15 of the Most Beautiful Places in Hawaii to Add to Your Bucket List

The ULTIMATE Hawaii Bucket List

Hanauma Bay Nature Preserve via Pixabay

TRAVEL GUIDE: 15 Most Beautiful Places in Hawaii

It’s no secret that Hawaii is one of the most beautiful places in the world. This state in the Pacific Ocean is just the ultimate dream destination with its phenomenal art, culture, history, nature, and food. There’s just a perfect tourist spot in Hawaii for all kinds of travelers, and we want to share some of the most breathtaking ones. Read more to know our top 15 most beautiful places in Hawaii, in no particular order.

Napali Coast State Wilderness Park

Na Pali Coast State Park by Dcrjsr via Wikipideia CC
Na Pali Coast State Park by Dcrjsr via Wikipideia CC

Location: Kapa’a, Hawaii

This stunning coastline spans 17 miles along Kauai’s North Shore, a postcard-perfect beauty of a shoreline where cliffs and ridges meet the deep blue water. This view is best seen by air via aerial tours, which will give you a view that a land or boat ride won’t be able to do. Activities you can do here include kayaking or raft tours.

Apart from this exact attraction, you’ll also find hidden sea caves and secluded beaches, which will make your trip to Napali Coast more interesting.

Rainbow Falls

Rainbow Falls in Hilo Hawaii by Nick Rickert via Unsplash
Rainbow Falls in Hilo Hawaii by Nick Rickert via Unsplash

Location: Hilo town, Hawaii

Are you an early morning adventurer? Seeing Rainbow Falls is just one of the best things you can do when you travel to Hawaii. Located within Hilo town, you can enjoy a short hike to see the 80-foot falls flowing from a lava cave into the river.

Be sure to visit when it’s sunny, so you can catch a glimpse of the rainbow that peeks into the falls, surrounded by lush greeneries. Viewing platforms are available to see the falls where you can take a nice photo.

Lanikai Beach

Lanikai Beach, Kailua by Genevieve Perron Migneron via Unsplash
Lanikai Beach, Kailua by Genevieve Perron Migneron via Unsplash

Location: Kailua, Hawaii

Lanikai, which means “heavenly ocean,” is the best spot for those looking for beautiful Hawaiian beaches. Its crystal blue waters and fine white sand is just what you imagine when you think of having a serene beach vacation. Sunrise in Lanikai Beach is to die for, and other activities you can enjoy here are kayaking and, of course, swimming.

This destination has a laid-back vibe, perfect for a quiet and peaceful vacay away from the busy cities. If you’re into hiking, go for the Lanikai Pillbox Hike in the morning to see a charming view of the Lanikai Beach, Kailua Town, and the Ko’olau Coast.

Mount Kilauea, Volcanoes National Park

Mount Kilauea photo via Wikipedia Public Domain
Mount Kilauea photo via Wikipedia Public Domain

Location: Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, Hawaii

Known as the only UNESCO World Heritage Site in Hawaii, the Kilauea Volcano is a must-see for those who love volcano tours. The Hawaii Volcanoes National Park is a destination for all those who love science and adventure! Here, you may even be able to see the lava glow in the halema’uma’u crater.

A variety of hiking points are available within the park where you can see different natural spots such as rainforest, old lava tubes, caves, and more! Both adults and kids will surely enjoy this park as there are also activities intended for kids.

Seven Sacred Pools

Seven Sacred Pools in Hawaii by Nathan Ziemanski via Unsplash
Seven Sacred Pools in Hawaii by Nathan Ziemanski via Unsplash

Location: Maui, Hawaii

Also known as the Pools of Oheo, this tourist destination is best recognized for its lush bamboo forests and freshwater sceneries. This tranquil jungle, which translates to “something special,” lives up to its name for its natural beauty. There’s a majestic collection of waterfalls, bamboo-laden paths, trails, and more, perfect for those who want to seek the beauty of nature. It’s the best place to hike, camp, and explore for those into nature trekking. It’s an ideal place to explore Hawaii’s natural spots.

Hanauma Bay Nature Preserve

Hanauma Bay Nature Preserve via Pixabay
Hanauma Bay Nature Preserve via Pixabay

Location: Hanauma Bay Road, Honolulu, Hawaii

Only a 30-minute drive from Honolulu, Hanauma Bay Nature Preserve is a gem that has always been a favorite among locals and foreign tourists alike. This wine glass-shaped bay is famed for its diverse marine life, best explored by snorkeling. And when you do, you get a chance to meet 400 species of fish, green sea turtles, and other marine creatures you’ll surely love seeing.

Since it’s a Nature Preserve, marine life is most prioritized here, and tourists are educated about the importance of reef etiquette when visiting.

Pearl Harbor

Pearl Harbor in Honolulu via Pixabay
Pearl Harbor in Honolulu via Pixabay

Location: 1 Arizona Memorial PI, Honolulu, Hawaii

Probably one of the most familiar sites in Hawaii is Pearl Harbor due to its significance in history. It is where people come to honor the lives lost during the 1941 attack. You can join various Pearl Harbor tours to learn more about this historic site, such as visiting the WWII museum exhibit, Polynesian Cultural Center on the North Shore, Dole Plantation, Pacific Aviation Museum, Pearl Harbor Museums, and Memorials, and many more. You can get a complete experience while learning and enjoying your scheduled visit!

