15 Reasons Why Winter Is The Best Time To Travel To Hawaii

15 Reasons Why Winter is the Best Time to Travel to Hawaii

If you are ready to take your dream vacation, look no farther than Hawaii. Gorgeous weather, incredible surf and humpback whale watching are just some of the many reasons why winter is the best time of the year to visit this beautiful destination.

It's the ultimate beach paradise, with weather that averages around 78 degrees during the winter months and swells so big even the most advanced surfers find them challenging.

*Related: Hawaii's Most Over the Top Resorts

Although active adventures are offered on the islands year-round, the winter is the best time to experience them. Instead of sweating profusely because of the summer's harsh temperatures, you can enjoy hiking in Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, soaring through the trees on a zip lining adventure, and driving the Road to Hannah without having to blast the A.C.


Although the weather in Hawaii remains fairly consistent year-round, the daytime temperatures during the winter months usually average around 78 degrees, with highs reaching high 70s and low 80s. Water temperatures also remain comfortable during this time of the year, the average temperature is around 74 degrees.

Beautiful Beaches

Hawaii is the ultimate beach paradise, especially in the winter months when it is a bit less crowded. Go swimming, surfing, snorkeling and boogie boarding in Hawaii's clear blue water. Then reap the benefits of the sun and catch a tan on Hawaii's soft white sand. Some of the most spectacular beaches in Hawaii include Waikiki Beach in Oahu, Black Sand Beach in Maui and Hanalei Bay in Kaui.

Winter Festivals

Winter in Hawaii calls for tons of exciting festivals. Attend the Hawaiian Slack Key Guitar Festival in Keneohe on Dec. 11, 2016. The Waimea Cherry Blossom Heritage Festival is in early February and the Maui Whale Festival is in late February/early March.

Spectacular Hikes

Go hiking in Hawaii without dripping sweat in the harsh summer heat. Visit Hawaii Volcanoes National Park and hike the Kilauea Summit Trails, the Earthquake Trail, Devastation Trail and Crater Rim Trails. Head to Maui and hike Twin Falls to view tropical waterfalls. Explore the Waihu Spring Trail Loop and capture the view from Maui's North Shore coastline.

Humpback Whale Watching

Hawaii is the only state in the U.S. where humpback whales, calve, mate and nurse their young, according to the National Marine Sanctuaries. They like the warm waters and ocean depths of Hawaii. January, February and March are peak months. Maui and Hawaii's Big Island are two of the most popular areas.

Adventure Sports

Face your fears and challenge yourself like you may have never before. Embrace the cooler temperatures and go skydiving with Skydive Kauai. Enjoy a 20- to 25-minute scenic plane ride, free fall over Kauai's breathtaking coastline, and then enjoy a peaceful parachute ride. Other adventure sports you can participate in include cliff diving and big wave surfing.

Great Surf

Expect the largest swells of the year from November through March. Swells can get to around 6-12 feet, with bigger swells pushing at 30 feet at times, according to Your Hawaii Vacation Guide. Some of the best beaches for big wave surfing in Hawaii include Jaws-Pe'ahi in Maui, Pipeline-North Shore in Oahu, and Waimea-North Shore in Oahu.

Christmas Light Displays

Attend the 20th annual Festival of Lights at Kauai's Historic County Building. The opening ceremony is on Dec. 2, 2016 from 6-6:60pm. It is open on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays, December 2-24. Families will enjoy admiring the beautiful lights and visiting Santa and Mrs. Claus.

Zip lining

Imagine soaring through the trees across canyons and through rainforests while capturing a nice warm breeze. You can do this on a zip lining excursion in Hawaii. Some of the best companies to choose from include Kohala Zipline, Big Island Eco Adventures, Skyline Eco Adventures, and Nui Pohaku Adventure Tours.

Vans Triple Crown of Surfing

From Nov. 12 to Dec. 20. you can enjoy high-performance and power surfing at the Vans Triple Crown of Surfing in North Shore. Also enjoy the Vans World Cup of Surfing from Nov. 24 through Dec. 6.


Spring and summer are high seasons for snorkeling. This means rates go up and people are everywhere. Not to mention that June to November is considered hurricane season. That being said, head to Hawaii in the winter and embark on an excursion in The Big Island and Maui for the best snorkeling options.


Take in the most famous sites of Hawaii, indulge in its natural beauty, and explore unique landscapes. There are a variety of sightseeing tours to choose from that will take you through rainforests, canyons, volcanoes and beaches.

Drive the Road to Hana

No one enjoys spending time scrunched up in a car during the hot summer months – winter temperatures in Hawaii make for the perfect road trip. Drive the Road to Hana – 64.4-mile route through Hawaii – and travel through tropical rainforests. Take pictures of the beautiful scenery as you drive over steel bridges. Don't forget to see the stunning waterfalls, spend some time at the beach, and stop off at various attractions along the way.

Celebrate New Year’s Eve

There are tons of New Year's Eve celebrations happening in Hawaii. Visit Waikiki Beach for a spectacular fireworks show, attend a Kahala Countdown New Year's Eve party at the Kahala Hotel & Resort, have a drink at the New Year's Eve Party at RumFire, an oceanfront poolside night club at the Sheraton Waikiki, and dance the night away at a New Year's Eve Masquerade Ball hosted by SKY Waikki.

See Snow on Mauna Kea

Despite its tropical beaches, palm trees and amazing weather, snow does fall in Hawaii, due to elevation. Hawaii's highest mountain Mauna Kea has reported snow to peak in January. Other summits that you will find snow include Mauna Loa and Haleakala.