THE ISLANDS of HAWAII
NKT-Travel has put together some information to help you decide which islands you would like to visit.
Oahu certainly lives up to its nickname as "the Gathering Place." The third largest island is home to the majority of Hawaii's diverse population, a fusion of East and West cultures rooted in the values and traditions of the native Hawaiian people. This is an island of activity. Whether you're learning to surf in legendary Waikiki, hiking through the rich rainforests of Waimea Valley, or watching the brilliant pastels of dusk fade off of Sunset Beach, you'll find variety at every turn on Oahu.
Oahu Quick Facts:
- Duke Kahanamoku, the "Father of Modern Surfing," grew up in Waikiki.
- The big waves of the North Shore arrive during the winter.
- Iolani Palace is known as "America's only royal palace."
- Hanauma Bay is a favorite snorkeling destination.
- Nightlife, music, and entertainment can be found nightly on Oahu.
Maui is the second largest of the Hawaiian Islands, in the United States. It has a population of just over 100,000 and is 727 square miles (1883 km2) in size. Maui is part of Maui County, Hawaii. The larger (or better known) towns include Kahului, Wailuku, Lahaina, Hana, and Wailea. Main industries are agriculture and tourism.
Maui was named for the demi-god Maui. In Hawaiian legend, he raised all the islands from the sea. Maui is also known as the "Valley Isle" for the large fertile isthmus (narrow land connection) between two volcanoes.
Maui is a volcanic doublet: an island formed from two volcanic mountains that are joined together. The older volcano, Mauna Kahalawai, is much older and has been very worn down. In common talk it is called the West Maui Mountain. The larger volcano, Haleakala, rises above 10,000 feet (3,050 m). The last eruption of Haleakala happened over 200 years ago, and this lava flow can be seen between Ahihi Bay and La Perouse Bay on the southeast shore.
The tropical paradise of Kauai basks amidst the sparkling blue waters of the Pacific Ocean about 20 minutes by air from Honolulu. Formed some six million years ago, the island encompasses roughly 550 square miles and is the oldest and northernmost of the main Hawaiian Islands.
To visit Kauai is to quickly lose yourself in the quiet majesty of the island's lush tropical setting and extraordinary natural heritage. Come, discover the legendary aloha spirit that abounds in this friendly garden island paradise.
BIG ISLAND of HAWAII
Famous for the active Kilauea volcano, Hawaii's Big Island is home to a list of fascinating anomalies. Eleven different climate zones generate everything from lush rain forests to arid deserts, black sand beaches to snow-capped mountaintops. The Big Island is Hawaii's biggest playground.
What can I do on Hawaii's Big Island?
- See molten lava flow at Kilauea volcano in Hawaii Volcanoes National Park
- Play in the snow atop Mauna Kea, the world's tallest mountain (measured from the ocean floor)
- Hike through Waipio Valley, the "Valley of the Kings"
- Explore Puukohola Heiau, the largest restored ancient Hawaiian religious temple
- Enjoy the entertainment, culture, and cuisine in Hilo and the Kona Coast