November to May, which means you will have the best view of the gentle giants as they execute undersea acrobatics and graceful lunges above sea level. Witness their playful antics on a boat cruise or trek to Oahu’s South Shore and zoom in on whale activity with your trusty binoculars. Big waves are also present on Oahu’s North Coast, making it a paradise for surfing professionals and amateurs. Take a look below for this month’s lineup of surfing events and try your hand at competing with others. Aside from surfers and whale watchers, golf lovers also flock to Hawaii in January to take part in PGA championships, such as the Sony Open in Honolulu or witness golf professionals from all over the world out-swing each other.
Hawaii Holidays & Festivals in January
New Year’s Day – As one of the most celebrated Hawaiian holidays, expect big crowds, high price hikes, cultural activities and colorful parties on a grander scale, especially on Big Island and Oahu. If you have big plans, it is best to make reservations early. Traffic will be hellish, and so is dealing with other tourists with a short string of patience. New Year’s Day in Hawaii is in full swing, with top-rated entertainment and activities expected in Honolulu and other venues. Celebrate with a six -course dinner in a five-star restaurant while hula dancers perform, or join a boat crew and watch the awesome set of fireworks with a Mai Tai in hand.
Cherry Blossom Festival – From 1953 up to the present, the Cherry Blossom Festival honors and preserves the Japanese culture in Hawaii by offering a lineup of cultural events that are free for both locals and tourists. With the aim to enrich women of Japanese ancestry, applicants train to become community leaders with a sense of confidence, maturity, creativity, and generosity. The introduction of Queen contestants starts in January, but the highlight of the festival (Festival Ball and Coronation) will be in Waikiki in March.
Chinese New Year Celebration – Fun, fireworks and fortune await the audience of Chinese New Year festivities, which run from mid-January to mid-February. Designed as a family-friendly celebration, spectators look forward to special food stalls, craft booths, live entertainment, Kung Fu exhibitions and lion parades as they revel in the rich Chinese traditions during the year’s first quarter. Head to Oahu’s Chinatown to experience the extravaganza at its liveliest
Ka Moloka’i Makahiki Festival –Tradition and friendly ties continue during the Makahiki Festival through the conduct of sporting competitions, ocean and land activities, art and craft workshops and traditional ceremonies at Kaunakakai Town Baseball Park, Molokai. As it marks the final feast of the harvest season, the festival is another way for tourists to witness and practice Hawaiian cultural activities, like chanting and hula dancing, for free.
Narcissus Festival – Chinese culture takes center stage in Honolulu’s Chinatown as the festival highlights the best traditions of the Red Dragon. From art and fashion to cuisines and Contemporary music, the Narcissus Festival allows everyone to take part in the annual rejuvenation of the Chinese culture in the Aloha State free of charge! The peak of the celebration is the Narcissus Festival Pageant, which is a paid event flocked by people eager to witness one of the oldest ethnic pageants in the US. The festival runs from early January to early February.
Pacific Island Arts Festival – Have a slice of the artistic side of Hawaii by attending the Pacific Island Arts Festival, a free event that is open to the public at Kapiolani Park, Honolulu. Fancy some artworks for your home? Buy authentic masterpieces and have them signed by the artist at the very event! Get ready for hula dancing and colorful shave ice in between demonstrations.
Martin Luther King Jr. Day – Head down to Kalakaua Avenue on Oahu for the annual parade in honor of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. With thousands of participants marching and forming a unity rally, this holiday is one of the most notable activities that Americans look forward to. The parade ends at Kapiolani Park, where refreshments await after your reflection about civil rights.
Da Hui Backdoor Shootout – Chase the adrenaline at the Banzai Pipeline on the North Shore of Oahu, where the best tube riders challenge the finest waves of the winter season! Surfers compete in intense Standup Paddleboard and Shortboard competitions, while audiences witness the flawless barrel rides from the shoreline. This invite-only event is regarded highly, so include this hidden gem in your itinerary if you love everything ocean-related!
Pyramid Rock Bodysurfing Competition – Buckle up and watch bodysurfers compete in buoyancy in the annual Pyramid Rock Bodysurfing Competition, which is open to anyone regardless of skill level and experience. Held at Pyramid Rock Beach aboard the Marine Corps Base, bodysurfing exhibitions are a must-see even if surfing or watersports, in general, don’t interest you. The concentration, timing, and skill of bodysurfers would tempt you to try the sport, even just for fun.
Volcom Pipeline Pro – Witness the world-famous wave action during the winter season in Hawaii by attending the Volcom Pipeline Pro in the legendary North Shore of Oahu. Stakes run high as pro surfers are invited from all over the world to participate and compete in this high-profile event made possible by the iconic lifestyle brand, Volcom, and other famous sponsors. Surfing fans are sure to see familiar faces, especially former surfing champions and aspiring title holders.
Sony Open – Known as Hawaii’s biggest charity golf event and a certified PGA tournament, the Sony Open at Honolulu’s Waialae Country Club does not disappoint in delivering top performances from the golfing world’s bests. The international event is televised and significantly contributes to the state’s tourism and economy, considering that crowds of golf lovers from all over flock to the island Annually.
Conclusion for January
Waves and whales in January are the best combinations to lure in ocean lovers, but not necessarily beach bums. Flight tickets are pretty expensive, and rates are relatively high because the month is part of Hawaii’s peak season, but your persistence will get rewarded with fairly small crowds, great weather and an awesome mix of activities for culture freaks and outdoor enthusiasts.
Visit Hawaii in February
While Hawaii is for everyone, the Pineapple State is undeniably teeming with lovers once the calendar turns to February. With an excuse to put a premium rate on things like candlelight dinners or sunset cruises in the name of love, will Hawaii in February be a perfect setting for culture and tourism or just another commercialized destination for romance?
Hawaii Weather in February
As compared to other winter months, February is full of sun with minimum showers that disrupt its dry weather. Kauai is most affected by rain, although rainfall trends may vary throughout Hawaii. Other islands get little to no wetness, especially Maui, Oahu and Big Island. However, preparation is half the battle. It is advisable to pack quick-drying clothes, breathable rain jackets and umbrellas to keep yourself dry on tour.
The Aloha State’s ocean temperature is notably low in February, around 75 °F –the coolest throughout the year. In the middle of the Hawaiian Winter Migration, Humpback whales can be spotted in the shallow waters of the Auau Channel, between Lanai, Molokai and West Maui, for cold-water feeding.
Recommended Hawaii Activities in February
Dare to get close to the underwater behemoths by booking a whale cruise or a boat tour. In fact, Hawaii is one of the world’s best locations for whale watching, so better put that on top of your bucket list. Big waves are to be expected in Maui, Oahu, and Kauai –perfect for wave riding or catching sight of professionals showing off their barrel exhibitions on open ocean swells.
While Mauna Kea’s peak has snow all year round, locals prefer to ski or snowboard to their hearts’ content in February. A 4-wheel drive is necessary to reach the summit, but its snow –considered as one of the world’s best –will be worth the effort. If you live for the extreme, never miss the chance to hit the snowy slopes of the dormant volcano at a high altitude.
Hawaii Holidays & Festivals in February
Valentine’s Day – This universally celebrated holiday consistently brings in a throng of honeymooners to Hawaii for a first-class retreat and romance, or exhilarating outdoor adventures for two. Aside from cheesy couples, you also get to compete with backpacking groups and families when booking popular winter tours, like inter-island cruises.
Act out a scene from the hit romantic film, 50 First Dates, which got filmed on Oahu, and you might not want to recover from memory loss once you replay a perfect day at the beach! Better yet, indulge in the signature treatments of the finest spa resorts, such as the Four Seasons Resort Maui (Wailea), Grand Hyatt Kauai Resort and Spa (Kauai), and Fairmont Orchid (Big Island).
