Waikiki, Oahu. Image credit: Hawaii Tourism Authority / Tor Johnson
Travel destination reviews that highlight 'The Best of...'
invariably refer to the Hawaiian Islands as the best place for sun,
sand and natural attractions - the place to head for a fun
This is the location of some of the finest beaches in the United
States, each unique in its dimensions, shapes and hues. These sandy
stretches are fronted by crystal waters teeming with tropical fish
darting through forests of coral. Some of the world's best surfing
and watersport opportunities are offered here and for those intent
on premium sightseeing it is hard to beat the thrill of watching
lava flow from the world's longest erupting volcano.
Visitors who relish exploring different cultures and ancient
civilisations will find the best of Polynesian relics in which to
indulge their passions, as they soak up some of the 'Mana'
(spiritual power) with which the islands were imbued by the
legendary gods and goddesses.
Hawaii's nightlife is centred on traditional festivals which
visitors are encouraged to experience as they don 'leis' (necklaces
of flowers) and dance the famous 'hula' after sunset.
The state of Hawaii includes approximately 130 islands in the
Pacific Ocean, many of which are uninhabited. The islands lie about
1,600 miles (2,600km) off the coast of mainland USA. The largest
island, Hawaii, is known imaginatively as the Big Island, but the
state capital, Honolulu, and most of the population is located on
the smaller island of Oahu, which is also the main tourist
destination. The other main islands are Maui, Molokai and Kauai.
Between them the islands boast an amazingly diverse geography
providing endless recreation opportunities, from snowboarding on
mountain summits to hiking through rainforests. The possibilities
offered by a Hawaiian holiday are limited only by the boundaries of
“There’s never a shortage of things to do in Hawaii. You can see Hawaii on a bike, surfboard, outrigger canoe, golf cart, kayak, off-road vehicle, or on your own two feet. You can snorkel in impossibly clear waters, build sand castles along the world’s most famous beach, watch the sunrise above a volcano, visit America’s only royal palace, learn to make a lei, swim with a manta ray, sample a variety of tempting cuisines, the list, of course, goes on and on.”
Paula Ramsay, Hawaii