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.

Dreaming of a Hawaiian cruise vacation surrounded by spectacular volcanoes, golden sand beaches, and azure waters? You’re not alone – Hawaii remains one of the most popular cruise destinations in the world.

If you’re short on time, here’s a quick answer to your question: The main cruise lines that offer regular itineraries to Hawaii include Norwegian Cruise Line, Princess Cruises, Holland America, and Carnival Cruise Line. Several luxury lines like Crystal Cruises also visit the islands occasionally.

In this comprehensive guide, we will provide details on the major cruise lines and ships that cruise to Hawaii, the different Hawaiian island cruise itineraries they offer, when the best time to take a Hawaii cruise is, and tips to get the best deals on Hawaii cruises.

The Top Cruise Lines and Ships Sailing to Hawaii

Norwegian Cruise Line and Pride of America

The Pride of America operated by Norwegian Cruise Line (NCL) is specially designed for sailings around the Hawaiian Islands. As the only large cruise ship registered in the U.S., federal regulations allow it to operate inter-island itineraries without calling on a foreign port.

Boasting a capacity of 2,186 passengers, Pride of America offers 7-night inter-island cruises that include stops on Oahu, Maui, Kauai, and the Big Island. With Freestyle Cruising, there is no set dining time and guests can choose from up to 10 included dining venues.

Princess Cruises and Grand/Star Princess

Princess Cruises’ 2,600-passenger Grand Princess and 2,600-passenger Star Princess sail round-trip from San Francisco or Los Angeles on 15-night Hawaiian Island cruises.

Ports of call include Hilo, Honolulu, Kauai, and Maui. On board, guests can enjoy specialty restaurants, Broadway-style theater shows, adults-only Sanctuary area, and Movies Under the Stars outdoor cinema.

Holland America and Multiple Ships

Several Holland America ships offer Hawaiian itineraries, including the 2,104-passenger Eurodam. These cruises are typically 14-18 nights round-trip from San Diego, Seattle or Vancouver.

In addition to the gorgeous Hawaii ports, sailings visit popular spots like Ensenada Mexico. Holland America is known for exceptional food, enrichment programs, and wraparound decks perfect for whale watching.

Carnival Cruise Line and Multiple Ships

Carnival Cruise Line offers occasional Hawaii itineraries on ships like Carnival Miracle from San Diego and Carnival Spirit from Vancouver. These are typically 15-night sailings with visits to Maui, Honolulu, Kona and Hilo.

On board, fun activities include waterslides, mini golf, casinos, Punchliner Comedy Club and lively deck parties. Carnival ships offer a range of dining and bar venues from casual to upscale.

Luxury Cruise Lines Occasionally Visiting Hawaii

Upscale lines like Crystal Cruises, Oceania Cruises, Regent Seven Seas, Seabourn, Silversea and Viking may have an annual sailing to Hawaii as part of a positioning cruise or around-the-world voyage. Fares are higher but include drinks, Wi-Fi, gratuities andmultiple specialty restaurants.

Hawaii Cruise Itineraries Offered

7-day Inter-island Hawaii Cruises

A spectacular way to experience the Hawaiian islands is via a week-long inter-island cruise. These voyages visit the four main islands of Hawaii, stopping at world-class destinations like Honolulu on Oahu; Lahaina on Maui; Hilo and Kona on the Big Island; and Nawiliwili on Kauai.

Depending on the cruise line and itinerary, you’ll get to enjoy 2-4 ports across these iconic locales.

Some key highlights may include exploring the vibrant city of Honolulu, hiking the scenic Na Pali Coast, witnessing lava flows on the Big Island, road tripping along Maui’s gorgeous coastline, and more.

The major cruise lines like Norwegian, Carnival, Royal Caribbean, and Princess offer quality Hawaii cruises in this 7-day format.

10-14 day Hawaii Cruises Combining Islands

For travelers who want to experience Hawaii’s top ports with added destinations, 10-14 day cruises are a great choice. These extended Island-hopping journeys combine visits across Hawaii while also adding ports in Mexico, California or on South Pacific islands.

Popular combo destinations include the Mexican Riviera with stops in Puerto Vallarta, Mazatlan and Cabo; sailing to Los Angeles or San Diego in California; and visiting Fanning Island or Samoa in the South Pacific. These provide a taste of Hawaiian culture alongside other regional influences.

According to industry reports, multi-destination Hawaii cruises are surging in popularity, with a projected 14% growth in 2023. Travelers appreciate the convenience of unpacking once while island hopping across this gorgeous region.

