There’s something magical about spending Christmas in a tropical paradise. Hawaii stays warm year-round, making it the perfect holiday destination to escape frosty weather. Enjoy dazzling lights and Christmas events in Hawaii to get into the holiday spirit. There are countless attractions to explore in Hawaii such as the scenic hiking trails and gorgeous waterfalls on Big Island, the breathtaking Waikiki and Waimanalo beaches in Oahu, and the island’s active volcanoes. Look forward to staying at one of many vacation rentals in Hawaii surrounded by natural beauty and vibrant culture. Check out the most exciting cities and towns in Hawaii featuring wonderful Christmas light displays.

christmas tree lights

1. Honolulu

If you’re looking for the iconic Hawaii experience, you can’t go wrong with beachfront vacation rentals on Honolulu’s stunning beaches. You’ll also be just minutes from one of Hawaii’s most popular holiday parties. Hawaii’s capital city hosts an annual month-long Christmas celebration called Honolulu City Lights at the Honolulu Hale, or City Hall. Highlights include a dazzling 50-foot Christmas tree, 21-foot-tall statues of Shaka Santa and his wife, Tūtū Mele, a wreath-making contest, and an indoor courtyard packed with uniquely themed Christmas trees. Stop by the Santa’s Enchanted Forest in the courtyard of the Honolulu Hale. You can find a wide variety of one-of-a-kind Hawaii-themed ornaments, decorations, and other keepsakes and souvenirs to bring home to the mainland. This family-friendly event is perfect for families on vacation. If you don’t feel like exploring the event by foot, take a trolley tour.

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2. Kauai

Known for its extensive rainforests, the island of Kauai is a fantastic place to look for vacation rentals if you plan on exploring Hawaii’s incredible natural landscapes. Kauai’s warm, welcoming community knows how to celebrate the holiday season. One of the most popular Christmas traditions is the annual Festival of Lights. The tradition started when a local woman named Auntie Josie crafted Christmas decorations out of whatever was available, turning garbage into beautiful treasures. Her art included materials such as cans, egg cartons, plastic bottles, and pieces of Styrofoam. Following her husband’s death, Josie sold her large collection of art at a garage sale. The art was subsequently donated to the county by local buyers, and a display of her work during the Christmas season became the cornerstone of a new holiday tradition. Today, the festival includes a breathtaking light display that covers the surrounding buildings and trees, pictures with Santa, and Auntie Josie’s famous Christmas folk art decorations. Enjoy this rich tradition with the friendly locals.

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3. Laie

Laie’s Hukilau Marketplace hosts one of the state’s best Christmas celebrations, known as Christmas at the Hukilau Marketplace. The events offers plenty of enchanting lights, decorations, and Christmas trees. On some days, guests can play in real snow. Other attractions include a magical train ride through the light displays, a Christmas scavenger hunt with prizes, live animal nativity scenes, and caroling. The event is at a marketplace in front of world-famous Polynesian Cultural Center, so there’s plenty of delicious food options, hot beverages, and other mouthwatering treats to enjoy, along with offerings from a variety of food trucks. If you’re in the mood for a sit-down holiday meal nearby, enjoy an exquisite meal at Pounders, one of the area’s most highly recommended restaurants.

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4. Lahaina

West Maui’s Lahaina was once a busy seaport and whaling village and Hawaii’s capital city. Today, this historic town is one of the best places for vacation rentals if you’re planning on enjoying some of the island’s famous water sports, such as surfing, water skiing, swimming, and boating. Perhaps the town’s most famous landmark is the banyan tree that Sheriff Smith planted in 1873 to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the first missionary. Since then, it has grown to be huge, spanning more than half of an acre and featuring a dozen main trunks. The massive tree is the perfect backdrop for an amazing Christmas display with thousands of twinkling lights. The Banyan Tree Park is a wonderful place to relax and enjoy a picnic with the family, and if you’re lucky, Santa might even stop by to pose for a picture.

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5. Kapolei

Located on West Oahu, Kapolei is a delightful community that hosts an ongoing wonderful yearly Christmas celebration. The focal point of the Kapolei City Lights display is an enormous Christmas tree decorated with classic holiday ornaments and lights. You can walk around and look at the other light displays on local buildings and trees, as well as indoor tree displays. There are also holiday-themed areas for taking photos, so you can create wonderful memories with your family. If you’re staying at a vacation rental in Kapolei on Christmas Day, enjoy a holiday feast at Roy’s Ko Olina. It’s one of the area’s best restaurants, hosting a special four-course Christmas dinner that features your choice of 15 tantalizing entrees and much more.

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