A Tropical Travel Blog
by Cate Lincoln

Hawaii Recommendations

Aloha and welcome to hulaland! If you’re planning a trip to Hawaii, you’ve come to the right spot. It can be pretty overwhelming (especially if you’re in the early stages of planning) so I’ve gathered all of my best resources for you right here. While you’ll find dozens and dozens of posts on Hawaii on this blog, this is the best place to start.

I also get so many questions about my go to websites and resources for planning my trips, so I’ve included my favorite resources as well. Some of these are affiliates (meaning I get a little percentage if you use them, although the price is the same for you), but as always, I only share stuff with you guys that I LOVE. Thanks for supporting the brands that make Hulaland possible!

Before you even start looking at specific places to stay, you’ll want to know the lay of each island. Read up on:

Where to Stay on Maui

Where to Stay on Oahu

Where to Stay on Kauai

Where to Stay on the Big Island

TripAdvisor: More than just for reading reviews (although, I never stay anywhere until I’ve read its TripAdvisor reviews), it’s a great site for booking and you’ll be sure you’re getting the best deals on resorts and hotels.

Check out some of my favorite budget hotels on Maui, Oahu, Kauai, and the Big Island.

My favorite family friendly resorts on Maui, Oahu, Kauai, and the Big Island.

And my favorite honeymoon resorts on Maui, Oahu, Kauai and the Big Island.

Plus top luxury resorts and boutique hotels in Hawaii.

And personal travelogues about the following properties:

Aulani, a Disney Resort and Spa (Oahu)

Fairmont Orchid (Big Island)

Hilton Waikoloa Village (Big Island)

Fairmont Kea Lani (Maui)

Four Seasons (Maui)

Vrbo: Vrbo is my favorite platform for booking apartments, condos, and houses. If you like staying more “local” or just want more space or bang for your buck, you’ve got to check out Vrbo. Want specific recommendations for each island?

Here are condo options under $100/night for Oahu, Maui, Kauai, and the Big Island.

These are some of my favorite condo complexes on Oahu, Maui, Kauai, and the Big Island.

Booking airfare is usually the most overwhelming task for first time visitors. Read all of my tips for booking the best (and cheapest) flights plus surviving the long flight.

Skyscanner: Skyscanner is the best flight search comparison website out there. Save hours by checking ALL THE SITES for the very best deals.

Hawaiian Airlines: Hawaiian Airlines is my favorite airline to fly both to and from Hawaii as well as interisland. Sign up for their newsletter as they often run some good discounts on vacation packages.

Hawaii Discount Car Rental: This is the only site I ever book my rental cars through. You’re guaranteed the cheapest price across all the major providers, don’t have to pay until you pick the car up, and I always manage to add an extra driver for free.

There are soooo many things to do in Hawaii. When possible, I usually prefer doing an adventure on my own, but sometimes the only way to have the experience is on an excursion or with a tour provider. Here are some of my favorite Hawaii adventures (and the tour providers I’ve chosen):


Snorkeling at Molokini & Turtle Town with Kai Kanani

Maui Pineapple Tour

Whale Watching with PacWhale

Old Lahaina Luau

Grand Wailea Luau

Dinner at Mama’s Fish House

Biking Haleakala (Maui’s dormant volcano) with Maui Sunriders


Paradise Cove Luau

ATV Tour at Kualoa Ranch

Ka Wa’a Luau


Helicopter Tour with Blue Hawaiian

Napali Coast Boat Tour with Holo Holo Charters

Smith Family Luau & Fern Grotto Tour

Big Island

Sunset & Stargazing at Mauna Kea Summit

Kayaking & Snorkeling at Kealakekua Bay

I’ve saved the very best for last. If you loved the stuff up above, this is going to knock your socks off:

If you’re planning a trip to Hawaii and feeling overwhelmed about mapping out a daily itinerary, you NEED Hawaii Bound! My tested itineraries are the best way to see all of the highlights on each island while still having time to chill at the beach.You’ll get FOUR 6-day itineraries for EACH of the four main island (Maui, Oahu, Kauai, and the Big Island). Specifically: my classic 6-day itinerary that’s designed for first time visitors who want to see it all as well as itineraries customized for honeymooners, adventure travelers, and foodies plus suggestions on what to do if you have less or more than 6 days. Click here to get the Hawaii itineraries.