If you’re trying to make your mind up which of the 6 Hawaiian islands to take a look at, it is really worth knowing that they all present incredibly unique experiences—and picking the ideal island for your trip depends on what you get pleasure from most. Showcasing all the things from outstanding hikes to scenic beach locations, just about every isle is cultivated by its individual loaded historical past, varied landscape, and the persons who reside and treatment for their island communities. When it will come to going to Maui and Kauaʻi, the absence of massive metropolis lifetime is alluring if you’re looking for a sluggish-paced, nation-model vacation.
Maui may be far more interesting to couples and honeymooners, and Kauaʻi’s attraction tends to attract solo and additional adventurous travelers—however, each and every sort of visitor can come across some thing suited to their interests at either place. Can not select between the two islands? A airplane trip is only 50 minutes lengthy and, quite often, a lot less than $100 spherical trip. So if you have the time and budget to squeeze in equally Maui and Kauaʻi, you are going to get the very best of each worlds.
Ideal for Hiking
Every Hawaiian island has its have nickname for a motive. When you fly into Maui and Kauaʻi and get an aerial watch of the two islands, it’s simple to comprehend why Maui is identified as “The Valley Isle” and Kauaʻi is recognised as “The Garden Isle.” Maui’s towns are embraced by two big mountain ranges—Hāleakala and the West Maui Mountains—while Kauaʻi’s historic grounds are blanketed in lush greenery as so much time has handed considering that the island’s past volcanic eruption. Although the two islands the two present differing and amazing trails, Kauaʻi usually takes the guide for climbing.
Hiking on Kauaʻi
The Kalalau Path on Kauaʻi’s Nā Pali coastline is a photo-fantastic representation of Hawaiʻi’s beautiful attractiveness, earning it one of the most sought-right after hikes in the planet. Established on the North Shore of Kauaʻi, the 11-mile journey into the Kalalau Valley leads you by way of verdant forest and dry purple clay terrain, along scaling sea cliffs, energetic seashores, and flowing streams. The path finishes at the secluded Kalalau Beach, a campground, and the refreshing Ho‘ole‘a Falls, the place you can acquire a refreshing drip put up-hike. If you don’t want to commit to the complete Kalalau Path, there are shorter hikes along the way. Verify out the state’s web-site for more details on accessibility, reservations, and finest methods for viewing the Nā Pali Coastline.
On the other conclude of Kauaʻi, Waimea Canyon State Park is nicknamed “The Grand Canyon of the Pacific.” On the winding 26-mile travel to the canyon’s peak, there are scenic outlooks that make for great picnic stops or picture ops of the sweeping canyon layers. The park has quite a few trail options for innovative and relatives-friendly hikes where you can check out flourishing native crops.
Climbing on Maui
Maui is dwelling to the otherworldly Haleakalā Countrywide Park, whose namesake volcano dominates the landscape at an extraordinary 10,023 feet tall. The summit of Haleakalā, which interprets to “house of the solar,” is exactly where the demigod Maui is said to have lassoed the sunshine from the sky, slowing down its descent and making the daylight last extended. Trekking to the prime to enjoy the sunshine rise over the clouds nearly feels like you are on a further world. Locals typically head to this sacred summit for ceremonies and to greet the sunshine with chanting.
Haleakalā has far more than 30 miles of hiking trails ranging from 10-minute walks to overnight camping treks through desert-like ecosystems and shrublands. Whichever route you choose, you will be in awe of one of Hawaiʻi’s most awe-inspiring scenes, but really do not forget about to dress warm—the large altitude and wind can get to below-freezing temperatures. Look at out the countrywide park’s formal web page to e-book your reservation and allow.
And no journey to Maui is complete without having driving by the iconic Road to Hana, the 52-mile route that snakes by way of the island’s northeastern coast together with cliffs, flourishing forestry, and numerous waterfalls. There are numerous hikes alongside the way that can get anywhere from 10 minutes to up to two several hours.
Where ever you finish up, be aware that some parks on Maui and Kauaʻi use a reservation method for certain actions like hiking and tenting. Test out Hawaiʻi’s Office of Land and Normal Assets web page to book your entry or examine the hottest updates for closures, functions, and weather warnings at the parks you hope to stop by. Often through the winter season months, when it rains the most in Hawaiʻi, flash flood warnings prohibit hikers from visiting some parks with streams or waterfalls.
Greatest for Shorelines
Whichever island you pick out, you are guaranteed to expertise a sunshine-kissed, tropical getaway. However, if you happen to be touring to Hawaii mainly to appreciate the seashores, Maui has more to give than Kauaʻi. Which is mostly because the island features large stretches of seaside whose calmer waters make things to do like swimming, kayaking, diving, and snorkeling considerably more obtainable. Additionally, Maui is one of the only Hawaiian islands with both of those black- and pink-sand beaches, each 1 promising spectacular sights as you sunbathe or get a dip in the water.
On Kauaʻi, most of the driving is extra inland, so not only do you not get the exact same coastal views as you would on Maui, but the beach locations right here are also a minor a lot more complicated to get to. Nevertheless, if you are equipped with the correct motor vehicle and directions, you are going to be blown absent by Kauaʻi’s shorelines, frequently surrounded by towering peaks of lush mountains.
Finest for Foodstuff & Drink
If you’re hunting for great dining selections and food items, Maui is the way to go. Its Lahaina town is energetic with assorted restaurants and bars that are positive to meet up with your cravings. On Kauaʻi, the tiny towns of Kapaʻa, Poʻipū, and Hanalei have quaint eateries with good local food stuff and develop, but be positive to get an early head start: In Hawaiʻi’s lesser towns, many places to eat, and most shops seriously, shut down for the working day at the time the sun goes down.
On the two Maui and Kauaʻi, a great rule of thumb is that if you have your heart set on a specific restaurant, be sure that it is really open up when you want to go and make a reservation. If you are planning to cook dinner any meals at your holiday vacation rental or campsite, you could also want to strike up your closest grocery keep and get what you need to have in advance of time. Solutions for late-evening snacking and drinking are confined the afterwards it receives into the night time.
For these smaller-city islands, it is best to program for things like your accommodation, rental car, and actions in advance for the reason that they can e book up promptly. Airbnb and other brief-term rental residence constraints are applied across Hawaiʻi, and lodge rooms can effortlessly reach maximum capability all through hectic seasons like summer season. Consider keeping at inns, motels, B&Bs, cabins, or campsites to get a close to-to-true Hawaiian island working experience.
Getting All over
Receiving all over on both Maui and Kauaʻi is probable without having a vehicle, but really tough if you are hoping to venture absent from your position of continue to be. To acquire advantage of the seashores, mountaineering, and other routines, you should really surely guide the appropriate kind of vehicle. Some terrain—especially on Kauaʻi—can really feel much more off-the-beaten-route, and demands sturdier wheels look at reserving a 4×4 if which is inside your interest. If you find oneself finding stuck in mud or getting a flat tire together the way, preserve in mind that roadside support and mobile company can be extremely limiting, especially in more rural towns.
Buses, taxis, and ride-share services are also out there on each islands, but pretty minimal. For vacationers to Kauaʻi, you would have to ebook a helicopter or boat tour to see the whole island, as the Nā Pali coast will make much of it inaccessible by motor vehicle.