Among the best places in the world to vacation, Hawaii is somewhere near the top of most people’s lists – and for good reason, too. Nearly transparent waters paired with vibrant blue skies in near-perfect temperatures make Hawaii both easy on the eyes and the body.
While you could fly to Oahu and spend a few days in Honolulu, you won’t get the full experience of what the Hawaiian islands have to offer. The best way to experience this isolated U.S. state is to go on cruises in Hawaii. Live in Canada? There are plenty of roundtrip Hawaiian cruises that start in Vancouver. They are among the best Hawaiian cruises, giving you a chance to explore two countries and different cultures.
Read on for our list of Hawaiian island cruises that will leave you with lifetime-lasting memories.
Hawaiian Cruise from Honolulu to Vancouver – Disney Cruise Line
Embark on a 10-night journey aboard Disney Wonder, hitting five Hawaiian ports before enjoying a relaxing five days at sea on the way to Vancouver.
In Honolulu, check out the Dole Plantation and its pineapple exhibits. Careful when visiting Hilo, as there are two active volcanoes at Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. In Nawiliwili, try to stay dry near Mount Wai’ale’ale, the second-wettest place on the planet. A stop at Kahului isn’t complete without a visit to Kanaha Beach Park, a place for swimming, sunbathing and picnics.
Disney Wonder will keep you entertained while at sea, too, with Broadway musicals, three themed pools, a spa and a boutique, among many other amenities.
Hawaii, Round-trip Honolulu – Norwegian Cruise Line
Aboard Norwegian Cruise Line’s Pride of America, you’ll embark on a seven-day itinerary that begins and ends in Honolulu and stops at four other ports: Kahului, Maui; Hilo, Hawaii; Kona, Hawaii; and Nawiliwili, Kaua’i.
In Honolulu, consider going on a Pearl Harbor tour and visiting a memorial to the sunken USS Arizona. Kahului offers the chance to taste local cuisine or discover how Hawaii’s best-selling vodka is made. How about a 4.5-mile, six-hour hike to see Hilo’s waterfalls? At your next stop, visit Kona’s black-sand beach. Saving the best for last, check out Luau Kalamaku on Nawiliwili for delicious local foods and authentic cultural showcases.
Pride of America was refurbished in 2016 after debuting in 2005. It fits 2,186 passengers and has a crew of 927.
Hawaiian Islands – Princess Cruises
Embarking from Vancouver, Canada, you’ll start your journey with five nights at sea aboard Pacific Princess before hitting three ports and ending your journey in Honolulu.
Before departing Canada in the late afternoon, visit the second-largest Chinatown in North America. On Maui, spot humpback whales, and consider traversing the Haleakala National Park with photo-op vistas. Try snorkeling to get a glimpse at the wondrous marine life off the shores of Kauai. On Hilo, visiting the 442-foot Akaka Falls is worth it for the sight alone. Lastly, when at your final destination, visit Hawaiian royalty at Iolani Palace.
Onboard Pacific Princess, Princess Cruises makes sure its travelers are taken care of in every way. This ship was refurbished in June 2019 and holds 670 passengers and 375 crew. It has 10 dining options, and activities include a writing room, a golf practice cage, shops, a Las Vegas-style casino, fitness classes, a spa and more.
Hawaii from San Diego – Carnival Cruise Line
Take to the salt from San Diego, California, and spend a 15-day vacation aboard Carnival Miracle traveling to Hawaii before returning to the mainland on one of the best cruises to Hawaii.
For your first stop on Maui, you can enjoy whale-watching and conch shell-supported luaus. Next up is Hawaii’s capital and largest city, Honolulu. There, head to the Polynesian Cultural Center to learn the long, majestic history of Hawaii. On Kauai, embrace nature, as you explore Kokee Forest Reserve and Poipu Beach. Explore sea caves while on Kona, and take in the aftermath of a past volcano eruption.