POW! WOW! Hawai’i – Surround yourself with vivid urban imagery as POW! WOW! Hawai’i brings the best mural artists and art creators to Kaka’ako, Honolulu for an intense week of creative demonstrations! Start off by partying at Honolulu Night Market and brave through break dancing battles, art exhibitions, documentary screenings and even soccer tournaments for much-needed inspiration. This celebration of music, art, and culture takes anyone to a new level of artistic high, making it a must-experience for locals and tourists alike.
Waimea Town Celebration Week – The west side of Kauai wows the rest of Hawaii with its Waimea Town Celebration Week. This unifying tradition presents a mashup of recreational and cultural activities, including sports tournaments, water-based competitions, hula dancing, local food booths and a beer garden among others! The town fair also features Hawaii’s oldest traditional rodeo which you can view at reasonable rates, plus access to food concession and crafts during the event.
Mardi Gras – Craving for carnival action? Hawaii’s version of Mardi Gras is entertainment worth seeing, albeit less grand in scale if compared to Rio De Janeiro’s. Head down to Honolulu and let your senses feast on samba parades, feathered and beaded costumes, Brazilian-inspired booths, floats and street food cuisine with a touch of aloha.
Presidents’ Day – The state holiday is on the third Monday of February. Government offices and other agencies are closed, except for emergency services and other state-run parks, gardens, and golf courses.
Chinese New Year Celebration – The event is from January to February. (See January: Chinese New Year Celebration)
Maui Whale Festival – Brush up your biology by participating in the Whale Festival at Kalama Park, just on the South Shore of Maui. Inter-island cruises are readily available at the venue, willingly taking tourists to see Hawaii’s giant winter guests at fair-priced rates. Learn more about the Humpback Whale Migration Season, while taking a pick from the event’s exciting lineup of street food and island dishes, and enjoying live music, and ocean-related games and contests.
Narcissus Festival – Catch the fun of the festival from January through February. (See January: Narcissus Festival)
Sunset Pro Standup World Tour – Take a seat back as the powerful swells of Oahu’s North Shore collide with the world’s best paddle surfers during this competition. A mix of international bigshots and aspiring local champions compete for prestige, prize money and a chance to make it big at the Association of Paddlesurf Professionals (APP) World Tour.
Buffalo’s Big Board Surfing Classic – Expect hilarity and Hawaiian-style camaraderie at the Buffalo’s Big Board Surfing Classic, a popular event that offers a variety of wave riding divisions at Makaha Beach Park, Oahu. Make way for unique maneuvers on water as renowned families surf their way to victory. Kick back and relax while the surfing community entertains you with body surfing, paddle boarding and canoe riding tricks for five days.
IBA GoPro Pipe Bodyboarding Challenge – Bet on the best bodysurfers of the world during the IBA GoPro Pipe Bodyboarding Challenge, the first of many surfing exhibitions in the IBA GoPro Grand Slam Series. Held at Hawaii’s notorious and well-loved Banzai Pipeline on Oahu, the surfing community will once again converge for intense wave riding demonstrations.
Conclusion for February
February is known for its luau parties, athletic races, and cultural festivals throughout the Hawaiian Islands. In comparison to January, it has fewer crowds, but rental and airfare costs are still expensive. The month is the best time for some whale watching, ocean activities, and island tours without big crowds to compete with –just couples wanting to experience Hawaiian romance.
Visit Hawaii in March
Cold winds wane and snow falls as March takes its turn in the calendar. The Hawaiian Islands are awakened as spring approaches, bringing forth endless sunshine and vivid tropical colors the Aloha State is known for. With an irresistible scenery ripe for exploration and adventure, is March the best month to go to Hawaii?
Hawaii Weather in March
Expect average temperatures ranging from 76 °F to 84 °F during the day and not lower than 65 °F at nighttime. In the evenings, prepare sweaters and jackets despite the low possibility of rain throughout the month. The island of Kauai still gets the most rain showers, albeit fewer in comparison to the rainfall trends of December. The Big Island’s resort areas get the most sunshine.
Recommended Hawaii Activities in March
Whale watching cruises are still popular among tourists, despite the fact that the Humpback migration starts in early January. The cool waters lure the adults and calves to the south and west Maui coasts for winter feeding, birthing, and breeding, allowing marine enthusiasts to catch a glimpse of the 40-ton sea mammoths before they head back to the Aleutian Islands and Alaska’s southern shores. Varied species of dolphins frequently appear in the vicinity, including rare False Killer Whales and Melon-Headed Whales.
Average temperatures mean great visibility and dry weather in most Hawaiian Islands, allowing tourists to trek, swim, dive, fly and cycle under the glorious heat of the winter sun. Inter-island tour operators are on a roll this month, so expect slightly higher rates and more tourists popping up like mushrooms.
Hawaii Holidays & Festivals in March
Honolulu Festival – Commemorate the unifying ties of Asia Pacific and Hawaii during the Honolulu Festival, and revel in the richness of Pacific Rim traditions through a series of performances, cuisines, movie screenings, craft fairs and a grand parade with the biggest firework show in Honolulu to boot! Make sure to grab a schedule of the festivities, since the festival celebrations are in three different locations (Kapiolani Park, Hawaiian Convention Center and Kalakaua Avenue)! Admission to all events is
Kona Brewer’s Festival – Fancy some craft beer on top of live entertainment, savory beach cuisines and a fun crowd? Head to the Courtyard King Kamehameha’s Kona Beach Hotel on Big Island, and drink to your heart’s content while showing support to Hawaii! Since 1996, this event highlights various nonprofit organizations who are all for environmental awareness, cultural conservation and sustainable livelihood in the Aloha State. Tickets are in demand, so make sure to purchase them once available to the public.
Prince Jonah Kuhio Kalanianaole Day – The state holiday honors the Hawaiian royal leader, Prince Jonah Kuhio Kalanianaole, by conducting luaus, canoe races, a commemorative parade (Kalakaua to Kapiolani Park) and a Pualeilani event (Royal Hawaiian Center). No admission fees are required to enjoy a Hawaiian immersive experience.
Patrick’s Day – While shamrocks and leprechauns are considered foreign to the Aloha State, St. Patrick’s Day is still one of the reasons why the month of March is festive throughout.
Duke Kahanamoku Beach Challenge – Prove you are a worthy Waterman by participating in the Duke Kahanamoku Beach Challenge’s series of competitive events. Annually celebrated at the Duke Kahanamoku Beach and Lagoon in Waikiki, it also forces the spotlight onto notable personalities who have contributed to the Pacific Islands’ water culture. Breeze through a whole day of fun, sand and sun with hula performances, arts and crafts exhibits, traditional games and a plethora of beach chow on the side. Most makahiki games are free, but ocean contests come with reasonable fees.
North Shore Surf Shop Pipeline Pro Junior – Top junior surfers get tested at the Banzai Pipeline during the North Shore Surf Shop Pipeline Pro to gauge their mettle as certified watermen. As the Pacific churns out the perfect barreling waves, the audience witness extreme exhibitions of rides and dangerous wipeouts! Keep an eye on this event if you are an aspiring tube rider, or would like to see how young surfers try to break through the ranks of professional watermen.
Conclusion for March
March gives way to the off-peak season, yet around this time, a sudden influx of international guests arrives by air. In fact, the months of March and December are highly rated as the best times to explore Hawaii. Crowds are expected to get bigger as April approaches, including hordes of students on spring break. The already expensive rates will increase by the end of the month due to the Easter holidays.
Visit Hawaii in April
Bring back your youthful glow by taking a dip in the Hawaiian oasis in April. The lovely month welcomes students on break and international tourists in Hawaii. Sun and all-around island fun await in a picturesque springtime setting. Will you be tempted to sit back and relax, or think twice if the April Fool’s Day joke is on you?
Hawaii Weather in April
Mild weather is expected when coming to Hawaii in April. Nighttime temperatures may dip lower than 65°F, so better start packing some warm sweaters to snuggle in. Daytime usually falls between the ranges of 76°F to 85°F, which is typical in tropical areas. Rainfall levels are insignificant as well, guaranteeing idyllic island conditions for outdoor activities. In fact, people note that rain showers only happen at night.
