Although any season of the year is a great time to visit Hawaii, the activities that you plan to do on your holiday are important factors to consider when deciding when to visit. So, when it comes to knowing the best time to visit Hawaii, you must first decide the things you want to do and see on your Hawaiian vacation, then look for the best time of the year that will allow you to fully enjoy these activities.

If you are a return visitor, plan your trip in a different season than your first visit so you can enjoy the Hawaiian islands in an entirely different way. Some of the major islands to visit in Hawaii are Oahu, Kauai, Maui, and the Big Island. The islands are different from each other and offer different activities and attractions as well. If you want to experience the best of Hawaii on your first visit, a vacation in Maui is a top choice. Maui is the second-largest island in Hawaii and is known for its world-famous beaches, scenic hiking trails, views of migrating humpback whales, and delicious Hawaiian cuisines.

Below are tips on the best time to visit Hawaii depending on the things you want to do on your vacation getaway.

Best time to go Surfing in Hawaii

Only four of the islands in Hawaii are suitable for surfing all year round – Oahu, Kauai, the Big Island, and Maui. As for when and where you should surf, this mainly depends on your skill level.

The waves follow a somewhat consistent schedule. During the winter, for instance, surfers will find serious swells in the north coast of the islands, while the south coast waters are calmer. But the opposite scenario happens during the summer.

For advanced surfers, the winter season is the best time to look for big waves. This runs from mid-November until early February. The best places to look out for big waves are on the North Shore of Oahu Island.

For novice surfers, you should check out the island’s southern coasts when visiting during the winter. In Maui, the beaches in Lahaina, Kaanapali, and Kihei have the perfect waves for beginners. Consider taking up private surf lessons in Maui if you want to hone your skills in this sport.

Best Time for Hiking in Hawaii

Hawaii offers some of the best hiking trails in the world, especially in the mountains of Maui. If you are fond of hiking, you could probably traverse Maui’s best hiking trails alone for years and you won’t feel bored. As with most activities in Hawaii, hiking is a great activity to do all year round. However, the best months to hit the trails are during late spring (April and May) to early fall (September and October).

The weather is drier during these months and throughout the entire summer. However, unlike the summer, the spring and fall months will be cooler. When hiking during summer, make sure to bring plenty of water and lather up in sunscreen, since the UV rays in Hawaii are very high all year round. If you prefer to hike during the winter months, prepare for unexpected rain showers. The trail conditions are potentially wet as well, so this is something you should consider.

If you’re going to Maui to hike, you might want to experience other activities as well, such as horseback riding in the Maui mountains to the beach.

Best Time to go Whale Watching in Hawaii

A whale watch is a very popular and fun activity in Hawaii, and you can experience this from the island of Maui. The best time to see the whales on Maui is from November through May. During this time, thousands of North Pacific Humpback whales can be seen gracing the Hawaiian waters for their annual winter migration. Considered one of the largest whale species in the world, the Pacific Humpback whales are certainly a sight to behold!

The best way to experience this is to go on a guided whale-watching boat tour manned by a professional captain and crew. Aside from witnessing the migration of whales, you will also learn a lot of interesting information about whale habits. You will also learn how to spot them in the ocean, and perhaps even hear them sing!

Best Time for Swimming and Snorkeling in Hawaii

Swimming in the oceans of Hawaii is a popular activity among tourists. The Hawaiian Islands offer fantastic swimming and snorkeling opportunities for most of the year, although the best time to fully enjoy these activities is during the summer months. In summer, the surf will be less intense compared to winter. Moreover, the water will be warmer and the weather will be more cooperative, which provides a safer condition for exploring the waters.

There are several beautiful beaches in Hawaii where you can swim and snorkel. If you want to make the most of your swimming experience, consider joining a snorkeling adventure tour. During your tour, you’ll experience an incredible underwater adventure where you will explore the ocean waters and witness interesting wildlife, from turtles to colorful fishes and corals.

Best Time to Take a Boat Cruise Around Hawaii

You can go cruising in Hawaii at any time of the year. But if you want to snag the cheapest deals on boat cruises in Hawaii, you should visit during the shoulder season. This is the period right before or after the peak tourist season. In Hawaii, the peak season is during summer when kids are on school break and families would flock to Hawaii for a holiday. It is during this time when the prices for cruises and other activities are high.

The shoulder season in Hawaii is during May and September. These months also boast some of the best weather, which makes it a prime season to enjoy a Hawaiian vacation. You will also find good bargains on cruises, including inter-island cruises, from late November through mid-December. Cruising during the winter months is quite expensive since the islands will also experience a high influx of tourists during this time.

Hawaii is fun to visit all year round. But you will enjoy your vacation even more if you schedule your visit according to the activities that you wanted to partake. So, if you’re thinking of visiting Hawaii soon, plan the activities you wanted to do ahead of time. That way, you’ll be able to decide which months you should schedule your visit. It’s also a good idea to book your activities as early as possible, especially if you are visiting during the peak season as they can fill up fast!