Planning a trip to Hawaii this November? Our comprehensive guide has been tailored just for you.
We packed it with essential information we gathered on our visits during this month. It includes everything you need to know – from the weather patterns and rainfall to the perfect clothing.
Tourists from all corners of the United States often seek solace in tropical havens like Hawaii to escape the cold grasp of winter. We love visiting Hawaii in November for the brilliant surfing conditions, pre-holiday cheer, and temperate weather!
So sit back, scroll through, and allow us to equip you with a full-proof plan for your November visit.
Trust us, armed with our crucial tips, your Hawaiian trip is going to be nothing short of memorable!
Is November a Good Time?
Although Hawaii is considered a destination to visit all year round, understanding the nuances of each month can significantly enhance your travel experience.
So, does November make for a good month to visit Hawaii?
November is a good time to visit Hawaii. The weather is typically fantastic during this month, making it perfect for enjoying an early winter getaway with your family. To dodge the crowd and experience nature and open trails in tranquility, a visit in early November is suggested.
What Part of Hawaii Is Best To Visit in November?
For us, the Big Island is the best part of Hawaii to visit in November. On average, you’ll experience slightly less rainfall compared to the other islands (keep in mind though, that Hilo is the wettest area). The diversity in flora and fauna, coupled with the incredible range of topography, make November an ideal time to visit the Big Island.
However, all the Hawaiian Islands are remarkable to visit, even in November.
What Big Island sets apart is the possibility of a combination of things you can do: surfing and witnessing an active volcano, snorkeling, and taking a scenic hike.
Average high temps in November
The weather in November could be a deciding factor when planning a vacation to Hawaii. Different islands may experience slightly varying conditions. So, what is the overall weather like in November in Hawaii?
The weather in Hawaii during November averages high temperatures ranging from a low of 79°F (26°C) to a high of 83°F (28°C). The average rainfall ranges from 1.3 in. (33.02 mm) in Maui to 4.8 in. (121.92 mm) in Kauai. On average, wind speed can be over 13mph (20.92 kph).
The warm weather makes Hawaii an excellent place to visit in November, with very consistent average high temperatures this time of year. However, the weather can slightly differ from one part of the day to another.
If you plan to visit Hawaii earlier, you might want to check out our Hawaii in October guide.
Rainy Season & Tradewinds
November marks the onset of the rainy season in Hawaii, a period that extends through March. However, don’t let this deter your vacation plans, as the Hawaiian Islands are known for their localized weather patterns. These patterns are largely dictated by high-pressure zones in the north Pacific that guide cool, moist trade winds toward the island’s northeastern slopes.
These winds, rich in moisture, are driven upslope by the mountains’ terrain, causing the moisture to condense into clouds and subsequently produce rain. The majority of this rain tends to fall in the mountains and valleys on the windward (northeastern) side of the islands, a phenomenon responsible for Hawaii’s lush, green, tropical environment.
Despite November being part of the wettest months, the winter rains do not typically interrupt vacation activities, given their localized nature. So if it happens to be raining where you are, rest assured there is likely a sunny spot to be found just around the coast. Also, rain often happens during the night.
One of the key advantages of the Hawaiian Islands’ trade winds is the nearly constant cooling breeze they offer. However, a few times during the year, these trade winds may halt entirely, causing the wind direction to flip to come from the south or west.
This can bring about stormy or hot, sticky weather conditions, a phenomenon the islanders sometimes refer to as “kona weather.”
So even though November signals the start of the rainy season in Hawaii, it’s unlikely to spoil your trip. You can still look forward to enjoying the breathtakingly beautiful landscapes and partaking in an array of outdoor activities.
💡 The showers, when they do occur, often pass quickly, making way for more sunny spells to enjoy.
From our experience, it often wasn’t that rainy during the month. Once it was though, but the rain showers never lasted long.
Here is a statement from a friend of us who is local:
Usually, in the fall months on the mainland, I’m wearing long sleeves out here on the island. And we can go through periods of lots of rain. November is often not that wet though, but it can be. Just depends. I wouldn’t base my trip on if it might rain
The rainy areas: Hilo on the Big Island is rainy but that’s why it has some of the most impressive rainforests, Kauai Mount Waialaeale is the wettest place on our planet. So that is something to consider when visiting. Maui and the road to Hana is dangerous when it rains and the infrastructure was not made to support the traffic that it sees on a daily basis.