Recommended Hawaii Activities in April
Inter-island cruises are popular among tourists beginning March, but a greater variety of boats will be available in April. Fishing is a year-round activity, which is preferred among middle-age groups off the coast of Maui.
Tourists are also offered the last chance to see Humpback whales mate and be merry on the coast of Maui before they migrate to the Northern Pacific.
Hawaii Holidays & Festivals in April
Easter Holidays – April is synonymous to Easter festivities. Due to the influx of tourists on Good Friday until Easter Sunday, it is best to book reservations ahead of time, even for car rentals. Families make up a huge chunk of foreign visitors, while locals will be out and about to participate in Easter church services, island brunches and Easter egg hunts around Hawaii.
Make your Easter holiday in Hawaii worthwhile by catching the magical sunset on Maui’s Haleakala Crater, or attend the annual Easter congregation at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific on Oahu to venerate the resurrection of Jesus at sunrise.
Merrie Monarch Festival – Hurry towards Hilo, so you don’t miss the highly-acclaimed festival of hula dancing! Merrie Monarch Festival is a testament that Hawaii prizes its traditions exceedingly–something culture aficionados truly appreciate. The competitions present a vibrant blur of colors and culture from hula groups in Hawaii, Asia, and the Polynesian Islands. Expect the festival to be divided into three parts: Opening Ceremony/ Hoolaulea (Afook Chinen Civic Auditorium), Merrie Monarch Invitational Hawaiian Arts Fair (Afook Chinen Civic Auditorium) and the Hoike (Edith Kanakaole Stadium). The latter is the main event which caters to eager audiences on a first come, first served basis sans tickets.
Honolulu Brewer Festival – Binge on top-quality craft beers by dropping by the Honolulu Brewers Festival held at Kaka’ako Makai Gateway Park. With more or less 80 brews on tap, ticket holders will go crazy on what to try and taste before the sun sets. Take time to appreciate the different flavors, while getting your fill of island cuisine on the sidelines.
Pro Tip: Start with craft beers under 6% alcohol, and balance it with heavier brews at the end of the day to avoid getting wasted. The best advice that one could get from expert drinkers in the event is to drink responsibly.
Waikiki Spam Jam – Sick of SPAM? Not Hawaiians! Venture towards Kalakaua Avenue in Honolulu by the end of April to witness the annual street festival dedicated to this canned goodness. Get your stomach ready for SPAM-inspired dishes made by acclaimed chefs all over Hawaii, or take your love for SPAM to another level by purchasing SPAM-themed merchandise, like sports balls, shirts, and slippers.
Rell Sunn Menehune Surf Contest – Join hundreds of locals and tourists as they cheer on boys and girls competing on the iconic swells of the Makaha Beach Park during the event. The contest welcomes children ages 7 to 13 and allows teens to discover their knack for water sports while fighting the rising concern of juvenile delinquency. Participants are required to pay an inexpensive entrance free, while spectators can watch the event for free.
HSA Invitational State Championships – Watch Hawaii’s cream-of-the-crop surfers battle it out on the big waves of Oahu during the highly-anticipated Hawaii Surfing Association (HAS) State Championships at Ala Moana Bowls. The invite-only tournament showcases the best youth and adult board riders who are preparing for a big break in professional surfing.
Conclusion for April
In general, April is a quiet month for tourism, except for the first and last weeks which coincide with the Easter Holidays and Japan’s Golden week respectively. However, if you desire a Hawaiian holiday involving cultural events, great ocean conditions, good airfare and accommodation deals, and moderate crowds, this month won’t disappoint.
Visit Hawaii in May
Summer officially hits the shores of Hawaii! If you live for the palm trees and 80 degrees of heat, the month of May is the perfect time to get used to an Aloha state of mind. Sun, sand and a healthy dose of Vitamin Sea lure travelers of every kind. Are you ready to trade your shoes for fins, or stay indoors to create memories with your bed?
Hawaii Weather in May
May is the first month of the summer season and, without a doubt, the best time to visit Hawaii if your dream holiday consists of sunshine, warm ocean temperatures, and less rain. Rain showers, albeit brief, are usually experienced in some parts of Kauai and Lanai. Great visibility can be expected, even at nighttime. Expect temperatures to fluctuate between 80 °F to 85 °F, while nights go as low as 70 °F.
Recommended Hawaii Activities in May
Snorkeling is a favorite among families, especially on the sunny side of Maui, Oahu and Big Island, where warm waters and calm waves portray the perfect beach vacation. Dive, swim with turtles or fly high on a parasail to witness a bird’s eye view of Hawaii’s beauty. Amateur and professional surfers also head to the southern and eastern shores of Hawaii to challenge the waves.
Sightseeing around the Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park is a great idea during the summer season. The longer daytime hours mean more time for exploration in rough lava terrain, dense forests, steep cliffs and arid slopes. Stargazing activities are also rampant at the summit of Mauna Kea, thanks to comfortable summer temperatures and great visibility, especially during a new moon.
Planning to tie the knot in Hawaii? Schedule your destination wedding in May, which is the ideal time of the year for less rain, more sunshine and picturesque locations that make other brides green with envy.
Hawaii Holidays & Festivals in May
Lei Day –Lei Day coincides with May Day and is considered the biggest Hawaiian festival dedicated to lei making. This annual celebration honors the Hawaiians’ generosity and hospitality to guests, which is expressed by giving beautiful lei. Enjoy the intricate creations at the Lei Contest Exhibit that is free for public viewing, while the Hawaiian Steel Guitar Association serenades you with traditional island music at Kapiolani Park. Want to see more? Make sure to drop by Kulana Lei, a makeshift Hawaiian village for artisans, and Tutu’s Hale for cultural activities for all ages, including lauhala weaving and lei making. Big Island’s Hilo Lei Day Festival is similar to Lei Day but smaller in scale.
Maui Onion Festival – Interested to know about the secret behind Maui’s delectable dishes? Head to Whaler’s Village in Lahaina, Maui and celebrate the agricultural feat known as the Maui Onion. Celebrity chefs, local kitchen connoisseurs, and foodies, in general, participate in a wide variety of gastronomic activities scheduled during the Maui Onion Festival. These include cook-offs, beer gardens, food booths, onion-themed games and cooking demonstrations among others.
Celebration of the Arts Festival – As one of the highly-rated events in Hawaii, this celebration shouldn’t be missed, especially if you are already on the island of Maui. Cultural activists, environmental educators, and artisans of varying expertise converge at The Ritz-Carlton, Kapalua for a weekend of traditional music and dance, informative talks, creative demonstrations, craft activities and historical films that allow participants to take on different perspectives of the Aloha State.
Moloka’i Ka Hula Piko – Take a cultural tour around the lush island of Molokai in celebration of Ka Hula Piko, a festive excursion that goes deeper than the usual food and craft fair. Every year, the organizers behind the event decide on a cultural theme that sets the tone of the entire festival, making it a great annual convention for cultural die-hards who are thirsty for knowledge and out-of-the-box experiences. Made-in-Molokai merchandise is also available during the three-day period.
Hawaii Book and Music Festival – In love with Hawaiian literature? Drop by the Hawaii Book and Music Festival for hard-to-get hard bounds, Hawaiian music, informative panels and other activities that highlight the importance of literacy for all ages. Socialize with other readers or take part in storytelling! The event offers free admission, but there’s no guarantee that you walk away without bagging a book, or two!
Mele Mei – Apart from being world-famous for big surfing swells, the Aloha State is also making waves in the music industry. Mele Mei puts the spotlight on Hawaii’s biggest music acts, with the annual Na Hokuhanohano Awards, the Grammy counterpart in the Pacific as its highlight. Let the rhythm bring you to Nirvana by participating in a plethora of cultural activities across the islands from April throughout June.
