Hawaii is the only state from the United States to be located in Oceania, it is entirely made up of islands thereby making it a popular holiday destination among tourists looking to spend their vacation on beaches while also touring volcano sites and natural attractions. Hawaii has 8 main islands but the most popular ones are Hawai’i (The Big Island), Maui (The Valley Isle), O’ahu (The Gathering Place), Kaua’i (The Garden Isle), Moloka’i (The Friendly Isle) and Lana’i (The Pineapple Isle).
The most difficult decision visitors have to make is deciding which island is worth going to and this really depends on what you’re looking to do, Oahu as its nickname suggests is quite crowded and this is because 75% of Hawaii’s population lives here, however the island has much to offer: Honolulu’s historical museums and mountains, forest trails filled with wildlife, sandy beaches and it is also famous for its feasts: you won’t run out of places or things to eat in Oahu, you’ll come across numerous farmers’ markets, food trucks, five star restaurants and street food vendors serving fresh and delicious food at all times.
Hawaii is best known for its wildlife, culture and hiking trails: the most active volcano on Earth, Kilauea can be found on The Big Island and it is every hikers’ dream island as the volcano offers super high summits, ice cold waterfalls and beautiful emerald valleys. The wildlife on the island includes humpback whales, sea turtles, spinner dolphins and coral gardens filled with colored fish. You can find plenty of packages online to swim with the turtles, swim with the dolphins and go whale watching.
If you only want the sea, sand and sun then head to Maui which is famous for its beaches and if you thought all beaches were the same then you’re in for a surprise. There are beaches perfect for kiteboarding, beaches where you can go snorkeling, beaches for surfing, beaches for whale watching or if you simply want to lie in the sand and soak in the sun then you will find some of the calmest beaches in the world in Maui.
The Haleakala National Park is also a well-known attraction, inside the park you will find the dormant volcano after which the park was named and along with it, flocks of Hawaiian geese, freshwater pools, bamboo forests, cinder cones and rugged trails. Lanai Island stays true to its nickname: the whole island was once planted entirely with pineapples and even today you can enjoy the fresh and juicy fruit. Lanai is a little more secluded compared to the other islands and it may get boring after a while therefore it’s a good idea to only take a day trip to the island. Molokai is full of history and culture: the aloha spirit can be felt and seen all around the island and there are a number of interesting attractions here such as the Kalaupapa National Historical Park which is home to 2 Leper Colonies (leprosy settlements) due to the hard work of Saint Father Damien. Another attraction in Molokai is the Halawa Valley: the valley offers a hike that will give you the most authentic and cultural Hawaiian adventure in the entire island, the length is about 3 miles and you will be in for a cultural treat as the hike is led by a tour guide who talks about the native species, worship sites, ancient colonies and much more. Finally, Kauai Island is best known for its landscapes, beaches and lifestyle. The Kauai North Shore is simply a paradise of sorts: it’s filled with waterfalls, golden-white beaches, valleys, lush green jungles, tropical flowers and you can engage in all sorts of activities from surfing, snorkeling and swimming to shopping and touring famous landmarks. The scenic Wailua River is the largest navigable river in Kauai and the twenty-mile-long river is absolutely gorgeous, you can go on a boat tour or rent a kayak and explore it. Some of the attractions along the river are The Wailua Falls, The Opaekaa Falls, The Sleeping Giant Mountains and The Fern Grotto which is also a famous wedding venue! Lastly Sunny Poipu is sunny all year round and this makes it an attractive destination amongst curious tourists who can shop, dine and even swim in Poipu’s beaches.
Now that you have some understanding of the islands in Hawaii you can choose which ones you want to visit. Since it’s a 10-day trip your best bet would be visit three islands at the most, this is because as fun as island hopping may sound, due to the flying hours, airport queues, baggage packing and the TSA you will end up being tired and weary and unable to enjoy even one island. It is doubtful whether you will be able to do all the activities Hawaii has to offer therefore pick what sounds most appealing to you and then purchase a package from the different options available.
Ideally it is best to spend 2-3 days in Oahu so you are able to experience the concrete jungle bit of Hawaii and other must-see attractions in Oahu include the Polynesian Cultural Centre, the Pearl Harbor Museums, the summit of Diamond Head Crater and the Waikiki area is an attraction in itself! The Big Island has much to offer as well and for your third island you can choose either Kauai or Maui so you are able to experience some of the natural attractions too. Other must do activities in Hawaii (These are mostly water activities and are available in all of the islands) include attending a Luau, going: surfing, scuba diving, kayaking, snorkeling, hiking and sailing. You can also go on photography tours, island tours, boat rides, Segway tours, Helicopter tours, Trikke tours, Catamaran tours (Oahu) and there’s even more: horseback riding, zip lining and a variety of water sports.
P.S. For all the movie fanatics Oahu Island is where you can find the Kualoa Ranch where Jurassic Park was shot.