Hawaii Aerial Shots: Haleakala sunrise

20 Hawaii Aerial Shots That Will Blow Your Mind

infographic showing 20 Hawaii aerial photos


Millions of people flock to Hawaii every year to enjoy the turquoise waters, lush rainforests, and balmy breezes. Take a look at these jaw-dropping Hawaii aerial shots, and get ready to explore some of the Islands’ most gorgeous spots from the air!   


#1:  La Perouse Bay, Maui

The Big Island isn’t the only one to have volcanic bragging rights. La Perouse Bay on Maui’s south shore is the site of Maui’s most recent volcanic activity, dating back to the 1700s.  

Hawaii aerial shots: La Perouse Bay on Maui


#2:  Spotted Deer, Maui

Maui is known for many things, but deer aren’t often the first thing that come to peoples’ minds.  However, the axis deer population has reached over 100,000 on this island.  Keep your eyes peeled for a herd of these gorgeous yet invasive wild creatures!

Hawaii aerial shots: spotted deer in the mountains


#3:  Makena Beach, Maui

Makena Beach (aka Big Beach) is an absolute gem, and it’s just as spectacular from above. 

Hawaii aerial shots: Makena Beach on Maui



#4:  Kauai, Hawaii

Known as the Garden Island, this lush landscape is brimming with waterfalls.  Many of the must-see waterfalls are extremely remote, which will require you to either be an advanced hiker or see them by air.  

Hawaii aerial shots: waterfall on Kauai


#5:  Haleakala, Maui

If you are ready to take your Hawaiian experience to the next level, Haleakala National Park is for you.  This volcanic crater is 10,023 feet above sea level, and watching the sun rise from up here will change your life!  

Hawaii aerial shots: Haleakala sunrise


#6:  Kaanapali, Maui

This side of Maui is made up of some of Hawaii’s most luxurious resorts.  And for a good reason!  The beaches are some of the best in the world.  Here’s a bird’s eye view of Kaanapali Beach and Black Rock.

Hawaii aerial shots: Kaanapali Beach on Maui


#7: Kamaole Beach, Maui

Kamaole Beach is your ticket to old fashioned beach fun.  Located across the street from great restaurants and convenience stores in Kihei, this 1.5-mile stretch of beach is the perfect spot to hang out all day.  A great place to swim and sun, this beach will keep everyone in your group as happy as Hawaiian clams.  

Hawaii aerial shots: Kamaole Beach on Maui


#8:  Napali Coast, Kauai

One of the most famous sights on the North Shore of Kauai is the Napali Coast.  From the cascading waterfalls to the 17-mile stretch of emerald-green cliffs, there is nothing quite as breathtaking as this coastline.  While there is a trail that has partial access, it ranges from difficult to treacherous.  Many Island visitors prefer to see the Napali Coast by boat or by air.

Hawaii aerial shots: Na Pali Coast, Kauai


#9:  Napali Coast, Kauai

This coastline is so stunning, we felt inspired to share one more mind-blowing picture.  Napali means “many cliffs” in Hawaiian, and some of these cliffs rise up as high as 4,000 feet above the Pacific Ocean.      

Hawaii aerial shots: rugged cliffs on the Na Pali Coast, Kauai


#10:  Waimea Canyon, Kauai

For obvious reasons, Waimea Canyon is known as the “Grand Canyon of the Pacific.”  There are plenty of trails for beginning and seasoned hikers alike, but this 14-mile long, 3,600-foot deep canyon may take you a while to traverse so prepare accordingly.     

Hawaii aerial shots: Waimea Canyon, Kauai


#11:  Kauai, Hawaii

The island of Kauai is a barrel of surprises, offering up bone dry canyons, rugged coastlines, and lush jungles all on one island.  Welcome to Hawaii, where anything is possible!  

Hawaii aerial shots: green farm and pasture land iin Kauai, Hawaii


#12:  Big Island, Hawaii

The active volcano on the Big Island provides plenty of photo-worthy opportunities!  One of the most spectacular sights is when the lava flows into the ocean.  The steam that is usually seen is from the ocean water instantly vaporizing into steam as the lava hits the water.  These huge clouds of steam are not only piping hot, the steam can also contain volcanic glass particles, hydrochloric and sulfuric acid.  This means you’ll want to keep a safe distance from these lava flows.  

Hawaii aerial shots: steaming lava hitting the ocean on the Big Island


#13:  Lahaina Harbor, Maui

From whale watching to sport fishing, this little town has a lot to offer!  While there is plenty to do in Lahaina, almost everyone stops in their tracks when the sunset starts to paint the sky in a vibrant rainbow of tropical colors.  Grab a seat at one of the ocean front restaurants and enjoy the show!  

Hawaii aerial shots: Lahaina harbor on Maui


#14:  Big Island, Hawaii

Eight of the world’s 13 climate zones exist on the Big Island, from snowcapped mountains to parched deserts.  And they have bragging rights to black, white and green sand beaches!  While it is possible to laze away your vacation days here, this island is really built for adventurers.  

Hawaii aerial shots: Big Island


#15:  Maui, Hawaii

The backside of Maui is stunning and feels like a completely different world compared to the first half of the Hana road.  This area is completely isolated (and the road is often closed for repairs), so make sure to stock up on all your food and gas needs before heading to this side of Maui!   

Hawaii aerial shots: Road to Hana, Maui


#16:  Molokai, Hawaii

Molokai, Maui’s “sister island,” is nothing short of magnificent.  Untouched by mass development and crowds of tourists, this pristine island is a step back in time.  The eastern cliffs are the tallest in the world, and the only way you can grasp their magnitude is from a bird’s eye view of Mother Nature’s masterpiece.  

Hawaii aerial shots: Molokai, Hawaii cliffs and waterfalls


#17:  Oahu, Hawaii  

The Diamond Head Lighthouse is an iconic sight when visiting the island of Oahu.  Sitting atop the extinct Diamond Head volcano, this antique lighthouse was built in 1899 and with the assistance of a concrete reinforcement, still stands today.  It is not open to the public, but you can see it from Diamond Head Road.      

Hawaii aerial shots: Diamond Head lighthouse in Honolulu, Hawaii


#18:  Honolulu, Hawaii

If you’ve had your fair share of rainforests and waterfalls, the city side of Oahu is a breath of busy air for those needing a little night life.  It’s no wonder that Oahu has adopted the nickname “The Gathering Place.”  From good eats to great surf, this island has a little bit of everything!    

Hawaii aerial shots: Waikiki


#19:  Road to Hana, Maui

The Road to Hana can be truly memorable if you know what to expect.  This winding road isn’t for those prone to car sickness or an aversion to narrow roads that barely fit two lanes of traffic.  But if you are up for a little adventure and lots of stunning scenery, this experience fits the bill.  The dense rainforest, the tropical fruit stands along the road, the thrill of discovering a hidden waterfall, the charming town of Hana…all well worth the drive! 

Hawaii aerial shots: Road to Hana, Maui


#20:  Upcountry, Maui

From tropical beaches to pine tree forests, Maui’s upcountry is a literal breath of fresh air.  The elevation offers one of the most spectacular views of Maui without battling the crowds to snag a picture.  There are plenty of unique activities up here depending on your interests.  Scout out the local Maui wine tasting or the farm-to-table dining up here!    

Hawaii aerial shots: Upcountry Maui

Mahalo to Guest Blogger Hawaii Web Group for their contribution to this great article!

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Candy Aluli, Publisher

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