Visit Hawaii in January: Is January a Good Time to Go to Hawaii? (2024)

by | Nov 9, 2023

Is January a Good Time to Visit Hawaii?

Yes, January is a good time to visit Hawaii. During this month, the islands offer mild temperatures that are conducive to outdoor activities and sightseeing. January in Hawaii is especially appealing for those looking to avoid colder climates.

Hawaii in January provides an opportunity to enjoy the beauty and diversity of the islands amid pleasant weather.

January might be a bit more rainy, but it won’t get in the way of having fun outside. Beach trips and hiking adventures are still great options. And while a lot of people visit Hawaii in December, fewer travel there in January.

Special events happen this month also! You can join Chinese New Year parties or watch humpback whales swim.

Read on to learn more about Hawaii in January!

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Are you contemplating the possibility of a Hawaii vacation in January? Surprisingly, it’s one of the best months to vacation to Hawaii. In this article, we will cover the various reasons why spending your vacation in Hawaii during the month of January is a fantastic idea.

Explore with us what to know. Everything from Hawaii weather conditions and costs to exciting events and activities that Hawaii offers this month – making your vacation planning effortless!

Key Takeaways of Hawaii in January

  • January is a good time to visit Hawaii because the weather is warm and pleasant, with temperatures ranging from 75°F to 80°F.
  • Despite some rain showers, most days in January are sunny and beautiful, allowing for outdoor activities like swimming and hiking.
  • Costs of traveling to Hawaii in January are relatively lower compared to peak months, making it more affordable for visitors. Airfare prices can range from $350 to $800 round trip, hotel rates average around $350 per night, and car rentals are more affordable with better availability.

Weather Conditions in Hawaii in January

In January, the weather conditions in Hawaii are generally warm and pleasant, making it a great time to visit. The average temperature during this month ranges from 75°F (24°C) to 80°F (27°C), providing an ideal climate for outdoor activities and beach relaxation.

However, it is important to note that January is one of the rainiest months in Hawaii, with occasional winter storms bringing heavy rainfall. Despite this, the rain showers are usually brief and followed by periods of sunshine.

Additionally, ocean temperatures remain warm enough for swimming and water sports throughout January.

Average Temperature

When it comes to average temperatures in Hawaii during January, they are relatively comfortable and inviting. Despite the overall warm temperatures, expect some variation depending on the specific location.

For example, Kauai experiences average lows in the 60s and 70s during January, while The Big Island can experience lows as low as the 30s and 40s in the higher elevations.

Therefore, if you plan on visiting during this time, pack a light sweater or jacket for the chillier evenings. Additionally, trade winds provide a cool breeze around 40% to 60% of the time in January.

This makes the overall climate quite pleasant and ideal for outdoor activities.

Rainfall and Ocean Conditions

In January, Hawaii experiences a mix of sunny days and occasional rain showers, which are usually short-lived. It’s also important to consider the ocean conditions, which can be a bit choppier compared to the summer months.

Weather AspectDetails
RainfallJanuary is part of Hawaii’s rainy season, with an average monthly rainfall of about 9 inches. However, these rain showers are usually short-lived and most days are sunny and beautiful.
Ocean TemperatureThe ocean temperatures in January range from 72 to 76 degrees Fahrenheit, making it comfortable for swimming and snorkeling.
Ocean ConditionsThe ocean conditions in January tend to be choppier than in the summer months. Trade winds occur around 40% to 60% of the time in January, which can make for more challenging swimming or surfing conditions.

These weather conditions can affect your plans, so it’s essential to plan accordingly and know your limits. However, even with these conditions, Hawaii in January can be a fantastic vacation spot with much to offer.


Costs of Traveling to Hawaii in January

hawaii in january - a sunset with palm trees on a beach.

RELATED PODCAST: Best Time to Visit Hawaii

When considering a trip to Hawaii in January, it’s essential to consider travel costs. From transportation to hotel rates and car rentals, understanding the expenses involved will help you plan your budget effectively.

Transportation costs can vary depending on where you’re traveling from. Airfare prices often fluctuate during peak travel seasons, but January is typically considered an off-peak time for tourism in Hawaii after New Year’s.

This means you may be able to find good fares and potentially save money on flights.

Hotel rates also tend to be more reasonable during January compared to the peak months of June and July. While daily hotel rates can still vary depending on location and amenities, you have a higher chance of finding affordable accommodations during this time.

Car rentals are another aspect to consider when calculating costs. Renting a car allows for greater flexibility and exploration throughout the islands, but prices may be slightly higher due to demand.

We recommend booking ahead and comparing prices from different rental companies to find the best deal.