East Maui Taro Festival – Combine food with culture, and you get a memorable excursion worth telling! The East Maui Taro Festival is exactly like that, but with a touch of Aloha that makes for a more immersive experience. Taro, being the staple starch in most Polynesian dishes, is obviously well-loved; hence, a festival that features lauhala weaving, poi pounding, tapa/ kappa cloth making, and educational and food booths, is celebrated in its honor. Hurry towards the Hana Ball Park to join this free event.
Memorial Day Lantern Floating Ceremony – Make Memorial Day a part of your Hawaiian Holiday by joining thousands of spectators for a Lantern Floating Ceremony on Oahu’s south beach. Devote yourself to reflection as the collective moment bears significant remembrance and gratitude towards the fallen brave souls of the United State’s military service.
New Hope Christian Fellowship Surf Contest – Coupled with their love for God and surfing, the organizers behind the New Hope Christian Fellowship Surf Contest yearn to share the blessings of Catholicism among surfers through a series of board competitions, including Standup Paddle, Shortboard, and Longboard divisions for kids and adults. Attend the annual meet-up at the Kuhio Beach Park, Waikiki, with guests from all over the Hawaiian Islands.
T & C Grom Contest – Fun surfing in a family-friendly setting sums up the T & C Grom Contest. Originally hosted as a non-competitive activity, the event now features three surfing categories (Shortboard, Longboard, and Bodyboard) with a venue packed to the brim! The contest focuses on inspiring kids to fall in love with surfing and allows parents to guide them in the water (Kokua Division for 3 – 6-year-olds). The mellow waves at Queen’s Break, Waikiki, are great for surfing introductions to beginners and amateurs, regardless of age.
Local Motion Surf Into Summer – Say hello to the summer season by surfing up a storm at Ala Moana Bowls in Waikiki during the state’s biggest amateur surfing event! Regional surfers prove their worth as watermen by practicing barrel rides and challenging the perfect swells against worthy opponents for a chance to break into the big leagues of surfing. Surfing fans should keep an eye out for up-and-coming players who will likely shake up the ranks of professional board riders in the future.
Conclusion for May
Tourists and locals agree that the summer season in Hawaii is at its best in the month of May. The wide variety of activities available and great weather conditions are things that matter most to tourists. Further, you can expect a fair-sized crowd with cheaper rentals to boot! If you are tired of typical summer activities, like swimming and volcano sightseeing, cultural events will put the life back into your vacation.
Visit Hawaii in June
Escape the concrete jungle and let Hawaii drown your worries with Piña Colada and ocean breeze. June is all about tan lines, warm waters, sandy toes and longer daytime hours –a perfect mix for a hefty serving of summer. Would you take this opportunity to indulge in cultural and natural wonders, or cower in fear of the Hawaii hurricane season?
Hawaii Weather in June
Weak for great weather? Surveys highlight June as the best month to see Hawaii, and it is not hard to see why. Daytime temperature is measured at an average of 83 °F to 85°F, while you can expect as low as 70 °F at night. Rainfall trends are at their lowest, so expect a stronger dose of sunshine in all areas of the Aloha State. Also, the ocean temperature is average.
When is the hurricane season in Hawaii? It typically starts in June through November, but tropical storms are somewhat rare. However, watch out for warnings issued by the National Weather Service, and take precautions seriously. It is wise to be updated and prepared at all times.
Recommended Hawaii Activities in June
Whether your adventurous lifestyle encourages you to swim with sharks on Oahu or your touristy nature demands volcano sightseeing on Big Island and Maui, the possibility of doing both is very high because of June’s ideal weather conditions
Satisfy your love for nature with a guided tour at the Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park, or lose sight of land and cruise through the cerulean waters of the Pacific. True to being a surfing mecca, surfers still flock to Hawaii, despite the absence of big waves. In fact, the mellow waves at the South and East sides of the Islands still provoke a good challenge.
Hawaii Holidays & Festivals in June
Kapalua Wine & Food – Make Maui a priority when in search for delicious delights in June. Featuring the longest running food and wine festival in North America, locals and tourists are treated to a wide array of fine cuisines, from appetizers to dessert, in a postcard-worthy tropical setting! Socialize with 5-star chefs, renowned winemakers, and the most requested food critics while reveling in Pacific bounty. Tickets run out before June, so make reservations once they are available.
Pan Pacific Festival – Craving for a cultural mashup? Enjoy the hodgepodge of fantastic entertainment and vibrant festivities during the Pan Pacific Festival, one of the best events Honolulu has to offer. Mingle with locals, and a thousand more foreign attendees as talents from Pacific countries and beyond amaze the audience with ethnic shows. End the three-day festival with a grand parade along Kalakaua Avenue and Ka’iulani Avenue, where different nations take turns to impress you.
King Kamehameha Day Celebration – Declared as a public holiday to honor a Hawaiian monarch, King Kamehameha Day features an assortment of activities that focus on history, culture, entertainment, and arts. Floral parades are held simultaneously on Maui, Big Island, Oahu and Kauai to kick off the event as locals and tourists gather to celebrate the man responsible for the unification of the Kingdom of Hawaii.
Maui Film Festival – Film lovers will fancy the five-day cinematic festival in four of the best locations on the island of Maui. Mixed with A-listers, top-rated cinematic reels, superior culinary presentations, live island music and dynamic dialogues with the filmmakers under a stunning celestial drapery, the Maui Film Festival is a rare cocktail that changes one’s perception of modern storytelling. Extravagance comes with a hefty price tag, so better start saving for a 4-day pass at once!
Pu’uhonua O Honaunau Cultural Festival – Experience life as a Hawaiian in a 2-day family-friendly event known as the Pu’uhonua O Honaunau Cultural Festival. Participate in traditional lei making at 10, or learn more about the art of lauhala weaving at 60. No matter what biological phase you are in, this free festival will make you feel at home while exploring the Pu’uhonua O Honaunau National Historical Park.
China Uemura’s Annual Wahine Surfing Classic – Watch as women take center stage in surfing during China Uemura’s Annual Wahine Surfing Classic. As one of the pioneers of women-only surfing events, the competitive event invites female boarders of all ages, from Pee Wees (10 years old below) to Grandmasters (50 years old & over), to prove their talents and tricks on the water. Cheer for women as they conquer the waves at the Kuhio Beach Park on Oahu, while contributing significantly to female-focused causes.
Roxy Waikiki Classic – Women take the wet reins once again as the Roxy Waikiki Classic heats up Oahu’s Kuhio Beach Park in June. This event welcomes females with ages ranging from 6 to 30 years old and up to compete in Shortboard and Longboard categories free of charge. The amateur and professional divisions will truly provide classic surfing entertainment while highlighting the sport as an activity for women to learn and excel in.
Conclusion for June
Take advantage of fewer crowds, low occupancy rates, ideal summer weather, significant cultural events and near-perfect ocean conditions to appreciate Hawaii to the fullest. Whether you live for the adrenaline rush or appreciate life at a slow pace, the Aloha State in June lives up to vacation expectations.
Visit Hawaii in July
Let the celebration of American liberty take over as July rolls by. Fireworks, freedom and island fun make Hawaii in July a destination for adventurous holidaymakers. Do you dare to celebrate Independence Day differently, or just stay at home with some bubbly?
Hawaii Weather in July
July is a typical summer month when temperatures are warmer and drier than what came before. Daytime warmth average from 78 °F to 82 °F, while at night, the temperature measures at 70 °F to 75 °F. Rainfall is lesser and more sporadic in Kauai and Lanai, while Oahu, Maui, and Big Island enjoy a lot of sunshine, and longer daylight. However, jackets come in handy when doing a helicopter tour around the summit of Kilauea or watching the sunrise/sunset at Haleakala Crater.
Recommended Hawaii Activities in July
Water-based activities will fill up your July itinerary because of warmer ocean temperatures, calmer waves, and clearer skies. Head off to the reef area and watch as turtles thrive in a vibrant marine ecosystem or speed away from the coast on a jet ski. Expect large crowds, especially in Waikiki, as holidaymakers fight for space to swim and sunbathe.