Byodo-In Temple

Byodo-In Temple Hawaii via Pixabay
Byodo-In Temple Hawaii via Pixabay

Location: 47-200 Kahekili Highway, Kaneohe, Hawaii

The peace and quiet of Byodo-in Temple is a beautiful place of worship where everyone from all kinds of religions can meditate or pray. It’s actually a replica of Japan’s more than 900-year-old Byodo-In Temple in Uji, and it was established to commemorate 100 years of Hawaii had its first Japanese immigrants.

Byodo-In Temple is located at the foot of the Ko’olau Mountains, is as peaceful as it can be, and is an ideal reflecting ground. For those seeking the quiet in Hawaii, this simple place is the spot for you.

Mauna Kea

Mauna Kea Hawaii by Alex Eckermann via Unsplash
Mauna Kea Hawaii by Alex Eckermann via Unsplash

Location: Hilo, Hawaii

If stargazing is your thing, Hawaii’s got an ideal place for you. The Big Island is where you can enjoy watching the stars at night in a dreamy setting. Drive to the Mauna Kea summit and visit telescopes during the daytime, and watch a scenic view of Hawaii’s best sunsets.

When going here, please respect the place as it is known to be where the goddess of snow, Poli’ahu, lives. A precaution, though, make sure you’re in good health when driving to the summit, as there might be risks when traveling to a higher altitude!

Waipi’o Valley

Waipi’o Valley by mana5280 via Unsplash
Waipi’o Valley by mana5280 via Unsplash

Location: Waipio Valley Road, Honokaa, Hawaii

This picturesque valley called Waipi’o (curved water) is one of the must-visits in Hawaii, located on the Big Island. It’s known for the challenging hikes, perfect for the pros who want extreme adventure. There’s also a beach along the valley floor, and it’s not your ordinary kind of beach as you’ll find black sand.

There’s plenty of organized tours you can try going to the valley (including horseback riding!) so expect lots of fun as you traverse through this tropical spot.

Wailua Falls

Wailua Falls by Jimmy Conover via Unsplash
Wailua Falls by Jimmy Conover via Unsplash

Location: Big Island, Hawaii

If you know Fantasy Island, then this place will be familiar to you. This is considered one of Hawaii’s most beautiful waterfalls, and rightfully so because this twin waterfall pours down dramatically onto the Wailua River, which is truly a sight to behold.

It’s also a great sight to see as it’s very accessible without a need for hiking. If you’re lucky, you might be able to spot a rainbow too!

Makena Beach State Park

Makena Beach State Park via Pixabay
Makena Beach State Park via Pixabay

Location: Maui, Hawaii

There’s a lot to explore in Maui, and one of them is Big Beach in Makena Beach State Park. Though undeveloped, this beach boasts of its beautiful nature view while you spend a day fishing, snorkeling, and just swimming in these wide blue waters.

The long stretch of this sandy beach is best for those who are looking for a place to just indulge and relax. Aside from the Big Beach, there’s also a Little Beach that you can explore here too.

Molokai Sea Cliffs

Molokai Sea Cliffs via Pixabay
Molokai Sea Cliffs via Pixabay

Location: Molokai, Hawaii

Yet another stunning attraction to see in Hawaii is the sea cliffs of Molokai, recognized as the world’s highest cliffs. These mesmerizing cliffs were created by forces of wind, waves, and rain, and seeing it in person is just something you wouldn’t want to miss when in Hawaii. To have a better view of paradise, we suggest going on available private helicopter tours.

Explore the sea cliffs in bird’s eye view and see the beauty surrounding it: the lush rainforest, majestic waterfalls, and crystal blue waters. If you’ve got money to spend, take this once-in-a-lifetime trip to see the grand Molokai sea cliffs.

Kona Coffee Farms

Hula Daddy Kona Coffee, Holualoa, Hawaii by Katya Austin via Unsplash
Hula Daddy Kona Coffee, Holualoa, Hawaii by Katya Austin via Unsplash

Location: Kona, Hawaii

Coffee lovers shouldn’t miss what Hawaii has to offer when it comes to the art and love of coffee. Book a Kona Coffee Tour that’ll take you on an incredible journey of all things coffee on the Big Island! Get to see how the locals grow their coffee, try free coffee tasting, see coffee berries, and of course, buy coffee on this scenic road.

There are different farms near Kona, but we highly recommend visiting Kona Coffee Living History Farm, which is known to be the only living history coffee farm in the country. Learn the history of how they make their coffee and enjoy a fun tour as you try local food and see amazing views on Hawaii Island!

Waikiki Neighborhood

Waikiki Hawaii via Pixabay
Waikiki Hawaii via Pixabay

Location: Honolulu, Hawaii

This one-stop destination is for travelers who want to see Hawaii’s urban vibes. Waikiki is an iconic destination in Hawaii as it caters to all kinds of tourists, be it couples, families, solo travelers, or a circle of friends. The Waikiki neighborhood offers many attractions such as the Honolulu Zoo, Kapiolani Park, Moana Surfrider, and lots of restaurants and high-end designer shops that you can enjoy while getting a magnificent view of the island!

Formerly a surfer-favorite destination, Waikiki has evolved into a multicultural community where all locals and tourists will love spending time.

Note: Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, be sure to check these tourist spots’ official websites to see their current operating hours, guidelines, and restrictions. Have a safe trip!

How about you? What’s on your bucket list when you visit Hawaii someday? Share it with us in the comment section below!

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