After the Hawaii tour, spend four day at sea before making one final, quick stop in the Mexican city of Ensenada before returning to San Diego. Indulge in local wine and cheese, as you take in the sites of the Guadalupe Valley.
On board Carnival Miracle, partake in a lip-sync battle, visit the Cherry On Top candy store, have a beer at the SkyBox Sports Bar, or play your favorite games, like Connect 4 and Yahtzee, but giant versions of them.
Hawaii, Tahiti & Marquesas – Holland America Line
Looking for that ultimate getaway? One that really takes you away from all your worries and responsibilities and puts you on a boat to explore 12 different ports over 32 days? This Holland America Line cruising adventure aboard Zaandam is for you.
Startin San Diego, and relax at sea for Days 2 to 6 before arriving in Hilo. Spend the day there before moving to Honolulu for the next two days. Your next stop is then Lahaina for the day. Two more days at sea will take you away from U.S. waters to Kiritimati (Christmas Island), just northwest of Australia.
Days 15 and 16 will be the start of the French Polynesia tour, beginning in Bora Bora. You’ll continue on to Raiatea, Society Islands, on Day 17. The next two days will be spent in Papeete, French Polynesia, before an early-morning trip to Moorea. Day 20 will be held on Avatoru, Rangiroa, and Day 21 is on Fakarava, Tuamotu. Days 23 and 24 take place in Hapatoni, Tahuata, Marquesas, and Taiohae, Nuka Hiva, before the journey back stateside for the next seven days.
You’ll share in this journey with 1,400 other guests. So, be prepared for the on-ship casino to be filled. Perhaps you’ll have to wait a little extra for a massage at the Greenhouse Spa & Salon. There is certainly no limit to how much you can spend, however, as onboard shopping is available.
Hawaii Cruise – Royal Caribbean International
Cruise the Hawaiian islands on a 10-night cruise aboard Radiance of the Seas that will take you from Oahu to Maui, Kailua Kona, Kauai and Hilo before ultimately ending in Vancouver, British Columbia.
Before you even leave from Honolulu, the state’s capital city, schedule a snorkeling tour in crystal-clear waters with a variety of marine life. Then, embark on your cruise where you’ll first stop at the former-whaling-village-turned-tourist-site of Lahaina. Day 3 will be spent at Kailua Kona where you can peer into the lives of Hawaiian royalty at the Hulihee Palace, formerly a vacation home for royalty but now a museum.
In Kauai, visit Wailua Falls without having to stress about a hike. You’ll also have a chance to see Alekoko Fishpond, a nearly 1,000-year-old, Hawaiian fishpond that is said to have been built in one night. In Hilo, check out 24-acre Liliuokalani Gardens, the largest authentic, ornamental Japanese garden outside Japan. Days 6, 7, 8, 9 and 10 are then spent at sea before you ultimately arrive in Canada on Day 11.
From live stage performances and dive-in movies above the main pool area to a variety of cuisines, including Japanese and Italian, and a full-service salon and spa, there will always be something for you to do aboard Radiance of the Seas.
Hawaii Cruise – Celebrity Cruises
Take 10 days out of your busy schedule to unwind and detach from your regular routine, and tour the islands of Hawaii. Start in Honolulu before stopping in Lahaina, Hilo and Kailua Kona before ultimately concluding the adventure in Vancouver, British Columbia.
The journey begins with an overnight stay in Honolulu. There, you can visit the Honolulu Museum of Art and admire cultural landscapes, Asian art and Polynesian artifacts. In Lahaina, take a helicopter tour that hovers above dormant Haleakala volcano. Hilo is for those who stand in awe at waterfalls, as it is home to Rainbow Falls and Akaka Falls. For your last stop in Hawaii, Kailua Kona will sate coffee lovers and snorkelers alike.
Aboard Celebrity Solstice, you’ll join 2,800 other passengers. Enjoy the martini bar, two lounges, three restaurants, a casino, a fitness center, an artificial lawn, outdoor movies, an art gallery, shopping and an adults-only solarium.