Oahu vs. Maui

If you’re searching for your next vacation spot, you’re on the right track. There is no better place than Hawaii’s Oahu and Maui. It doesn’t matter what type of getaway you want to experience, it is guaranteed that these islands have it for you.
Oahu vs. Maui

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A Hawaiian vacation is a vacation that’s to die for. Not a single visitor to this remarkable place has ever left with a frown on their face, and it’s easy to know why! The state of Hawaii is a known tropical haven perfect for any traveler.

When people think of Hawaii, the first ideas that come to their mind are beaches, volcanos, and some surfing. While the Hawaiian islands do have these, they have so much more to offer. That’s right, if you don’t know it yet, these islands have varying and distinct characteristics that you are sure to love.

Now, since you’re here, you’re probably sure already that you want to go to Hawaii. The next step is knowing which island you want to visit. With 8 major islands, just how would you know the best one for you?

Choosing the Hawaiian island you would visit is the same as choosing the type of experience you want to enjoy. With that in mind, there are no better islands to compare than the two that contrast each other a lot. That’s why this article would show you the islands of Oahu and Maui in particular.

Oahu is a modern island while Maui is more regarded for its ruralness. Oahu is more developed and touristy than the other islands in Hawaii. It also has more accommodations and establishments for visitors to revel in.

On the other hand, Maui is the place to go if you want to relax and revitalize in a tranquil atmosphere. Here you would be treated to nature’s embrace. Astounding sceneries and refreshing activities would fill your schedule.

Now, it would be hard to choose from the two islands just by a summary of what they offer. That’s why you should check out their best features to know just what makes them an amazing vacation spot. Read on ahead, and you are sure to have a destination in mind before finishing this article.


The island of Oahu is the place to go if you want comfort and luxury. There is no better Hawaiian island than this place to treat you to life’s greatest pleasures. This island specializes in utilizing its breathtaking scenery for its man-made recreational hubs. Here, you would get the best of comfort and nature’s beauty.

Oahu is known to be the best place for those who would visit the Hawaiian islands for the first time. This amazing island is equipped with facilities and amenities to accommodate any traveler.

To top it all off, the locals of Oahu are also hospitable and vibrant people. This makes it an ideal destination, especially for families and huge groups.

All of the major islands in Hawaii have been given a nickname that speaks of their characteristics. For Oahu, the nickname it has received is “The Gathering Place”. There can be numerous reasons for this moniker, but mostly it is because it has the highest population in the state.

Oahu as the Gathering Place is also apt with its history and current status. It is a natural harbor, making it a hub for people all over the world to trade and interact.

The island played a significant role in Hawaii’s history as it was frequented by visitors from the East and West alike. Nowadays, it is known to be the most visited place in the state, with over 4.7 million visitors every year.

Now, being modern and a central hub for socializing isn’t all that Oahu is known for. The Gathering Place became a popular tourist destination for several reasons.

With that in mind, here are the best features that you should look at. This might just be the location for your dream Hawaiian vacation.

What Makes Oahu Unique

Modern Living in a Tropical Sanctuary

With Oahu’s strategic location as a natural harbor, it has developed much faster than the other Hawaiian islands. Because of this, the island’s culture has become more enriched and heterogeneous. It has also adapted into a welcoming and accommodating destination for visitors around the world.

A vacation in Hawaii’s islands is sought after for the premium island getaway that they offer. Often, what comes to mind are abundant greeneries, humble beaches, and locals dancing the hula. Although these are still present in modern-day Oahu, it has evolved with more to offer.

On this island, your beach experience would most likely come from luxurious resorts or lively beaches. You can still have the typical Hawaiian vacation here, but you’d share it with more people. Besides that, there are also more facilities and amenities for your convenience.

Oahu doesn’t lack spas, wellness, and beauty parlors. Here, you can focus on treating yourself to the world’s best pleasures. Where else is it better to pamper one’s self than in one of the most stunning places you can ever visit?

The island’s urban aspect also means your usual concerns when planning a vacation are answered perfectly. That means there’s easy transportation, accommodation, and even communication with the locals. There are tens of thousands of visitors going on this island every day, so you would never feel out of place!

Abundant Marine Life You Can Explore

One of Oahu’s most admired natural beauty is its aquatic scene. The island has numerous beaches that are great for various beach activities and water sports. Yet, what makes this island unique appears just as you dive into its waters.

Surfing is a common activity on this island. There are big and small waves that are ideal for any surfer. Many water sports are done on Oahu for thrill seekers. However, if you want to fully appreciate the island, you’d have to go snorkeling or diving!

There is so much to explore in Oahu underwater. You would have unforgettable experiences with the island’s abundant marine life. By snorkeling or diving, you are guaranteed to have fascinating encounters with some aquatic creatures!

