World famous for its natural scenery and tropical climate, Hawaii is rich with memorable adventures and exhilarating activities that have cemented it as one of the top travel destinations. On your first trip to Hawaii, you mustn’t make the same mistakes I did that can impact the overall quality of your vacation to these beautiful islands. Keep reading to learn what I wish I knew before my trip to Hawaii to upgrade your experience!
1. Visit More Than One Island
If you travel to Hawaii, I highly recommend visiting more than one island. In total, 137 islands make up Hawaii, though only eight are well-known and only six are accessible to visitors.
There is a uniqueness to each Hawaiian island, providing new and memorable experiences to savor on your travels. From the world-famous Waikiki Beach on Oahu to the Grand Canyon of the Pacific and Waimea Canyon in Kauai, one mistake you don’t want to make is missing out on the different accessible Hawaiian islands.
2. Consider A Private Rental/Airbnb Over A Hotel
Taking a trip to Hawaii is a costly venture, as the prices on the islands are infamously expensive. From the food to the hotels, Hawaii has some ridiculously steep prices that frequently coincide with high quality.
On that note, I recommend a cheaper option, such as a private rental or Airbnb, instead of reserving a hotel. Do your research, as there are scams out there, and of course, read reviews to ensure you’re getting what you sign up for.
3. Bringing Snorkeling Gear Is Cheaper Than Renting
Hawaii isn’t one of the top travel destinations in the world for nothing. Its scenic sandy beaches, sparkling blue waters, and diverse marine life make it one of the best places in the world for snorkeling and scuba diving.
As mentioned before, Hawaii is costly, and prices for renting snorkeling gear are high. To save money, bring your snorkeling gear in your bag and buy one of the full-face snorkel masks. This will save you money, and with your gear, you can go snorkeling whenever and wherever you want without having to find a rental place and pay overpriced amounts for gear.
4. Be Prepared For The Sun
Pack a rashguard, wear sunscreen, and reapply it religiously – trust me. Hawaii is just north of the equator, meaning the sun is directly on you throughout the day. The humidity and the breeze along the beach can be deceiving, making it not seem as hot or as if your skin is burning.
Do yourself a favor, wear a rashguard, a short sleeve works fine, too, and apply sunscreen. If you spend hours snorkeling in the water, the rash guard can protect your back from the rays to prevent nasty sunburn.
5. Rent A Quality Car With Good Miles & Brakes
If you rent a car for your trip to Hawaii, ensure the vehicle has good miles and brakes. The roads in Hawaii are bumpy, winding, and often unpaved, meaning a pair of bad brakes and tires will not end up in your favor.
Good brakes and tires will be essential for a safe journey on unpaved roads. Oftentimes, you may not know a treacherous road is oncoming as the signage in Hawaii isn’t the best in forewarning those of the upcoming road’s quality.
6. Bring Waterproof Cameras/Phone Covers
If you want to catch underwater memories during your travels in Hawaii, bring a waterproof camera like a GoPro or a phone cover to protect your phone from getting wet. Whether snorkeling, diving, or hiking to the waterfalls, bringing a waterproof device or cover can offer many opportunities to capture special moments of your trip to Hawaii!
7. If You Don’t Like Being Hot, Plan Accordingly
Air conditioning in Hawaii is minimal at best, so visiting in the summer may not be the best fit for you if you can’t take the heat. Even if you get too hot, many of the restaurants and markets in Hawaii lack air conditioning, along with the airports, so you won’t be able to find relief from all the sweating in these establishments.
Schedule your trip accordingly, choosing a cooler time of the year to visit Hawaii to avoid the overall misery of being sweaty if you’re not a fan of neverending heat.
8. Pack The Right Shoes
Pack some water shoes with a good grip on the bottom for when you go snorkeling. This will protect your feet on the hike over rocks, shells, and the like, such as sea urchins, to some of Hawaii’s best snorkeling spots. For ziplining and hikes, pack appropriate footwear that is closed-toed to protect your feet and provide ample support.
9. Plan Water Sports Activities At The Appropriate Time
It’s best to plan for the early morning for water-based activities. This time is when the waves and winds are often the most peaceful, so you can relish in the perfect weather as you explore the beautiful underwater world of Hawaii.
10. Tour The Parks
Throughout Hawaii, many parks, from national to state parks, are brimming with breathtaking natural wonders that you should take advantage of. Whether it be a quick pit stop on your drive or a hiking adventure through the park, skipping out on visiting Hawaii’s parks is a mistake you don’t want to make.
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