Longer daytime hours and drier trails make mountain trekking and cycling in Hawaii very desirable among athletic and adventurous tourists. However, it is advisable to wear light clothes and pack a minimum of 2 liters as the summer sun tends to get hotter, especially during midday. Plan routes ahead and start your course early.
Join a lava boat tour or take a helicopter ride to witness lava flow in the summer. Since the weather will not disrupt the visibility, you can capture awesome shots of active volcano craters or behold the sight of massive geological spectacles and their path of destruction.
Hawaii Holidays & Festivals in July
Independence Day – Prepare to take the annual 4th of July fireworks tradition to another level when you choose to celebrate in Hawaii. Trade pavement for white sand and buildings for palm trees as you witness an Acrobatic Airshow and Aerial Fireworks Display at the shores of Kailua, Oahu. Book a seat on a luxurious double-deck boat with a sumptuous buffet and an open bar onboard, and cruise along the Maui coastline while waiting for brilliant pyrotechnics to light the sky at sunset. Whichever island you are on, America’s Independence will be celebrated with a touch of aloha.
Makawao Rodeo and Parade – Are rodeos right up your alley? Don’t miss the four-day Makawao Rodeo and Parade held at the Oskie Rice Arena on Maui. The professional exhibition features calf roping, bull riding, breakaways, bronco riding, horse racing and mugging among others, with a flamboyant parade of colors to end the festivities. Saddle up for this Upcountry tradition at reasonable admission rates.
Parker Ranch Rodeo and Horse Races – Witness the best ranches on Big Island compete in the Parker Ranch Rodeo and Horse Races at the Parker Ranch Rodeo Arena on Hawaii’s Orchid Isle. For a reasonable admission fee, you can go big on your bets during the event’s roundup of activities, including ribbon mugging, horse racing, dally team roping and ranch mugging among others. Get your fill of food and fancy mementos at the Parker Ranch Store Booth.
Ukulele Festival – Hawaii’s largest ukulele festival is celebrated annually in Waikiki with an all-star line-up of musical prodigies, free ukulele lessons, food booths, ukulele exhibitions and ethnic giveaways for everyone. The festival is free and open to the public, making it a must-experience for aspiring musicians and culture hunters who want to discover more about Hawaii’s ukulele renaissance.
Haleiwa Arts Festival – Take your love for the culture and arts a notch higher by participating in the annual Haleiwa Arts Festival. Keep an eye and ear out for inspiration as the festival’s mix of creative displays, music performances, competitive demonstrations, and an artistic showcase will keep you energetic from day to night. This free festival also has a lot of beverage and food options in store.
Korean Festival – Does a stroll around Seoul work you up? Hawaii might be miles away from the Asian country, but its Korean Festival aptly brings the authentic vibe of Korea to the shores of Oahu, specifically at the Frank F. Fasi Civic Grounds in Honolulu. Enjoy the free event watching taekwondo performances, participating in traditional tea ceremonies, dancing to the beat of Korea’s fan and drum dances, and milling around to look for the best kimchi rice! Look forward to unique souvenirs and meeting the state’s Korean community for a truly memorable experience.
Prince Lot Hula Festival – As one of the highly-anticipated hula festivals in Hawaii, the Prince Lot Hula Festival features the usual roundup of activities, including cultural demonstrations, craft booths, live concerts and a plethora of local farm-to-fork specialties. The showcase of out-of-state hula dancers against the tropical backdrop of Honolulu’s Moanalua Gardens is well-attended by locals and tourists who want to breathe in Hawaii’s flair.
Lanai Pineapple Festival – Take a trip to the state’s Lanai Island, where agricultural abundance gets widely celebrated, especially its amazing production of top-quality pineapples since 1922! The Lanai Pineapple Festival honors the island’s top crop and highlights pineapple cooking contests, local crafters and a lively showcase of award-winning performances, including hula and Tahitian dancing. The free event is open to the public at Dole Park and culminates in the evening with giveaways.
Koloa Plantation Days – Want a laid-back setting to spend your summer in July? Make the trip to Kauai worth it by attending the Koloa Plantation Days, a celebration that runs for ten (10) days of nature and nostalgia. Take part in cultural activities that matter, such as the rodeo championships, guided nature walks, plantation era exhibits, historical film nights, Keiki fishing, mini golf, ukulele competitions, and other artistic and cultural demos you can think of. Held in Koloa Town on Kauai for a few bucks, guests get treated to an extravagant parade, unique souvenirs and endless opportunities for entertainment and learning.
Hawaii State Farm Fair – The Farm Fair is a government-funded event that opens to guests of all ages who are willing to enjoy an agricultural experience. Held at the 4000-acre Kualoa Ranch on the windward coast of Oahu, the annual fair features educational activities, live agricultural demonstrations, stage contests, rides and one of the largest plant sales in Adults need to pay an admission fee, but kids and students are free to explore.
Aloha Board Shop Honolulu Fish Fry – The Aloha Board Shop Honolulu Fish Fry is a surfing competition with a twist! For a fixed rate, surfing teams of varying experiences and ages draw lots to determine the ‘fish board’ to use for the contest. Although paid, this popular event at Kuhio Beach Park, Waikiki lures crowds of locals, tourists and even the non-surfing community for its magnificent showcase of modern surf culture.
China Uemura’s Annual Longboard Surfing Classic – Let the Longboards determine your worth on water in the highly-acclaimed China Uemura’s Annual Longboard Surfing Classic. The event is known as the world’s largest Longboard-only surfing competition, drawing in more or less 250 participants who face the biggest swells along the coast of Kuhio’s Beach Park in Waikiki. Entry fees get donated to charities after the event.
Oakley Surf Shop Challenge – The annual battle of Hawaiian surf shops commence as the Oakley Surf Shop Challenge hits the shores of the Aloha State. Pitting shop surfing pros and employees, this event is a must-see for the surfing community and even tourists who enjoy watching the wave action on the sidelines. The regional surfing series starts in California around March and ends at the world-famous Ala Moana Bowls on Oahu in the first or second week of July.
Conclusion for July
Crowds eventually increase in July, specifically during Independence Day, even if airfare and accommodate deals are twice as expensive as the travel packages during the lazy months. Families are a common sight, considering that North American schools are coming to a close and students are enjoying their vacations. Book airfare, accommodation, and tours early and take advantage of discounts.
Visit Hawaii in August
Say hello to heat waves when you schedule your tropical vacation in August. Considered as the hottest month in Hawaii, expect to bathe in the sunshine as you chase the waves and dance your worries away. Will you say yes to sun-kissed hair, or hide forever under the shade of your boring life?
Hawaii Weather in August
Brace yourself for hotter temperatures in Hawaii in August. Hot temperatures are felt from day to night. The temperature during the day reaches 85 °F to 89 °F, while it measures closely to 74 °F at nighttime. Rainfall trends are irregular and happen mostly on Kauai. Maui, Oahu and Big Island are favorable for vacation for the sunshine, warm waters, and great visibility, even at night.
Recommended Hawaii Activities in August
Swim with turtles on Oahu’s Laniakea Beach and seek the sharks during August, when warm waters beckon thriving marine life. You have the perfect weather to thank for good visibility on land, air and even under the sea. Snorkeling spots tend to get pretty crowded, especially on Maui and Big Island. Stargazing at night is also encouraged without rain showers to ruin your campfire. If waterfalls and rivers get included in your itinerary, expect low flow due to the dry weather.
Since Kilauea has been actively spewing lava since 1983, year-round volcano tours are available. However, seeing it in August will allow longer visitation times, better trails and clearer pictures of lava flow at Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park. Make sure to start your trek early to enjoy the cooler temperature at dawn before the scorching sun unleashes its wrath.
Hawaii Holidays & Festivals in August
Made in Hawaii Festival – Not afraid of excess baggage? Make sure to attend the Made in Hawaii Festival and score the best souvenirs you could ever encounter during a Hawaiian holiday! The three-day fair showcases a huge collection of Hawaiian-made products, including food, artworks, jewelry, fashion clothing, cultural books, and quality ingredients –all at the convenient location of the Neal S. Blaisdell Center Exhibition Hall and Arena in Honolulu. The various live performances and cooking demos make the trip worthwhile. Adults are required to pay an admission fee, while kids under 6 are free to enter.
