Thursday, March 21, 2019

Maui vs. Oahu, In My Opinion

I told you this was probably coming; I feel the need to debate the various merits of the two Hawaiian islands that I have had the pleasure of exploring, so, you don’t have to!

Or, you still could; totally not my place to tell you what to do.

Anyhoodle, here are my thoughts regarding the two islands, broken down into Pro/Con lists, starting with Oahu.

Oahu Pros:

-Fantastic weather, possibly a titch warmer than Maui, although that could may have been influenced by the time of year we visited (June and August vs. March)
-Many great dining options, including food trucks
-Ted’s Bakery! Best pies and cakes in Hawaii!
-Lots of attractions
-Lots of outdoor activities
-The drive to the North Shore
-Plenty of shopping options
-Dole Pineapple Plantation
-Pearl Harbor
-Easy to navigate by rental car
-Decent public transportation
-Airport was easy to navigate
-The Man-Cub is there (This clearly is only a factor that applies in my particular situation)

Oahu Cons:

-Crowded beaches, both in the resort areas and outside of the resort areas
-Dirty beaches, especially outside of Waikiki and other resort areas
-Over-commercialized (International “Marketplace”, I’m looking at you)
-Long waits for seating at restaurants
-Lots of poverty evident, homeless camps, etc.
-Heavy traffic
-Parking options are expensive
-Too many tourists

Maui Pros:

-Clean, uncrowded beaches, both in resort areas and outside
-Friendly locals
-Not a lot of traffic
-Easy to navigate by rental car
-Plenty of restaurant options, and, great food truck selection
-Little to no wait for restaurant seating
-Lots of outdoor activities
-Better snorkeling
-Less commercialized
-More laid-back vibe
-The Road to Hana
-Lots of public parking spaces, including at the beaches
-Whales and Sea turtles!
-Airport was super easy to navigate

Maui Cons:

-May be slightly harder to get to
-Weather and water are slightly cooler (again, may have to do with the time of year we visited)
-Seems to be windier (again, time of year?)

Things that Oahu and Maui had in common that we enjoyed:

-Tropical weather
-Sandy beaches
-Cliffs from which the children could jump
-Snorkeling excursions
-Shaved ice
-Fresh seafood (according to Hugh and the children)
-Fresh pineapple
-To die-for sunsets
-ABC Stores (A staple in Hawaii, like a large convenience store, but with liquor and souvenirs)

To sum up our experience, I will say; Oahu felt somewhat less relaxing and more “touristy” while Maui was more laid-back and restful. The experiences shared some similarities, and the majority of the differences we encountered could have had to do with the resort vs. condo situation that we had going on. Plus, there is a big difference between Honolulu and Lahaina.

In the interest of fully researching each location; it appears that we should go the VRBO route the next time we visit Oahu, and, book a resort the next time we travel to Maui.

Now, all we need to do is win the lottery, so, I’m off to purchase Powerball tickets.

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