The 4 Best Hawaii Cruise Shore Excursions

Cruise shore excursions are the perfect way to enhance your Hawaiian cruise experience. They are specifically designed by cruise operators themselves or in a tie-up with a local shore excursion companies, wherein a full one day tour is arranged in various port of call cities. Excursions allow travellers to peak into the life of the various places they sail along.

Depending on your needs or the theme of your cruise, the shore excursion revolves around adventure, entertainment, sight-seeing, shopping and/or dining. Most cruise reviews give an important cruise tip which relates to you paying good attention to the shore excursions itinerary.

1. Volcanoes National Park, Macadamia Nut Factory & Garden Tour     

Princess Cruise has a number of shore excursions for their Hilo port of call. For the tour “Volcanoes National Park, Macadamia Nut Factory & Garden,” you get to see the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park where you can walk through Thurston Lava Tube. After which you are whisked away to explore the Hawaii Botanical Gardens where you get to walk amidst 2,000 species of tropical plants. Last on this tour is a visit to the Mauna Loa Macadamia Nut Factory where you get guided tour about harvesting and processing of Macadamia Nuts.

2. Atlantis Submarine Tour

Carnival Cruises' Honolulu shore excursions range from 3 to 8 hours, so you have plenty of choices. Opt for going underwater aboard the Atlantis Submarine, a hi-tech passenger submarine. You are transported to Waikiki’s Hilton Hawaiian Village and then onto the Atlantis Pier. From here, you have a 15-minute boat ride to the dive site. Once aboard the submarine, experience the thrill of descending 100 feet underwater. Get yourself the best glass view and have a spectacular view of the ship wrecks, corals, reef life and lots of fishes.

3. Na Pali Explorer

Norwegian Cruise has a number of shore excursions lined up at the port of call Kauai. One of them is the Na Pali Explorer, a 7-hour shore excursion where you are expected to wear a swimsuit and bring a towel. A great place to snorkel among the marine life found in the lake. You are taken to the base of the 4,000-foot-high sea cliffs. All along the rainforest coastline, you can watch the large sea caves and cascading waterfalls. Your tour captain will give a narration about the history of the entire area. Once that is done, feel free to jump in the water and feast on a deli-style lunch on board before getting back to ship.

4. A Walking Tour through Lahaina's Past

Celebrity cruise offers its guest a variety of shore excursions on major port of call. One of them is designed for Maui port of call known as “A Walking Tour through Lahaina's Past,” a 2-hour shore excursion that takes you through the historic Lahaina town. As you have to walk 1.5 miles, it is best to wear walking shoes and a hat. You start your journey with a welcoming chant at the sacred Hau'ola birthing stone and then are guided through the travels of the first Polynesians that arrived here some 1700 years ago. After, you are shown the ruins of the King's taro patch and the Brick Palace. A walk down the memory lane of the immigrant plantation workers can be experienced down at Luakini Street. Further, you continue down to Waiola Church and Cemetery and the final resting place of Hawaii's royalty. The walk culminates at 505 Front Street.

The idea is to enjoy the shore excursions at leisure. And, when it comes to a Hawaii shore excursion, nothing beats watching and experiencing the majestic volcanoes, soaring seaside cliffs, tropical forest, vast stretches of beaches and the famed Hawaiian hospitality.

Find a Cruise

Ask questions and get advice from other cruisers on our popular discussion board,