Ho’oku’ikahi Establishment Day Hawaiian Cultural Festival – Channel your inner Hawaiian and say yes to cultural activities that make you more of a local of the Aloha State! The Ho’oku’ikahi Establishment Day Hawaiian Cultural Festival features a mashup of traditional action, from lauhala weaving and lei-making to hula dancing and canoe riding! Catch the event for free at the Pu’ukohola Heiau National Historic
30 Days of Aloha on Hawaii Island – Staying on Big Island? If you are a die-hard culture fan of anything Hawaiian, then this event will allow you to appreciate traditional activities in various venues across the Orchid Isle. Running from the end of August throughout September, this month-long celebration provides endless entertainment, most notably the Poke-Recipe Contest, Kupuna Hula Festival, Annual Paniolo Parade and the Clyde Kindy Sproat Falsetto and Storytelling Contest, to almost a million spectators. Nominal fees are required, but some events are free to the public.
Heiva I Kauai International Tahitian Dance Competition – Feel the groove of the Heiva I Kauai International Tahitian Dance Competition at the Kapaa Beach Park on Kauai and let the dancing exhibitions take you through a physical storytelling like no other. Featuring a variety of Tahitian performances, both solo and group dances, Polynesian artistry, crafty souvenirs and Pacific Rim dishes with a dash of aloha, the grassroots cultural festival is an easy favorite among Kauai’s free events.
Duke’s Oceanfest – Dare to be the waterman you aspire to be by challenging the waves along Waikiki shores during Duke’s Oceanfest! This sea-focused event honors one of Hawaii’s greatest –Duke Paoa Kahanamoku, a legendary figure that had brought fame and prestige to Hawaii in the past. Team up for volleyball, tandem surfing, and surf polo, or wow the audience with you skills in individual competitions, like paddleboard racing and swimming. This event is free and also has mini games for children to enjoy.
Statehood Day – Statehood Day is slated every 3rd Friday of August and celebrated in honor of the Hawaiian Statehood. Although this legal holiday is pretty low-key, culture aficionados are encouraged to take the time to visit the Iolani Palace or Bishop Museum for exciting cultural tours.
HIC Pro Junior – Inspired by the Duke’s Oceanfest, the HIC Pro Junior is a 1-star event for Pro Junior Men and Women with a promising career in surfing. If excelling in watersports is part of your dream, then head to Kuhio Beach Park in Waikiki to compete with aspiring surfing champs.
Duke Waikiki Kane and Wahine Longboard Pro Am – The Queen’s Surf and Kuhio Beach on Oahu play hosts to the heated Longboard competitions during the Duke Waikiki Kane and Wahine Longboard Pro Am event. Honoring Hawaii’s father of modern surfing, Duke Kahanamoku, the best players of the men and women divisions take the battle to the ocean, while the crowd got treated to aggressive water entertainment throughout the day.
Menehune Surf Contest – Take your love for surfing to another level by watching the new generation of surfers under 18 compete in a family-focused event at Haleiwa Beach, Oahu. Free for spectators, the organizer of Menehune Surf Contest upholds the principles of giving back to the community. In fact, in recent years, they invited parents and physically-challenged athletes to participate in the Longboard, Shortboard and Novice divisions.
Conclusion for August
Deals on accommodation, tours, and airfares are rare during August since it is one of the best times to visit Hawaii. The sunny and dry weather allows tourists to do almost anything, except winter-only activities. With that, the Aloha State gets considerably crowded during this month, and last-minute bookings are discouraged unless discounts are up for grabs.
Visit Hawaii in September
Wake up the wild child within you and chase adventures in September. Like palm trees dotting the beautiful stretch of sandy shores in Hawaii, the month is teeming with opportunities for the brave and bold. Do you want to answer the ocean’s calling, or would you rather drift in your sleep, dreaming of escape?
Hawaii Weather in September
The ninth month of the year is typically hot during daytime, with temperatures ranging from 85 °F to 89 °F. Nighttime has an average temperature of 70 °F, which is still cool despite the dry weather. Low rainfall trends are expected, especially on Maui, Molokai, and Big Island. Brief rain showers are also expected on Kauai, Lanai and sometimes, Oahu.
Recommended Hawaii Activities in September
Prepare to be whisked away by waves as you flounder with tropical fish off the coasts of Hawaii. Snorkeling and swimming are two of the top must-dos of tourists when visiting in September. Aside from the calmer waves and warm waters, you can also look forward to brighter days –perfect for trekking, biking, and parasailing as you discover the island paradise bit by bit. Keep that camera ready, as Mother Nature is in its best dress for photo shoots.
Hawaii is known for its volcanoes, and September might be the best month to marvel at lava activity while keeping warm at higher altitudes. However, volcano geotourism is pretty much buzzing all year round. Always consider visibility, tour availability and sightseeing hazards before jumping at the opportunity to see volcanoes up close.
Hawaii Holidays & Festivals in September
Aloha Festival – Aloha Festival is annually celebrated since 1946. It has now expanded to four (4) events staged throughout September and held at various points across Oahu. In fact, it is one of the reasons why September is the best time to vacation in Hawaii. The month-long activity is free and open to the public, so don’t miss this extravagant showcase of Hawaiian culture, music, and art.
Okinawan Festival – Experience Uchinanchu Culture in Hawaii during the Okinawan Festival held at Kapiolani Park, Honolulu. Honoring Japan’s prefecture, this unique activity offers something for everyone. From the favorite Anda Pop desserts to the traditional Bon Dance, the event is highly anticipated by those curious about Japanese culture. Tickets are reasonably priced, and all proceeds support local beneficiaries.
He Hali’a Aloha No Ka Queen Lili’uokalani Festival – Celebrate the birthday of Hawaii’s late queen with hula performances, music, craft demonstrations, food booths, and cultural activities at Lili’uokalani Festival Gardens Park in Hilo, Big Island. Get ready to experience a cherry blossom shower as you go from one special show to another. This day-long event is free and shares the significance of the queen’s vision to the world.
Mokihana Festival – Experience this event for some cultural extravaganza. The 7-day festival offers an interesting order of activities, including church services, informative forums, classical Hawaiian music, and even a bit of hula dancing on the island of Kauai. This is open to everyone with no charges for admission.
Hawaii Food & Wine Festival – If your tongue demands attention, this festival won’t disappoint with its cooking demos, culinary excursions and wine tastings for locals and tourists alike. Renowned as one of the best food events in Hawaii, expect a lineup of cuisines from the bountiful Pacific.
John “Pops” Ah Choy Surf Fest – Cheer loudly for stand up paddle surfers as they compete in a two-day surf fest that honors one of the water sports trendsetters in Hawaii, John Ah Choy, also known as “Pops.” Catch the Tandem Pet Division and other surfing activities at Kuhio Beach, Waikiki that will keep you entertained for hours. Proceeds to the event are contributed to charities in Hawaii, making it a worthwhile endeavor to support.
Wet Feet & Blue Planet Surf WPA Regionals – Paddling from Portlock to Kaimana Beach on the island of Oahu, event participants are expected to cover the famous Hawaii Kai Run, an 8.5 mile that goes around the iconic Diamond Head. Register for a chance to compete with Hawaii’s elite watermen, or try your luck as you enjoy the scenic coast.
Conclusion for September
Despite the turnout of tourists during the Labor Day weekend, September is considered to be a slow period for island tourism. If you are backpacking solo, the inexpensive flights, various accommodation options, and tour packages make the month the best time to visit Hawaii. While you refuse overpriced rentals because of your penny-pinching philosophy, your senses are constantly splurging on cultural events, natural wonders, outdoor activities and tropical cuisine, ranging from fine dining to street eats!
