Everyone has a different wish list when it comes to where they want to live – some want small, artsy towns while others thrive in big cities with lots of amenities. In an attempt to give an accurate analysis of Hawaiian cities, we have compiled the 10
best places to live in Hawaii, based on various criteria.
We don’t know everything, and just because your town isn’t on this list, doesn’t mean it isn’t an absolutely glorious place to live. Tell us why you think your hometown should be on this list in the comments below!
Highest Livability – East Honolulu
is widely thought to have the highest livability rating in the Aloha State - and it's not just one of the best cities to live in Hawaii but in the entire nation. This is due to low crime rates, high graduation rates, lots of local amenities, and a stable housing market.
Best Beachside Town – Paia
Located on Maui’s North Shore,
has long been designated as the "happiest beach town in America," and there is no doubt as to why! This small, eccentric, artsy town is perfect for anyone who wants a true Hawaiian experience – without all the fuss of a big tourist center. And the town is heaven for artists, surfers, and wind sport enthusiasts. Oh, and did we mention it's about the cutest and most charming beach town in the world? It is!
Best Small Town – Haleiwa
Voted as Hawaii’s favorite small town by Hawaii Magazine,
sits on Oahu’s north shore, as the gateway for many gorgeous beaches – and killer surfing in the winter months. The quaint town is full of shave ice stands, restaurants, souvenir shops, and surfing retailers. People come from around the world during surf season to ride the huge waves, but even in the summer, the town is the perfect getaway from the big state capitol. It's pretty much the best weekend getaway in Hawaii, and you'll fall in love with it so much, you might be tempted to make it your home! Which we fully support, by the way...
Best Surfing Mecca – Hanalei
Named one of the best surf towns in the world by National Geographic,
is located in Kauai’s north shore, and is the perfect place for surfers of all skill levels. Just be careful as some of the wave action is not suitable for visitors – so please, ask the locals or lifeguards if you are unsure of an area. More than just surfing, the historic and cultural town gives transplants and visitors alike the opportunity to learn about Hawaii’s history.
Best City to Raise a Family – Mililani Town
One of the
best cities in Hawaii to raise a family
, as well as one of the best places to live in Hawaii overall, Mililani has a stable housing market, sunny weather, and low crime rates. However, because the town is located in central Oahu, you will have to drive to get the best beaches on Oahu.
Best Place to Retire – Kailua-Kona
beachside town in Hawaii
town is a golf lover’s dream, with low annual rainfall, stellar views, and towering palm trees. The city also boasts a lower cost-of-living than nearby resort destinations, and a small town feel, despite the hospital, airport, and tourists.
Safest Place to Live – Makaweli (AKA Kaumakai)
Though this town is tiny – the population is just over 1,000 full-time residents – it has one of the
lowest crime rates in the nation
, and is an extremely safe, and very quiet place to live.
Best City for Millennials – Honolulu
The state’s capital,
has a thriving art and cultural scene, plus excellent recreation options, and is the main city in Hawaii if you want to further your career, or start a new one.
Best City For Adventurers – Kailua
Located along Hawaii Island’s scenic Kona coast is Kailua-Kona, a historic seaside village full of natural beauty, royal history, and plenty of charm. It’s the best small town in Hawaii, and we think you’ll agree! In fact, if you are looking for adventure, look no further than Oahu’s
. Located near some of the island’s most beautiful beaches, the town is also close to great hiking, and has a charming, old town feel. With low crime rates and a booming housing market, Kailua is a perfect place to fuel your sense of adventure – if you can afford it, of course.
Most Underrated Town – Hilo
has never experienced huge tourist draws. In fact, visiting Hilo in Hawaii is unlike many big Hawaiian cities as it has stayed true to the spirit of "Old Hawaii" and is full of plantation-style architecture and historic storefronts. With approximately 278 days with substantial rain each year, the Big Island’s Hilo is one of the rainiest locations in Hawaii, making it the perfect place to live if you want tropical weather, but work inside and don’t want to experience what people in Hawaii like to call "sun guilt." Hilo is also only a 40-minute drive from Hawaii Volcanoes National Park.
Otherwise, would you agree that these are generally among the best places to live in Hawaii?
Whether you’re here as a resident or tourist, be sure to enjoy
this awesome hike to an abandoned mansion. And if you are visiting and are looking for a great place to stay, we recommend Marriott’s Ko Olina Beach Club.
If you’re still in the mood for more Aloha State adventures, take a look at this video:
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More to Explore
More Fun in Hawaii
Where can we find volcanoes in Hawaii?
Diamond Head is known as the Honolulu Volcanic Series and its crater is estimated to be approximately 200,000 years old.
The East Molokai Volcano comprises approximately two thirds of the entire island of Molokai.
The Wai’anae Volcano is believed to have had its last eruption approximately 2.5 million years ago.
Read on to learn more about some of the many other spectacular
volcanoes in Hawaii.
Are there any celebrities from Hawaii?
Former President Barack Obama is definitely a celebrity and thefirst American president to be born in the Aloha State.
World renown entertainer Bruno Mars was born and raised in Waikiki.
Professional surfer Bethany Hamilton was born on Kauai.
Read on to learn more about some of the many other
celebrities from Hawaii.
Where can we find botanical gardens in Hawaii?
The Ho’omaluhia Botanical Garden on Oahu features a 400-acre garden, lake, campgrounds, and walking trails.
The Lili’uokalani Gardens on the Big Island features the largest Edo-style garden outside of Japan.
The Enchanting Floral Gardens in Maui is home to 1,500 species of tropical and semi-tropical plant species.
Read on to learn more about some of the many other stunning
botanical gardens in Hawaii?