Whether you’re daydreaming of Maui’s black-sand beaches, O‘ahu’s famous surf spots, or the Big Island’s epic volcanoes, every trip to Hawai‘i requires a place to stay no matter which island you choose.
There are plenty of beautiful resorts to book across the island chain. But if you’re traveling with a large family or desire more privacy, renting an Airbnb is key for a comfortable and relaxing trip. Although most islands have slightly different laws about where vacation rentals can operate and require owners to obtain a permit to operate, renting an Airbnb in Hawai‘i is legal. (But it’s best to stick to properties that include a license number in the listing to be sure.)
From a luxurious villa that sleeps 14 near O‘ahu’s Diamond Head State Monument to a glamping-style retreat for two on a mango farm in Kona, here are 10 of the best Airbnbs in Hawai‘i right now.
Big Island Airbnbs
1. Kūono Modern Volcano Cabin
Location: Volcano, Big IslandSleeps: 4Highlights: Private backyard, hot tub, firepitBook Now: From $450 per night, airbnb.com
This modern cabin is located in a forest of ohi‘a trees just a five-minute drive to Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park. Inside you’ll find a small kitchen and an open-concept living space outfitted with a king-size bed and a sofa bed. But you’ll probably spend most of your time outside anyway on the private lanai that is equipped with an outdoor hot tub and firepit.
To access the area’s spectacular black-sand beaches at MacKenzie State Recreation Area, drive down the Puna Coast along Route 137, also known as the Red Road. —Lyndsey Matthews
2. Tropical Garden Retreat Airbnb Plus
Location: Captain Cook, Big IslandSleeps: 2Highlights: Open-air design, private backyardBook Now: From $185 per night, airbnb.com
Open-air living may not be for everyone with all of nature’s guests able to wander in at their leisure (don’t worry, the bedroom and kitchen are walled in), but we love the idea of truly connecting with the outdoors in this glamping-style retreat on a mango farm (added bonus: guests have access to ample fresh fruit).
This nature lover’s home is outfitted with dreamy Bali-meets-Hawai‘i design details and an indoor/outdoor shower. It’s a mile from Kealakekua Bay in Kona, an ideal destination for snorkeling, scuba diving, and kayaking amid the coral reefs. Or head to the nearby Keʻei Beach, a secluded cove known for good surfing conditions. —Michelle Baran
3. Haiku Garden Cottage Airbnb Plus
Location: Haiku-Pauwela, Maui Sleeps: 4Highlights: Private backyardBook Now: From $329 per night, airbnb.com
One of two cottages located on two secluded acres on Maui’s North Shore, this two-bedroom Airbnb Plus is surrounded by a lush tropical forest. It may feel remote, but it’s only a short drive from the beaches, hikes, and restaurants in the town of Haiku. If you’re traveling with another family, the other cottage on site is a one-bedroom that can sleep up to four additional guests and can be rented separately on Airbnb. The Kahului Airport is a 26-minute drive away. —L.M.
4. Ocean View Maui Airbnb Plus
Location: Kihei, MauiSleeps: 8Highlights: Private backyard, pool, hot tubBook Now: From $1,393 per night, airbnb.com
Just a 25-minute drive from Kahului Airport, the town of Kihei on Maui’s southwest shore is known for being one of the sunniest—and driest—parts of the island. With three bedrooms, two bathrooms, and an open concept kitchen and living area, this spacious home is ideal for large families or groups of friends traveling together. The sandy shores of Kamaole Beach Park III are a little over a mile away, but if you feel like staying in, this Airbnb also has a large pool. At night, relax in the hot tub. —L.M.
5. Luxury Airbnb Plus Beach Cottage
Location: Kihei, MauiSleeps: 2Highlights: Private backyard, saltwater hot tub, outdoor showerBook Now: From $764 per night, airbnb.com
This charming one-bedroom cottage is located in the heart of Kihei within walking distance of Kalama Park as well as shops and restaurants along the main road. The airy space is designed to feel like a home away from home with a full kitchen, washer and dryer, and a memory foam mattress. The highlight, though, is the palm tree–filled backyard with its saltwater hot tub, outdoor shower, and covered lanai. —L.M.
