Oahu or Kauai – which island is right for you?
Here’s a few things you can count on with a Hawaii vacation: warm weather, rich culture, incredible beaches, inspiring scenery and the likelihood you’ll say “this is paradise” at least once daily.
With its South Pacific location and embracing spirit of aloha — the multiple-meaning Hawaiian word that translates as “breath of life” — Hawaii has topped wish lists for sun-craving Canadians for decades. We’re Hawaii’s second-largest international tourism market, after Japan.
The emphasis on Native Hawaiian language, history and culture means the 50th state feels very different from the U.S. mainland.
All beaches are public. There are no all-inclusive resorts, although some tour operators book packages with flights, hotels and tours.
This won’t be a budget getaway. Food, drink and accommodation prices are the same as any major North American city — and in U.S. dollars.
One way to save a few bucks is by doing good. Sign up for one of more than three dozen Malama Hawaii program activities. A couple hours of giving back by repairing a heritage fish pond or helping restore the USS Missouri at Pearl Harbor can earn a free night’s hotel stay.
In response to overtourism, visitors are encouraged to travel on a deeper level, getting to know more about the Hawaiian people, supporting local businesses and travelling responsibly and respectfully, especially when visiting sacred sites.
Which of the six main Hawaiian islands will be your getaway paradise? I visited two on a recent trip: Oahu and Kauai. Both are easy to get to, with direct six-and-a-half hour flights from Vancouver.
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