Hawaii’s beaches are among the best a traveler could hope for: just saying the words “Honolulu” or “Maui” out loud instantly brings up images of snowy-white sands and coconut trees.
Yet Hawaii is not just a place to sit back and relax: after one or two days spent basking in the sun, you will want to start exploring, knowing what those islands have to offer.
Within an hour you can find yourself wandering alone in the rainforest or enjoying unforgettable views at the peak of a mountain. Stunning landscapes become perfect scenarios for all kind of activities, ranging from diving down the coral reef to hiking your way up the hillside of an active volcano.
The Hawaii archipelago is composed by eight main islands, the most famous being Hawaii (also called “The Big Island“), Oahu, Maui and Molokai. Hawaii is the biggest, Oahu is definitely the most “touristic” and Molokai a little less mainstream.
Unmissable attractions in Hawaii
The Hawaii Volcanoes National Park Is a must- and is the most visited attraction in Hawaii. And for a reason: the half-solidified half-alive lava tongues flow vertically into the foaming waters which have over the years created a dramatic and unusual volcanic landscape that will never leave your mind once you have captured its rugged beauty.
A visit to Hawaii’s capital, Honolulu is a must. But if the thought of big crowds of tourists doesn’t appeal to you, then don’t spend too much time in this populous city and head to Molokai instead.
Kalaupapa. This Molokai peninsula hosts one of the most isolated settlements in the archipelago. This valley was formed by an underwater volcanic eruption – lava spread on the land creating what nowadays is called a “shield volcano”; it is protected by the highest cliffs in the world and reachable only by riding a mule. An experience to remember.
Waimea Canyon. The Canyon of the Pacific can be found in Kauai: breathtaking landscapes and dramatic waterfalls can be seen at the peak of the mountain.
Diamond Head. The symbol of the Hawaiian Islands, it’s a mountain cone situated on the southern shore of Oahu, just outside Honolulu.
Hanauma Bay Nature Preserve. A Sheltered bay in Oahu Island, the Hanauma Bay Nature Preserve is blessed with crystal clear waters, an ideal spot for snorkelers.
Activities in Hawaii: what can I do, apart from basking in the sun?
The Hawaiian Islands provide ideal locations for a wide variety of activities that will help you truly enjoy your holiday. To name a few you can go snorkelling, whale watching and horse riding. Besides these you can take to the air and enjoy stunning views from a helicopter ride and also participate in a wide variety of water sports.
However, Hawaii is best-known for these two activities:
- Surfing. The biggest waves in the world are ridden by the bravest and most talented surfers! Home of the Billabong Pro yearly surfing contest (scheduled for December 2011, 8th ‘till 20th), a must-attend for pros and for tourists, who will witness an unforgettable show.
- Hiking. Your feet will get you far (and high). A wide range of trails will entertain both the recreational hikers and the experienced mountaineers.
Localities: Hawaii, Honolulu, North America, United States
Travel Themes: Sport and Adventure