Leave behind your mundane routine of dull, drab weather in the winter and vacation on an island paradise. You can even take such a trip without leaving the United States by choosing Hawaii for your winter vacation destination. Hawaii offers warm weather, pristine beaches and stunning volcanos. After spending a winter here, you may find yourself rejuvenated, refreshed and ready to return to your daily life.
Winter in Hawaii
Winters in Hawaii are much warmer than even the Southern states of the mainland U.S. During the Hawaiian winter, from November through April, daily high temperatures average 78 degrees Fahrenheit.
While temperatures during the winter are around seven degrees lower than in the summer, this season is also rainier compared to the summer, which accounts for the other half of the year. To avoid having your Hawaiian vacation rained out, choose sites either on the west or south sides of each island. For example, if you want to visit Oahu in the winter, choose Ko Olina or Waikiki Beach.
If you do want to spend winter, especially the holidays in Hawaii, book early. You will have to compete with other snowbirds heading to the state. Therefore, you may pay a premium price for booking hotels or flights during the holiday season. However, booking your vacation as early as possible may help you to get rooms at the hotels you want and avoid inflated prices for flights.
Things to Do in Winter in Hawaii
During winter in Hawaii, there are several events that you cannot miss. These range from warm-weather fun to winter sports and holiday celebrations. The availability of options will depend on when you visit the state. For instance, if you miss Christmas celebrations, you may still arrive in time for Chinese New Year festivals in late winter or early spring.
1. Christmas Events With a Hawaiian Twist
Visit Honolulu City Lights for a Christmas light experience complete with shopping and events. Since 1985, the Honolulu City Lights have lit up downtown throughout December. Seeing these lights is a great way to kick off the holiday season in Hawaii.
Additionally, the Sheraton Waikiki features a stunning display of holiday sand sculptures that are created by Sandsational Sand Sculpting. Each year is a different theme for the sculptures, and past themes have included snowmen on vacation, Samoan pre-battle knife dance and a display on the Malama Honua voyage.
Lastly, you will not want to miss Santa arriving at Waikiki Beach via an outrigger canoe. A celebration often accompanies the event when Santa comes in.
2. Whale Watching
The whale watching season lasts from December 15 through May 15. During this time, up to 15,000 Humpback whales migrate to the waters of the Hawaiian Islands. These whales mate in the warm waters after traveling south from Alaska. Visit sites on the islands, such as Oahu’s Halona Blowhole, to see these majestic creatures in their natural setting.
While whale watching from land offers excitement, taking a boating trip offers a different dimension to the experience. Boats typically must stay at least 100 yards from whales to avoid injuring them with the boat or gear. However, some whales will “mug” a boat by swimming very close to it or right under it, giving passengers a rare, up-close view of a Humpback whale.
3. Surf Competition
Winter in Hawaii offers exceptional surfing with large waves and many popular surfing competitions. Various events happen from October through February, depending on conditions and other factors. If conditions are not right, a competition may be delayed. You can still call your hotel, though, to see if a specific competition is planned to occur during your stay.
While Hawaii is not known for snow, you can enjoy this winter sport atop Mauna Kea. For the best chance at seeing snow that allows for good snowboarding conditions, visit between January and March. Be aware that weather conditions can vary. Therefore, have an alternative plan in place if you set up your vacation months in advance, and snow does not fall while you are in Hawaii.
Even if you cannot snowboard or ski, Mauna Kea provides outstanding views of the nearby volcanoes and the night sky.
5. Chinese New Year Festivals
Chinese New Year follows the lunar calendar. Therefore, it will change its time each year.
If you are lucky enough to be in Hawaii when it happens, make sure to visit one of the many festivals to celebrate this time. For instance, on Oahu, visit Chinatown or the Chinatown Cultural Plaza for events. On Maui, go to the Wo Hing Museum for a free event.
Taking a Winter Vacation to Honolulu
Honolulu, on the island of Oahu, is the capital of Hawaii, and the city offers many urban experiences while putting you close to other destinations as well.
While you’re in Honolulu, be sure to see the Iolani Palace, the only former home to royalty in the United States. You can take either a self-guided audio tour or a docent-led tour of the site. Either will require between an hour to an hour and a half to complete. When visiting, though, be respectful as the palace is a sacred site.
Honolulu vacations also put you at the perfect spot for sandcastle competitions, Christmas light displays and shopping. However, watch out for traffic, which increases during the holidays.
Whether you stay in Honolulu or travel to the other islands, a winter vacation in Hawaii gives you an unequaled experience that you will not find elsewhere.
Find Out More Ways to Rejuvenate Yourself This Winter
Staying in a tropical location can improve your physical and mental health, but there are also other things you can do to keep yourself feeling your best, even while on vacation.
During the winter, you can also feel revived through IV therapy. You can get a reinvigorating IV to ease symptoms of conditions such as dehydration, hangovers and migraines. Plus, you don’t have to leave your location for care. At Mobile IV Medics, we bring IV therapies to you, whether you’re at your home, at your office or on vacation. Our prompt response times mean you can get your IV quickly and get started feeling better soon. Plus, we serve many areas both on the mainland U.S. and in Hawaii. So, you can have your IV therapy even while on your Hawaiian vacation.
We’re here to help you feel your best, and you don’t have to find a drip bar or medical clinic. Let us know how we can help you. For answers to your questions, contact us. You can also book your appointment online with us for the greatest convenience.
About the author
Brad Wenderoth, Pharm.D.
Brad Wenderoth, Pharm.D. is a licensed pharmacist and co-owner of Mobile IV Medics. With over 16 years of healthcare experience, Brad is bringing his expertise and passion for patient care to the Mobile IV Medics patient population. Prior to Mobile IV Medics, Brad worked in varying areas including both direct patient care and hospital leadership at Keck Medicine of the University of Southern California (USC) in Los Angeles, nationwide health system pharmacy consulting for Comprehensive Pharmacy Services (CPS), and professor of pharmacy at the USC School of Pharmacy. He holds a doctorate in pharmacy from the University of Arizona, a pharmacy practice residency from USC, and a lean six sigma green belt from Johns Hopkins.