Hawaii

The 10 Best Airbnbs in Hawaii for Your Tropical Getaway

by Brittany Varano

best unique hawaii airbnbs
Photo: Airbnb

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Indulge in an island paradise in the Aloha state, where Pacific Islander culture, sandy beaches, and breathtaking landscapes await.

Hawaii is an archipelago with eight main islands and offers a multitude of unique travel experiences as each island has its own distinct flavor (partially reflected in their unique nicknames.) On the “Garden Island” of Kauai, you’ll find that untouched lush rainforests and mountains reign supreme, whereas Maui is dubbed the “Valley Isle” for its superb mountain peaks and valley between.

There’s plenty to do in Hawaii to fill several trips, like exploring world-famous beaches, hiking massive volcanoes, learning to surf, and experiencing the vibrant culture of native Hawaiians. It’s a place where anyone can try their hand at surfing or sample exciting Hawaiian classics like poi, kalua pork, and haupia (coconut cream) pie.

So it’s not surprising that a place so beautiful has equally incredible Airbnbs. From treehouses to beachside cottages and penthouse condos, these are some of the best Airbnbs in Hawaii for when you want a truly tropical experience (and they start at just $115 a night – cheap by Hawaiian standards!)

1. Romantic Treehouse

hawaii big island treehouse airbnb
Photo: Airbnb

Why you should stay: Sleep in a bright rainforest treehouse just minutes from Hawaii Volcanoes National Park.

  • Location: Volcano, Hawaiʻi Island (the Big Island)
  • Sleeps: 2
  • Minimum stay: 3 nights
  • Rates start from: $150/night

Enjoy your time in paradise in a charming romantic treehouse just a few miles from Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park. This cute green cottage features a covered ground-level lanai with lounge seating protected from the elements. Surrounding the home is a lovely scene of palm trees and a flowering garden.

The french doors allow sunshine to illuminate the home and brighten the colorful decor. This treehouse has a full bathroom and kitchen featuring quartz counters, a gas stovetop, a mini-fridge, and more for your cooking needs. In the bedroom, a hanging wicker chair offers a place to cozy up with a good book. This property is located away from the crowds of Hawaii but still set in a prime location close to the vibrant charm of Volcano Village.

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2. Waikiki Beach Condo

waikiki penthouse airbnb
Photo: Airbnb

Why you should stay: Live luxuriously in a penthouse condo with a deck overlooking Waikiki Beach and Diamond Head.

  • Location: Honolulu, Oahu
  • Sleeps: 4
  • Minimum stay: 3 nights
  • Rates start from: $211/night

The Waikiki Beach condo is a tenth-floor penthouse in a prime location just a half-block from the famous Waikiki Beach. It’s a quick walk to the ocean, restaurants, shops, and other top Oahu attractions from the apartment. This suite has direct access to a community sun deck that boasts panoramic views of Diamond Head, Kapiolani Park, and the city.

The deck is furnished with sun loungers, cafe tables, and chairs, so you can sip your morning coffee in the island breeze. With your booking, you also have access to a swimming pool and a secure garage parking spot. Inside, the spacious unit has one bedroom, two beds, two bathrooms, and a kitchenette stocked with all essentials. The hosts make sure you have items like coffee, creamer, and, of course, everything you’ll need for the beach.

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3. The Kutcher Condo

maui beach airbnb
Photo: Airbnb

Why you should stay: An oasis condo steps from Kamaole Beach II, one of Maui’s best spots to see the sunset.

  • Location: Kihei, Maui
  • Sleeps: 4
  • Minimum stay: 3 nights
  • Rates start from: $190/night

Hosted by an Instagram-famous duo, The Kutcher Condo is a beautiful Maui home on the island’s southwest shore between Kihei and Wailea. The interior is beautifully decorated with beachy accents like wicker chairs, a wall-mounted surfboard, and potted tropical plants that’ll make you feel right at home. The condo also has a lovely balcony, pool access, and keyless entry for a painless check-in.

Typical amenities aside, the hosts also provide convenient extras such as beach chairs, umbrellas, a cooler, and beach towels so you can have some fun in the sun. There’s also a comprehensive guidebook and a website on which the hosts share their favorite eats and things to do in the area.

Follow ‘em: Instagram

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4. Kūono at Volcano

volcano airbnb big island
Photo: Airbnb

Why you should stay: An architecturally stunning cabin with hotel-style amenities and premium design elements.

  • Location: Volcano, Hawai’i Island (Big Island)
  • Sleeps: 4
  • Minimum stay: 1 night
  • Rates start from: $350/night

Looking like it came straight out of a magazine, Kūono at Volcano is a unique vacation rental in Hawaii that’s caught the attention of Dwell and other publications. Though Hawaii is generally a laid-back place, contemporary design elements like asymmetrical floor-to-ceiling windows and a knotty-pine eave over the home’s back porch exude a rare sophistication.

This studio home has a king bed and a pull-out sofa, as well as a full kitchen, bathroom, and on-site laundry. The surrounding Ohia trees provide plenty of privacy for relaxing in the hot tub, and there’s also a fire pit that ignites with a switch and comfortable lounge seating for stargazing. Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park is a short five-minute drive away.

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Follow ‘em: Instagram

5. Tracy Tropical Treasures

maui tropical airbnb
Photo: Airbnb

Why you should stay: A cute and colorful condo literally across the street from one of Maui’s best beaches.

  • Location: Kihei, Maui
  • Sleeps: 2
  • Minimum stay: 1 night
  • Rates start from: $115/night

Hospitality is the number one priority at Tracy Tropical Treasures, a one-bed studio condo across the street from the peaceful Kalepolepo Beach Park. Guests are supplied with everything from beach supplies and tennis rackets to yoga mats, sunscreen, aloe, and more.