Transportation Costs

Planning your trip to Hawaii in January can be cost-effective, especially when it comes to transportation costs. Here’s a breakdown of the average transportation expenses you might encounter:

AirfareInter-Island FlightsTaxis/UbersPublic Transportation
Airfare prices can vary, but they tend to be lower in January. The average cost can range from $350 to $800 round trip from the continental U.S., depending on the departure city and how far in advance you book.Inter-island flights are a quick and convenient way to explore Hawaii’s different islands. These flights can cost anywhere from $70 to $150 one way, depending on the distance and the airline.For those preferring a taxi or Uber, the average cost for a short ride within Honolulu, for example, ranges from $10 to $20. Longer trips, like from the airport to a far-located hotel, can go up to $40-$50.If you’re on a budget, public transportation is an affordable option. TheBus, Honolulu’s public transit system, offers a $35 monthly pass or a $5.50 daily pass. For occasional rides, single tickets are $2.75.

It’s worth noting that flight prices, hotel rates, and car rental costs tend to be lower in January than in peak months like June and July. This can make your Hawaii trip in January more affordable while still providing a memorable experience.

Hotel Rates

Hotel rates in January are an important consideration when planning a trip to Hawaii. After the peak travel season during the Holiday and the New Year, hotel rates drop and become just above average. On average, you can anticipate spending approximately $350 per night on accommodations in January. However, it’s essential to remember that these rates can fluctuate depending on the specific hotel and its location. Here’s a rough guide for you:

WeekAverage Hotel Rate
First week of January (post-New Year)$400
Second week of January$350
Third week of January$350
Fourth week of January$350

This table gives you an idea of the average hotel rates in January. It’s worth noting that these rates are cheaper compared to the peak travel months of June and July. So, if you’re looking for a less expensive stay, January might be a good time to consider.

Car Rentals

Car rentals can be a fantastic way to explore the Hawaiian Islands in January. With less crowd and more availability, you can easily find a rental that suits your needs and budget. Notably, the costs for car rentals tend to dip in January compared to the peak summer months, making it an economical choice for travelers.

Here’s a brief overview of the car rental scenario in Hawaii during January:

AffordabilityCar rentals in Hawaii are more affordable in January compared to other months.
Cost ComparisonThe costs are significantly lower in January compared to the peak months of June and July.
CrowdJanuary is a less crowded time in Hawaii, resulting in better availability and prices for car rentals.
FlexibilityYou have the flexibility to choose from a wide range of vehicles due to less demand.

Activities in Hawaii in January

In January, there are plenty of exciting activities to enjoy in Hawaii. From celebrating Chinese New Year to watching world-class surfing on Oahu’s North Shore, there is something for everyone. Read on to discover more about the amazing activities waiting for you in Hawaii in January!

hawaii in january - hiking in maui overlooking a valley.

Chinese New Year

Chinese New Year is a vibrant and festive celebration that takes place in Hawaii during January. Visitors to Hawaii can immerse themselves in the rich traditions of Chinese culture through various activities and events.

The celebrations include colorful lion dances, captivating kung fu demonstrations, rhythmic drum performances, and other cultural displays.

It’s an incredible opportunity to witness the beauty and excitement of this important holiday while enjoying your vacation in Hawaii.

Watching Surfing on Oahu’s North Shore

The North Shore of Oahu is renowned for its world-class waves, making it a paradise for surfers. In January, the ocean conditions here are absolutely perfect for watching exciting surfing competitions and events.

The big waves pound the shore, attracting some of the best surfers from around the globe. You can witness their impressive skills as they ride these massive waves with ease.

Whether you’re an experienced surfer yourself or just enjoy watching others in action, the North Shore is definitely a must-visit spot during your trip to Hawaii in January.

If you are planning a visit to Oahu’s North Shore, be prepared for traffic! Give yourself enough time and practice aloha as you make your way to this surf paradise.

Whale Watching

January is the peak of Hawaii’s whale season, making it a great time to go whale watching. During this time, many of humpback whales migrate from Alaska to give birth in Hawaii’s warmer waters.

Whale-watching is a popular activity in Hawaii in January, allowing you to witness these majestic creatures up close and personal. So, if you’re planning a trip to Hawaii in January, don’t miss out on the opportunity to go whale watching and experience this incredible natural phenomenon.

How Busy is Hawaii in January?

January is a popular time to visit Hawaii, but it’s not as busy as other peak months. The holiday rush dies down by the first week of January, so you don’t have to worry about crowded beaches or long lines.

Additionally, the whale season kicks off in January, drawing visitors who want to see thousands of humpback whales migrating from Alaska to Hawaii.

While there may be some crowds during Chinese New Year celebrations and surfing competitions on Oahu’s North Shore, overall, January offers a more relaxed and enjoyable experience compared to the busier summer months in Hawaii.

hawaii in january - hiking in hawaii

Is February a Better Time Than January to Visit Hawaii in 2024?

Both are great! However, I personally like February better because of the weather. With milder weather and fewer crowds than January, February offers a more pleasant and relaxed experience. Enjoy whale watching, hula festivals, and pleasant temperatures. Plus, it’s the perfect escape from the winter blues. Start planning your visit hawaii in february now!

FAQs for Hawaii in January

1. What can you do in Hawaii in January?

In Hawaii, during January, you can go on an island exploration by helicopter or take part in outdoor activities like hiking trails. You might also see some big waves!

