The Ultimate Guide to Hawaii's 2023 Summer Festivals & Activities

The Ultimate Guide to Hawaii's 2023 Summer Festivals & Activities

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Looking for some summer fun in the sun? Are you dreaming of a picture-perfect tropical beach and Instagrammable crystal-clear waters? Ready your sunscreens because we got excellent vacay ideas for you and your family’s 2023 summer getaway in Hawaii!

From June 21st to September 22nd, 2023, Hawaii will officially kick off its summer season. While Hawaii's natural beauty and stunning waves are enjoyable year-round, these months are the perfect time to indulge in an array of exciting activities across the state.

Now let's dive into details...

Let's start with the Aloha Festivals. It's a statewide celebration of Hawaiian culture and traditions. The festival is held in September and features events such as street parties, parades, and live music performances. The highlight of this festival is the Floral Parade, where colorful floats and marching bands fill the streets of Waikiki on Oahu.

Obon is a traditional Japanese festival that is celebrated in Hawaii with dance, music, and food. The festival usually takes place in July and is a time to remember and honor ancestors who have passed away. During the festival, you can witness beautiful dance performances, enjoy delicious Japanese food, and experience the vibrant culture of Hawaii.

Kauai Summer Activities

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Heiva I Kauai is a Tahitian dance competition that takes place on the island of Kauai on August 5th, 2023. The festival features dancers from all over the world who come to compete and showcase their talent. The festival also includes traditional Tahitian food, crafts, and entertainment.

The Kōloa Plantation Days Celebration is an annual event that celebrates the history and culture of Kauai's sugar plantation era. The festival features a variety of events, including a parade, live music, food booths, and cultural demonstrations. The festival will take place from the 21st to the 30th day of July.

The Battle of The Food Trucks is also an annual event on Kauai that brings together some of the best food trucks on the island to compete for the title of the best food truck. The festival also includes live music and entertainment for all ages. This year, it will be celebrated on the afternoon of Sunday, September 10th.

Mokihana Festival is a week-long celebration of Hawaiian music, dance, and culture. The festival features workshops, concerts, hula competitions, and other events that highlight the rich traditions of Hawaii. The festival usually takes place in September.

Oahu Summer Activities

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The summer fun run and festival happening on June 24 of Mana Honua is an annual event held at Kualoa Ranch on Oahu. The festival includes a 5K fun run, live music, food booths, and other activities for all ages.

The international paddleboard race in the Molokai 2 Oahu Paddleboard World Championships will occur on July 30, 2023, between the islands of Molokai and Oahu. The event attracts athletes from all over the world who compete in different categories, including solo and team races.

Duke's OceanFest is a week-long celebration of the life and legacy of Duke Kahanamoku, the father of modern surfing. The festival includes a variety of events, including surfing competitions, ocean swims, beach volleyball, and other water sports. This festival will fall between August 19th and 27th of 2023.

The Korean Festival in Hawaii is an annual event that celebrates Korean culture and traditions. The festival features food, music, dance, and other cultural activities. The festival usually takes place in August.

Looking for a unique party experience? The Surfjack Hotel in Waikiki is hosting a Silent Disco on July 15, 2023. Participants wear wireless headphones and dance to music that only they can hear, creating a silent dance party. It's a fun and quirky way to experience the nightlife in Waikiki.

But if you're a fan of Japanese culture, you won't want to miss the Okinawan Festival Hawaii, which is scheduled to take place during the first week of September. This annual festival celebrates the vibrant culture of Okinawa, with traditional music, dance performances, and food.

Molokai Summer Activities

For the water enthusiasts out there, the Molokai Holokai Ho'olaule'a is a must-attend event. This two-day festival, taking place on July 14-15, 2023, is a celebration of Molokai's rich ocean culture. The festival features a variety of water-based activities, such as stand-up paddleboarding and outrigger canoeing, along with live music and local food vendors.

Maui Summer Activities

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Art lovers won't want to miss the Maui Youth Art Exhibition 2023, which will showcase the talents of Maui's young artists. This event, running from July 28 to August 25, 2023, will feature a variety of artwork in different mediums, such as painting, sculpture, and photography. The exhibition is a great opportunity to support and appreciate the creative talents of Maui's youth.

Hula is an integral part of Hawaiian culture, and the Emma Farden Sharpe Hula Festival is a great opportunity to witness this beautiful art form in action. The festival, held annually in August (exact dates TBC), features traditional hula performances from dancers of all ages. The event also includes workshops, craft vendors, and food trucks.

Big Island Summer Activities

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The Big Island Experience Volcano Festival is a celebration of the island's volcanic history and geology. This two-day festival, taking place on July 29-30, 2023, will feature guided tours of the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, talks on volcanic science, and cultural demonstrations. There will also be food vendors and live music to enjoy.

And lastly, the fans of SpongeBob SquarePants won't want to miss the Bikini Bottom Day Cruise, taking place on June 24, 2023. This themed boat tour will take you to different locations that inspired the beloved cartoon show. You'll get to see the real-life equivalents of Bikini Bottom's iconic locations, like Goo Lagoon and Jellyfish Fields, and enjoy games and activities inspired by the show. But this activity is strictly for adults aged 21 and above, so you might want to skip this one if you are on a family trip with youngsters, (or if you are young at heart).


Hawaii is an enchanting destination that is a perfect vacation spot for your summer this 2023. Aside from the suggested activities above, you can also enjoy the serenity and peaceful vibes when island hopping, even restaurant-hopping. You might want to check our blog on The Most Expensive Restaurants in Hawaii.

The beautiful beaches, lush greenery, and warm sunshine are not the only things that attract tourists to this Aloha paradise. Hawaii is also home to a variety of festivals and activities that will make your summer season complete. How exciting!

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