Hawaii, a U.S. state, is an isolated volcanic archipelago in the Central Pacific. Its islands are renowned for their rugged landscapes of cliffs, waterfalls, tropical foliage and beaches with gold, red, black and even green sands. Of the 6 main islands, Oahu has Hawaii’s biggest city and capital, Honolulu, home to crescent Waikiki Beach and Pearl Harbor’s WWII memorials.
Statehood granted: August 21, 1959
State fish: Reef triggerfish
Population: 1.42 million (2014)
State flower: Yellow hibiscus
Getting to Hawaii
Honolulu International Airport (HNL) on Oahu is Hawaii’s major airport, serving as the entry point for most of Hawaii’s visitors. All major domestic carriers and many international carriers serve Oahu, so you can get here from just about anywhere.
There are also direct flights from the U.S. mainland to Maui, Kauai, and Hawaii Island, but for the most part, you may need to connect through Oahu to get to the neighbor islands including Lanai and Molokai. There are daily ferry services from Lahaina Harbor in Maui to both Manele Bay in Lanai and Kaunakakai Harbor in Molokai.
Flight times from Honolulu International Airport (HNL), Oahu to:
Lihue Airport (LIH), Kauai: 30 minutes
Kahului Airport (OGG), Maui: 30 minutes
Kapalua-West Maui Airport (JHM), Maui: 30 minutes
Molokai Airport (MKK), Molokai: 20 minutes
Lanai Airport (LNY), Lanai: 25 minutes
Hilo International Airport (ITO), Hawaii’s Big Island: 50 minutes
Kona International Airport (KOA), Hawaii’s Big Island: 45 minutes
The natural beauty of Hawaii’s fragile environment comes from its geographical isolation from other ecosystems. Bringing plants, produce or animals can introduce pests and non-endemic species that could be destructive to Hawaii’s environment.