Oahu is frequented by green sea turtles, dolphins, and even manta rays! If you’re up for some thrill, there are also services offering shark diving. If you’re not familiar with it, it’s exactly what it sounds like. However, there would be a cage separating you for safety.

There’s no lack of snorkeling spots in Oahu for you to discover. There are lagoons, beaches, bays, coves, and canyons you can go to! Just make sure to check which ones are close to your accommodation. Your Oahu vacation can only be complete with a dip in its waters.

Historical Landmarks That Would Fill Your Eyes and Mind

The state of Hawaii has a fascinating history that’s ripe with culture and talks of important pieces of the past. Oahu, in particular, plays a huge part in one of the world’s grimmest times — World War II.

Due to its deep past, Hawaii has several historical landmarks and monuments that you can explore. However, there are countless places in the world where you can find mementos of the past. So, the question is what makes Oahu’s landmarks special?

It is only on the island of Oahu that you can experience such significant parts of the history with a backdrop of the world’s best sceneries. There’s no place better to learn and appreciate the past than one where you can gawk at the view as well.

On top of that, the monuments and landmarks are strategically displayed. Of course, most of these are placed according to their history. But, the environment is utilized in each exhibit to create a great mixture of artificial creation and the earth’s natural beauty.

Going to one of these places would treat you to some learning and breathtaking sights. However, it might be hard for you to visit every monument on the island. With that in mind, here are some of Oahu’s best historical landmarks you should check.

Diamond Head Monument

The Diamond Head Monument is an astounding destination that showcases the beauty of Oahu. Here, you would appreciate gorgeous views of the coast, the landscape, and its historic structures.

This monument holds the amazing Fort Ruger which remains standing today. It is known for being the first fortification ever built by the US Army on an island. The monument holds some of the equipment and weaponry used in the past.

Diamond Head Monument is the place to be if you want a great vantage point to take satisfaction in viewing the island. Its history with the military just makes it a more fascinating spot. There’s sure to be something of interest for everyone who would visit.

Pearl Harbor National Memorial

The Pearl Harbor National Memorial, also known as the USS Arizona Memorial, offers a peak at one of the most significant pieces of Oahu’s past. The attack on Pearl Harbor during World War II is a grim but pivotal point in time.

The events that transpired in this memorial shook and changed the world. Such a momentous incident is important to be remembered. This is why people from all around the world purposely visit Oahu just to see this memorial.

The Pearl Habor National Memorial is built on the remnants of the sunken USS Arizona. About $65 million were used to produce this. Creating 17 acres (6.9 ha) of a fascinating and enriching exploration of the past.

It now has monuments, museums, and a courtyard for the family to discover. There are also tours for you to participate in, including an audio tour. To top it all off, there is even a virtual reality center that takes the experience to the next level.

Mauna ʻAla — Royal Mausoleum State Monument

For royalties, their place of residence is always lavish and grand in design. This does not only apply to when they are living. The Royal Mausoleum State Monument will show you exactly why!

The Royal Mausoleum State Monument, also known as the Mauna ‘Ala, is an astounding place that’s sure to make your jaw drop. This destination serves as the crypt for some of the most influential families in the history of Hawaii.

Mauna ‘Ala is the mausoleum for the royal families of the Kamehameha Dynasty and the Kalākaua Dynasty. Here, you can enjoy observing numerous gravestones and tombs. Their intricate details and gorgeous exteriors are sure to amaze you.

All the Best Sights Nature Can Offer

No matter how convenient the location of a place is, people wouldn’t frequent going to it if it’s appalling to the eyes. This is why The Gathering Place remains to be one of the most popular tourist destinations all around the world. Not only is the place a natural harbor, but it’s also filled with gorgeous sights to take in.

Oahu’s modernity comes as a package with its natural beauty. For many metropolises in the world, they have sacrificed much of their environment to build more establishments. Oahu, on the other hand, creates harmony with the contemporary and nature.

For you, this means that Oahu is a comfortable place where you can enjoy pristine environments. Luckily, there is no lack of beautiful spots on this island. There are mountains, beaches, and even rainforests for you to explore.

There are numerous lookout points from hills and cliffs, as well as fascinating trails for you to try. It is important to note that there are challenging treks on the island. However, there are easier hikes that even families can enjoy.

It is hard to imagine going on a Hawaiian vacation without being able to appreciate the island’s nature. With that in mind, you must visit at least one of Oahu’s natural landmarks. Here are some of the island’s best that you might love!

Nuuanu Pali Lookout

The beauty of Oahu’s nature is best seen through the wonderful Nuuanu Pali Lookout. This offers a vantage point for you to enjoy views of the Koolau cliffs and stunning Windward Coast. There are numerous areas that you can see here, including the Kaneohe, Kailua, and Mokolii.