Consider the rain and showers a blessing as that’s what it is in Hawaiian culture and consider it part of the Hawaii Experience. We would say that it will rain at least once while you are here in November. No way to avoid it. It may be a storm or it could be a 5-minute passing shower. It all depends.
Find more details about the rainiest regions below:
While the average high temperatures are ideal during November in Hawaii, there are other significant weather patterns that you’ll want to be mindful of. Each island in Hawaii has unique weather characteristics in November; let’s explore some of these.
The Big Island is known for its weather diversity, featuring a cool mountain climate during November and other autumn months. The weather here is often warm and dry compared to other Hawaiian islands in November.
Rain: The average rainfall in November ranges from 2.3 in. (58.42 mm) to 2.8 in. (71.12 mm). Although it rains, it’s not an all-day affair. There are numerous fun outdoor activities to enjoy during your Hawaii visit in November, as the rain usually falls in shorter intervals rather than throughout the day.
It’s important to note the climatic variance across the island. The north and east sides, like Hilo, experience the windward climate, making them rainier, which also contributes to their lush beauty. In contrast, the south and west sides of the islands are leeward, which means they are drier. The most popular spot on the drier side is Kailua-Kona.
Like other Hawaiian islands, wind on the Big Island can be noticeable at certain times of the day, averaging over 13 mph (20.92 kph). Days are slightly shorter, and nights are a tad cooler, so an early start to your day outside would be a good idea. The average temperature still hovers between 80–83F (26–28C).
Oahu is famed for its harmonious blend of urban and tropical landscapes. Like other Hawaiian Islands, it’s warm and welcoming in November. The average high temperature ranges between 81–83 F (27–28C), with abundant sunshine for most of the day.
Rain: Oahu experiences a moderate amount of rain in November. The averages range from 1.8 (45.72 mm) to 2.4 (60.96 mm). Like other Hawaiian islands, the rain is sporadic and hurricanes are a rare occurrence.
On Oahu, the windward side includes areas like Kaneohe and Kailua, while the leeward side features Honolulu and Waikiki.
Kauai is usually associated with its lush tropical landscape, often considered the greenest island and a paradise for hikers. The weather in November plays a significant role here.
Rain: November sees quite a bit of rain in Kauai, especially on the north side of the island, with several showers throughout the day.
The west and south parts receive less rain. The average rainfall on Kauai ranges between 3.5 in. (88.90 mm) to 4.8 in. (121.92 mm).
Even though Kauai gets more rain than the other islands, it remains very comfortable for much of the day. The average highs range from 79 F to 81 F (26–27C), making it an ideal place for a host of adventurous activities in November.
Princeville and Hanalei are on the wetter, windward side of Kauai, while Poipu and Waimea are on the drier, leeward side.
Maui is a wonderful island to visit in November. The average temperature is very consistent as it barely fluctuates throughout the month. 82 F to 83 F (28C) is the typical high temp on average in Maui.
Rain: Maui receives minimal rain. In fact, Maui is the driest island in Hawaii, with an average ranging from 1.3 in. (33.02 mm) to 1.8 in. (45.72 mm). This lack of rain makes it ideal for outdoor activities that require prolonged exposure without the need for shelter from the rain.
Maui also experiences similar weather factors as the other Hawaiian Islands, such as:
In Maui, the windward side includes Hana and Paia, while the leeward side features Lahaina and Kihei.
Water Conditions | Beaches | Swimming
Hawaii’s unique water temperature sets it apart. The ocean water in Hawaii is cooler at the bottom and warms up as you go higher.
💡 This cooler water mixes with the warmer water at the top, making it unfavorable for hurricanes. As a result, hurricanes are rare in Hawaii.
It’s a great place for water activities year-round. In November, you can have a splendid time indulging in activities like:
- Relaxing at the beach.
The water temperature remains very pleasant during November. The average temperature in the Hawaiian Islands ranges between 77°F and 78°F (25–26°C). Although it doesn’t change much from island to island, minor differences may be encountered if you visit in early November rather than late November.
