A Travel Price Comparison for United States of America Yellowstone National Park vs. Oahu for Hiking, Families, Couples, and Backpackers

Should you visit Yellowstone National Park or Oahu?

Which is cheaper to visit? Which is more expensive for vacation?

Should I visit Yellowstone National Park or Oahu? This is a common question asked by many travelers. By figuring out which city has activities that align with your interests along with knowing which is more affordable, you'll understand where you can get more bang for your buck. So, let's dive into the details and the data, which all comes from actual travelers.

Yellowstone National Park

Yellowstone National Park is a breathtaking, vast, and world-famous national park. It's considered by many to be an absolutely beautiful destination, too. Visitors also love the hiking.

Oahu

Oahu is a scenic, historic, and energetic island. Because this is such a big city, visitors will find many sights and attractions around town. The famous beauty of this place is one of the main draws. Other popular activities here include nightlife, food, and scuba diving and snorkeling.

Yellowstone National Park and Oahu: Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Good for hiking
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers
  • Impressive beauty
  • Home to Old Faithful
Pros
  • Popular museums and historical sights
  • Active nightlife
  • Good music scene
  • Good scuba and snorkeling destination
  • Popular beach
  • Good for hiking
  • Fun shopping
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Impressive beauty
  • Home to Pearl Harbor and the USS Arizona Memorial
Things to Consider
  • Less popular with backpackers


Is there more to do in Yellowstone National Park or Oahu?

Tourists will generally find more to do in Oahu. Although Yellowstone National Park and Oahu are both popular with visitors, Oahu has more sights, activities, and attractions for travelers. Yellowstone National Park is popular for its iconic geysers, breathtaking waterfalls, world-class hikes, and diverse wildlife. Oahu is popular for its unique blend of cultures, stunning beaches, vibrant energy, and world class water sports (including surfing). It is also home to Pearl Harbor and the USS Arizona Memorial.

How is Yellowstone National Park different from Oahu?

Which is Better for a Holiday?

Let's take a look at the differences and similarities between Oahu and Yellowstone National Park. Then, you can decide for yourself which place is better for your next trip.

Are the Museums and Historical Sights Better in Yellowstone National Park or Oahu?

Yellowstone National Park
Oahu

Oahu is well known for its museums and landmarks. However, Yellowstone National Park does not have museums and landmarks.

Oahu offers many unique museums, sights, and landmarks that will make for a memorable trip. The USS Arizona Memorial & Pearl Harbor is a moving and special place to visit, but tickets should be purchased in advance. Other landmarks around the island include the Tour Iolani Palace and the Battleship Missouri Memorial.

Yellowstone National Park does not have museums and landmarks.


Is the Food Better in Yellowstone National Park or Oahu? Which Destination has the Best Restaurants?

Yellowstone National Park
Oahu

Oahu is a popular place for its restaurant scene. However, Yellowstone National Park is not particularly known for its local flavors and cuisine.

There are many up and coming restaurants in the Oahu area. Honolulu has a diversity of cuisines and a cosmopolitan vibe, giving it some of the best food in the Hawaiian Islands. The local restaurants are influenced by a number of countries and often incorporate Japanese, Chinese, Filipino, Korean, and Portuguese flavors. Dishes are often saucy, sweet, and starchy, but you'll also find fresh tropical fruits such as mango and coconut.

Yellowstone National Park offers some easy restaurants to choose from. This is a large park and there are a number of dining options available both inside and just outside of the park. Many places are seasonal so your options will be highest during the summer months. Like most national park venues, prices can be high and the quality is variable. It's recommended that you pack your own food and plan to picnic.

Is Yellowstone National Park or Oahu Better for Nightlife?

Yellowstone National Park
Oahu

Oahu is well known for its evening party scene. However, Yellowstone National Park is not a destination with noteworthy nightlife.

Oahu is a popular destination for visitors looking to party into the night. Honolulu, and Oahu, have some of the best nightlife in the Hawaiian islands. There are tiki bars and posh nightclubs that keep buzzing late into the night. Head to Waikiki for some of the island's best nightlife. In Honolulu you'll find some local bars and clubs, but many resorts also offer a great nightlife scene and a fun atmosphere that caters specifically to tourists.

Yellowstone National Park is not a destination with noteworthy nightlife.

Is Yellowstone National Park or Oahu Better for Music?

Yellowstone National Park
Oahu

Oahu is a island with a few options for its music scene. However, Yellowstone National Park is not a live music destination.

For those who seek it out, Oahu has several music venues. There are a few good venues that offer live music on Oahu.

Yellowstone National Park is not a live music destination.


Is Yellowstone National Park or Oahu Better for Resorts?

Yellowstone National Park
Oahu

Yellowstone National Park and Oahu offer a relatively similar set of very good luxury resort options.

Yellowstone National Park is known as a popular and fun resort destination. It is a large national park, and there are several impressive lodges nearby. Reservations are recommended well in advance. Within the park, Old Faithful Inn, Roosevelt Lodge, Lake Yellowstone Hotel, and Mammoth Hot Springs Hotel are all nice options.