Visit Hawaii in October
October calls to ocean lovers of every kind. Whether it is your first visit or the nth time, get ready to lose your heart to the sea, and drown into beautiful sceneries of the Aloha State. Will you finally write your story on the tides of Hawaii?
Hawaii Weather in October
As compared to the sunny months of September and August, October takes a turn towards the cold side and is characterized by higher rainfall levels. Daytime temperatures cool down slightly at a range of 83°F to 87 °F. However, nighttime shows no change in temperature, with an average of 70 °F.
Rainfall trends begin to increase in most islands, except Big Island, which remains with the most sunshine throughout the year. Bear in mind that rain is frequent at night, but certain parts of Hawaii have brief rain showers during the day. It is highly recommended for tourists to bring rain jackets or light sweaters to keep themselves warm, may it be on tour or indoors.
Recommended Hawaii Activities in October
Waves are beginning to swell, eventually leading to the perfect surfing conditions in November and December. Nonetheless, amateurs and pros are already seeking refuge in the Pacific Waters, especially on Oahu, Big Island, and Maui, to kick start their longboard adventures.
If the purpose of your Hawaiian vacation is to trek Kauai and do volcano sightseeing, October is your last chance to enjoy warmer temperatures and longer daylight –otherwise, come back to the Aloha State in May for the summer season. The increasing rainfall trends might disrupt visibility, and cancel helicopter and lava boat tours. However, don’t lose hope and be flexible with your schedule.
The inconsistent weather may not be ideal for some tourists, but Hawaii in October is an exception. Enjoy inter-island cruises and witness marine life in the Pacific. While the peak of the Whale Migration Season starts in December, dolphins and Humpback whales can be spotted breeding and feeding off the coast of Maui as early as October.
Hawaii Holidays & Festivals in October
Maui Fair – With various attractions and exhibits lined up, this event is a timeless tradition that locals and foreigners look forward to. Take part in the LEGO Competition, buy stuff from horticulture and craft exhibits, or ride the night away in the family-friendly Joy Zone. No matter what you fancy, this country fair has something to keep anyone happy.
Coconut Festival – Go crazy over coconuts at Kapa’a Beach Park in Kauai, where the annual festival is held to celebrate the valuable fruit. Crafters, performers, and artists all over Hawaii gather to provide nonstop fun for the audience of this family-friendly event. Kids age 12 years old and younger are free to enter, while older ones need to buy tickets.
Princess Kaʻiulani Keiki Hula Festival – Celebrate and honor the life and legacy of Princess Kaiulani at the sophisticated Sheraton Princess Kaiulani Hotel. A full day of storytelling sessions, lessons on ukulele, lei-making, and wood crafting among others, cooking demonstrations and a non-competitive hula event open to children ages 5 to 12 years old. This festival is well-attended because of its cultural significance, and free admission.
Ironman World Championship – Endurance, strength and speed get tested in three grueling categories during the Ironman World Championship. From one island to the next, challengers channel their body, mind, and spirit as they race through lava landscapes, sandy shorelines, turquoise waters and green valleys of the Aloha State. Even spectators experience adrenaline from watching along the sidelines. Witness as the world’s best athletes outlast each other to win the coveted “Ironman” title.
Lahaina Halloween Party – Take Halloween festivities to the next level and channel spooky vibes during the Halloween party on Maui. Join locals and tourists at the Front, Street, Lahaina and parade through the streets in costumes! Live music and beer specials are also present, highlighting the event as one of Maui’s best annual activities.
Emalani Festival – Hawaii’s history, hula and everything in between can be experienced for free during the Emalani Festival. Join culture enthusiasts at the Koke’e State Park on Kauai to commemorate the visit of Queen Emma at Koke’e, while enjoying craft exhibits, food specialties, silent auction and a grand retelling of the historic event.
Hawaii Fishing and Seafood Festival – This weeklong event is held at the Honolulu fishing village, an iconic landmark that serves as the perfect place to showcase live fishing demonstrations, fishing vessel tours, seafood cook-offs, Gyotaku fish printing, fishing workshops and child-friendly activities. Promoting ocean safety, marine conservation and responsible fishing, the festival is Hawaii’s way to take pride in its abundant seafood industry.
HIC Pro – As it welcomes the winter season, HIC Pro takes participants into a challenging ride across the big waves of Sunset Beach on Oahu’s North Shore. Attended by experienced surfers and aspiring talents, this professional competition is the official qualifier to the world-famous Vans Triple Crown of Surfing, a specialty series open to both men and women. Witness the exciting event at sea for free, or test your skills against Mother Nature on a surfing board.
Conclusion for October
Avoid crowds during October so you can enjoy all-around fun under the sun in peace. The month is typically quiet as compared to August and September, which means you have greater chances of scoring cheaper deals for rentals, flights and tour packages. As the summer slowly fades to give way to winter, head to the beach and do summertime activities as much as you can.
Visit Hawaii in November
Look forward to a combination of chill and thrill as November weather conquers the Hawaiian Islands. While drizzles won’t dampen anyone’s day, do yourself a favor and dress up with a light jacket. Will you let yourself catch a cold during the rainy season or make an effort to warm yourself to experience the cool things Hawaii has to offer?
Hawaii Weather in November
The tropical weather in Hawaii guarantees a warm climate all year round as compared to other states of America. Despite average temperatures during daytime (80 °F to 83 °F) and nighttime (68°F to 74 °F), the winter season’s rainfall levels are higher than normal. Kauai and Lanai have more rain showers than Maui, Molokai, and Ohau, but these are likely sporadic throughout the islands. Big Island, on the other hand, is still teeming with sunshine, with brief drizzles at night. Ocean conditions begin to pick up around the region, with a chilly breeze prevailing on the eastern and northern shores. The winter swell varies around the Islands, but surfers of varying degrees of experience will surely find a suitable surf spot to connect with.
Recommended Hawaii Activities in November
Hit the beach and let the swell of the waves wash and bash you across the blue. November is high time for surfing, and the islands of Maui and Oahu won’t disappoint. Experienced surfers and spectators alike gravitate towards the Pacific’s surfing mecca during the winter season. If you fancy ocean sports, surfing is a must-do. Schedule a trip to Maui if wildlife is the very thing that pushed you to visit Hawaii. Famous for whale watching, the western shores of Maui look out to the cerulean waters where whales frequently break the water surface to feed. Spinner dolphins are also spotted in the vicinity, so better book that inter-island cruise early. If you wish to visit volcanoes and sightsee inland wonders, be prepared with quick-drying clothes and umbrellas or light rain jackets. Avoid catching a cold while visiting during the wet season to maximize your Hawaiian experience.
Hawaii Holidays & Festivals in November
Vans Triple Crown of Surfing – Famous and forever daunting, this specialty surfing series already has three decades of reputation under its belt. Thousands of surfing fans flock to the North Shore of Oahu in November and December of every year to witness the “Super Bowl of Surfing” and get the chance to catch the action while rubbing elbows with famous watermen of all ages. The Vans Triple Crown is held at three venues: Pipeline (Billabong Pipe Masters), Haleiwa (Reef Hawaiian Pro), and Sunset Beach (Vans World Cup of Surfing).
Hawaii International Film Festival – Fuel your love for film by attending this 10-day event during winter. With more than 150 cinematic works for showcase, workshops/seminars with top filmmakers in Asia, North America, and the Pacific, and thousands of attendees, this festival is one of Hawaii’s premier affairs. Get tickets online or during the event at the Dole Cannery Stadium, Honolulu.
Kona Coffee Festival – Drop by Kona and witness its annual Coffee Festival –arguably the oldest cultural celebration in the Aloha State. Watch as small and large farms compete in coffee cupping competitions while tasting demonstrations, coffee science seminars and gallery installations help you learn about Hawaii’s rich caffeine history.
Hula O Nā Keiki – Help preserve Hawaiian culture by taking the time to attend the hula competition staged at Ka’anapali Beach Hotel on Maui. Dancers from Oahu, Big Island, Maui and even Japan perform solo in front of the best hula teachers in Hawaii, while craft demonstrations, varied entertainment, games, and cultural reenactments are easily enjoyed on the sidelines. Admission to the children’s hula competition is free.
