You’ll feel like you’ve paddled into paradise when cruising the Hawaiian islands.
Cruise ships weren’t the first vessels to bring ocean-going passengers to Hawaii. Outrigger canoes were. Polynesian settlers paddled to the islands more than 1,000 years ago. Their first glimpses of Hawaii revealed much of what cruise passengers today see: verdant volcanic peaks forming a backdrop to fertile valleys of sugar cane, thick groves of coconut palms and ocean as blue as Windex.
Today, cruise ships ply the Hawaiian islands en masse. Many begin or end their sea journeys to Hawaii from Los Angeles and San Diego, popular jumping-off ports more than 2,500 miles across the Pacific Ocean. Others visit the islands when repositioning between the Caribbean and Alaska.
Among the key players offering 12- to 17-night itineraries featuring Hawaii on repositioning cruises and from Southern California: Carnival Cruise Lines, Celebrity Cruises, Holland America Line, Princess Cruises and Royal Caribbean International.