Welcome to Hawaii
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
Information & Facts
The climate of Hawaii is more subtropical than tropical, due to
the fact that the sea surrounding the islands has a moderating
effect. Weather conditions tend to be fairly consistent, with
little temperature variation. There are two seasons, neither of
which is particularly extreme. Summer (May to October) has pleasant
temperatures and humidity is low, with the average highs of 82°F
(28°C). Winter (November to April) has temperatures that rarely
fall below 65°F (18°C). The climate of each Hawaiian island can
differ according to whether they fall on the windward side or not,
as those areas on the windward side experience more rain and cloud
cover caused by prevailing north easterly trade winds. Hawaiian
resorts tend to therefore cluster on the leeward sides so that
tourists can enjoy the benefits of more sunshine.
English is the most common language but Spanish is often
spoken in south-western states.
The US Dollar (USD) is the unit of currency and is divided into
100 cents. Only major banks exchange foreign currency. ATMs are
widespread and credit cards and travellers cheques are widely
accepted. Travellers cheques should be taken in US Dollars to avoid
hassles. Banking hours are Monday to Friday 9am to 3pm.