The Nuuanu Pali Lookout is the best way to escape Oahu’s busy center. Here, you would be treated to the most astounding natural sights you could ever see on the island. Views of the skyline, landscape, and coastline make for the perfect sightseeing experience.

Ka’a’awa Valley

The Ka’a’awa Valley is one of the most charming and extraordinary places you can ever visit in Oahu. Despite the island being known for its modernity, this valley may be your favorite destination. Here you would have a tranquil atmosphere, gentle breeze, and gorgeous scenery.

The Ka’a’awa Valley is culturally significant for the locals. It is also largely popular internationally. It has numerous cows on location and the astounding Ko’olau Mountains. This place is also famous as a film location for many successful films!

The Byodo-In Temple

The Ko’olau Mountains is a geological landmark that’s sure to take your breath away. Its beauty and atmosphere allures numerous tourists all around the world.

The best way for you to enjoy this amazing place is by going to one of its most astounding features. This is none other than the Byodo-In Temple.

The Byodo-In Temple is located on the base of the Ko’olau Mountains in the Valley of the Temples Memorial Park. It boasts one of the most scenic views on the whole island of Oahu.

The astounding temple itself is an amazing structure with several monuments you can gawk at. Its intricacies and the natural beauty of the environment make it a must-visit!

Kaneohe Sandbar

One of Oahu’s main attractions is its sandbar known to be the largest saltwater sandbar you could ever see. The Kaneohe Sandbar is a gorgeous and fascinating natural attraction that you are guaranteed to love.

Sandbars are submerged portions of the shore that are near the water’s surface. The exquisite white sands of the Kaneohe Bay are even more astounding here. It makes for the perfect day at the beach, surrounded by some of nature’s best views.

Halona Blowhole

The Halona Blowhole is a natural wonder that you shouldn’t miss! This astounding attraction is formed way back when Oahu’s volcanos erupted. They formed molten lava tubes that make fascinating rock formations.

Today, these lava tubes present an even interesting show. When the currents and waves are stronger, they hit these tubes.

This makes the rush of water go out the tubes into what looks like blowholes. The scenic views of this destination and its amazing natural phenomenon are truly a must-see.

Enriched and Colorful Culture

One of the perks of being in The Gathering Place is having a heterogenous culture. If you’re not familiar with what that is, it simply means that Oahu is a hotpot of several traditions and beliefs. Although the local culture on the island is still evident, outside influences are also quite prominent.

There are Eastern and Western cultural impacts that are noticeable in today’s Oahu. You can observe it through their food, festivals, and lifestyle. Despite this, Oahu has still managed to keep its cultural identity intact.

To do this, the island celebrates numerous events that honor its traditions, beliefs, and heritage. If you are lucky enough to be able to participate here, you would be treated to music, performances, and food! You would also get to know how it feels like to be part of the Hawaiian community.

Another great way to experience their culture is through their cuisine. Oahu is known to be a haven for food lovers all around the world. With its mixed culture, it is sure that there’s a great meal on this island for every single person. Who knows? Your new favorite food might be here!

Now, experiencing Oahu’s culture is a sure way to make your vacation unforgettable. That’s why you should check these out. These offer a taste of the island’s deep and rich culture.


At the Kahala Hotel lies one of Oahu’s most delectable menus. The food establishment that you would have to try in this place is known as the Hoku’s. It is a beachside restaurant with an elegant ambiance, making it perfect for fine dining.

Hoku’s offers some of the best dishes you’d ever eat in Oahu. The restaurant itself has been awarded as a Critic’s Choice Best Restaurant.

The kitchen, on the other hand, is managed by a seasoned chef trained in the world’s top-tier eateries. Here, you would be able to enjoy French and local flavors served as fresh as they can be.

Lucky Belly

On 50 North Hotel Street lies one of the best restaurants in Oahu known as Luck Belly. This astounding restaurant offers great Asian dishes. Their menu is guaranteed to make your mouth water.

The ambiance here is comfortable but classy. You can order lobster gyozas or oxtail dumplings for a savory taste of Hawaii’s flavors.

They have successfully used their local flavors to create a new take on Asian dishes. You can expect the same aromatic and scrumptious food of Asian cuisine served with the freshest ingredients on the island.


STRIPSTEAK Waikiki is the place to go if you want to enjoy American cuisine. It is considered to be a modern steakhouse, but it offers so much more than just its meat. They serve the best steaks and even seafood.

Here you would see your favorite American dishes touched by the influence of Asian cuisine. It is an upscale restaurant so you might have to prepare more cash to dine here. However, it is guaranteed to serve you meals that are more than worth the price!


Do you see yourself on your Hawaiian vacation in a laid-back manner? Is sipping cocktails on a lovely beach with a gorgeous sunset your definition of a great time? Then the island of Maui is the best destination for you!

