Hawaii: When is the best time to visit?

Rainbow over Kapa'a in Kaua'i


When is the best time to visit
Hawaii - especially its waterfalls?

The state's temperatures are relatively uniform throughout the year. Thanks to its remote location (surrounded by the ocean while at 2,000 miles from the nearest continental landmass) and the unique northeasterly trade winds that help ventilate the humid tropical climate, any time of year is a good time to visit.

But even with that said, there are two main seasons - winter and summer.

The winter season (usually October through April) is characterized by stronger storm systems. These complement the rainfall already brought by the moisture-laden trade winds, which tend to condense and precipitate the windward sides of each island (i.e. the eastern and northeastern shores). Thus, the winter is generally the rainy season and the more reliable time to see waterfalls (though this is far from guaranteed for some of the them).

Heavy winter rain on the Moloka'i North ShoreTemperatures can range from the low 80s to the 50s (the coldest months are February and March (as opposed to December and January) because of the dominance of the ocean). In some cases, the trades along with the lower temperatures and lower humidity may make you think you're not even in a tropical climate! This is also the season where waves crashing into the windward coasts (typically North Shores and Northeastern Shores) are monstrously large, which dare serious surfers to ride the big waves.

The summer season (usually May to September) is characterized by fewer storms and a relatively less overall rainfall (though trade winds can still persist on the windward side of the islands). However, sometimes large convective tropical storms and thunderstorms can develop when trade winds aren't blowing. Hurricanes, while possible, are very rare. There are also infrequent Kona winds (typically only in the summer), which blow opposite the direction of trade winds and bring moisture to the leeward shores of the islands.

Beautiful summer morning at the Dragon's Teeth in MauiTemperatures can range from the high 80s to the high 50s and low 60s in the coastal regions (where most of the population is). The hottest months are August and September; again due to the lagging effect from the dominant ocean surrounding the islands. However, when the ventilating trade winds aren't blowing, it can be uncomfortably hot and humid. Also, many waterfalls tend to dry up as this season progresses (despite the presence of trades). But on the flip side, it's an excellent time for more beach and ocean activities as oceans tend to calm down.

For a more complete climate summary from NOAA's website, click here.



Have A Great Story Or Comment You'd Like To Share?

Here's your chance to share them (as well as post a picture)!

Click here to see visitor comments

Enter Your Title



[Back to top]

[Return from When is the best time to visit? to the Hawaii Page]




FOLLOW US ON:   Facebook   Twitter

There's lots to say about Hawaii and its waterfalls. Click on one of the following links to jump to the section you're interested in...


If you like this page,
you might also like...

Hawaii Map
Hawaii Waterfalls

Hawaii's Top 10
Hawaii's Top 10

South Pacific Waterfalls
South Pacific Waterfalls

Other Hawaiian Attractions
Other Hawaiian Attractions

Hawaii Travel Stories
Hawaii Travel Stories

A Waterfalling Adventure
Tell YOUR Story!


Featured Visitor Stories
or Comments


The Tragedy of Sacred Falls
Prior to the Mothers day landslide that killed 8 people and injured 50 others, on Mothers Day of 1999, Sacred Falls State Park was my favorite hike on this Island...[more]


Gigantic Waterfall Hole
Ahoy! On or about June 1975, on an afternoon helicopter ride with Jack Harter, out of the Kauai Surf Hotel, Na'wili'wili, we were flying west of Kapa'a...[more]


Memories of Likeke Falls
I was stationed at Kaneohe Marine Corps Air Station 1970 to 1972 and frequented the Likeke water falls (Oahu). Back then there was a trail off...[more]


Papalaua Falls
I am extremely familiar with Papalaua Falls. I used to run kayak trips down Koolau Moloka'i and will again someday. I also made two documentaries including the falls...[more]


Wailua Falls, Kauai
I loved Wailua Falls. We hiked to the bottom and swam in the gigantic pool. We got such beautiful pictures of our family. The hike was not well marked and very steep....[more]


Mountain Apples
I was stationed at Schofield Barracks from 1980-1983. I was introduced to Sacred Falls by some locals at my church. My fondest memory was climbing the hillsides on the trail...[more]


Likeke Falls - Easier path
I am a professional photographer and was turned onto this waterfall by a local tour company which took hikers up to Likeke waterfall on a daily basis...[more]


Explore the
World of Waterfalls

World of Waterfalls Map
See Where We've Been!

Top 10 Waterfalls
The World's Top 10

Waterfalls FAQ
Waterfalls FAQ

Waterfalls 101
Waterfalls 101

World of Waterfalls: An Emotive Journey
Take an Emotive Journey!


Waterfalls Blog