Many people wonder when is the best time to visit Hawaii. There are multiple answers to that question. In my opinion, there’s really not a bad time to go to Hawaii. Anytime is a great time to visit Hawaii. You’ll always be able to find nice warm weather in Hawaii, even in the winter. (See my post, Is Winter A Good Time To Go To Hawaii?)
Though winter months (November – March) tend to be a tad rainier, chances are you won’t have to contend with much rain through your entire trip. I’ve been to Hawaii in all the seasons and very rarely has rain cause any issues. Many times rain showers are short lived and you are treated to a rainbow afterwards. (See my article, Where to Stay in Hawaii to Avoid Rain.) Additionally, most of Hawaii’s rain falls during overnight and early morning hours.
Most people like to consider weather, crowds, and costs when choosing a good time to go to Hawaii. Generally speaking crowds and rates tend to trend together. I’ve developed the following decision matrix that helps you compare all those key factors. I’m going to use Kauai as an example of average high temperatures (F) and average rainfall levels (inches) so that you can get an idea of overall trends that will generally be true across Hawaii.
|Day Temp||Rainfall||Crowds||Hotel Rates|
|December||79||4.8||Low & High ****||Low/High|
* Exception in April is that if Easter falls in April, the weeks around Easter can be higher.
** Generally high until the week after Labor Day, then low.
*** Exception is the weekend of Thanksgiving.
**** Crowds are very low until approximately December 20th, then very high through the Christmas and New Year’s holidays.
***** Exceptions in February is around Valentine’s Day and President’s Day.
From the matrix, you can see that May and September are optimal times for best weather, least crowds, and lowest costs. The end of April and beginning of October are also quite good. Another great time to consider is the very beginning of June before kids get out of school in the U.S.
I’ve compiled this list of links to see average weather trends for each island:
- Maui (Kahului) temperature and rain averages by month
- Kauai (Lihue) temperature and rainfall averages by month
- Oahu (Honolulu) temperature and rainfall averages by month
- Big Island (Hilo) temperature and rainfall averages by month
- Big Island (Kailua-Kona) temperature and rainfall averages by month
- Lanai (Lanai City) temperature and rainfall averages by month (Note that those temperatures are for the upcountry town which is much cooler than the resort area at Manele Bay.)
- Molokai temperature and rainfall averages by month
The best places in Hawaii for avoiding rain on each island and practically any time of the year are:
- Maui: Wailea area
- Kauai: Poipu Beach
- Big Island: Kohala Coast
- Oahu: Waikiki Beach and Ko Olina
- Lanai: Manele Bay
We are creating month-by-month guides in choosing when to go to Hawaii. These guides will be written over 2014. They are listed as follows: