Is March a good time to visit Hawaii?

Today we’re taking a look at visiting Hawaii in March. We’ll review all the important information you need to help you choose when is the best time for you to vacation in Hawaii.

Before we jump into the details about Hawaii in March, I want to say that just about anytime is a great time to visit Hawaii. The temperatures are warm and generally sunny year-round. If I found the right flight deal, I wouldn’t hesitate to go to Hawaii in March.

Rainbow Falls on Hawaii, the Big Island in March
Rainbow Falls on Hawaii, the Big Island from our visit in March 2008

What’s the weather like in Hawaii during March?

The weather in March is quite nice — especially if you are coming from chilly, winter climates from North America. Daytime high temperatures generally average in the upper 70s  to lower 80s F. You might want to bring a light sweater or jacket to wear in the evenings with an average low in the upper 60s F. (Use this link to convert temperatures to Celsius.)

Ocean temperatures in March are pleasant enough for swimming. For more details, see our article on Hawaii ocean temperatures.

March isn’t Hawaii’s rainiest month. December gets that designation. March rainfall levels tend to be on the medium-high side of the annual rainfall scale. While temperatures are fairly consistent in the resort areas of the Hawaiian Islands, rainfall varies quite a bit between islands and between the leeward and windward sides of each island.

Here are the average rainfall levels for the month of March:

Kauai – 4.61 inches – This measurement is based on Lihue’s averages per Lihue is located on the southeastern side of the island and is not as wet as the North Shore, but not as dry as the South Shore.

Oahu – 2.71 inches – This average is based on Honolulu’s rainfall per North Shore rainfall will be a little higher, while Ko Olina’s rainfall will be slightly lower.

Maui – 2.45 inches – This average is based on Kahului’s rainfall per Kahului is where Maui’s main airport is, but it’s not typically considered a resort area like Wailea, Lahaina, Kaanapali and Kapalua. Kahului’s rainfall tends to be a bit higher than all the resort areas, with the exception of Hana on east Maui.

Hawaii, the Big Island – 1.49 inches – This average is based on Kailua-Kona’s weather per Kailua-Kona is a popular resort area. Further north on the Kohala Coast, the weather tends to be even drier with only about 10 – 12 inches of rain for the entire year! Hilo, on the east side of Hawaii Island, is another story though, with an average of 13.43 inches of rainfall for March per

Lanai – 2.88 inches – This average is for Lanai City in Lanai’s upcountry/highlands, which tends to get much more rain that the island’s sunny, beach resort at Manele Bay.

Molokai – 1.63 inches – This average is for the airport just west of Kaunakakai town. Weather towards the east side will be rainier.


When we created the rainfall chart, we were perplexed that there’s an uptick in rainfall from February to March. This jump is partially explained by the fact that February has 28 days (typically) while March has 31 days. We further crunched the rainfall data to determine the average rainfall per day. March had a slightly higher average rainfall per day, but not quite as dramatic as the chart appears to indicate.

I know we just covered a lot of information and data, but I want to highlight that there are plenty of places to stay in Hawaii to minimize your chances of experiencing rain in March. Additionally, Hawaii’s rain tends to fall mostly at night.

Is March a crowded time to visit Hawaii?

I evaluated data provided by Hawaii Tourism Authority, March is one of the most popular months to visit Hawaii. That being said, I have never felt like Hawaii was crowded during our visits in March. The only exception is around spring break for school children and Easter if Easter falls in March. If you are making plans to be in Hawaii during Easter and spring break, I advise you to pre-book any activities and restaurants that you don’t want to miss.

The following chart shows visitor arrivals to H

Is March an expensive time to go to Hawaii?

From my experience, you can find hotels deals any time with the exception of holidays. Per our Hawaii hotel rate trends analysis accommodation costs are above average. The highest rates would coincide with spring break and/or Easter.


The other big cost component of a Hawaii vacation budget is airfare, which from my observation tends to fluctuate more than hotel rates. From our experience, we tend to book our trips when we find airfare deals. We check fares on a daily basis. We have found flight deals in March, but not very often. Unfortunately, we don’t have any specific data to point to, but anecdotally, March fares tend to be on the average to slightly high-side.

Are there any special reasons to visit Hawaii in March?

Humpback whales continue their winter birthing and breeding visit to Hawaii in March. These magnificent creatures can really captivate your attention as they surface to breath, splash or breach.

It seems that just about anytime you visit Hawaii there’s a festival or celebration going on somewhere. Hawaii’s top festivals and celebration held in March are as follows:

All islands – Prince Kuhio Day is on March 26th and is a state holiday. Celebrations may be held on the 26th or on a weekend around the 26th.

Oahu – Honolulu Festival 

Hawaii, the Big Island – Annual Kona Brewers Festival and also the Waikoloa Ukulele Festival

We publish a list of the top festivals at least a month or two before each new quarter. Subscribe to our free updates to stay on the pulse of the very best Hawaii vacation news.

How does March compare with other months? See our article the best time to visit Hawaii.

If you are planning a Hawaii vacation for the first or second time, check out our First Time to Hawaii Visitors Guide.

Have you been to Hawaii in March? How was your experience?

  1. We went to Kauai two years ago in March, and it was great! It did rain a few times very early in the morning, but for the most part the weather was great.

  2. Went to Maui in March 2013, stayed on Kaanapali beach. It never rained while we were there. The weather was great and there were humpback whales everywhere you looked! A mom and calf were 30 yards away from us when we were kayaking! Amazing!