As temperatures average a few degrees less in December, if you head to the beach in late November, you might experience slightly cooler water. The waves can also be more intense during late November, as autumn and winter often see larger waves in Hawaii.
Can You Swim in November in Hawaii?
You can swim in November in Hawaii if you’re careful. Choose an area with less open water, like a bay or cove. This protection will help insulate you from the waves, which can be a bit larger during November. November is an excellent time to swim if you choose the correct location.
What To Wear/Packing List
Visiting Hawaii in November calls for lightweight clothing layers. Although the rainy season starts this month, the temperatures remain relatively high, reaching up to around 81 °F (27°C). For those rare cooler mornings and nights when the temperatures can dip below 70 °F (21°C), you might want to have a light jacket or long sleeve shirt at hand.
An occasional rain shower is to be expected in November. Having a rain jacket or an umbrella with you could be useful, especially if you plan on outdoor activities like hiking. However, remember not to overdress, as despite the onset of the rainy season, Hawaii in November is still pleasantly warm.
Packing List for November:
- Button-ups/Dress shirts
- Flip flops
- Rain Jacket
- Swimming trunks
- Snorkeling gear
How Busy/Crowds/Rates in Hawaii in November
Despite November marking the beginning of the rainy season, Hawaii is not overly crowded during this month. While the Thanksgiving week can see a surge in visitors, the rest of the month doesn’t usually see the same crowd levels as some other times of the year.
Crowds: Thanksgiving week sees Hawaii bustling with visitors, as families take advantage of the holiday to vacation in warmer climates. However, outside of this week, many popular locations, such as beaches, hiking trails, and attractions, are generally less crowded throughout November.
To avoid Thanksgiving crowds, consider visiting areas away from the hotel districts or rising early to visit popular attractions. This strategy can make your stay much more peaceful and enjoyable.
Hotel and Airfare: Arriving in early November often allows for cheaper airfare and car rentals. The closer it gets to Thanksgiving, these costs can escalate. Booking your car and accommodations in advance can help mitigate these costs and secure your plans.
Hotels generally maintain reasonable rates throughout most of November, with a potential rise closer to Thanksgiving. Airfares, while typically more affordable early in the month, can increase towards Thanksgiving and may also be affected by weather delays due to storms in other parts of the USA.
Things to Do in November
Hawaii offers a wide array of activities that can be enjoyed throughout the year. However, some activities may be more suitable or enjoyable during certain months. Here’s a breakdown of the best activities to enjoy in November, tailored for each of the major Hawaiian Islands.
With the start of the rainy season in November, hiking in Oahu’s lush mountains and valleys can be an incredibly enriching experience. Manoa Falls and the Maunawili Falls Trail offer gorgeous views and the chance to see a waterfall. Also, attending the ‘Vans Triple Crown of Surfing’, which begins in mid-November, is a thrilling spectacle even for non-surfers.
Oahu Activities in November:
- Hiking (Manoa Falls, Maunawili Falls Trail)
- Watching the ‘Vans Triple Crown of Surfing’
In Maui, the Road to Hana is a must-do. The November rains bring an extra touch of magic to the already stunning waterfalls along this famous drive. Snorkeling at the Molokini Crater can also be rewarding, with warm waters and abundant marine life, while the Maui Film Festival, held in November, offers a cultural immersion.
Maui Activities in November:
- Driving the Road to Hana
- Snorkeling at the Molokini Crater
- Attending the Maui Film Festival
Kauai, with its captivating landscapes, is perfect for outdoor activities such as kayaking along the Wailua River or hiking the Waimea Canyon, often called the ‘Grand Canyon of the Pacific.’ In November, the Kauai Marathon & Half Marathon offers a chance for running enthusiasts to participate or cheer on others.
Kauai Activities in November:
- Kayaking on the Wailua River
- Hiking the Waimea Canyon
- Participating in or watching the Kauai Marathon & Half Marathon
The Big Island
On the Big Island, start by exploring the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. The slightly cooler November weather makes hiking around the park more comfortable. Also, don’t miss stargazing at Mauna Kea Observatory, which is less crowded in November. Participate in or enjoy watching the annual Ironman Triathlon, which often occurs in this month.
The Big Island Activities in November:
- Exploring the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park
- Stargazing at Mauna Kea Observatory
- Participating in or watching the Ironman Triathlon