Vacationers can choose from a number of terrific resorts in Oahu. The island has a diversity of resorts, from luxury 5 star accommodation to family-friendly resorts that are fun for all ages. Ko Olina is where you'll find Aulani, the Disney Resort. Waikiki is one of the most famous tourist areas on the island and you'll find high rise hotels and condos along the beach.

Is Yellowstone National Park or Oahu Better for Scuba Diving and Snorkeling?

Yellowstone National Park
Oahu

Oahu is well known for snorkeling and scuba diving. However, Yellowstone National Park is not a scuba or snorkeling destination.

Many visitors partake in scuba diving or snorkeing while visiting Oahu. Snorkeling and diving on the island is among the best in the world. There are 3 marine life conservation parks and miles of coastline to explore.

Yellowstone National Park is not a scuba or snorkeling destination.

Is Yellowstone National Park or Oahu Better for Beaches?

Yellowstone National Park
Oahu

Oahu is very popular for the beach. However, Yellowstone National Park is not a beach destination.

Travelers come from around the world to visit the beaches in Oahu. From the energetic Waikiki Beach to the family-friendly Ko Olina, Oahu has some of the most famous beaches in the world. The beaches are lined with sand and some areas offer better swimming conditions than others. You'll also find beaches with snorkeling or sea turtles, and some with world class surfing waves.

Yellowstone National Park is not a beach destination.


Is Yellowstone National Park or Oahu Better for Hiking?

Yellowstone National Park
Oahu

If you're looking to go hiking, Yellowstone National Park and Oahu both have fantastic trails.

People visit Yellowstone National Park specifically for its hiking, as the natural beauty is well-known. The park is huge, and there are countless hikes throughout. From short strolls to lengthy endeavors, there really is something for everyone. If you want to see the geysers, some of the best hikes are Grand Prismatic Overlook Trail, the Upper Geyser Basin and Old Faithful Observation Point Loop, and the Lone Star Geyser Trail. For waterfalls you can check out Brink of the Lower Falls Trail, the North Rim Trail, and Fairy Falls Trail.

Many people visit Oahu specifically for its hiking. World famous hikes on the island include Diamond Head and Koko Crater Railroad Trailhead. There are hikes ranging from easy to challenging and views that will take your breath away.

Is the Shopping Better in Yellowstone National Park or Oahu?

Yellowstone National Park
Oahu

Oahu is well known for its shopping areas. However, Yellowstone National Park is not a noteworthy shopping destination.

Browsing through shops is a popular activity in Oahu. There are shopping centers and malls in Honolulu that have major department stores as well as island favorites. For a local experience head to the Aloha Stadium Swap Meet or wander along the Waikiki Beach Walk with its many boutique shops. Also worth a visit is the Honolulu Chinatown market.

Yellowstone National Park is not a noteworthy shopping destination.

Is Yellowstone National Park or Oahu Better for Families?

Yellowstone National Park
Oahu

Oahu is very popular for its family-friendly activities. Also, Yellowstone National Park is still popular, but not quite as popular for its kid-friendly activities.

As it has a large number of activities for kids, Oahu is a very family-friendly destination. There are plenty of outdoor activities, places to learn about Hawaiian culture, and world class beaches. The most popular family-friendly area is Ko Olina, which is where you'll find the Disney Resort, Aulani. Kids will also enjoy the area's snorkeling and kayaking. Surfing lessons are a fun activity for the whole family as well.

Yellowstone National Park is a very family-friendly destination. Kids who enjoy the outdoors and exploring new environments will appreciate a visit to this park. The geysers are fascinating for everyone and the waterfalls are breathtaking. There are ranger shows and other activities that are great for kids as well. Make sure you stop by the Visitor's Centers.


Is Yellowstone National Park or Oahu Better for Couples?

Yellowstone National Park
Oahu

Oahu is very popular for couples. Also, Yellowstone National Park is still popular, but not quite as popular for romance.

Oahu makes for a terrific place to visit as a couple. The island offers a beautiful and adventurous honeymoon destination that is perfect for anniversaries and other romantic getaways. It's an island paradise with world class beaches, stunning vistas, and countless water sports.

Yellowstone National Park is a great national park if you're traveling as a couple. This park is a beautiful and romantic destination for couples who enjoy the outdoors. There are world-renowned hikes and breathtaking views. There are also lodges in the area that make for a romantic stay.

Is Yellowstone National Park or Oahu Better for Backpackers and Budget Travelers?

Yellowstone National Park
Oahu

Yellowstone National Park is a world-class destination for backpackers and budget travelers. Also, Oahu is not quite as popular, but is fairly good for backpackers.

With so many budget-friendly offerings, Yellowstone National Park is extremely popular for backpackers. Backpackers will appreciate the campgrounds and affordable facilities that are found around the park. Reservations are recommended well in advance, particularly if you're hoping to stay inside the park.

