Looking for a tropical getaway but confused between Hawaii vs Bali? The two islands are impressive in terms of what they have to offer including incredible natural wonders,  beaches, lush rainforests, vibrant culture, food, adventure opportunities and more. 

The similarities between these destinations make the choice between Hawaii and Bali all the more difficult. So, here we help you evaluate the differences between the two islands so that you can make the right choice.

Hawaii Versus Bali

Also Useful:

What to Choose Between Hawaii And Mauritius?

Hawaii Vs Bali: The Better Tropical Escape

Below are the metrics that will give you a fair idea of the differences between Hawaii and Bali. Take a quick look before we delve into the details- 

LOCATION
Hawaii

USA, North America

Bali

Indonesia, Asia

BEST TIME TO VISIT 
Hawaii

Mar-Oct

Bali

Apr- Oct

SAFETY LEVEL
Hawaii

Very Good

Bali

Good

IDEAL LENGTH TO STAY
Hawaii

7-14 days

Bali

6-10 days

7 DAY TRIP COST (2 People)
Hawaii

3900 USD

Bali

1500 USD

BEACHES
Hawaii

Excellent

Bali

Very Good

SIGHTSEEING & ADVENTURE
Hawaii

Very Good

Bali

Excellent

FOOD CULTURE
Hawaii

Hawaiian & Fusion

Bali

Indonesian & Local

SHOPPING
Hawaii

Excellent

Bali

Excellent

NIGHTLIFE
Hawaii

Very Good

Bali

Excellent

ACCOMMODATION 
Hawaii

Low to Very High Priced

Bali

Low to High Priced

CULTURAL EXPERIENCE
Hawaii

Good

Bali

Very Good

CLEANLINESS & SAFETY
Hawaii

Excellent

Bali

Very good

FAMILY VACATION
Hawaii

Very Good

Bali

Excellent

HONEYMOON
Hawaii

Excellent

Bali

Excellent

Let us take a closer look at each of these metrics-

Location & Accessibility of Hawaii Versus Bali

Hawaii is a gorgeous island located in the Pacific Ocean and is officially a part of the United States. It is well-known for its mesmerizing white sandy beaches, active volcanoes, lush green rainforests, and more. 

Hawaii is pretty well connected to all parts of the world. While visitors from the US can get direct flights, travellers from other parts of the world should be prepared for connecting and longer flights.

Bali is a part of Indonesia located between the Indian and Pacific oceans. Bali is known for its natural beauty including gorgeous beaches, national parks, rice terraces, hot springs, and many more beautiful terrains. 

If you are travelling to Bali, you must know that there are no direct flights from most parts of the world. So, you might have to get connecting flights depending on where you are coming from.

VERDICT: Hawaii has more frequent and direct flights and is thus more easily accessible.

Hawaii vs Puerto Rico Climate

Hawaii has a diverse landscape, and thus witnesses variations in its weather

Weather & Best Time to Visit Hawaii Vs Bali

Hawaii experiences tropical weather all year round. There are two main seasons in Hawaii – Summer: between May and October, and Winter: between October and April.

The best time to visit the Hawaiian Islands is Mid-April to Mid-December. This is due to the least rainfall and high temperatures between 23 and 32 degrees. If you want a serene experience, we recommend October and December to because it is less crowded. 

Bali experiences, a warm, humid and tropical climate all year round. The island has two distinct seasons – Dry (April to October) and Wet (November to March).

The dry season is the best time to visit Bali.  Avoid planning your trip between October, January and February due to heavy rainfalls. However, if you are looking for cheaper deals, it might be a good time to visit

VERDICT: Weather in Bali and Hawaii is pretty similar but Bali has a longer dry season in comparison to Hawaii

How Many Days are Needed to Explore Hawaii Vs Bali?

Hawaii is a large group of islands and has a lot to offer when it comes to adventure and sightseeing opportunities. Therefore, we recommend a minimum of one week in Hawaii although two weeks would be ideal to explore all major attractions and activities without rushing through.

Bali is much smaller in size than Hawaii but has a lot to offer. We would recommend a minimum of 6 days on the island to be able to explore all major attractions.

VERDICT: You need more time to explore Hawaii because of its size. 

Is Hawaii or Bali Cheaper For Travellers?

Hawaii will cost you 3900 USD approx for two people for a week if you have a mid-range budget. The costs would depend on the season, as prices of flights and stays may spike during December and New year. It also depends on which islands you are staying like Oahu is mid-range, Molokai is the cheapest and Maui is quite expensive. 