Longer Hawaii Cruises with Other Destinations

In addition to 7-14 day options focused heavily on Hawaii, some remarkable 15+ day journeys incorporate Hawaii among a variety of exotic stops in Australia, New Zealand, Fiji, Bora Bora, and beyond. These extended adventures across the South Pacific are the stuff that dreams are made of!

A sample 19 day cruise could include Honolulu, Maui, the Big Island and Kauai alongside 6 days exploring Australia and stops in Samoa or Fiji. The cruising experience combined with tropical destinations creates memories to last a lifetime.

No matter if you select a 7-day, 10-14 day or 15+ day Hawaii cruise, you’ll be treated to stunning scenery, rich culture, fine dining, exciting entertainment and awesome adventures along the way. Let the spirit of Aloha wash over you on your next escape to paradise!

Best Time to Take a Hawaiian Islands Cruise

Year-round Cruising But Weather Varies

Hawaii enjoys warm tropical temperatures all year, so cruises operate year-round. However, weather patterns change with the seasons. Trade winds blow from the northeast from May to October, keeping things cooler. From October through April, Kona winds come from the southwest, raising temperatures.

Rainfall varies too, with the winter months tending to be rainier.

Peak Season: Summer and Early Fall

The peak cruising season for Hawaii runs from approximately June through September. This summertime period offers reliably warm and sunny weather. According to the Hawaii Tourism Authority, over 40% of visitors come during these months.* As crowds swell, so do prices for both cruises and hotels.

Early fall still sees great weather before the rainy season kicks in.

Cheaper Fares in Spring and Fall Shoulders

The spring (March to May) and fall (October to November) shoulder seasons offer a nice compromise – fewer tourists, lower prices, and still favorable weather most of the time. You’ll avoid the worst of the crowds and save money on your cruise. Just be prepared for occasional rain showers.

Avoid the Rainiest Months of Winter

If you really want to save money, look at winter cruise deals. But the weather turns dicier from December through February. Hawaii’s rainy season brings more frequent rain, choppy seas, and even the rare storm.

Whale watching activities peak with humpback migration, but weigh the weather risks vs. rewards.

Jan-Feb Mar-May Jun-Sep Oct-Nov Dec
Average Temps 75°F 75-80°F 80-90°F 80°F 75°F
Rainfall High Moderate Low Moderate High
Whale Watching Peak Good Light Good Peak
Prices Low Moderate High Moderate Low
Crowds Light Moderate Heavy Moderate Light

Tips for Finding the Best Hawaii Cruise Deals

Book Early for Best Selection of Cabins

Booking a Hawaii cruise early, ideally 4-6 months in advance, gives you access to the widest selection of cabin categories and locations on the ship (CruiseTimetables). Last minute deals sometimes pop up, but choices are more limited. Booking early also locks in price protection before any increases.

Be Flexible with Departure Dates

If your schedule permits, look at Hawaii cruises leaving on different days of the week and from various ports. Mid-week departures are generally several hundred dollars cheaper per person. You may also save money departing from LA, San Diego or Vancouver rather than traditional port cities.

Watch for Sales and Discount Promotions

Many cruise lines offer promotions around holidays like New Year’s, President’s Day, or Black Friday. Sign up for email alerts and check for last minute deals. Third party websites also compile and list discounted cruises to Hawaii.

Consider Repositioning Cruises

Early spring and late fall are seasons for ships to reposition between their usual routes. Repositioning cruises can mean exceptional deals on longer Hawaii itineraries since cruise lines discount empty rooms.

Compare Similar Itineraries Carefully

Cruise Line Days Ports Visited Starting Price
Norwegian 10 Oahu, Maui, Big Island $799
Princess 10 Oahu, Maui, Kauai $849

Itineraries, port visits, amenities offered and cruise lengths can vary greatly. Compare deals in detail to find your perfect Hawaii cruise at a great value.


With its famous beaches, majestic mountains, volcano landscapes, and welcoming culture, Hawaii remains a dream location for cruisers. By knowing the top cruise lines like NCL, Princess, and Holland America that sail there regularly, the different cruise itineraries available, when to find the best weather and prices, and tips to get deals, you can discover heavenly Hawaii by ship.

Which Hawaii island would you be most excited to explore on your upcoming cruise? The active volcanoes of the Big Island? The world famous Waikiki Beach on Oahu? Let us know if you have any other questions as you plan your Hawaii cruise vacation!

Sharing is caring!

Similar Posts