There are eight islands in Hawaii, six of which you can visit. No one island is like any other. Since Hawaii is so far away, I always recommend that first time travelers (especially those from the East Coast) plan to visit at least two islands and spend at least ten days to two weeks on the trip.
The time of year you choose for your trip is a consideration for which island(s) you visit. For example, if you want to see the high waves that make Hawaii a world famous surfing destination, you'll want to plan your trip for November - January. The Vans Triple Crown of Surfing takes place each November and December on Oahu's North Shore but traffic on the North Shore is extremely heavy on competition days. On the other hand during summer, this same surf is mostly calm and a great place to bring the whole family.
In that vein, summer is when you'll find more families vacationing in Hawaii since that's when school is out in many areas of the USA. School is also out in Hawaii in June and July, so the most popular beaches on every island tend to be more crowded during those two months as well as two weeks at the end of December when the students are on winter break.
To learn more about each of the islands, check out our feature on Hawaii Island and County Names, Nicknames and Geography and then complete our interactive feature Which Hawaiian Island Suits You Best?.
Next, we'll look at how the cost of airfare will impact your decision.
Next Page - How to Manage the Cost of Airfare