  3. We have been to Maui in May, June, and September (various years).
    We went to Maui in March of 2011. It rained a lot, and not just light rain. There were times that we just sat in our car, waiting for the rain to stop, and one time we were driving down Front St, and it just started pouring, and everyone was running for cover.
    This was also the most crowded I had ever seen Maui. We didn’t get much choice of hotel rooms, because they were all completely booked.
    On the bright side, we did get to go whale watching (although the first trip was canceled, due to weather).
    Flights and hotels were reasonably priced.

  4. i’ve always, often, visited Oahu in Mar. i’ve found the climate very comfortable. early Mar. before the Spring Break crowd begins is wise. on the off chance it might rain it’s sporadic and brief. that being said, for one who loved the visits, so much i moved there, there isn’t a bad time to “go visit Hawaii” ™

    1. Awesome Edward! Where did you move to? How has it been living there? It is on our minds to move more and more since we have had the coldest longest winter in my life!

      1. Waianae, is the jewel for me. leaving Honolulu the rent prices fall & you discover more of the natural, slower pace & more grateful “Ohana” life style Hawaii is known for. everything one needs is on the single coastal road so ditch the car & the expense. Kapolei offers the upscale amenities. dramatic sunsets every evening. mountains behind you, ocean in front simple endless beauty, i love the west side.

  5. Hi Shelia,

    Big fan of your website! Quoting from this article, “From our experience, we tend to book our trips when we find airfare deals. We check fares on a daily basis.”
    I tend to do just the opposite, I book my accommodations then the airfare. How has that worked for you? Specifically did you have to rethink your resort accommodations to work with your air? Thanks!

    1. Hi Nan,

      Thanks for reading Go Visit Hawaii!

      From our experience, unless we’re going to be in Hawaii over a holiday, we’ve always been able to find the accommodations we prefer. The only time we weren’t able to stay at a particular resort was when we were in Kauai last year over Valentine’s Day. We were hoping to stay at the Grand Hyatt Kauai, but they were sold out.

      We have paid anywhere from $580-ish to nearly $1,200-ish for flights per person. So, whenever we can get flights around or under $700, that usually results in a big savings for us.

  6. Glad to see your website.Hawaiian island is very unique and more attractive.there is a very untouched and natural beauti.In the every morning you can enjoy amazing sunrise.

  7. We are in Maui in March and the weather sucks! Rainy and windy every day! We will never come to the islands again in March! Plus no jet skiing allowed this time of the year. I’d rather be back in sunny California.

  8. hello,
    I am planning to visit in early march 2016.
    is this time good to visit?
    How many days are required to visit the islands?
    I have 3 year old kid, so would like to cover the trip in 4 to 5 days. Can’t stretch beyond it. Will it be sufficient?


    1. We think anytime is a great time to visit Hawaii, however, some times are better than others when it comes to pricing, weather, crowds, etc. So, read through the above article and decide whether you think March is a good time for you to go.

      Four or five days would be the absolute minimum we typically recommend – particularly if you are traveling from a long distance away. See this article for more information:

      1. Hello,
        Thanks for your quick reply.
        The link is awesome .. Actually, I browsed some other relevant links on your site. its really very helpful.

        based on this info, I am planning to visit for 7 to 8 days. will stay at one island (probably big island) for 6 to 7 days & then visit one more island for a day trip (probably to visit perl harbour).. Please suggest if you feel some modification will improve our stay.
        My main interests are 1) volcano helicopter tour. 2) beaches 3) perl harbour visit. 4) simple trek in forest/near waterfall..

        I have two more questions.
        1) is march really a good time? If it rains, will it spoil my entire trip ? Since I am coming from far (California), this might be my first & only visit to Hawaii.. hence, i want to make it sure that, the weather should be good. otherwise, I can move the trip dates before or after by 1 month. (feb/April)
        2) Should I book packaged tours for Ohau(perl harbour visit) in advance from mainland US? Or should I do it after I land on big-island? I am planning to a rent car on big island & do the sight-seeing on my own. Or, would a packaged tour for big island be a better option?


        1. We would guess that you should have a nice visit based on what you described.

          Everyone comes to Hawaii from far away, but you are actually very, very lucky that California is the nearest flight to Hawaii compared to anywhere else.

          We can’t tell when is the best time for an individual to visit Hawaii. You have to review the data yourself and make your own decision as it fits with your schedule and your budget. We also can’t tell you what the weather will be like when you visit. We have no idea if it will rain everyday of your Hawaii visit in March or June or August or whenever. It’s impossible for anyone to predict. Each person must review the weather data to make their best decision.

          Here’s are two more articles that should help:

          You may want to seek the assistance of a travel agent to help you with further planning. They can assist you with booking questions. We are unable to assist with individual Hawaii travel planning.

          1. Hello,
            Thanks a lot.. As I browse this site, with more n more links, I understand that, you have written over various topics related to Hawaii..
            This is quite a lot of information. I can plan something wonderful now..

            Will update here after my Mrach trip..

  9. Hello is it cheaper to do a cruise or to fly and spend money for lodging and food.planning a 14 day cruise from long Beach ca. On the carnival cruise ship. Thanks Judy J.

    1. A travel agent could probably help you with that question.

      That’s probably not a fair comparison. On a cruise from California to Hawaii you probably end up spending as much or maybe more days at sea and stuck on the ship than you do actually in Hawaii, but when you vacation in Hawaii, you get to enjoy the beaches and scenery of the island everyday of your stay.

      1. Thanks for your response it makes sense…except I’m not keen on flying. Will definitely talk to a travel agent.

  10. We have visited Oahu in April, October and then in August. So far, August is our least favorite due to lots of tourists and strong trade winds. Our next trip is scheduled for mid-March and we can’t wait. We love the north shore so much for the quiet that we have spent almost no time in Honolulu or down south at all. This will be our first trip bringing our children and I’m hoping I can find good coupons for Waimea, the PCC, Pearl Harbor and even Kualoa Ranch.

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