If your ideal vacation means warm sun, gorgeous beaches, and plenty of outdoor activities, a visit to the Aloha State may be the perfect place for you to visit and relax. Hawaii offers a multitude of beautiful things to see, exciting activities to do, and delicious food to eat. Plan a unique vacation with these sites on your to-do list and get set for a great time.
Switch out your swimsuit for a pair of sturdy hiking boots and visit Waimea Canyon. Nicknamed “The Grand Canyon of the Pacific,” the canyon is more than 10 miles long and almost 3,600 feet deep. Pack a picnic, and spend the day hiking the trails of beautiful lush forests.
The canyon offers stunning views of the green landscape and clear, blue skies. Going deeper into the canyon, it is not uncommon to come across waterfalls that you can take a quick dip in to cool off from your hiking.
Hike a mile through Haleakala National Park to discover the stunning Bamboo Forest. This hike is not particularly strenuous and is fine to do with younger children. The towering bamboo sways gently in the breeze over a picturesque waterfall and river and makes a quiet, serene rustling sound.
Though swimming is not recommended, you can stay cool as you sit by the crystal-clear water and enjoy the breezes. You can continue the hike further to see the Waimoku Falls, which is a slightly longer hike.
It isn’t the best place to build a sandcastle and doesn’t make the ideal place for sunbathing, but a visit to Glass Beach is worth a stop. The beach is made of minuscule pieces of round, smooth glass that have washed ashore and been beaten by waves to remove all sharp edges. The colorful pieces of glass glint in the sun under the crashing waves, which makes it a must-see place on Kauai island.
Officials do ask that visitors don’t take the glass from the beach so that others can continue to enjoy seeing the sea glass. It takes the ocean over a decade to create the smooth sea glass, which makes it hard to replace if tourists were to continuously take it from the beach.
Kaumana Lava Tubes
Those with an adventurous streak will want to check out the Kaumana Lava Tubes that are located on the Big Island. The place doesn’t see tourists too often, which will give you plenty of space to explore the tubes and privacy for your adventure. The tubes were created thousands of years ago by hot lava from a volcanic eruption. When the lava flowed away, it left a hard tube in its place that can be explored.
There are no tour guides or guards, which makes it a great place to explore uninhibited, so long as you take necessary safety precautions on your own. The rocks are slippery from humidity and moisture, so bring appropriate shoes for the hike. Bring plenty of water and flashlights as it is extremely dark. This venture is for slightly more advanced explorers who are confident in their hiking skills and have the right gear.
Pineapple Garden Maze
Leave your vacation rental behind and take a visit to the Dole Pineapple Plantation, which is the home of the Pineapple Garden Maze. The maze isn’t your typical garden maze; it covers the expanse of over two acres and features two and a half miles of the maze within it. Made up of over 14,000 fragrant plants, this is the world’s large plant maze.
It boasts as a fun and unique way to spend an afternoon with the family. Plan on spending about an hour in the maze as you visit different stations and learn about the pineapple plantation. However, if you can get through the maze faster, your time will be posted at the entrance for all to see.
The Blue Room
The magical Blue Room is a subterranean cave that shimmers in a striking blue color when the waves are high. Experienced divers enjoy exploring the unique cave that sits behind two other caves that are also worth exploring. Those who don’t want to swim in the caves can take a dip at the nearby Ke’e Beach. It’s best to plan your trip here when the tide is higher so that you can get the full effect of the cave. You should be cautious if you visit the cave and enter at your own risk. It is best to do so with the right equipment and for experienced swimmers only.
Don’t settle for the typical tourist traps on your next Hawaii vacation. Try one of these unique, beautiful sites, and enjoy a new take of the islands. Whether you are vacationing with a loved one, your whole family, or by yourself, there is always something new to see or do.
Anica is a professional content and copywriter who graduated from the University of San Francisco. She loves dogs, the ocean, and anything outdoor-related. You can connect with Anica on Twitter @AnicaOaks.