With its unique culture, sublime weather, and picture-perfect beaches, Hawaii is the perfect island getaway. And doesn’t the world know it… come peak season, the island is awash with tourists, with prices rocketing and hotels filling up faster than you can count to three. Fortunately, Hawaii is an all-year-round destination, with plenty to keep you occupied around the calendar. As to the best time to visit, it all depends on why you want to go and what you plan on doing once you get there. Here’s exactly what you need to know about the best time to go to Hawaii.
The Weather in Hawaii
The first thing you’ll need to think about before planning your trip to Hawaii is the weather. After all, this isn’t the kind of island where you’ll be spending most of your time indoors. Hawaii is all about the great outdoors, so matching the season to your activities of choice is crucial. As Tripsavvy.com explains, Hawaii might have a tropical climate, but each month is a little different. Its dry season runs from April through October and its rainy season lasts from November to March. Summer can be hot and humid. Hurricanes aren’t unheard of but neither are they common – if they’re going to happen, they’ll happen between June and November. April, May, September, and October tend to have the best weather. During these months, it’ll still be warm enough to enjoy a good range of outdoor activities, but not so hot as to be unpleasant.
Why You Should Go To Hawaii In Winter
Traveling to Hawaii in winter doesn’t come without its disadvantages. For a start, prices start to soar during the holiday season, with the result that you’ll probably pay a lot more for airfare and accommodation than you would during the shoulder seasons. But there’s also a lot to recommend the winter months. The weather, while at its wettest and coldest, is still warm enough to enjoy the island’s outdoor attractions. The surf is high, the whales are out in force, and the temperature rarely dips below the mid-70s.
- December – Hawaii’s rainiest month is the best time to check out its dramatic waterfalls. The falls at Koolau Mountain Range, Kaneohe, Oahu are particularly spectacular. According to hawaii-guide.com, December is also a great time to find a bargain on an inter-island cruise or go on a whale-watching expedition. If you’re into surfing, check out the pros on the last legs of the Vans Triple Crown event on Oahu’s North Shore.
- January – According to upgradedpoints.com, January is one of the most expensive months to book a flight or hotel. If you want to do your wallet a favor, be sure to book your reservation as early as possible. The surfing action is still dreamy, plus the whale watching season is at its peak, with thousands of humpbacks adults and their calves gathering in the warm waters.
- February – Although the ocean is a little cool, February in Hawaii is still warm, with temperatures hovering in the high 70s. The peak season has past, so providing you’re not planning to visit over Valentine’s Day, you shouldn’t have too many problems in finding a hotel at a reasonable price.
Why You Should Go To Hawaii In Spring
Late spring is an excellent time of year to visit Hawaii, with fewer crowds than in either winter or summer, dry, pleasant weather, and some great opportunities for outdoor adventure. Early spring is a little cooler, but it’s still much warmer than the mainland.
- March – If you’re around in March, you should still be in time to catch the end of the whale-watching season. Prices rise and availability drops during Spring Break, so if you’re visiting then, be sure to book in advance to avoid too big a ding to your wallet. Temperatures are warm during the day but can get chilly during the evening, so be sure to pack a few sweaters.
- April – April is the start of the dry season, and you should start noticing things warming up considerably as the month gets underway. It’s also one of the quietest months, making it a great time to enjoy the island without the crowds and the high prices. Just be sure to avoid Easter weekend if you want to grab a bargain.
- May – Hawaii is arguably at its most glorious in May. The weather is divine, the ocean is calm and warm, and the crowds are underwhelming. Hotel rates are low, and there’s no need to jostle for elbow space on the beach. This is the time to make the most of the water, so get ready to enjoy some first-rate snorkeling, diving, and swimming.
Why You Should Go To Hawaii In Summer
Summertime in Hawaii is hot, hot, hot. Unfortunately, the prices are high, high, high. Hotels book up quickly, so you’ll need to secure your reservation as far in advance as possible to avoid disappointment. The beaches are packed and trying to find a table at a restaurant without a reservation is nigh on impossible. But still, it’s a fabulous time to visit, with excellent hiking, super snorkeling, and tons of wildlife to spot (keep your eyes peeled for sea turtles in particular).
- June – June is Hawaii’s driest month, and the optimal time for sun-worshippers to visit. Prices start to increase as schools begin to close, but airfare is still slightly cheaper than in winter. June marks the start of hurricane season. Fortunately, hurricanes are rare, but it’s still a good idea to keep an eye on the weather reports in the weeks leading up to your trip. If you’re around on June 11, be sure to join in the King Kamehameha Day celebrations.
- July – If you visit Hawaii in July, expect crowds, and plenty of them. The island’s busiest month is also its hottest and most humid, so be sure to slather on the sunscreen. The ocean is at its most meek and mild, making previously off-limit beaches open for water sports.
- August – Like July, August in Hawaii is hot and busy. Beaches are packed and so are the hotels, so be sure to book early. Prices start to drop towards the tail end of the month, so you’re more likely to find a bargain then.
Why You Should Go To Hawaii In Fall
Hawaii in fall is beautiful. The weather is glorious, the ocean is at its calmest, the nights are refreshingly cool, and asides from Thanksgiving, the crowds are mercifully absent. Prices are also lower, making it a great time to find a bargain.
- September – September is glorious, with warm weather and high ocean temperatures. The first week can still be a little crowded and pricey, but by the end of the month, prices start to plummet and the crowds begin to thin.
- October – October is a beautiful time of year in Hawaii, sporting warm, clear days and cool, refreshing nights. Prices are low, bar Labor Day weekend, and you shouldn’t have too many problems in finding a space for yourself at the beach. Key events to watch out for include the Hawaii Food and Wine Festival, a three-week celebration with cooking classes, dinner parties, and other foodie activities.
- November – If you can avoid Thanksgiving, you’ll find November a beautifully peaceful time of year in Hawaii. The days are a little cooler and wetter, but it’s still warm enough to enjoy hiking, swimming, and watersports. If you like surfing, be sure to check out the pros at one of the surfing competitions on Oahu’s North Shore.