The island of Maui is known all around the world by vacationers as one of the most relaxing places you can go to. This astounding island receives more than 2 million visitors yearly but adamantly remains to be rural. It might have fewer hotels and malls, but it has more natural beauty to discover.

Maui is best known for its gorgeous beaches that visitors describe as a tropical sanctuary. Its beaches are world-class and offer some of the most sceneries you can ever see. To top it all off, watching sunsets and stargazing here would make your jaw drop.

Now, for some people, the idea of being on a rural island sounds difficult. However, Maui is well-adjusted for visitors. There are enough hotels and food establishments for you to enjoy, as well as activities and events to participate in.

You should already know about the major islands of Hawaii having a nickname. For Maui, this happens to be “The Valley Isle”.

This is mostly due to its geographical landscape that turns its center into flat land. Yet, its sides are filled with towering mountains.

Its landscape and rural environment make it one of the most beautiful places in the world. Imagine, anywhere you go on this island, you would be treated to astounding sights and clear skylines.

Instead of skyscrapers, you would see the gentle swaying of trees and maybe some green luscious mountains.

To top it all off, Maui’s culture is also as beautiful as the island itself. Here, there are mouthwatering island food and exhilarating festivals.

If these aren’t enough to make you want to go to Maui, then that just means you haven’t pictured it well yet. So, here are some of its best features to help you see just how gorgeous this island is.

What Makes Maui Unique

Extraordinary Geographical Landscape

The island of Maui is composed of two towering mountains which are connected through a valley in the middle.

Most of the population lives in this center, while the attractions are scattered around. One thing for sure is no matter where you are on this island, you’d have a breathtaking view.

The mountains encompassing the island are the two volcanos that shaped it. These are the Haleakala and the Mauna Kahalawai. They are also known as the East Maui Volcano and West Maui Volcano respectively.

Haleakala is the larger of the two volcanos, making up about 75% of Maui’s land. It is an enormous mountain that you can appreciate even from afar.

It has a fascinating environment, with a large part being barren land. Here, you would be treated to gorgeous sights that are uncommon in mountain regions.

The Mauna Kahalawai on the other hand only makes up 25% of the island. Despite this, it is still a popular landmark as everyone appreciates its natural beauty. It showcases lush greeneries and a serene atmosphere you are sure to love.

Maui’s valley makes the island easier to travel through. Its flat lands make for simple roads, meaning shorter distances toward various destinations. The landscape also gives the island a charming skyline that you can enjoy anywhere.

Distinct and Varying Beach Towns

Many islands in Hawaii have gorgeous towns with numerous activities you can revel in. However, Maui’s towns have different personalities that personify some of the best aspects of Hawaii. This makes a vacation on this island almost like going through different countries in a short time.

Forget the usually crowded and skyscraper-filled cities. Maui has distinct towns that offer varying unique experiences. Each town showcases the beauty and diversity of the Hawaiian culture.

You’d be able to see historic landmarks, bustling markets, Old West–like streets, and many others. Your itinerary would be filled to the brim with amazing destinations.

To top it all off, most of these towns have beaches in their vicinity. Each gorgeous beach has outstanding sceneries and fun activities you can enjoy. Yet, what makes them interesting is the town that they are in as they add for a better experience.

There are numerous towns for you to visit on this island. Yet, it would be time-consuming and tiring to visit all of these places. With that in mind, here are some of the most noteworthy towns in Maui. Make sure to pick one that suits you best and find accommodation near it!


The town of Lahaina showcases some of the best features of Maui. For one, it is a vibrant place filled with energetic locals and colorful buildings. There are numerous boutiques and antique shops as well. To top it all off, the town is also frequented by whales come the winter season.

Lahaina also has Hawaii’s coconut farm where you can join educational tours. This town is also filled with numerous food establishments for you to enjoy. Of course, this place is also very gorgeous with its quaint edifices and mountains in its backdrop.


The town of Pāʻia is the best destination for those that love going to the beach. If your ideal island vacation is focused on enjoying the sand, then this place is for you.

Pāʻia is considered to be one of the best examples of island life. Streets and locals here are covered in sand. It is also known for its galleries and boutiques that are sure to pique your interests.


Hāna of Maui is a simple place that offers some of the most tranquil and stunning atmospheres you can experience. It is located on the east side of the island, boasting the best natural sights. Here, there are falls, pools, and rainforests for you to discover.

This peaceful town is the best place to go for revitalization. You are guaranteed to feel the weight off your shoulders as soon as you get here. To top it all off, the road to this town is famous for being the best scenic drive you can imagine.

Thriving Whale-Watching Industry

Whale watching is a popular activity in the entirety of Hawaii. Such beautiful islands are the best location to observe majestic creatures playing around.

However, the problem for most tourists is that there are no guarantees they’d be able to see a whale even during a tour. That’s why the island of Maui is the ideal place for your whale-watching endeavors!

