Save money on your next flight

Skyscanner is the world’s leading flight search engine, helping you find the cheapest flights to destinations all over the world.

If you’ve ever wondered how far those beautiful Hawaiian islands are from the glitz and glamour of Los Angeles, you’re not alone. Many people are curious about the distance between these two iconic destinations on opposite sides of the Pacific Ocean.

If you’re short on time, here’s a quick answer to your question: Hawaii is around 2,556 miles from Los Angeles as the crow flies.

In this comprehensive guide, we’ll dig deeper into the exact distance and methods of travel between LA and Hawaii. We’ll look at flying and sailing times and routes, how Hawaii’s island geography factors in, and some history behind how Hawaii became part of the United States.

Flight Distance and Times from Los Angeles to Hawaii

Direct Flights Take Around 5 Hours

A direct flight from Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) to Hawaii generally takes between 5-6 hours depending on your island destination. The flight distance from LAX to Honolulu on Oahu is about 2,556 miles, with an average nonstop flight time of around 5 hours and 30 minutes.

Other major Hawaii airports also have direct LAX flights: Kona on the Big Island is approximately 2,523 miles away, taking around 5 hours 20 minutes; Lihue on Kauai is 2,596 miles from LAX with an average flight time of 5 hours 40 minutes; and Kahului on Maui is 2,546 miles from Los Angeles, taking roughly 5 hours 25 minutes to reach by air.

Connecting Flights Can Be Quick Too

While direct flights are the fastest way to reach Hawaii, connecting flights from Los Angeles can still transport travelers rather swiftly. Many major U.S. airlines offer routes with just one stopover, keeping total travel times to Hawaii under 8 or 9 hours in most cases.

For example, flying from LAX to Honolulu with a connection in cities like Phoenix, Salt Lake City, San Francisco or Seattle will only add an extra 60 to 90 minutes – still very reasonable for the distance traveled across the Pacific Ocean to reach those beautiful Hawaiian islands!

Route Distance Flight Time
LAX to Honolulu (direct) 2,556 miles 5 hours 30 minutes
LAX to Kona (direct) 2,523 miles 5 hours 20 minutes
LAX to Lihue (direct) 2,596 miles 5 hours 40 minutes
LAX to Kahului (direct) 2,546 miles 5 hours 25 minutes

As the table shows, flying direct from Los Angeles to any Hawaiian island takes between 5-6 hours typically. Connecting flights only add about an hour more but give travelers more options at usually cheaper fares too.

No matter if you take a nonstop or connecting flight from LAX, just remember that beautiful Hawaii is only about 6 hours away once you takeoff from sunny Southern California!

How Far Each Hawaiian Island is from LA

Oahu and Maui Are the Closest

Oahu and Maui are the two closest major Hawaiian Islands to Los Angeles. Oahu, home of the state’s capital Honolulu and popular Waikiki Beach, is approximately 2,556 miles from LA. The flight time is about 5 hours and 30 minutes nonstop.

Maui, famous for its gorgeous beaches, lush rainforests, and the Haleakala volcano, is around 2,559 miles away or about 5 hours and 40 minutes by direct flight.

So in terms of distance and travel time, Oahu and Maui are quite comparable from LA. Both make fantastic vacation destinations for Californians looking to escape to paradise without extremely long journeys.

The relatively short flights open up high-quality getaways on these stunning islands for Los Angelenos.

The Big Island of Hawaii is Farther Away

The Big Island of Hawaii, also simply called Hawaii Island, is located farther from Los Angeles than Oahu and Maui. From LAX airport, Hawaii Island is approximately 2,623 miles away. Flight duration runs around 6 hours nonstop. So the Big Island takes about an extra hour of travel than Oahu or Maui.

The large island is famous for volcanoes like Mauna Loa and Kilauea, black and green sand beaches, coffee farms, waterfalls, and more. So visitors flying from southern California should be prepared for a longer journey to explore its natural wonders.

But the awesome sights and experiences available on Hawaii Island’s make the extra distance and time worthwhile for many globetrotting Angelenos.

Sailing Distance and Times from Los Angeles to Hawaii

Common Sailing Routes and Duration

There are several common routes that recreational boats and cruise ships take when sailing from Los Angeles, California to the Hawaiian Islands. The total direct sailing distance is around 2,550 nautical miles. Most boats will not travel in a straight line due to wind, waves, and other factors.

A frequently used route is to first sail west to the Channel Islands off Southern California and then southwest towards Oahu in Hawaii. This route passes by Santa Catalina Island, San Clemente Island, and San Nicholas Island in the Channel Islands before crossing the Pacific Ocean towards Hawaiian waters.

The total duration of Los Angeles to Hawaii sailboat trips varies greatly depending on the boat size, speed capacity and weather conditions. The average voyage by a motorized cruiser or powerboat takes approximately 6 to 12 days. Slower sailing yachts and catamarans may take 10 to 18 days.

Luxury sailing or motor yachts with advanced capabilities can sometimes make the crossing in less than 5 days.

Most sailing vessels embark on the Los Angeles to Hawaii journey in April through early June or September through November. These shoulder seasons provide the most favorable weather windows with decreased chances of summer storms or winter waves making the Pacific crossing safer and more comfortable.

Route Distance Duration
Los Angeles to Oahu (direct) 2,556 nautical miles 5 to 18 days
Los Angeles to Maui (direct) 2,414 nautical miles 6 to 20 days

While trade winds generally blow from east to west across the Pacific Ocean which assists westbound sailing, variable wind gusts, high waves, storms and even complete doldrums may happen occasionally which can significantly increase trip duration.

Checking long-range weather forecasts and scheduling flexibly is always advised before embarking on extended offshore sailing voyages like the trek from Southern California to gorgeous Hawaii!

  • When and Why Hawaii Became Part of the United States

    A Strategic Location

    Hawaii’s strategic location in the Pacific Ocean made it an important target for the United States. As early as the 1820s, American business interests saw Hawaii as a prime location for plantations and trade.

    By the late 19th century, the U.S. government also recognized Hawaii’s value as a naval base and refueling station, especially for travel to Asia. After the 1898 Spanish-American War, the U.S. annexed the Hawaiian Islands in large part to control this strategic location across the Pacific.

    Statehood in 1959

    After being annexed in 1898, Hawaii was governed as a U.S. territory for over 60 years. Support for Hawaiian statehood grew in the post-World War II era for several reasons:

    • Hawaii’s economic and social infrastructure was more closely tied to and integrated with the U.S. than ever before.
    • Statehood would give native Hawaiians full U.S. citizenship rights.
    • Statehood would allow Hawaii to elect its own representatives to the U.S. Congress.

    After much campaigning and debate, Hawaii officially became the 50th state in the Union on August 21, 1959 when President Eisenhower signed the Hawaii Admission Act. Hawaiians celebrated their new status with the Aloha Festivals that continue annually to this day.


    We’ve covered a lot of ground on the distance between Los Angeles and Hawaii—by plane, boat, and history. While LA and Hawaii feel worlds apart in culture and climate, improved air travel has made the trip convenient for leisure and business.

    The two destinations may be separated by over 2,500 miles of ocean, but their appeal endures for many travelers today. Whether you’re looking for island adventure or big city lights,both Hawaii and Los Angeles offer iconic west coast destinations.

    Sharing is caring!

    Similar Posts