Here’s a breakdown of the costs that you may incur in Hawaii:

Food, travel & sightseeing (Per Day)150 – 300 USD
Accommodation (Per Night)30 – 350 USD
Inter-Island Transportation118-250 USD

 Bali is a more budget-friendly trip for travellers. A 7 day trip for two people in Bali will cost you around 1000- 2800 USD. Whether it is accommodation or food, Bali is reasonably cheaper with the average meal costing you around 3-5 USD.

Here’s a breakdown of the costs that you may incur in Hawaii:

Food, travel & sightseeing (Per Day)50 – 120 USD
Accommodation (Per Night)20 – 200 USD
Daily Transportation20- 55 USD


VERDICT: Bali is way cheaper than Hawaii. 

Hawaii vs Puerto Rico Beach

The black sand beach Punalu’u Beach Park is the most famous one on the Big Island in Hawaii

Hawaii Vs Bali – The Better Destination for Beaches 

Hawaii is the world’s most popular Island known for its lovely white, black, green and red sand beaches with crystal clear and calm waters.

There are more than 100 beaches to explore both serene and lively all over Hawaii. You can find a beach to party,  surf, swim or just relax. Punalulu, Kahalulu, Kalapaki, Waikiki, Ko Olina Beach Park, Lanikai and Keauhou are some of the best Hawaiian beaches.

Bali has beautiful white and black sand beaches with turquoise warm waters to swim, surf and snorkel. There are more than 35 beaches in Bali.

The beaches in Bali are relatively more crowded and at times you may find them a little dirty. Some of the best beaches in Bali are Seminyak, Jimbaran, Canggu, Nusa Dua, Green Bowl, Jungutbatu, Labuan Sait, etc.

VERDICT:  Hawaii is a better choice for the variety and cleanliness of beaches. 

How is Hawaii Compared to Bali For Sightseeing?

Hawaii will astound you with its places of interest. The natural attractions here will leave you in awe with the beaches, active volcanoes views, waterfalls, valleys, stargazing tours, sea cliffs and natural landmarks. Apart from the natural attractions make sure you also check out museums, historical sites, zoos, aquariums, coffee farms and markets, on your trip to Hawaii.

Major attractions in Hawaii:

  • Na-Pali Coast
  • Gardens of the Gods
  • Pearl Harbour
  • Waimea Canyon
  • Polynesian Cultural Center
  • Diamond Head
  • Honolulu Museum of Art
  • Waikiki Aquarium
  • Kalaupapa Cliffs, Molokai
  • Nahuku- Thurston Lava Tube
  • Spouting Horn
  • Mauna Kea
  • Hawaii Volcanoes National Park

Bali will win your heart with its diverse nature of natural and man-made wonders. You can visit ancient temples, rice terrains, waterfalls, mountains, art galleries, historical & cultural centres, active volcanoes, beaches and more on your trip to Bali. 

Major attractions in Bali:

  • Ubud Monkey Forest
  • Menjangan Island
  • Pura Tanah Lot
  • Uluwatu Temple
  • Tegallalang and Jatiluwih Rice Terraces
  • Pura Ulun Danu Bratan
  • Sekumpul Waterfall
  • Lempuyang Temple Complex
  • Mount Agung

VERDICT:  Both Hawaii and Bali are excellent places for sightseeing but Bali will give you a better mix of spiritual, and cultural places to visit.  

 Mount Agung,

While in Bali, you can hike up to Mount Agung, the active volcano on the island

Hawaii vs Bali – Which is Best For Outdoor Adventures & Entertainment? 

Hawaii offers mind-blowing adventure spots that will keep an adrenaline junkie super busy. You can indulge in activities such as helicopter tours sunset cruises, hiking, ziplining,  windsurfing and camping.

Best Entertainment Spots in Hawaii:

  • Kona Kozy’s magic show
  • Comedy show at Waikoloa Village
  • Rodgers and Hammerstein South pacific dinner show, Kaui Beach resort
  • Dance performance live shows at Maui Arts and Cultural Center
  • Hawaii cultural performance at Polynesian Culture center
  • Hawaii theatre center in Chinatown
  • Kaui community college performing arts center

 Bali is known for its adventure and entertainment options. The best adventure sports activities you can indulge in here paragliding, flyboarding at Nusa Dua, flying fish, reverse bungy, hiking, zip-lining, canyoning, cave diving at Shark Cave, Gili Biaha and a special quad bike ride to explore the jungles and more.

Best Entertainment Spots in Bali:

  • Pandora Experience Escape Room
  • Krishna Funtastic Land
  • Smash Room Bali
  • Kovee VR Kuta
  • Devdan Theatre Show at Bali Nusa Dua
  • Kecak dance and Seafood dinner on the beach at Uluwatu
  • Amazing Bali swing experience with Ubud Fall
  • Taman Nusa Indonesian cultural park
  • Borong dance and Batur Volcano

VERDICT: If you love adventure, Bali has a lot more to offer than Hawaii.  

