Bali vs. Hawaii: Which Island Escape Is For You?

Bali and Hawaii – two impressive islands located on the opposite side of the world, yet both share an unwavering similarity. With growing popularity, both offer vast natural landscapes including lush rainforests, iconic beaches, impressive volcanoes along with a burgeoning food scene and a welcoming culture.

Capital cityDenpasarHonolulu
Most popular destinationBedugulOahu
Natural attractionTanah LotHawai’i Volcanoes National Park

The real question is, which island will you escape to? 

Fun in Bali


With a culturally rich and diverse landscape, it’s hard not to fall in love with the spirit of Bali. Situated near Java and Lombok, Bali is attractive for those seeking an in-depth cultural experience. Plus, local cuisine on a budget.

Essential Bali information:

  1. Climate: Tropical
  2. Best time to go: given the close proximity to the equator, the warm climate makes Bali an attractive destination all year round

What To Do In Bali: Top Attractions

To ensure you get the most out out your island getaway, we’ve rounded up our top attractions:

  • Bali is an inherently spiritual place, and a visit to one of the many temples is just the beginning when looking to immerse yourself in local traditions. Enjoy a moment of peace at the Pura Ulun Danu Bratan, a Hindu-Buddhist lake temple dedicated to the goddess of the waters.
  • Hire a bike and cruise alongside the lush rice fields of Ubud. Opt for a half-day or full-day guided tour with a local guide for an in-depth, educational experience.
  • Pick up a surfboard and see for yourself why the locals are so proud of their surrounding beaches. Visit Uluwatu, Kuta, Canggu and Nusa Lembongan for consistent barrels.
  • Hike to the summit of volcanic Mount Batur and watch the sunrise – an invigorating and rewarding adventure. 
Bali surfing
Surf at Uluwatu, Kuta, Canggu and Nusa Lembongan.

What To Eat And Drink In Bali

The best way to experience a destination in it’s truest form is through sampling local cuisine. These are our top experiences: 

  • Be sure to indulge in anything wrapped in a banana leaf, from noodle dishes, tum and nasi jinggo.
  • Satay, or sate, involves slices of marinated or spiced meat skewered and grilled in a tasty sauce.
  • A trip to Bali wouldn’t be complete without sampling Sambal Matah, a hot sauce featuring shrimp paste, chilli and local spices with a citrus twist.
  • Sip on a Balinese coffee and if time allows, visit a nearby plantation to learn more about local coffee production.
  • Go one step further and flex your skills at a Balinese cooking class. 

Phrases and Words

Apa Kabah?
How are you?
Terima Kasih
Thank you



In short; Hawaii has it all. Possessing a strong multicultural identity, Hawaii has carved a name for itself as a year-round tropical destination for nature lovers, adventurers or those searching for total relaxation. Embrace the Hawaiian value of aloha ‘aine – love and respect for the land, at your own pace.

Oahu Hawaii
Oahu, Hawaii

Essential Hawaii information:

  1. Climate: Tropical
  2. Best time to go: As a tropical destination, Hawaii is pleasant to visit year-round. October to December may be subject to higher rainfall.

What To Do In Hawaii: Top Attractions

Go beyond Honolulu and uncover the beauty of this unique archipelago. But before you go, we’ve carefully curated a handful of attractions to add to your list. 

  • A visit to Hawaii would not be complete without spending time at the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park – a true sight to behold.
  • Cruise along the Road to Hana, a cliff-hanging, scenic road along the edge of Maui. 
  • Take a step back in time with a historic visit to Pearl Harbor and the USS Arizona Memorial.
  • Take to the waves and embrace the iconic surf culture. If you’re a surfing novice, build your confidence by taking a handful of surf lessons. 
  • For those seeking a challenge, set your eyes on the Koko Crater Railway Trail. This impressive volcano last erupted 30,000 years ago and has become a popular hike for those searching for sweeping vistas while breaking a sweat.
Hawaii volcano
Hawaii Volcano National Park.

What To Eat And Drink In Hawaii

Naturally, an island surrounded by a large body of water delivers fresh seafood. Hawaii is no exception to this rule. Modern Hawaiian cuisine can be identified as a fusion of Japanese, Polynesian, Chinese, Mexican and more. Sample it all with our top recommended food experiences:

  • Laulau is a Hawaiian favourite featuring meat wrapped in taro leaves and cooked to deepen the flavours.
  • For seafood lovers, Ahi is one of the go-to staples of Hawaiian cuisine. Ahi refers to yellowfin tuna and the bigeye tuna that is pan-seared and served on a bed of rice with traditional salt and spice. 
  • A sugar injection can be found in the form of a malasada – a Portuguese doughnut that has become a firm favourite among locals. 
  • With an abundance of coconuts scattered on the island, Haupia is a local dessert made from coconut shavings and coconut milk boiled together and served cold.

Phrases and Words

A Hui Hou<
Until we meet again
Kala mai ia‘u
Excuse me
Shut up!
Thank you

Share with us in the comments below, will you be travelling to Bali or Hawaii? Maybe both?

Gemma is a travel-lover from Melbourne. When she's not surrounded by the great outdoors, Gemma can be found spending her time with family and friends or planning her next trip overseas.

Up Next:

How to Access the Internet in Beijing, China

How to Access the Internet in Beijing, China