Most places in Hawaii offer a spot for you to try whale watching, yet not all end fruitfully. Maui, on the other hand, is famous for being one of the most regular routes for whales during migration. That means there’s a better chance for you to see a whale on this island successfully.

There’s no better way to appreciate the turquoise waters and breathtaking views than to see some of the most regal creatures of the ocean. If you are fortunate enough to see one, you’d be able to see the beauty of nature through such gentle giants.

Once you’ve been graced by the presence of whales, you are sure to develop a new appreciation for nature. Whale watching also promotes healthy ecotourism. It helps to educate people on the beauty of seeing animals in their natural habitat.

You can search for vantage points near your accommodation to see migrating whales. However, the best way to enjoy this activity is by joining a whale-watching tour.

You’d most probably end up on a cruise where you can relax while feeling up the fresh sea breeze. It is sure to be an unforgettable moment no matter what!

Fascinating Hikes With Outstanding Views

The island of Maui is most famous for its gorgeous landscape anyone would appreciate. Here, there is a lot of relaxing places and fancy resorts you can spend time in while enjoying the view. However, to truly understand the beauty of this island, you would have to explore it!

Maui’s interesting landscape doesn’t just make the island easy to travel around. It also has extensive wildlife filled with fascinating sights. You can expect varying flora and fauna as well as other natural marvels.

You can enjoy all of these without breaking a sweat. There are helicopter tours and establishments that offer good vantage points. However, there would be so much that you’d miss. Only a look up close would tell you the beauty of Maui’s environment.

This is why hiking is the best way for you to enjoy Maui’s best natural features. Lucky for you, there are numerous trails on the island that you are sure to love. Each one offers great views and exhilarating treks. Talk about a fun time!

You can go hiking to see the island’s bays, falls, valleys, and ridges. All of these are great destinations that would make your trek more than worth it. The only problem is choosing which one you should go to.

Here are the best trails in Maui that you should check out. Prepare proper equipment and sufficient training to complete these treks. Make sure to map out your itinerary as well so you wouldn’t be too far from the hike of your choice.

Hosmer Grove Loop Trail

Inside the Haleakala National Park lies one of the most interesting hikes you can ever try on! The Hosmer Grove Loop Trail is known to have the record for the trek with the highest elevation in the shortest distance. Just from this, you already know that it’s challenging.

The Haleakala has five different climate zones which you may be able to observe during your hike. This environment also brought up a healthy and diverse flora and fauna for you to encounter.

To top it all off, the Hosmer Grove Loop Trail boasts some of the best vantage points for you to appreciate the island of Maui.

Wai’anapanapa State Park Trails

The Wai’anapanapa State Park Trails is generally an easier hike but has more features to offer. In this trail lies Maui’s black-sand beach and numerous lava tubes. There are also lava caves in this place.

Foliage is also rich in this area, making a great and unique scenery of black and green. The coastline also has some blowholes which are always fascinating to observe. This hike is a must-do especially if you plan on going to Hana.

La Perouse Bay Trails

The La Perouse Bay Trails are composed of a rocky coastline and sea estuaries. It is said to have been made as far back as 1790. Now, it serves as one of the best places to hike with some monuments for you to observe.

This place is also known to be a popular spot for dolphins to visit. Just make sure to prepare proper attire as this place is also windy.

Scenic Drives to Your Destinations

Maui does not lack gorgeous sights and fascinating views. This rural island has a lot of it preserved and untouched. Hiking would let you appreciate these up close, but driving gives you a different experience.

The best way to go around Maui is by renting a car. This lets you move at your own pace and take any pee breaks you want. Yet, what makes car renting the best is you can go on long drives to appreciate scenic views.

For vacationers, driving is usually downtime until they get to their actual destination. However, in Maui, your road trip is half of the fun!

You would be bombarded with some of the best sights your eyes can catch. If you have the time, you can also stop at some of the scenic views to grab a great picture!

One of the most popular features of Maui is its road to Hana. While Hana is a fantastic destination, the road leading to it offers a magnificent experience that would take your breath away. There are tons of picturesque sceneries and even some good tourist spots along the way.

You might want to consider checking the best routes for your itinerary. Your rides may take longer, but you are guaranteed to have a spectacular time enjoying nature’s best displays.

Picture-Worthy Beaches

What is a Hawaiian vacation without going to at least one beach? Surely, no vacationer has gone to this state without packing their beach wear. Hawaii is popular for its beaches after all. Lucky for you, the island of Maui does not lack great beaches to choose from.

Maui has the usual dream beach for many. There’s the golden sand, turquoise waters, fluttering trees, and gentle sea breeze. However, if you want a change of scenery on your beach, then this island has it for you.

The island of Maui has different colors of beaches. There’s gold, white, red, black, and even green. All of these are fantastic destinations offering some of the most unique picture backgrounds. How often do you see someone posing on a green or red beach?

