The Best Hawaiian Island is Oahu. Hawaii is amazing because there is so much variety between islands. Wven areas of the islands of the same island can be so different. Gorgeous beaches and steep mountains, the active volcano, and volcano National Park is an exciting place to visit. Kauai the garden isle is great for hiking kayaking beaches and visiting it’s a beautiful cathedral.
Maui has was is said to be the most beautiful sunrise in the world from high up in the mountains, the road to Hana, and Molokini snorkeling. Every island is unique. We have visited these islands via cruise as well as Oahu. We keep coming back to Oahu for the affordability of flights and the numerous activities for kids. I feel Oahu is the best island for families with younger kids.
Free or cheap Flights to the Best Hawaiian Island, Oahu Hawaii
Southwest finally released flights to Hawaii. So now you will be able to use southwest miles and companion pass to fly to Hawaii. Hawaii is one of my favorite places in the world. Mike and I have visited 5 times and are finishing up our 3rd trip with the kids. Here’s how you can get southwest companion pass and 110,000 miles and fly to Hawaii for free.
Good Cheap Hawaii Food on the Best Hawaiian Island, Oahu Hawaii
Hawaii food has been largely influenced by Asian countries. It is obvious when you look at the options on a plate lunch: Kalbi, chicken katsu, shoyu chicken, and many more. Garlic shrimp is another popular dish as is Poke (cubed raw fish). Hawaiian food is so delicious.
A Variety of Activites for Everyone on the Best Hawaiian Island, Oahu Hawaii
Besides Gorgeous Beaches there are a lot of activities especially in Oahu. There’s a small zoo and aquarium in Wakiki that are nice despite their size. There are a lot of options for hiking including Diamond Head and Manoa Falls. Hanauma Bay Snorkeling is a nice option for families as well as the Polynesian Culture Center and Kualoa Ranch.
Cruising the Islands
If you have never been to Hawaii the NCL Cruise is a great way to see Maui, Kaui, and the Big Islands with 2 days at each. The cruise departs from Oahu and it’s recommended you stay at least one night prior to the cruise. The cruise stays overnight on Maui and Kaui so you can experience an evening on those islands it also cruise past the cathedrals.
Wakiki is a Long Beach with the diamond head at one end and Hilton Hawaii Village (HHV) resort on the other end. There are areas of the beach with a breaker that is calm as well as a lagoon by HHV. In wakiki there is a zoo and aquarium. You can hike a diamond head and if you have a car you can hike to manoa falls. We hiked up manoa Falls with kids and it was a little more challenging than we expected as non hikers but it was fun and we always felt safe.
Waikiki and most of Hawaii have ABC stores that sell cheap souvenirs, wine, snacks, and more. Some even have delis and sell hot entrees. We have eaten here a lot and enjoy their food. Entrees range from $4.99 to $13.99, there is Italian, fried chicken, and Hawaiian entrees. From Waikiki, there is also transportation (for a fee) to many attractions including the Polynesian culture center, Hanauma Bay and Kualoa Ranch. We have stayed at Hilton Hawaii Village with kids, Sheraton Waikiki and Princess Kaiulani hotel, and most recently Hilton Waikiki, which inspired my article about how you can visit Hawaii for as little as $104.
Aulani is my favorite resort we have visited with children. For us it has it all. A beautiful calm beach with boogie boards and sand toys available, a great pool complex with tube slide into the lazy river and an awsome kids club and family activities. There’s also affordable food options nearby. Aulani isn’t cheap but I feel it’s a good value because of the entertainment that is included. There’s an option to rent DVC (timeshare) points to pay as little as $300 a night and includes parking or book at a 30% off rate and pay around $350-$370 a night.
When comparing to Disney world packages which are about $5,000 for a week now (including food), a trip to Aulani for a week could cost you as little as $2100 and you could pay as little as $500 for food. Even factoring in the cost difference of flights Disney Hawaii Aulani could still be cheaper than a trip to Disney World. Check out my full review of Aulani along with tips and resources including menus and activity schedules.
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