When choosing a vacation destination, you can’t go wrong with choosing Hawaii. There are four major islands that make up Hawaii, including Big Island (Hawai’i), Oahu, Maui, and Kauai. Each island offers unique sides of Hawaiian culture, food, attractions, and natural beauty. When you’re ready to say aloha to adventure, you have plenty of options to choose from.
Which island is the right one for you and your getaway? Keep reading to learn more about what each island offers and how that might fit your dream vacation.
The Valley Isle – Maui
Golden beaches, outdoor adventure, spirited nightlife, and incredible surfing… Maui is a paradise of endless possibilities.
Maui is home to some of the best beaches in the world. Stay at the luxurious beachside resorts, enjoy delicious dining at Hawaii’s finest restaurants, and relax on the beach.
We highly recommend checking out the Road to Hana, which has 617 turns, 56 bridges, and takes three hours. Along the way, you’ll discover the Kaumahina State Wayside Park, Keanae Arboretum, Wailua Valley State Wayside, waterfalls, a black sand beach, picnic areas, forest, caves, and much more.
With so much to do, Maui is an ideal destination for honeymooners, foodies, and adventure-seekers.
The Hawaiian Island of Oahu is where nature meets culture. With famous beaches, botanical gardens, jungles, and trails surrounding upscale cities, Oahu offers scenic Hawaiian landscapes with modern comforts.
Visit the capital city of Honolulu to shop for luxury brands, dine in world-class restaurants, and much more. Travel back to a day that changed the course of history, the attack of Pearl Harbor. Five historical sites from Pearl Harbor are within a 30-minute drive of Waikiki, including the WWII Valor, USS Battleship Missouri Memorial, the USS Oklahoma Memorial, the USS Bowfin Submarine Museum & Park, and the Pearl Harbor Aviation Museum.
Experience nature at its finest with Oahu. Oahu offers pristine blue waters, silky sand, and warm weather. Visit the popular Waikiki Beach, Ala Moana Beach Park, Waimea Bay Beach Park, Ko ‘Olina Lagoons, and Sunset Beach Park. Check out Nuuanu Pali lookout for lush green mountain views. Explore Kualoa Ranch, where you can see the filming locations for Jurassic Park, Pearl Harbor, LOST, Hawaii Five-O, and even 50 First Dates.
Oahu is the ultimate getaway for foodies, travelers on a budget, surfers, shoppers, movie buffs, and honeymooners.
Big Island – Hawai’i
The Big Island of Hawai’i is the ultimate destination for experiencing every natural habitat offered in Hawaii. In fact, the Big Island is home to 11 of the world’s 13 natural climates. From sandy beaches to volcanoes and even snowy mountain peaks, you’ll experience a diverse environment with a variety of adventures.
The Big Island doesn’t attract as many tourists as Maui or Oahu but has no shortage of activities and attractions. Visiting black sand beaches, touring volcanoes, and even snorkeling with manta rays are just a few of the exciting things to do on the Big Island.
For families, animal lovers, and outdoorsy travelers, the Big Island is the ultimate destination.
The Garden Isle – Kauai
For lush, green landscapes, look no further than the island of Kauai. Kauai is the oldest and fourth-largest island in the Hawaiian archipelago and is home to pristine, natural beauty. Yet, Kauai is only 33 miles wide at its widest point, and only 20% is accessible by foot or car. Giant cliffs, verdant forests, and stunning waterfalls cover the island. If you’re not afraid of heights, helicopter tours are an excellent way to experience Kauai’s unique beauty. The 1993 film, Jurassic Park, was filmed in Kauai and features an iconic helicopter scene that you can experience on your own helicopter tour.
If heights aren’t your thing, take a boat to the Fern Grotto, a lush, fern-covered grotto made of lava rock in the Wailua River State Park.
Even with its beauty, Kauai attracts fewer tourists than the other three large islands. This makes Kauai an excellent destination for families and travelers seeking a quieter, relaxing vacation.
This Week Hawaii
Ready to say aloha to adventure? This Week Hawaii is your go-to resource for planning your time in paradise. Our team is dedicated to bringing you the latest destinations, tips, advice, itineraries, and insights to make the most of your vacation. Oahu, Maui, Kauai, and Big Island… We’re here to help you find the best activities, events, entertainment, and dining across each island.