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Active gear to pack when exploring the Hawaiian islands

If you're planning to explore Hawaii and be outdoors the majority of your time here (who isn't?!), it's important to pack the right active gear to ensure a comfortable and enjoyable adventure. Here are some essential items to consider:

  1. Water-resistant hiking shoes: Hawaii is known for its breathtaking hiking trails, so invest in a sturdy pair of hiking shoes that provide ample support and traction. To ensure your feet are comfortable when walking through the many trails that intersect with streams or waterfalls, we recommend choosing water-friendly shoes that either keep your feet dry or dry quickly. Active sandals like Chacos or Tevas are also great options! 

  2. Lightweight clothing: The weather in Hawaii can be hot and humid, so opt for lightweight and breathable clothing that dries quickly. Mornings and evenings can be cool and, depending on where you are on the islands, rain can appear in a moment's notice, so we always think layers, such as a UV-protective long sleeve or a light rain jacket can be super helpful. 

  3. Sun protection: Sun protection extends beyond sunscreen to UV-protective clothing, as well as a hat and sunglasses to protect yourself from the intense Hawaiian sun! Keep in mind that Hawai'i recently passed a ban that only allows reef-friendly sunblock to be sold and used throughout the islands, so keep that in mind when buying and packing your sunblock for your trip. (Double-check your ingredients and info on which products are acceptable here on

  4. Water bottle: Staying hydrated is crucial when exploring the islands! And being on an island, recycling isn't as prevalent as on the mainland US, Canada or other countries, so consider bringing or purchasing a reusable water bottle to refill throughout your travels to avoid single-use plastics.

  5. Snorkeling gear: Hawaii's crystal clear waters offer some of the best snorkeling in the world. Pack a snorkel, mask, and fins to experience the underwater beauty, or consider renting from one of the many snorkel gear companies throughout the island, such as Auntie Snorkel or Snorkel Bob's (with locations on all 4 main islands).

By packing these essential items, you'll be prepared to explore Hawaii's stunning landscapes and enjoy all the outdoor activities the islands have to offer. Happy exploring!

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