“To say that this place is “fully equipped” feels like a massive understatement – Tracy really has thought of everything, with lots of little touches to make your stay as comfortable as possible.”

Debbie, Sydney, Australia

The interior of this lovely Hawaiian Airbnb is decked out in ocean blues and greens, with a comfortable king bed, seating area, and well-appointed kitchenette. In the evenings, sit out on the ground-level porch where you can take in the ocean view across the street. Guests have access to a community swimming pool, hot tub, and tennis court during their stay.

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6. The Surf Shack

Photo: Airbnb

Why you should stay: Embrace the bohemian beach vibes at this cute condo on Kauai’s north shore.

  • Location: Princeville, Kauai
  • Sleeps: 5
  • Minimum stay: 1 night
  • Rates start from: $265/night

The Surf Shack is on Kauai’s northern shore, near top attractions like Hanakapiai Falls, the Kalalau Trail, and the Queen’s Bath. Exuding a trendy bohemian aesthetic, this two-bedroom, three-bath condo is a colorfully decorated space, with a vibrantly patterned kitchen island, natural wood accents, and modern art that command attention.

The living room’s french doors lead out onto the balcony with a pod-style sofa and striking ocean views of Bali Hai. During your stay, indulge in local coffee provided by the hosts and make good use of the supplied beach chairs, bodyboards, snorkel sets, umbrellas, beach towels, and cooler. You also have access to a swimming pool and hot tub shared with the rest of the condo complex.

Follow ‘em: Instagram

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7. The Hale Wainiha

garden airbnb hawaii
Photo: Airbnb

Why you should stay: A private slice of paradise in the rolling lush Wainiha River Valley.

  • Location: Hanalei, Kauai
  • Sleeps: 2
  • Minimum stay: 1 night
  • Rates start from: $347/night

For travelers who prefer to stay a bit outside of town centers, The Hale Wainiha might be the best choice on this list of Airbnbs in Hawaii as it has a beautiful outdoor area tucked away on an acre of land. This one-bedroom cottage is wonderfully perched on a bluff overlooking the impressive rolling mountains and lush greenery of the Wainiha River Valley. Enjoy the views from the comfort of the balcony or from the home’s many outdoor seating areas.

The yard also features a luxurious swimming pool, hot tub, and outdoor shower perfect for a romantic getaway in the middle of Hawaii’s rainforest. Although a bit far from the busy streets of Kauai’s main areas, the home is still conveniently located to some of Kauai’s best beaches like Tunnels, Lumahai, Ke’ e, and Hanalei.

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8. The Bali House

Photo: Airbnb

Why you should stay: Find your zen in this romantic home with a hot tub on the Puna Coast of the Big Island.

  • Location: Pāhoa, Maui
  • Sleeps: 4
  • Minimum stay: 3 nights
  • Rates start from: $179/night

Outfitted in natural and alluring wooden accents, The Bali House is one of the most unique Airbnbs in Hawaii thanks to an impressive collection of exotic and cultural art from Asia – take one step inside, and you’ll immediately feel transported to Bali. The home’s standout features include the stone mosaic in the bathroom and the private garden with a BBQ grill and hammock.

“Quite possibly the coolest rental I’ve ever had the pleasure of visiting. The pictures don’t even do it justice.”

Ben, Detroit, MI

This eclectic cottage also boasts an ocean view as it’s near the black-sand Kehena Beach. Be sure to check out other nearby things to see like the Pahoa Farmers Market and Kapoho Tide Pools.

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9. Boutique Beachside Cabin

beachhouse airbnb hawaii
Photo: Airbnb

Why you should stay: Avoid the tourist areas at a spacious modern home near Makaha Surfing Beach.

  • Location: Waianae, Oahu
  • Sleeps: 4
  • Minimum stay: 30 nights (subject to change)
  • Rates start from: $185/night

This boutique beachside cabin on Oahu’s western shore is a charming pet-friendly home with a modern interior. Thoughtfully curated art fills the walls and the sprawling yard is filled with tropical fruit trees – and yes, you’re welcome to help yourself. The home also has other fun elements like a projector and large screen and a tree-branch chandelier.

This is one of the best Airbnbs in Hawaii for someone with a bit of work-from-home flexibility, as it’s currently rented for a minimum of 30 days (though that could change if COVID-19 dies down.) Spend your days relaxing on the lounge chairs around the fire pit or grilling out in the sunshine. The city of Waianae has excellent eateries, shops, and outdoor activities like golfing, whale watching, and caving. Honolulu is just 40 or so minutes away.

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10. Malu Manu

Photo: Airbnb

Why you should stay: A rustic getaway in a historic log cabin near Haleakalā National Park.

  • Location: Kula, Maui
  • Sleeps: 2
  • Minimum stay: 3 nights
  • Rates start from: $240/night

Offering a unique take on Maui, the Malu Manu is a historic log cabin away from the famous beaches of the island – but don’t let that deter you. While the nearest beach is about a 25-minute drive away, this quaint home is perfectly perched on Haleakala Mountain, offering striking views of the north and south coasts.

Guests rave about the incredible sunrise and sunset viewing and appreciate the quiet atmosphere away from the touristy streets. When you arrive, you’re greeted with breakfast supplies ranging from yogurt and granola to eggs and fresh fruit, plus coffee and tea. If you do want to head to the beach for the afternoon, you’ll find available  beach towels, a picnic blanket, a sun umbrella, and beach chairs.

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