 What Is Better Hawaii or Bali for Water Activities?

Hawaii offers mind-blowing water activities like deep-sea fishing, whale watching tours, kayaking, parasailing, snorkelling, stand up paddling, surfing and diving

One of the best water activities you can pursue here is surfing. In fact, Oahu is one of the best spots for surfing. If you are a beginner, intermediate or expert, you will find a beach that caters to your surfing requirement.

When it comes to water sports in Bali, it incredibly offers endless water activities to enjoy with your family and friends. These include jet-skiing, Bali rolling donut, snorkelling, skiing, parasailing, fly fishing, snorkelling, fly fishing, underwater scooter ride, water tubing, windsurfing, kayaking, river rafting, stand up paddling, etc. 

Just like Hawaii, Bali too offers some incredible spots for surfing. For beginners, Kuta and Seminyak are great to start. For someone with advanced surf skills, Uluwatu or Padang Padang are the perfect spots.

VERDICT:  Both Hawaii and Bali offer some incredible water activities, especially Surfing. 

Hawaii vs bali food

In Bali try the juice Satay, a Southeast Asian dish of seasoned, skewered and grilled meat, served with a sauce

How is the Food Culture in Hawaii Vs Bali? 

Hawaiian cuisine varies significantly because of the influence of multiple cultures – Hawaiian, Asian-Pacific, Portuguese and American. Regular, western-style and fusion food is the most common along with traditional Hawaiian dishes that are typically fish or pork-based.

Hawaii is famous for “Plate Lunch”, seafood tacos, Japanese inspired Poke Bowl, and farm-grown fresh fruits from local markets. The staple food in Hawaii is taro poi, breadfruit, sweet potatoes, leafy vegetables, pork, and taro tops. 

Famous Food Spots in Hawaii:  

  • Rainbow dive-in
  • Jawz Tacos and Da Poke Shack in Kailua Kona
  • Helena Hawaiian Food
  • The Original’s Roy in Hawaii Kai

Balinese delicacies will make you feel the essence of this beautiful island. It is famous for traditional cuisine with a huge variety of dishes. Indonesian cuisine mostly consists of rice, noodle or soup dishes. Dishes are typically fried and are packed with flavour. Apart from that, you can also try western food here.

Famous food of Bali includes Satay, Babi Guling, Betutu, Lawar, Bubur menguh, Nasi Jinggo, Nasi tepeng, Urab (traditional vegetable salad), Sambal Matah, Nasi Goreng, etc. 

Famous Food Spots in Bali:  

  • Gooseberry restaurant
  • Ganesha Ek Sanskriti- The Indian Food Cuisine
  • Mamasan Bali
  • Bumbu Delhi Indian Restaurant
  • Jimbaran Seafood Cafes

VERDICT: Hawaiian food has the essence of multiple cultures that can be felt in their cuisine, but for more local flavours Bali is a better choice 

Better Shopper Paradise – Hawaii or Bali? 

Hawaii is a wonderful place for shoppers. Bring home lovely souvenirs such as Macadamia nuts, Hawaiian quilts, special Hawaiian fruits, Aloha t-shirts, Kona coffee, Music, and Tropical fruit jams.

Recommended Places for Shopping in Hawaii: Queen’s Marketplace, Hawaiian boutiques, Keauhou Shopping center, Kona international market, Ali Gardens marketplace, etc. 

 Bali offers a fascinating shopping experience and authentic souvenirs. You can buy handbags, sweet pie,  Bali Banana Cake, traditional batik fabrics, Bali Tees, local pastries, organic coffee, wine, handmade silver jewellery, spices etc. too at a bare minimum cost. 

Recommended Places for Shopping in Bali: Sukawati Art Market, Sindhu Market,  Threads of Life, Kharisma Antiques Bali, Seminyak Village. Ikatbatik

VERDICT: Both Hawaii and Bali are outstanding shopping destinations but Bali is way cheaper

Which One Has More Thrilling Nightlife- Hawaii or Bali?

Hawaii has rocking nightlife right from dance clubs, and local bars to lounges. Oahu is the most popular Island to experience a unique party culture. 

Best Places for Nightlife in Hawaii: Waikiki, Honolulu, and Chinatown for lively nightclubs and bars. 

Bali is one of the best places to visit for nightlife, especially for young travellers. Enjoy DJ parties, delicious cocktails, and beers to unwind, dance and have fun on rooftops, and beach clubs at South Bali. 

Best places for Nightlife in Bali: Kuta, Seminyak, Canggu and Uluwatu. 

VERDICT: Hawaii and Bali are both great for nightlife, but Bali is better. 

