American holidaymakers flock to the Hawaiian archipelago each year for the sun, sea and sand.
Luxury vacationers stay in the big resorts or inside private vacation rentals alongside the beach or Hawaii Big Island Villas.
Surfers stick to the more chilled out hostels and shacks.
Regardless of the type of holiday you want, check out our summary of the top things to do in Hawaii.
Surfing Along the Spectacular Coastline
Hawaii is the birthplace of surfing. The islanders started the sport centuries ago, and the Pacific paradise has evolved into the hottest spot for surfers in the United States.
Enormous waves roll in from the Ocean creating some of the best surfing conditions in the world. If you’re experienced, you’re sure to have the time of your life.
You won’t have to wait long for that perfect wave to roll in. If you’ve never tried the sport before, Hawaii is the perfect place to take lessons.
Walk down near the beach and you’ll find dozens of surfing schools catering to everyone from first-timers to those wanting a refresher course.
It’s recommended to book at least a few hours before going out into the water yourself. And never attempt to surf without an instructor or coastguards nearby.
Pro tip: Hawaii’s best surfing areas are clustered around the northern coast. The schools tend to be near Waikiki.
Get Out into the Water and Take Part in the Water Sports
Hawaii and Hawaiians have a deep relationship with the water. Islanders had to rely on fishing to survive before airplanes and freight ships brought in supplies.
This has led to a thriving water sports scene that’s evident around the entire island. If you want to learn how to scuba dive, you can get PADI-certified.
Otherwise, you can join a tour that takes you out to the best snorkelling spots.
Pro tip: If you want to go snorkelling, join a tour that takes you out into the water near Oahu. Aside from diving and snorkelling, you can join fishing tours.
The tours out in the tropical waters guarantees that you’ll pull out some of the biggest fish of your life. Thrill seeking travellers can test their nerve by swimming with the sharks.
Or, if all else fails, you can relax on the beach and go for a swim in the more gentler parts of the islands.
Hawaii’s Postcard Perfect Beaches
Picture yourself sat under a bendy palm tree. Behind you are volcanoes and a verdant oasis. In front rolls the gentle waves and larger ones in the surfing areas.
Hawaii has hundreds of beaches. Some are popular among holidaymakers. Others have a more deserted atmosphere.
But there’s something unique about these beaches: The colour of the sand varies. You can spend your day relaxing on white-sand – the ones that look like the postcards. Or you can rent a car and visit others with a black volcanic sand.
Maui has a more special type of beach on Kaihalulu where the sand exudes a reddish colour.
But by far the most popular beach in all of Hawaii is Waikiki Beach. This stunning beach attracts tourists and locals.
The best time to enjoy Waikiki Beach is with a cold drink as the sun sets over the Pacific Ocean.
Try Dirt Biking Up and Down the Mountains
Hawaii has another side that’s often overlooked by luxury holidaymakers and that’s the adrenaline-junkies paradise.
The island’s rugged environment creates the perfect conditions for dirt biking adventures. You can join a tour which takes you up the steep dirt trails through the rainforest.
Expect to fly over bumps, and get dirty in the mud after the rain. As you rise, you’ll come across various breaks in the terrain providing a panoramic of the island and coastline below.
Tours vary in their difficulty and duration. If you’re new to dirt biking, you probably want to skip some of the more challenging ones.
If you do a lot of biking back home, be prepared to have the adventure of a lifetime.
This activity has a lot of risks and dangers and it’s not suitable for everyone. If you’ve never ridden a dirt bike before, you could also take part in the mountain biking tours instead.
Pro tip: Don’t just wake up in Hawaii and decide you want to do this activity. Instead, plan and make sure your insurance will cover you for any accidents.
Fly Over Hawaii’s Active Volcanoes in a Helicopter
Helicopter tours are a privilege for wealthy holidaymakers around the world and you might not have experienced flying in one before.
But in Hawaii, you’re guaranteed a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Rather than flying around the coast like most helicopter tours, the ones here go over the rugged interior to active volcanoes.
Just picture yourself flying over the open crater. You can look down inside and see the hot magma aggressively bubbling in the pit.
You don’t get to have this type of experience every day. If this is something you want to do, find a tour that will take you above Mount Kilauea on Big Island.
Pro tip: Because of how special this tour is, places often sell out well in advance. Make plans and book your spot at least two weeks in advance.
The Top Things to Do on Your Trip to Hawaii
Whether you’re here for a luxury vacation or a thrill-seeking adventure, you’ll find dozens of activities in Hawaii: hit the beaches, make the most of the water sports and surfing, or take a helicopter ride over Mount Kilauea.
More adventurous tourists can get out onto the dirt trails and speed up and down the mountains in the heart of Hawaii.