6. Waikiki Mountain View Condo
Location: Honolulu, O‘ahuSleeps: 6Highlights: Shared pool access, private balcony, free parkingBook Now: From $172 per night, airbnb.com
If you want the full Waikiki experience, this one-bedroom apartment is the place to be. Located on the 26th floor of a sky-rise, the studio’s floor-to-ceiling windows—and its lanai—offer panoramic views of the city skyline and mountains. While petite, the condo’s clean design makes the space feel open and airy, and it offers two double beds, a fold-out sofa, and a fully equipped kitchen. The building has a shared pool and hot tub—and it’s only a five-minute walk to the iconic Waikiki Beach. —Aislyn Greene
7. Stylish Waikiki Studio Apartment
Location: Honolulu, O‘ahuSleeps: 4Highlights: Shared pool access, private balcony, free parkingBook Now: From $152 per night, airbnb.com
Between the queen-size bed and fold-out couch, technically up to four people could sleep in this studio apartment decorated with millennial pink and palm-print accents. However, its size is best designed for solo travelers or couples who want to be within walking distance of everything Waikiki has to offer. The host, Sunny, has also kitted out her property with extra amenities like beach chairs and towels to take down to Waikiki Beach, which is two blocks away. Though you won’t need a car to get around Waikiki, a free parking spot is included if you’d like to explore the rest of O‘ahu during the day. —L.M.
8. Kahala Oceanside Villa
Location: Honolulu, O‘ahuSleeps: 14Highlights: Ocean views, beach access, private backyard, pool, hot tubBook Now: From $3,500 per night, airbnb.com
Where else but Hawai‘i could you have a volcanic vent in your backyard? Located a mile from Diamond Head State Monument—a volcanic tuff cone (and a safe and beloved hiking spot)—this six-room villa offers easy access to Honolulu’s best, but feels like a retreat from the world. The villa has two bedrooms in the main house, plus four private cottages set around a common garden. Guests have their own private pool, six bathrooms, and plenty of indoor/outdoor dining and living space. Part of Airbnb’s Luxe service, travelers can add on anything from a private chef to a butler. —A.G.
9. Secluded Kaua‘i Jungle Cottage
Location: Hanalei, Kaua‘iSleeps: 3Highlights: Mountain views, screened-in lanaiBook Now: From $345 per night, airbnb.com
This light-filled jungle oasis is the perfect place to disconnect. Located near Kaua‘i’s North Shore, the property offers mountain and jungle views from the abundant windows. Guests can watch birds and listen to the jungle sounds from the living room or two bedrooms or head out to get a closer look on nearby hikes.
The earthy chic minimalist decor features plenty of ideal reading and relaxing nooks. (A nap on the hammock in the screened-in lanai is calling to us.) Hanalei Bay, Tunnels, and Ke‘e Beaches are all a short drive from the house for snorkeling, surfing, kayaking, and paddle boarding. A washer and dryer and full kitchen make this house a great option for longer stays, too. —M.B.
10. Princeville Surfshack
Location: Princeville, Kaua‘iSleeps: 5Highlights: Ocean view, beach access, shared pool/hot tub accessBook Now: From $348 per night, airbnb.com
Ideally laid out for a small family or group of friends traveling together, this cheerful two-bedroom condominium is decorated with beachy rattan furniture, colorful tilework, and palm-print wallpaper. On the private deck, curl up in the oversized rattan lounge chair with your morning coffee and watch the waves roll in. When it’s time for a sundowner, shake up a tropical cocktail and enjoy it in one of the vintage tiki mugs that also double as decor in the kitchen.
This Airbnb has its own private paved walkway down to the Hideaways Beach, located just behind the condo. Your stay also includes access to the complex’s shared pool and hot tub. —L.M.
This article was originally published in 2020. It was updated on February 25, 2022, with current information.
Lyndsey Matthews Lyndsey Matthews is the senior commerce editor at AFAR who covers travel gear, packing advice, and points and loyalty.