Hawaii’s best little beach towns
One of the best ways to explore the Hawaiian Islands is by learning more about the local culture that pertains to each unique island and county; Maui, Oahu, Kauai and the Big Island. Each of the Hawaiian Islands are incredibly different! Yes, they are all Hawaii, but they are also all very singular in offerings.
By visiting small towns in Hawaii, you can easily see the rare qualities that each island offers while catching glimpses of Hawaii’s historical and cultural past. When visiting Hawaii’s best beach towns, make sure to check out all the top Hawaii activities. No matter what Hawaiian Island you choose to visit, get ready to have a blast! You’re about to embark on one of the most remarkable journeys of your life!
Approximately 8 miles East of the Kahului Airport, all guests will be stoked as they drive into Maui’s Historic Pa’ia Town! Pa’ia is like the main hub of Maui’s North Shore, a place for folks to congregate, shop, dine, explore and experience some real, local culture. Like no other small town in Hawaii, Pa’ia oozes with the energy of its Hawaii plantation past with historic buildings and a variety of locally owned businesses. It’s not just the best beach town on Maui; it’s one of the best beach towns in the world! Yeah, Pa’ia has changed due to an influx of visitors, new residents, and development.
Located on Oahu’s Windward side is the fabulous and ‘historically Hawaiian’ Kailua Town. Set against the incredibly gorgeous Kailua Beach coastline, this Oahu beach town is in my opinion the creme de la creme of Hawaii beach towns. I love Kailua so much!
When in Haleiwa, do as the locals do! Haleiwa Town has been one of Oahu’s most popularly visited destination since the late 1960’s, and is notably one of the most famous surf locales in the world! Here you can enjoy local surf culture and a laid back island lifestyle, fresh caught fish and grilled shrimp, great restaurants, shave ice, yoga, nightlife and some really fun shopping opportunities.
Last but not least, we have the famous Waikiki area of Oahu. Waikiki is not quite a little beach town in Hawaii due to the fact that there are such high numbers of visitors every year. But, it is worth noting because #1, it’s one of the most popular destinations in Hawaii, and #2, it’s pretty freakin’ unique.
Kailua-Kona is located on the Island of Hawaii, also known as the Big Island. Situated seaside on the Kona coast, Kailua-Kona is one of Hawaii’s best little towns. Referred to as sometime just “Kona,” this town is rich in Hawaiian culture and history. Throughout Kona guests can explore a myriad of activities on land and in the ocean.
Hawi, Hawi, Hawi. In my opinion, Hawi is one of the Big Island’s best kept secrets. This Big Island small town is perched alongside the far Northern coastline of the Big Island’s Kohala area. In fact, Hawi Town sits exactly across from the Island of Maui, directly across from Kaupo on the Maui Channel.
Hilo is located on Hawaii’s Big Island. The historic Downtown Hilo offers so many experiences for those that are curious to learn more about the Big Island. Why do I love Hilo so much? Well, first, I always admire Hawaii’s plantation-style architecture and historic store fronts. Visiting an ‘Old Hawaii-style’ town that reaches towards great lengths for preservation does nothing less than open your mind to the mysteries of Hawaii’s cultural and historical past. Too often lately, many of Hawaii’s old school charms and locally owned businesses are slowly disappearing. Therefore, I think it’s super important to not only experience Hawaii’s enticing little town centers, but also to really appreciate the opportunities and people you may come across.
Located on the North Shore of Kauai, Hanalei is found just a few minutes North of Princeville resort areas. This charming Kauai beach town truly offers a form of luxury that’s not found often! Actually, the vibe that Hanalei exudes is like no place in the universe.
And, then there’s always the Garden Isle! Oh boy. Where to start! Kauai’s sweet and quaint Kapa’a Town community is probably one of my favorite places to visit in Hawaii.
Guarded by the Sleeping Giant in the background, Kapa’a is actually one of the most densely populated locales in Kauai. Kapa’a translates to “solid” in the ancient Hawaiian language, and that’s exactly what this Kauai beach town is. Straight up, solid!