Hawaii, known as the “Crown of the Pacific,” boasts some of the best beaches in the world. While some of these beaches can only be reached by yacht or helicopter, yachting is a popular activity in the Hawaiian Islands. It offers tourists the opportunity to marvel at breathtaking landscapes, fish, dive, and have a blast.
Features of Yachting
The archipelago has a well-developed infrastructure that is mainly concentrated along the coast. After mooring ashore, tourists can easily find a wide range of cafes, restaurants, nightclubs, shops, and scenic spots. Sometimes, travelers opt not to spend the night on board and instead stay in comfortable hotels. Hawaii is located 4,000 km away from the mainland, which hinders the development of yachting. During the season, themed shows and large ships are not seen, but each island has a unique charm, making it an ideal destination for a cruise vacation.
The main feature of yachting in the Hawaiian Islands is the abundance of small land areas between which yachts can easily ply. Private cruises usually begin in Maui or Hawaii and then head north, visiting Lanai, Oahu, and Molokai before culminating in a vacation in Kauai. The route depends on the preferences of vacationers and weather conditions such as currents and winds. Clients can rent a vessel for the following purposes:
- Surfing Safari – This attracts experienced athletes with big waves and unique locations.
- Golf Cruise – Tourists can visit various islands where different golf courses are available.
- Wedding Ceremony – Newlyweds can have an exclusive wedding on the deck of the ship.
- Parties – A romantic atmosphere can be created for a party with loved ones.
- Family Holidays – On board, guests can enjoy a varied menu, go diving or snorkeling, and invite animators for children, or a personal trainer for adults.
- Romantic Dinner – Tourists can be taken to the most interesting places in the archipelago, circled around the island, and provided with an amazing atmosphere.
- Spa Weekend on a Yacht – During the holidays, visitors can enjoy the services of a personal masseur and beautician, taste delicious dishes, and relish the serene ambiance.
How to Rent a Yacht in Hawaii
If you want to rent a yacht in Hawaii, you have two options: you can either book a cruise that includes all the necessary services or rent a small boat on your own.
Booking a Cruise
Booking a cruise is the easiest option as it includes everything you need for your vacation. You can expect to have a cook, crew, and necessary staff, as well as transfers, excursions, hotel accommodations, and entertainment. You may also be offered additional activities like deep-sea fishing, helicopter rides, or jet skiing. The tour can be tailored to your individual preferences, and there are many different routes to choose from.
Renting a Small Boat
If you prefer to rent a small boat on your own, you can expect to pay around $2,000 for the rental. However, you will need to pay separately for cleaning, skipper services, and parking, which can cost between $1,000 to $1,500. You will need to cook for yourself, but port fees, insurance, fuel, bedding, and other necessary items will be included in the rental.
When to Go Yachting
You can go yachting in Hawaii almost all year round. The archipelago enjoys hot weather for nine months of the year, with no sharp natural anomalies or large temperature fluctuations. The temperature typically fluctuates within 4°C, with summer temperatures reaching up to +29°C and winter temperatures up to +25°C. The cruise will be accompanied by warm winds and clear skies, creating comfortable conditions for yachting. While there are no hurricanes in Hawaii, there may be whirlwinds and storms during the winter months, making yachting less popular at this time.
Entertainment and Sights to See While Yachting in Hawaii
Yachting in the Hawaiian Islands offers tourists a variety of activities to enjoy, such as kitesurfing, windsurfing, diving, and canoeing. However, it is essential to be aware of the presence of ocean predators like tiger sharks, and safety briefings are necessary before swimming. For those interested in traditional Hawaiian activities, canoe racing is also offered, as it is a popular old tradition.
Two Types of Yachting
Yachting in the Hawaiian Islands is divided into two types: active and calm. Active yachting is accompanied by music and songs, while calm yachting takes tourists to small, uninhabited islands, allowing them to escape the noise and enjoy the silence of the wild. Visitors can also take advantage of the opportunity to visit various sights and attractions, such as the following:
- Fort Elizabeth – the ruins of a Russian fortress on Kauai, built at the beginning of the 19th century. This area is now a national park and a popular attraction for tourists.
- Seven-Mile Miracle – the name given to the legendary beaches of Oahu located in the northern part of the island. Waves here can reach up to 20 meters in height during winter, making it a perfect destination for surfers.
Regattas in the Hawaiian Islands
In the Hawaiian Islands, local residents, together with educational institutions, organize regattas that young yachtsmen take part in. The most famous of these is Transpac, where yachts move from Los Angeles to Honolulu using vessels of Olympic and national classes. Canoe competitions, on the other hand, are more of an attraction for tourists than a sailing competitions.
Rules and Prohibitions for Yachting in Hawaii
As soon as a yacht arrives in the Hawaiian Islands, the captain is obliged to report the visit to the customs service, which will issue a permit to visit the archipelago within 48 hours. Until then, no one is allowed to leave the vessel. Violators may be issued a large fine, and their property may even be confiscated. If the ship is not from the US or Canada, it may be banned from importing certain food products, such as eggs, fruits, and vegetables.
Staying in the coastal waters of the Hawaiian Islands is allowed for no more than 60 days, and all crew members must have a visa. If there are animals on board, they must be declared, and the animals will be sent to quarantine in Honolulu. Tourists carrying firearms should report to the customs office and obtain a special permit from the local police.
While yachting in the Hawaiian Islands, it should be noted that anchoring is prohibited in some bays that are included in the program for the conservation of marine life in the region. Foreigners can only visit the island of Niihau with special permission.