2. How is the weather in Hawaii in January?

The weather in Hawaii in January is generally warm and pleasant.

While the rest of the mainland United States may be experiencing snow and cold temperatures, Hawaii offers a tropical paradise with temperatures averaging in the high 70s to low 80s Fahrenheit (around 25 degrees Celsius).

However, it’s important to note that Hawaii’s weather can vary depending on the island and region you are visiting, so it’s recommended to check the specific forecast for your chosen destination.

3. Are there any special events happening during this period?

Special events include Chinese New Year celebrations at Chinatown and Maui Oceanfront Marathon, which runners would love! There’s also PGA tour at Kapalua for golf lovers.

4. Do I need specific clothes while visiting Hawaii in this time of year?

The average high temperature requires normal summer clothing, but sometimes trade winds call for a light sweater.

5. What about wildlife viewing opportunities available specifically this month?

January welcomes thousands of humpback whales migrating from Alaska, making it perfect timing to plan your trip around whale-watching tours.

6. Is January a popular time for vacation in Hawaii?

January is indeed a popular time for vacation in Hawaii. Many people choose to visit Hawaii in January to escape the winter cold and enjoy the warm weather.

Additionally, the holiday season, including New Year’s, is a popular time for travel, and Hawaii offers a perfect getaway during this time of the year.

It’s recommended to book your accommodations and activities in advance to secure the best rates and availability for your Hawaiian vacation.

7. What is the best time to visit Hawaii in January?

The best time to visit Hawaii in January is during the third Monday of the month, which is celebrated as Martin Luther King Jr. Day. This long weekend provides an excellent opportunity for a getaway to Hawaii. However, if you’re planning a visit during this time, it’s advised to make your reservations early, as it can be a popular period for travel.

8. What are the advantages of visiting Hawaii in January?

Visiting Hawaii in January has several advantages. Firstly, the weather is generally warm and pleasant, allowing you to enjoy the beautiful beaches and outdoor activities.

Secondly, January is outside of the holiday season, which means you may find more reasonable rates and availability for accommodations and flights.

Lastly, visiting in January allows you to experience the unique events and celebrations that take place during this time, such as luaus and local festivals.

9. What are some things to do in Hawaii in January?

There are plenty of things to do in Hawaii in January. You can explore the stunning beaches, go snorkeling or scuba diving in the crystal-clear waters, hike the beautiful trails, visit historical sites, enjoy water sports, or simply relax and soak up the sun.

Each island in Hawaii offers its own unique attractions and activities, such as visiting the volcano on the Big Island or enjoying the famous big waves on Oahu’s North Shore. There is something for everyone to enjoy in Hawaii during January.

10. Is January a good time to visit the Big Island of Hawaii?

Yes, January is a good time to visit the Big Island of Hawaii. While it is considered the rainiest month in Hawaii, the Big Island has a diverse climate, with regions like the Kohala Coast experiencing less rainfall.

This makes it a great time to explore the beautiful beaches and tropical landscapes of the Big Island. It’s always recommended to check the specific weather forecast for the area you plan to visit on the Big Island.

11. Can I find affordable vacation rentals in Hawaii in January?

Yes, it is possible to find affordable vacation rentals in Hawaii in January. While it may be a popular time for travel, there are still options available at reasonable rates. Planning your trip in advance and booking accommodations early can help you find the best deals.

Additionally, considering less crowded areas or smaller islands like Maui or Kauai instead of the more popular Oahu can also help you find more affordable options.

12. Are there any specific events or festivals held in Hawaii in January?

Yes, there are several events and festivals held in Hawaii in January. One notable event is the celebration of Martin Luther King Jr. Day, which takes place on the third Monday of January. Many communities in Hawaii hold special cultural and educational events to commemorate this day.

Additionally, there may be local festivals, music concerts, and cultural performances happening throughout the month. It’s recommended to check the local event calendars for your chosen island to see what events are taking place during your visit.

Wrap-Up for Hawaii During January

In conclusion, January is a great time to visit Hawaii. The weather is hot and pleasant, perfect for outdoor activities like surfing and swimming. Despite some rain showers, most days are sunny and beautiful.

Plus, January offers lower costs and fewer crowds compared to peak months. With special events like Chinese New Year celebrations and humpback whale-watching, there’s plenty to see and do in Hawaii in January.

So start planning your dream vacation now!

Bryan Murphy
Bryan Murphy

Bryan Murphy, owner of Hawaii’s Best Travel, is a certified Hawaii destination expert from the Hawaii Visitors Bureau. He actively participates in the Hawaii Visitors and Convention Bureau as a member and has a strong educational background focused on local culture and sustainability. As the host of “Hawaii’s Best Travel,” a top-30 US travel podcast, Bryan combines his years of experience with valuable insights. He connects with a broad online community, reaching nearly half a million people, and offers a richer, more responsible way to experience Hawaii.