The beaches on this island not only differ in color. The calmness of the wave depends on what part of Maui you are on. The sand may also be fine or grainy, and the shore may be rocky! That’s why you need to check out the beaches before going.

With that in mind, here are some of the most unique beaches in Maui that you should consider for your itinerary. Whichever you decide to go to, you are certain to have an extraordinary experience. Just choose the one that piques your interest the most.

Makena Beach State Park

The Makena Beach State Park offers a huge stretch of fine white sand for beach lovers. It has the Big Beach and the Little Beach perfect for a day on the shores. There are numerous activities that you can participate in here so the whole family would be kept busy.

The Makena Beach State Park is also fully equipped with amenities and facilities for maximum comfort. This beach is also known for its stunning views. It is encompassed by black lava outcroppings while also offering gorgeous sights of the Molokini and Kahoolawe.

Ka’anapali Beach

Ka’anapali Beach is the beach-goer’s go-to on the island of Maui. Not only is this beach gorgeous, but it also has some of the best hotels and resorts in the place. Here, you can have a luxurious day at the beach.

This beach offers some relaxing and other exhilarating activities. You can go shopping, dine, or enjoy a museum.

On the other hand, you can also go on zip lines, snorkeling, or cliff diving. This makes it the perfect destination for groups. There’s just something for everyone here!

Baldwin Beach Park

Baldwin Beach Park is the ideal destination for families and vacationers who want to have a relaxing time. This beach has a long stretch of golden sand that glimmers over the sun. It has pristine waters and fluttering trees all over. This gives it a serene atmosphere you are sure to love.

This beach also comes prepared to handle crowds. There are bathrooms, lifeguards, showers, and other important facilities for your convenience.

Which is Better – Maui or Oahu?

Knowing the best features and characteristics of Oahu and Maui should help you in deciding which island is better for you.

In general, Maui is the place to go to for those who want to experience their Hawaiian vacation with less crowd and more natural sights. Oahu on the other hand is better for those who want to treat themselves to luxury and other man-made pleasures.

Both islands are easy to travel through. Maui’s geographical landscape and ruralness mean easier transportation and less travel time. Oahu on the other hand as a more developed island also has more advanced transportation. You would have an easier time finding taxis or Uber and Lyft here.

Oahu’s population and numerous visitors may cause traffic at times. It is also more like a city in the Pacific than a tropical island.

Although this is not a bad thing, it is a little different from what most think of a Hawaiian vacation. Despite this, you wouldn’t run out of things to do, and there’s something for every family member to enjoy.

On the other hand, Maui is the typical idea of a person whenever they think of Hawaii. Its main features are the ones that are more commonly depicted in pop culture.

It has gorgeous beaches, lush greeneries, and even a prosperous whale-watching industry. To top it all off, its food and festivals are sure to be unforgettable.

Now, you should probably already know which island you would love to visit. Just make sure to prepare and research ahead the weather conditions and plan your itinerary properly. You don’t have to worry, however, as a vacation on any Hawaiian island is guaranteed to be exceptional and memorable.


Is Maui Prettier Than Oahu?

Maui and Oahu are pretty islands in their own right. Oahu is a large, bustling island with lots to offer — from luxury resorts to thriving nightlife. However, Maui is the picture-perfect image of a tropical vacation. It is up to you to decide whether a rural or urban island is prettier in your definition.

Is Maui Less Crowded Than Oahu?

Maui is less crowded than the island of Oahu. Maui has a population of 144,000, while Oahu has almost a million. Consequently, Maui has about 2 million visitors yearly, while Oahu has upwards of 4 million.

Is Maui Cheaper or More Expensive Than Oahu?

Maui is a cheaper destination than Oahu. The average expenditure in Maui is about $220 per day. On the other hand, visitors to Oahu spend an average of $266 daily. This includes accommodation, entrance fees, meals, transportation, and other necessities. Maui is cheaper because of its affordable hotels, but meals and transportation tend to be more expensive.

Why Is Maui More Expensive Than Oahu?

Generally, Maui is a cheaper destination than Oahu. However, this is only because Oahu’s accommodations are more luxurious. Aside from that, meals and transportation are often more expensive in Maui. This is because the demand for these services is more than the supplies.

Is It Cheaper to Go to Oahu or Maui?

Flight costs for Oahu are generally more expensive than for Maui. However, it is important to note that several factors may change this. Oahu flights may go for about $226 – $330. Maui on the other hand may go for $212 – $435. For your entire stay on the island, Oahu would also be more expensive.

Maui or Oahu for Family Vacation

The ideal island for a family vacation depends largely on what the group wants to do. If their idea of a Hawaiian vacation is staying in or pampering themselves in a resort, then Oahu is a better choice. On the other hand, if exploring various distinct beach towns and natural sights interest them more, then Maui is better.

