School’s out, the sun is shining, the waves are barreling to shore, and Hawaiʻi is calling your name! While there’s no bad time to make a trek to paradise, we certainly can’t deny the perfection of a summer island getaway. As if you need more convincing, here are eight reasons why a Hawaiʻi adventure in the summer is so special.
1. The beaches are at their most beautiful
Sure, Hawaiʻi is known for its world-class beaches and sprawling blue waters, but what makes the shores around the Pacific even more beautiful in the summer? Well, you’ll just have to see for yourself! From giant wave swells to picture-perfect sunsets, beaches across the island are truly incomparable following summer solstice. There’s just something about spending a long, leisurely day at the beach that transforms a simple day into an unforgettable summer memory. Click here to read more about our favorite beaches across the islands.
2. Sample fresh and exotic Hawaiʻi fruit
More than just an aquatic heaven, Hawaiʻi is also known for its abundance of fresh fruits found nowhere else on earth. These sweet treats are especially plentiful in the summer, when seasonal fruit make a long-awaited return to people’s yards and kitchens. Some of our favorites include:
Mango: Mangos are definitely a favorite across the board (and across the islands). This sweet and slightly tart fruit is enjoyed at different points of ripening, and people have their preferred textures and tastes. Pro tip: Sample fresh mango with li hing mui powder, a popular seasoning made of salty dried plum. It may sound weird, but trust us—don’t knock it ‘til you try it!
Lychee: This is another summer favorite popular in both China and Hawaiʻi. Lychee is a distinctive red berry with a rough exterior and sweet, refreshing fruit center.
Papaya: No trip to Hawaiʻi is complete without indulging in papaya for breakfast. This sweet, seasonal fruit is truly delightful, and can be found on the breakfast and brunch menus of a variety of hotel and resort eateries. PC: HTA / Mark Kushimi.
3. Every day is a good day to explore the great outdoors
Everyone knows that Hawaiʻi is a hiker’s paradise, but did you know that the best time to hit the trails is during the summer? While passing showers are common throughout the year, it’s less likely for rain to get in the way of your hiking plans over the summer than during the wetter seasons. And even if you wake up to overcast skies, don’t cancel your hike right away: the summer sun might just dry those trails in no time! PC: HTA / Blake Bronstad.
4. Experience Obon season
The distinctive sounds of Taiko drums, music and chanting are all sure signs of Obon season in Hawaiʻi. If you visit the islands from June through August, you’re likely to come across colorful Buddhist temples lit by a string of illuminated lanterns—this is a tradition you don’t want to miss, no matter your religious beliefs!
Obon is a festive celebration that involves dancing around a tower lit by those iconic strings of lanterns. The fun includes delicious Japanese and local food, entertainment and mingling with people from around the state. Both visitors and locals alike find enjoyment during bon dance season!
5. Watch movies under the stars
The Maui Film Festival at Wailea is a star-studded event unlike any other. Featuring nightly film premiers and screenings in breathtaking, open-air venues, the annual Maui Film Festival is ideal for both passionate movie buffs as well as general film observers. Signature events include a Taste of Summer Launch Party, Taste of Chocolate, Taste of Wailea and more. Single ticket, Festival and VIP Patron Passes available.
6. Peer into Hawaiʻi’s plantation history
Home to a rich and diverse local community, Kauaʻi is a melting pot of various ethnic groups and cultures, representing the people who first traveled to the island to work on sugar plantations. Every summer, Kauaʻi’s south shore gathers together for Kōloa Plantation Days, a 10-day festival featuring a lineup of engaging, family friendly activities and events that are sure to keep you entertained! Of course, the festival isn’t complete without the popular Plantation Days Rodeo, a three-day frenzy of Hawaiian-style rodeo action at CJM Country Stables. Other popular events include the Sunset Hoʻolauleʻa, free Heritage Craft Fair and the annual Historic Kōloa Plantation Days Parade. PC: Chuck McKeand.
7. Cruise into the sunset
From sparkling blue waters to gorgeous city and country landscapes, Hawaiʻi is a state best viewed from the water. In fact, some of the best memories you’ll make can be enjoyed on a dinner cruise! From our friends at Star of Honolulu on Oʻahu to the experts at Pacific Whale Foundation on Maui, we work with dinner cruise providers that sail through Hawaiʻi’s waters nightly aboard comfortable, award-winning vessels. Continue exploring our website to find the dinner cruise that’s perfect for your schedule and budget. No matter what company you choose, you’re sure to have a blast sailing off into the sunset.
8. And speaking of sunset…
What better way to close out a summer adventure? PC: IHVB / Tyler Schmitt.