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Hawaii in January: Daytime Temperatures, Ocean Conditions, and More

If you’re considering a January escape to the enchanting islands of Hawaii, you’re in for an unforgettable experience.

Hawaii in January is synonymous with paradise—a destination where lush landscapes, azure waters, and a warm, welcoming climate converge to create the perfect vacation setting.

In this article, I’ll discuss what January has in store for travelers in Hawaii. I’ll shed light on the number of sun-soaked hours you can look forward to, the day and night temperatures, and more.

Day and Night Temperatures

When it comes to the weather in Hawaii in January, it’s all about balance. The islands offer a climate that’s not too hot, not too cold; just right for a diverse range of activities like dancing at a Hawaiian Luau.

Daytime Temperatures

In January, you’ll be greeted by daytime temperatures that typically range from the low 70s to the low 80s Fahrenheit (21 to 27°C).

It’s the Goldilocks zone of temperatures; warm enough to make you feel like you’re in a tropical paradise, but not so scorching that you’ll be seeking refuge indoors.

Nighttime Temperatures

As the sun sets over the Pacific, Hawaii’s nights in January offer a welcome reprieve from the daytime heat.

Evenings are cooler, with temperatures averaging in the mid-60s (18 to 20°C).

This drop in temperature provides a comfortable atmosphere for stargazing, romantic beachside dinners, or leisurely walks under the moonlit sky.  Book a Hawaiian dinner cruise if you really want to experience the magic of the Hawaiian nighttime.

You won’t need heavy coats or layers to stay warm during the evenings, but it’s a good idea to have a light sweater or jacket handy, especially if you plan on exploring higher elevations or spending time outdoors after sunset.

Sun Hours Per Day 

January provides you with approximately seven hours of sunshine each day, giving you ample daylight to explore Hawaii’s stunning landscapes or simply unwind by the beach. Whether you’re into hiking, surfing, or lounging, you’ll have plenty of sunny hours to enjoy.  Great time for a jetski ride.

Trade Winds

Hawaii’s trade winds are a defining characteristic of the local climate.

In January, they blow consistently from the northeast, flowing across the islands from the cooler ocean waters toward the warmer landmass.

These trade winds are typically gentle, making for pleasant and predictable weather conditions. They keep humidity levels in check, ensuring that you can comfortably explore outdoor activities without feeling stifled by the heat.

If you’re interested in sailing or watersports, the trade winds in January offer excellent conditions.

Windward shores, like Maui’s North Shore of Oahu’s Kailua Beach, are particularly popular for windsurfing and kiteboarding. The steady winds create ideal conditions for these thrilling activities.


Hawaii experiences a unique rainfall pattern in January. It follows the rainiest month of the year, December, which is part of Hawaii’s broader rainy season spanning from October to March.

As a result, January sees a continuation of the rainy season, and travelers can expect slightly higher chances of rain during their visit.

On average, Hawaii receives about nine inches of rainfall in January. While this may sound substantial, rain showers are typically scattered and sporadic. They tend to be brief and passing, occurring mostly during the early morning or late evening hours. 

While you won’t need to pack heavy rain gear, it’s a good idea to have a lightweight rain jacket or umbrella handy. These can be helpful for unexpected showers, and they won’t take up much space in your luggage.


Hawaii’s location in the central Pacific Ocean makes it susceptible to tropical storms and hurricanes, but January marks a period of relative calm.

During this month, the chances of a hurricane forming or making landfall are extremely low.

Instead, you can expect stable weather patterns, gentle trade winds, and sunny skies for the majority of your stay.

Water Temperature

Water temperatures during this month generally range from a comfortable 76 to 78°F (24 to 26°C). This delightful range strikes a harmonious balance between refreshingly cool and warm enough for extended dips.

Surfers, in particular, will appreciate the inviting water temperatures in January. The North Shore of Oahu comes alive during this month with big wave surf competitions attracting top athletes from around the world.

Ocean Conditions

January in Hawaii typically brings with it calm and serene ocean conditions, particularly on the western sides of the islands. These sheltered areas are shielded from the full force of the trade winds and the associated choppy seas.

That said, Hawaii’s renowned North Shore, especially on Oahu, usually experiences a surge in big wave activity during January.

Top Reasons to Visit Hawaii in January

Hawaii is a dream destination year-round, but visiting in January has its own unique appeal. Here are some compelling reasons to consider a Hawaiian getaway during this month:

  • Perfect Weather: January in Hawaii boasts mild and comfortable temperatures, making it an ideal escape from winter’s chill. You can enjoy outdoor activities without the sweltering heat of summer months or the heavy rain of winter months.
  • Abundant Sunshine: With approximately seven hours of sunshine per day, January provides ample daylight hours for exploring Hawaii’s stunning landscapes, beaches, and outdoor attractions.
  • Whale Watching: January is one of the peak months of whale-watching in Hawaii. Humpback whales migrate to Hawaiian waters during this time, and you can take boat tours to witness these majestic creatures up close.  Swimming with dolphins is also a great option if you want to get up close and personal.
  • Festivals and Events: Hawaii hosts various cultural festivals and events in January, such as the New Year Luau, The Eddie big-wave surf contest, and the Ko’olina Artfest.
  • Fewer Crowds: Compared to the peak tourist season around the holidays, January sees fewer crowds, allowing you to explore popular attractions with more peace and solitude.
  • Great Deals: You can often find lower accommodation and airfare rates in January due to decreased demand, making it a budget-friendly time to visit.

Final Thoughts

Hawaii in January promises a vacation filled with balmy temperatures, abundant sunshine, and a taste of occasional island rain.

The ever-present trade winds keep the atmosphere pleasant, and the warm ocean waters invite you to explore their depths.

January also conveniently falls outside of hurricane season, ensuring a stress-free and memorable Hawaiian getaway.


  • Elizabeth L

    Aloha! I’m Elizabeth L. At LiveYourAloha, I am responsible for writing about sightseeing tours and Hawaiian culture. For the last 12 years, I’ve been working as a tour guide in Hawaii. It’s been a great way to see the world and learn about new cultures. I love nature and the outdoors, and have even climbed two of the world’s highest peaks! Making connections and showing my visitors the incredible beauty of these beautiful islands is a passion of mine. When I’m not out giving tours, you’ll likely find me on an invigorating hike or enjoying local cuisine on the beach.