When you come to think of the phrase “Paradise on Earth”, there are quite a few places that should spring up in your mind. Among these numerous exotic locales lies a small island nation called Hawaii. With its pristine beaches, vast stretches of immaculately scattered white sand and tropical rain forests, Hawaii can be your perfect travel destination, when you are looking to run away from the din of the city-life. 15 Best Places to Visit in Hawaii!
We transcribed a list of the 15 best places to visit when in Hawaii, to help you devise your travel strategies in a better fashion. Every individual location mentioned in this list is equally serene and unbiased. Read on!
1. Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, Big Island
The biggest volcano of the world – Mt. Kilauea – is located here at the heart of Volcanoes National Park, Hawaii. This park offers great hiking and camping opportunities. Although, tourists are required to follow certain protocol in order to ensure their safety.
Apart from the hiking or camping expeditions there are a few other things to do, such as, take short walks around the summit, explore the East Rift – which was formed after the last eruption, back in 2003 – and drive down the Chain of Craters, etc.
2. Haleakala National Park, Maui
The Haleakala National Park was devised in the midst of the Haleakala volcanic reserve in a bid to preserve the natural landscape of the area. There are no asphalt roads or paved surfaces here, which make it a haunt for trekkers and hitchhikers.
You must make it a point to hike a two-mile stretch to Oheo Gulch and swim down to the freshwater lower pools, when here. While taking the scenic route in Haleakala, you must keep ample time, resources and emergency supplies at hand as the nearest human civilization is quite a few hours away.
3. USS Arizona Memorial, Oahu
If you’re out looking for places to visit, when in Hawaii, the USS Arizona Memorial is an introspective proposition. The memorial commemorates the sacrifices made by thousands of valiant American soldiers and arouses patriotism in the weakest of hearts.
This memorial has been built around the central piece of the original Arizona’s deck, which provides an opportunity to civilians to recapitulate a few historic incidences from the day. A guided tour of the USS Arizona is available in the form of a 23-minute documentary, which is constantly being played on numerous screens throughout the ship, educating tourists about Hawaii’s history.
4. Hanauma Bay Natural Preserve, Oahu
This naturally sheltered, artificially preserved bay was once subjected to inhumane levels of neglect and exploitation. So much so, that it was on the verge of being completely destroyed. The city of Honolulu, in 1990, took it upon itself to restore Hanauma Bay to its original glory. Hence, this Natural Reserve was formed.
This bay preserves a pristine eco-system, consisting of a diverse assortment of flora and fauna, on both land and water. Visitors need to understand and respect the restrictions imposed on them, in order to preserve and maintain the local eco-system. The Hanauma Bay Natural Reserve provides some great swimming and snorkeling opportunities to the enthusiasts.
5. Puuhonua o Honaunau National Historical Park, Big Island
This Historical Park is spread across 182 acres of open land, featuring some of the grandest examples of Hawaiian archaeology. It was an abode of Hawaiian royalty at one point of time, while providing refuge to people that broke an ancient Hawaiian law or Kapu.
Puuhonua o Honaunau National Historical Park presents a great opportunity for budding photographers to soak in the essence of Hawaii and preserve a part of it for eternity.
6. Diamond Head State Monument, Oahu
Known as Le’ahi in Hawaiian, Diamond Head State Monument is one of the best places to visit in Hawaii. This place was named so, by Western Traders who thought that they had found diamonds, in some of numerous the natural craters. What they had discovered was calcite crystals that are not related to diamonds in anyway and practically worthless.
While here, you must make it a point to check out the abandoned military bunkers and embark on a 1.4 mile trek, elevating 560 feet. Your hardships will pay off once you reach the summit, which provides an out of the world view of the surrounding landscape.
7. Kilauea Point National Wildlife Refuge, Kauai
Kilauea National Wildlife Refuge is spread across 203 acres of protected land. While exploring through the dense vegetation, you might come across the nene – Hawaii’s State Bird, Layson albartross or the Pacific Golden plover.
8. Waimea Botanical Garden, Oahu
If you are not interested in heading mainstream, we bring you some of the off-beat places to visit that you might have missed out on. The Waimea Valley Audubon Center surely qualifies as unique. It boasts of a collection of 36 botanical marvels, found exclusively in this part of the world.
Spend some quality time with your family or indulge in a picnic, Waimea helps you catch-up on life.
9. Panaewa Rainforest Zoo, Big Island
Panaewa is the sole rainforest in the United States and is a popular travel destination for tourists. Numerous endangered species flourish in the lush greenery of Panaewa, including a white Royal Bengal Tiger, lemurs, Spider Monkeys, nene geese, etc. Tourists can witness the spectacular sight of the Royal Bengal – named Namaste – being fed everyday at 3.30pm.
10. Waimea Canyon, Kauai
Popularly referred to as the Grand Canyon of the Pacific, the Waimea Canyon is 10 miles long and one mile wide. Visitors are reminded of the prehistoric creatures that dwelled in these mountains, by the sharp and rugged terrain. Some of the most dramatic hiking paths in Hawaii are located here.
11. Makena Cove, Maui
In the huge list of things-to-do when in Hawaii, getting married finds precedence. Makena Cove is turning out to be quite a popular destination for couples that are willing to get hitched. The clear blue water, pristine beaches with Kaho’olawe and Molokini in the backdrop, Makena Cove is the perfect location for a beach wedding.
12. Molokini Crater, Maui
Molokini is a volcanic crater, partly submerged under the unspoiled blue water off Maui. It offers an avid scope for snorkeling or a boat-ride. Tourists get a chance to swim with the fishes – quite literally – as over 50 species of fish, are known to thrive along this region.
13. Poipu Bay Golf Course, Kauai
The Golf Course at Poipu Bay is unlike any other found in the world. Its location and terrain make it unique. It is a favorite with some of the golfing legends and is known to have hosted the PGA Grand Slam, 13 times. Putting here presents a whole new experience!
14. Ke’e Beach Park, Kauai
A famous location in its own right, Ke’e Beach Park is another popular snorkeling destination, with a wide variety of fish species and the rare Pacific Green Sea Turtle. Ke’e Beach Park is also home to a variety of trees, such as, guava, ti, coconut palms and ironwood. You might want to head up the nearby Na Pali coast line and get the surprise of your lifetime!
15. Anini Beach, Kauai
Anini is the shallowest beach in Hawaii, home to the largest natural reef in these parts. Tourists can try out an underwater expedition, exploring all nooks and crannies of this reef, while staying clear of outgoing tides. Anini is safe for amateurs too!
Hawaii is an exotic location frequented by tourists from around the globe. It has some of the most dangerous yet picturesque locations on the face of our planet, making it a hot pick for travel and sports enthusiasts alike. We suggest you visit Hawaii – at least once – and witness this once-in-a-lifetime experience!
Source: Ultimate Places