World Hula Invitational Festival – Show your respect and commitment to the sacred art of hula dancing by joining thousands at Kapiolani Park, Honolulu, to celebrate the annual hula festival. The best hula dancers from all across the globe join Hawaiian locals in competing for the grand prize in fourteen available categories, including the ‘Auana’ (modern) Styles and ‘Kahiko’ (ancient) Styles. Take time to appreciate Hawaii’s legacy of unique storytelling, as well as the island craft demonstrations, authentic Hawaiian massage, and local beverages available. You need to buy as soon as the tickets are released to the public since they get sold out fast.
Veteran’s Day – A public holiday that is celebrated in different parts of Hawaii to honor the steadfast service and sacrifices of veterans and their families. The annual parade is held in Wahiawa, while a somber gathering led by Hawaiian political leaders takes place at the Punchbowl Cemetery in Honolulu. Other locals and tourists opt to witness the Sunset Ceremony on the deck of the U.S.S Missouri at Pearl Harbor.
Thanksgiving Day – The federal holiday is celebrated with fun luaus, numerous dinner cruises along Hawaii’s picturesque islands, musical performances, delicious buffets featuring a bounty of island cuisines, and local activities with a seasonal twist! Book accommodations and tours ahead if you don’t want to line up for a slot.
Conclusion for November
Take advantage of the decrease in international arrivals in Hawaii in November. Smaller crowds mean fewer people to compete with when it comes to booking rentals, accommodations, flights, and tours. Since prices are not yet jacked up, ocean lovers will find winter in Hawaii a great experience at an affordable rate.
Visit Hawaii in December
The Pacific Islands are set for the most wonderful time of the year! Trade the snow for sand, sun, and surf by celebrating the month of Christmas in the tropics of the Aloha State. Will Hawaii in December live up to jolly expectations, or let loose the Grinch in all of us?
Hawaii Weather in December
Undoubtedly the wettest month in Hawaii’s calendar, December brings out a fair share of rain encounters, especially in the islands of Kauai and Lanai. Oahu, Maui, and Molokai also experience downpours, yet these tend to be short-term. Big Island still gets more sun despite the chilly weather. Enjoy 80 °F during the day and an average of 65 °F to 69 °F when night falls.
Swells at the western and northern shores get bigger while the ones on the southern coast calm down. Ocean conditions are nonetheless comfortable, but may not be as warm as the water temperature during the summer season.
Recommended Hawaii Activities in December
Surfs up! December is the best time to go to Hawaii for surfing, with its high peaks and awesome swells brought about by the aggressive Pacific Ocean. Pursue big waves and perfect your barrel rides for an extremely worthwhile ocean experience. Still not experienced enough to surf with the pros? Amateurs may enjoy the smaller waves on the south shores since these are still challenging enough as compared to other surfing locations in North America.
Cruise with marine observers and let huge whales be a welcome distraction from your tropical daydreams. Calves and adult Humpback whales journey towards the shores of Maui during the Migration Season, and participate in breeding, cold-water feeding and calving. Dolphins also appear to play around boats. Inter-island cruises are tourist favorites, so be sure to head to the dock early to grab the best viewing seats.
Hawaii Holidays & Festivals in December
Christmas Day – Snow won’t be a part of your holiday’s happy equation, but spending Christmas in Hawaii is still a joyous occasion best celebrated with loved ones. Trade pine trees for palm trees and witness Santa Claus ditch his thick coat and boots for speedos and slippers. In between snowmen made out of fine sand and spontaneous singing of Mele Kalikimaka (Hawaiian-theme Christmas song), you can enjoy luaus, island cruises, Pacific Rim dishes delicacies, ukulele and hula performances and cultural activities on any part of the state.
Festival of Lights – Feel the Christmas Spirit by spending time at the Festival of Lights, an annual tradition, and Kauai’s premier cultural event. From Vidinha Stadium to the Historic County Building in Lihue, Kauai, lighted structures will bring life to the night.
Thousands of Christmas-themed folk art pieces owned by the late Josie Chansky (Auntie Josie) are on display at the County Building for public viewing. Admission is free, and tour guides will be present to provide a narrative tour around the area.
Honolulu City Lights – The month-long celebration is highly anticipated in the Aloha State. The special events held throughout December include the tree lighting ceremony, live concerts, vibrant parades, tree decorating contests and Christmas-themed fairs among others. Celebrate with everyone since the majority of events are open to the public without any charges. Grab a schedule to be updated on the festivities.
Moku’ula by Moonlight – Considered to be a must-experience for culture die-hards, this cultural and educational program is a free event held at Kamehameha Iki Park in Lahaina, Maui. Expect a combination of unique island storytelling and live jam-style music performances with local elders. Current issues get discussed by the invited local guests as well.
Wailea Village Mochi Pounding – Pour in the hard work in exchange for good luck at Wailea’s annual celebration of local tradition. Tourists who visit this village on the south shore of Maui are steadily growing in number ever since the traditional mocha-pounding activity is opened for public viewing and participation. The sticky rice cakes aren’t just the focus of the event. You can also enjoy massage options, fortune telling, plantation stories, food and craft booths, floral arrangements, Okinawan taiko drumming and a whole lot more of local Hawaiian entertainment.
Honolulu Marathon – Branded as one of the largest marathons in the world, this event covers 26.2 miles of pavement from Ala Moana Beach Park down to Waikiki Beach on Oahu. First-time marathoners, intermediate runners and thousands of tourists participate in the activity annually. In fact, it has gotten very popular over the years that there’s an office in Tokyo, Japan to process entries for the competition. Also, satellite races are being held simultaneously at U.S. bases in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Pearl Harbor Day – Pearl Harbor Day on the 7th day of December commemorates the Japanese attacks on the Hawaiian territory during World War II. This is the best time to visit Hawaii to join thousands for a history walkthrough across Pearl Harbor’s Historic Sites while reflecting on the dramatic events that transpired three and a half centuries ago.
Quiksilver In Memory of Eddie Aikau – The big wave surfing competition honors the late legendary big wave surfer, Eddie Aikau, who also served as a lifesaver at Waimea Bay on Oahu’s North Shore. Running from December to February, this surfing tournament has a unique feature that lures in the best wave riders from all over the Aloha State to Waimea Bay. Participants are only allowed to surf when open-ocean swells reach a height of 20ft and above. Only 28 surfers are invited to this prestigious competition, and decisions are based on a poll participated by the surfing community.
Surf N Sea Haleiwa International Open – Known as the world’s longest –running competition for amateur surfers, Surf N Sea Haleiwa International Open features Shortboard and Longboard categories for all ages and nationalities. This grassroots activity takes pride in Hawaii’s surfing culture and encourages ocean education as it raises funds for worthwhile endeavors in the locality. With big brands backing this community fundraiser, the event is already popular in Japan, Spain, Brazil, South Africa, France and Australia among others.
New Year’s Eve – Celebrate the end of the year partying until dawn on Oahu, or choose to spend a quiet night in luxury on Maui while watching fireworks in the distance. No matter what island you head to, you are sure to enjoy grand showcases of entertainment, midnight buffets of island-inspired cuisines and wondrous displays of fireworks that are best viewed in tropical.
Conclusion for December
The months falling under Hawaii’s high season (Mid December to March or Mid April) are pricey, especially during the week of Thanksgiving and Christmas. Deals are rare, so it is highly advised to book rentals, accommodations, and flights early to secure reservations. Some hotels also put a high price on cancellations in addition to larger deposits and longer stay requirements. If money is not an issue, then prepare to trade wool socks for lei and shout Mele Kalikimaka (Merry Christmas) at the top of your lungs while enjoying the dazzling holiday parades and presentations in tropical Hawaii.
Do you think Hawaii is an all year round destination or does a certain month rock or suck more than others? Let us hear your holiday story in the comment section below!