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Hawaii Cruise
Hawaii Cruise

What to Wear on Your Hawaii Cruise?

Learn how to dress for a Hawaii cruise vacation and enjoy the perfect blend of comfort and style.

By Cruise Booking Team

Book a Cruise to Hawaii

Hawaii is a dream destination for many because of its magnificent landscapes, rich culture, and unlimited opportunities for adventure. Whether you're taking your first Hawaiian cruise or a seasoned visitor to the Aloha State, knowing what to dress is an important part of arranging your trip. Hawaii's distinct environment and numerous activities necessitate a well-planned outfit that balances comfort, style, and practicality. From casual beachwear to elegant evening attire, ensure that you are fully prepared to embrace the warm and welcoming Aloha spirit.

Find out what to wear on a Hawaii cruise

1. Understanding Hawaii's climate and geography

Before getting into the specifics of what to wear, it's important to understand Hawaii's distinct climate and geography. While the Hawaiian Islands are known for their tropical weather, each island has its distinct microclimate due to the existence of both leeward and windward sides. This implies that the weather may change throughout your cruise, from sunny and dry on the leeward side to rainy and chilly on the windward side.

For example, the Big Island's volcanic Kona and Kohala shores lie on the leeward side and have plenty of sunshine. Hilo, on the other hand, with its tropical rainforest and waterfalls, lies on the windward side and receives more rain. This variability in weather means you should pack for both sunshine and rain, ensuring you're ready for whatever Mother Nature has in store.

2. Casual and colorful daytime attire

The laid-back lifestyle of Hawaii necessitates informal and colorful daytime clothes. Don't be afraid to wear bright floral-print sundresses, T-shirts, and shorts - they perfectly match Hawaii's cheery ambiance. A mix of shorts and T-shirts, as well as khakis or trousers, teamed with collared polo shirts and short-sleeve button-downs, is excellent for males. Hawaiian shirts with palm trees, orchids, or surfboard motifs are practically a uniform in these parts, and you may buy one as a souvenir.

3. Swimwear for water adventures

More than one swimsuit or pair of swimming trunks will be required in Hawaii, where water-based activities abound. You'll need at least two swimsuits, from snorkeling and paddleboarding to waterfall treks and river kayaking. This allows one to dry while the other is worn, ensuring you're always ready for a swim in the clear seas. Given the scorching Hawaiian sun, bring a long-sleeve swim shirt or rash guard to protect your skin from the elements.

4. Practical activewear for adventures

Hawaii offers many outdoor adventures, including hiking, biking, and sightseeing in rugged, volcanic terrain. Pack comfortable clothing to make the most of these activities. Moisture-wicking tops, including tanks and long sleeves, go well with quick-dry shorts or leggings. Bring no-show socks with your trainers, as comfortable footwear is crucial for seeing Hawaii's landscapes. A lightweight waterproof jacket with a hood and a folding travel umbrella is also recommended, as weather conditions might change decisively, especially at higher altitudes.

5. Versatile footwear

Footwear in Hawaii should be as versatile considering the activities you'll engage in. Sandals are a must-have, with waterproof rubber flip-flops for the beach and durable walking sandals for day trips. Consider strappy flats, wedges, or heels for ladies and slip-on shoes for men to match with long slacks for evenings on the cruise ship. Remember that some cruise ship casual dining locations allow shorts worn with a polo shirt and sandals or trainers, providing a blend of comfort and flair.

6. Essential accessories

To complete your Hawaii cruise wardrobe, remember essential accessories. Here's a list of items to consider:

7. Formal attire for evening elegance

While Hawaii has a casual attitude, there will be times when you'll want to dress up for special evening events on the cruise ship. Women should wear breezy sundresses or strappy jumpsuits with a lightweight sweater or shawl. Slacks, khakis, or pants, as well as collared polo shirts and short-sleeve button-downs, should be packed by men. Hawaiian shirts with whimsical designs are another fun and fashionable alternative. Depending on the cruise line's dress code, you might choose cocktail dresses or summer jumpsuits for classy nights, ensuring you're ready for anything.

Also Read: A List of All Cruise Lines to Hawaii


Preparing for a Hawaii cruise is a fascinating trip itself, and having the proper clothing is essential to enjoying every second of your journey. Following these packing guidelines and compiling a flexible mix of apparel and accessories will allow you to enjoy Hawaii's beauty, culture, and adventure. Whether lounging on the beach, exploring lush rainforests, or dining under the stars, you'll be dressed appropriately to soak in the Aloha spirit and create lasting memories in this tropical paradise. 

Tags: cruise lines
Header Image by Viktor_hladchenko at Freepik

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