Which Is Better for Kids – Maui or Oahu?

Maui is considered by most visitors to be a better destination for kids. This is regarding the idea that kids get bored easily and are in constant need of a changing environment. That is why Maui’s numerous beach towns with different personalities appeal to them better.

Maui or Oahu With Toddler

Oahu is generally determined to be the better choice for a vacation with toddlers. Both islands have gorgeous sights and fun activities. They also offer encounters with flora and fauna that toddlers would love. That’s why the deciding factor for this is the comfort and accessibility of the islands. Oahu, being the modern island, has the upper hand in this area.

Oahu or Maui With Teens

Generally, Oahu is a slightly more popular destination for teenagers. At this age, they often have an idea already of what they want to see and do.

That is why it is largely up to them what the better destination would be. Oahu offers more luxury and gorgeous resorts for a good time. Maui on the other hand has more Instagram-able views and exhilarating activities they can enjoy.

Maui or Oahu for Couples

Maui is often a better choice for couples to enjoy. This destination is considered to be more romantic, giving more chances for intimate moments. It also has more dining options that offer exquisite views. However, Oahu is also a good place for couples to relax and just enjoy each other’s company.

Maui vs. Oahu Wedding

Maui offers better views and a more relaxed atmosphere that’s perfect for a wedding. There are more beaches and other natural sights that you can choose for your location. Oahu on the other hand has more luxurious resorts and hotels. Yet, it is also more crowded and busy.

Maui or Oahu for Honeymoon

Maui is often the go-to destination for couples who want a Hawaiian honeymoon. Its gorgeous landscapes, stunning beaches, and exhilarating activities make it an ideal place. Although Oahu does not lack great views and destinations, its bustling streets and crowded hotels make it less intimate.

Oahu or Maui for Seniors

Oahu is generally more preferred by the seniors traveling in the Hawaiian islands. Oahu has more bus tours that allow them to enjoy the views without exerting effort. It is also better equipped for seniors with its numerous amenities and facilities.

Maui vs. Oahu for First-Timers

Oahu might be a better destination for those that would go to these Hawaiian islands for the first time. It has better transportation, accommodations, and facilities. Generally, it is a much more comfortable experience.

Are There More Things to Do in Maui or Oahu?

Maui has more natural destinations, so there are also more things to do and explore here. Its numerous beaches and fascinating landmarks guarantee that you would not run out of activities.

Does Maui or Oahu Have Better Beaches?

Oahu is known to have the best beaches in all of Hawaii. This island has 365 kilometers (227 miles) of shoreline, so there’s an endless amount of beaches to choose from. Its bays are protected with reefs, giving it a richer marine life and calm waters all year round.

Oahu vs. Maui Snorkeling

Oahu’s extensive shorelines are protected by rich reefs, giving it an abundant aquatic scene. This makes it a much more desirable destination for snorkeling. Its calm waters and thriving marine life just give a better experience.

Oahu vs. Maui Surfing

Oahu has better surfing spots than the island of Maui. Although Oahu is known for its healthy reefs and calm waters, the scenes on its southern shores are quite different. It has some of the biggest surf breaks you can ever see, making it the ideal surfing spot.

Is Maui or Oahu Better for Whale Watching?

Maui is a better choice for visitors who want to go whale watching. This place is more frequented by the migrating whales, so you would have more chances of seeing one. On the other hand, Oahu does not lack whale-watching tours either.

Does Oahu or Maui Have Better Hiking?

Although Maui is more popular for its natural beauty, Oahu has better hikes than it. Oahu has volcanic mountain ranges with numerous trails that you can enjoy. Not only are their views stunning but you are also guaranteed to have exhilarating treks.

Maui vs. Oahu Food

The food scene in Maui and Oahu are generally similar, but Oahu has much more restaurants to choose from. They offer cuisine from all around the world. Most of their menus have Eastern and Western cuisine mixed with the taste of their local flavors.

Best Luau in Maui or Oahu

Visitors generally consider Maui to have the best Luaus. Most notably are the Old Lahaina Luau and Feast at Lele.

Oahu vs. Maui Weather

The weather on the islands of Oahu and Maui is usually sunny and warm. They have a generally tropical climate, but it is still comfortable and relaxing. Oahu is also known to be the driest island in Hawaii for having the least rain throughout the year.

Is Maui Colder or Warmer Than Oahu?

Maui has a cooler temperature than Oahu. It is 8–10 degrees F (4–5.5 C) colder than most Hawaiian islands. This is even more usual in Upcountry Maui.

Oahu or Maui in January

Maui is a more popular destination in January. During this time, more whales pass through the island’s waters. Oahu also tends to be busy on the 2nd to 3rd week of the month due to the holidays.

Maui or Oahu in December

Maui is a better destination than Oahu during December. Many vacationers especially families would crowd the island of Oahu at this time. Maui on the other hand has a thriving whale-watching industry during this month.