Hawaii vs Bali – The Better Accommodation For Tourists

Hawaii has plenty of budget-friendly, clean and hygienic accommodations such as hostels, vintage hotels, and private lodges. 

Accommodation costs in Hawaii range from 96 USD-450 USD per night and vacation rentals cost around 250 USD- 850 USD per night.

Bali is a more reasonable option for travellers whether you choose Dorm rooms, homestays, guest houses, private villas or luxury hotels. 

The accommodation costs in Bali range from 30 USD to 350 USD. Guesthouses, homestays and small hotels will cost 10-20 USD per room, luxury hotels are affordable and cost 70 USD- 150 USD per night and high-end luxury hotels or villas will cost 150 USD – 350 USD per night. 

VERDICT: Bali is undoubtedly your best bet for budget-friendly stays. 

Hawaii vs bali culture

Bali is strongly influenced by spirituality and ancient traditions

Comparing the Vibrant Culture of Hawaii and Bali

Hawaiian culture is known for its Aloha spirit. It is a true essence of peace, compassion, responsibility and kindness. The island has a strong Polynesian and American influence, which is evident from the moment you step here. 

Cultural Activities in Hawaii: Mele Music,  Kapalua Wine food festival at Maui, Luau – The Hawaiian feast, Aloha shirts and mumu’s dresses in Honolulu, King Kamehameha day celebration, Sashimi new year

Balinese culture is well-known for spirituality and unique traditional Balinese rituals, sacred temples, theatre dance, crafts, special ceremonies and local flea markets that can be seen everywhere. The taste of ethnicity and traditions in Bali will leave you astonished. 

Cultural Activities in Bali: Ubud Palace, Kecak Fire Dance at Uluwatu Temple, Bathe in Holy water at Pura Tirta Empul, Balinese Art at Agung Rai Art Museum, Traditional Cooking Classes at The Bale Nusa Dua, Bali Mud Wrestling at Batubulan, Gianyar 

VERDICT: Both Hawaii and Bali will give you a unique cultural experience, but Bali has an edge because of its authenticity.

Hawaii vs Bahamas Safety

Hawaii is quite safe, but as is with all destinations, we must always be careful

Which is Safer & Cleaner to Travel – Hawaii or Bali? 

Hotels in Hawaii are safe and quite clean. However, travellers need to take extra precautions at night. There is a risk of pickpockets, especially if you are in Honolulu. In addition, the main safety concern in Hawaii is natural disasters so make sure to plan your trip wisely. 

 Bali is safe for all kinds of travellers except for petty crimes, thefts and common scams like ATM skimming. So, you need to take adequate precautions. Most places in Bali are clean but you might find trash in several places.

VERDICT: Hawaii is safer and cleaner when compared to Bali

Which One Is Better for Family Vacation – Hawaii or Bali? 

Hawaii is an excellent family vacation spot to explore the serene beaches in remote areas, outdoor fun, cruises, snorkeling and watching sea turtles. There are also plenty of kid-friendly resorts and activities all around the island.

Bali is one of the most popular family vacation spots. With your family, you can explore mesmerising beaches, valleys, adventure spots, underwater dives, waterfalls, breathtaking adventure sports to tranquil ancient temples. It is also more pocket friendly.

VERDICT: Bali is a better choice for families and young kids because o reasonable accommodation and adventure options  

Choosing Hawaii Vs Bali for Honeymoon

Hawaii is an amazing place for married couples to enjoy the sandy beaches, romantic sunset cruise, deep-sea diving, Aloha spirit, and one of the beautiful resorts in Maui, Oahu, Lanai on Hawaii Island. 

Bali is one of the best places for honeymoon couples to enjoy world-class accommodation, spa, ceremonies, exciting water activities for surfers, gorgeous beaches, resorts and amazing budget-friendly honeymoon packages. 

Verdict: If you are looking for a budget-friendly trip for your honeymoon then Bali is your best bet. 

COVID Quarantine Conditions & Travel Restrictions 

Hawaii has no travel restrictions for domestic passengers. However, for international travellers, you are required to follow the requirements of the United States.

If you are heading to Bali, you should be fully vaccinated and must have proof in order to travel. Those people who have got infected within 30 days before travelling must produce medical proof/official letter and they will be exempted from PCR test 48 hrs before the departure.

Before we wrap up, we would like o address the question – Is Hawaii similar to Bali? Yes, in a lot of ways it is. However, when you have to choose between the two it all comes down to budget.  Bali offers you better options and quite a budget-friendly trip as compared to Hawaii. 

So what’s your final choice – Bali or Hawaii? Share your thoughts in the comments. 

Happy Wayfaring! 

BW Copyright Addendum