There is definitely great hiking on all the Hawaiian islands - to hidden waterfalls and spectacular valleys! Maybe it sounds odd but you can even get lost when hiking in Hawaii. So definitely tell your friends or hosts where you intend to go for your hike. For challenging hikes, make sure you don't go by yourself but with a hiking companion.
There are great hiking books available plus the Hawaii Island Revealed books, there is one for each island, also make hiking suggestions!
Hiking the Na Pali Coast on Kauai is one of those challenging hiking adventures. You want to have the right outfit and have somebody with you who has done it before. We didn't do that one but we had a wonderful hike to the Fern Grotto on Kauai after Kayaking the Wailua River. No guide needed for kayaking or hiking!
Maui has a lot of trails around Haleakala. If interested in hiking on Mauai, visit Maui Island Hiking Trails which offers a map with Maui hiking trails, hiking destinations and hike description with length of hike and level of hike.
I am not too familiar with hiking on Oahu but Frommer's - Frommer's Hawaii 2008 is a perfect book to have for your trip to Hawaii anyways - lists a lot of great Oahu hiking trails and resources.
The Big Island offers exciting hikes, around and into Waipio Valley on the Hamakua Coast and Pololu Valley in North Kohala. When hiking into the valleys (Pololu is much easier than Waipio), it's an experience of a life time you won't forget. Just one suggestion: better don't go swimming in the ocean there, as you are not familiar with undercurrents in the area.
You will find a lot of hiking on the Big Island in Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. Our favorite trail is the Kilauea Iki Trail. When you follow the signs of the Park Rangers, it is very safe. And which of your friends can say they have seen a live volcano and real red glowing lava on their vacation?!
Hiking should be something different and exciting on your summer vacation in Hawaii. Have fun. What's your favorite hike in Hawaii? Aloha, Pua Hawaii Vacations
Summer in Hawaii can be very hot but as hikes are mostly leading into higher elevation hillside and mountain territory, it will be a nice change to lying on the beach all day long. Don't forget: hat + plenty of water + sunscreen when hiking in Hawaii!
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