Is Oahu and Maui on the Same Island?

Oahu and Maui are separate islands. They are both situated in Hawaii. Oahu and Maui, together with 4 other islands, are the major islands of the state.

Is Oahu Near Maui?

Oahu is considerable near the island of Maui. They are only separated by the islands of Molokai and Lanai.

How Far Is Maui From Oahu?

The distance from Maui to Oahu is about 186 kilometers (116 miles).

Can You See Oahu From Maui?

It is possible to see Oahu from the western part of Maui. It is hard, however, and requires good weather conditions. It would also be easier if you are using aids like a telescope or binoculars.

Is Maui Bigger Than Oahu?

The island of Maui is bigger than Oahu. Maui has an area of 1,884 km² ( 725.87mi²) while Oahu only has 1,545 km² (596.53 mi²).

How Big Is Maui Compared to Oahu?

Maui has 339 km² (129 mi²) of an area bigger than Oahu. Maui’s area is about 1,884 km² ( 725.87mi²) while Oahu has 1,545 km² (596.53 mi²).

Oahu vs. Maui Population

Oahu has a much larger population than Maui. According to the census in 2020, Oahu has a population of 1,016,508. Maui on the other hand only has 164,754.

What Is the Difference in Age Between Oahu and Maui?

The difference in age between the islands Oahu and Maui goes as big as 2 million years. Maui is known to age about 0.8 to 1.3 million years old. Oahu on the other hand is 3 years old.

Can You Island Hop From Maui to Oahu?

Yes, you can island hop from Maui to Oahu in several ways. The easiest way is through a flight. You can also choose to go on interisland cruises or hire private vehicles to do so.

Can You Take a Day Trip to Oahu From Maui?

Yes, there are day trips that would take you from the island of Oahu to Maui. Just make sure to research it before your vacation so you can book a service for this.

Can You Take a Day Trip From Maui to Oahu?

Yes, there are day trips from Maui to Oahu. The only way to do this is through a flight booked on the same day.

How Much Is a Day Trip From Oahu to Maui?

There are various services offering day trips from Oahu to Maui. You can expect this sort of trip ranging from $400 to $1200 depending on the inclusions.

How to Get From Oahu to Maui

The easiest way to get from Oahu to Maui is by booking a flight. There are also private vehicles that you may hire for interisland travel.

How to Get From Maui to Oahu

The most common way to get from Maui to Oahu is by airplane. You can also opt to go on an interisland cruise or other private vehicles that may pass.

How Easy Is It to Get From Maui to Oahu?

Transportation from Maui to Oahu is easy. You can go by taking a flight or riding ferries.

Is It Cheaper to Fly to Maui or Oahu?

Oahu generally has more expensive flights. This is, however, influenced by numerous factors. The average flight for Oahu may go for about $226 – $330. Maui on the other hand may go for $212 – $435.

Can You Fly From Maui to Oahu?

Yes, some airlines offer flights from Maui to Oahu. It is also possible to charter a plane for this travel.

How Long Is the Flight From Oahu to Maui?

A direct flight from Oahu to Maui only lasts for 30-45 minutes. However, connecting flights may go for more than 6 hours.

Is There a Ferry From Oahu to Maui?

No, there are currently no ferry services that would directly lead you from Oahu to Maui. There is, however, a ferry option from Maui to Lanai.

How Long Is the Ferry Ride From Oahu to Maui?

A ferry ride directly from Oahu to Maui would take about 45 minutes. However, this may vary in the size and speed of the vehicle.

How Far Is Oahu From Maui by Boat?

The distance between Oahu from Maui through a boat is about 101 nautical miles. This is based on the straight flight distance which is 186 kilometers (116 miles).

Is There a Car Ferry From Maui to Oahu?

No, there are no car ferries than go from Maui to Oahu. However, there used to be the Hawaii Superferry which allows for cars onboard. It stopped operation way back in 2009 because of environmental concerns.

How Far Is Maui From Oahu by Car?

The distance from Maui to Oahu is about 186 kilometers (116 miles). However, there is no way to travel this by car.

How Long Does It Take to Drive From Maui to Oahu?

The distance between Maui and Oahu takes about 8 hours for a car to travel at a constant speed of 15mph. However, there is no way to travel between these islands by car.

What Is the Best Way to Travel From Oahu to Maui?

The best way to go to Maui from Oahu is through a direct flight. There are several airlines that you can choose from for this travel.

Should I Go to Oahu or Maui First?

Oahu is a better choice for those that would go to the Hawaiian islands for the first time. However, if you would go to both islands on the same vacation, then it is better to go to Maui first. Maui offers more fun but exhilarating activities, so you would be left tired. This makes your stay in Oahu perfect as you can opt to spend your time pampering yourself.