Oahu is a good national park to visit for backpackers. There are a couple of hostels on the island. Public transportation is also a bit better than the other islands, so it is one of the better Hawaiian islands for backpackers.

Is Yellowstone National Park or Oahu Better for Public Transit? Which Is Easier to Get Around Without a Car?

Yellowstone National Park
Oahu

Oahu is a island with a few options for its public transit. However, Yellowstone National Park is not particularly known for times when you don't have a car.

Public transit is generally limited in Oahu. Honolulu has a fairly good bus system, but once you're out of the city, public transportation is limited.

Public transit is quite limited in Yellowstone National Park. There is no public transportation service available in the park. There are private tour options available.


Is Yellowstone National Park or Oahu a more walkable city?

Yellowstone National Park
Oahu

Oahu is a island with a few options for its ease of walking around. However, Yellowstone National Park is not particularly known for its walkability.

Oahu is generally not very walkable. There are some walkable neighborhoods in Honolulu, but if you really want to explore the island, you'll want to have a car.

Yellowstone National Park is not a very walkable national park. This is among the largest national parks and a car is an absolute must if you hope to experience the different landscapes.

For even more information, also check out Is Yellowstone National Park Worth Visiting? and Is Oahu Worth Visiting?.

Should I spend more time in Oahu or Yellowstone National Park?

How long in Yellowstone National Park or Oahu?

Both Yellowstone National Park and Oahu have a number of activities to choose from. In our opinion, Oahu has more to see and do, so we recommend spending more time in Oahu than Yellowstone National Park. In general, 5-7 days is a good amount of time for Yellowstone National Park, and 3-7 days is enough time in Oahu.

Families should spend more time in Oahu than Yellowstone National Park. Because of the many family-friendly attractions and fun things to do for kids in Oahu, it's a great place to visit with the whole family.

Couples should spend more time in Oahu than Yellowstone National Park. You'll find plenty of romantic sights and fun activities in Oahu that are perfect for a weekend getaway or a longer couple's trip.

Backpackers and budget travelers should spend more time in Oahu than Yellowstone National Park if your budget allows for it. With a larger number of budget-friendly sights, good nightlife, and active things to do, anyone traveling on a budget would have a good time in Oahu.


  • How many days in Yellowstone National Park or Oahu? Ideal Length of Stay
    Yellowstone National Park 5-7 
    Oahu 3-7

One day in Yellowstone National Park or Oahu?

Visitors enjoy the when visiting the destination of Yellowstone National Park. Hiking can easily take up a good amount of your time here, too. Take your pick from the many activities offered here. With so much to do, one day is probably not enough time to see everything.

Visitors enjoy the food and scuba diving and snorkeling when visiting the energetic island of Oahu. People enjoy relaxing at one of the resorts. Since there is so much to do in the area, one day is probably not enough for all of it. The length of your trip often depends on your style of travel.

A weekend in Yellowstone National Park or Oahu?

Yellowstone National Park is a fun place to experience. Most people visit for the hiking. You can also relax and pamper yourself at one of the resorts. But since there are so many activities, you'll likely want to spend more than a weekend exploring. The entire region has so many activities, and you'll want time to do everything.

Visitors enjoy the scuba diving and snorkeling and shopping when visiting the destination of Oahu. Many travelers plan to spend time hiking while in the area. Anyone can find something fun to do here. A weekend is usually not enough time for a trip here as there is plenty to do.


Five days in Yellowstone National Park or Oahu?

Visitors enjoy the when visiting the breathtaking destination of Yellowstone National Park. This national park offers something for everyone. Many visitors also spend a good bit of time hiking. Plenty of people spend five days in the area when traveling. Five days is often enough time to do most activities.

Oahu is a popular place that is full of things to see and experience. If you have five days, this island makes for a great vacation. People often spend their time relaxing at one of the resorts. Because of this, five days is usually enough time for a trip here. It offers something for everyone.

A week in Yellowstone National Park or Oahu?

Visitors enjoy the when visiting the world-famous national park of Yellowstone National Park. Make sure you spend some time hiking while you're in the area. Many people spend one week here. The length of your trip often depends on your style of travel. Because of this, one week is usually enough time for a trip here.

Oahu is a popular choice for travelers. One week here is typical. One week is usually enough time to experience most activities. Your budget might influence how long you stay.


For some great organized tour ideas, see The Best Hiking & Trekking Tours in United States of America, The Best Historical Tours in United States of America, The Best 10-Day Tours in United States of America, and The Best One Week (7-Day) Tours in United States of America.


Which place is cheaper, Oahu or Yellowstone National Park?

These are the overall average travel costs for the two destinations.

The average daily cost (per person) in Yellowstone National Park is $147, while the average daily cost in Oahu is $333. These costs include accommodation (assuming double occupancy, so the traveler is sharing the room), food, transportation, and entertainment. While every person is different, these costs are an average of past travelers in each destination. What follows is a categorical breakdown of travel costs for Yellowstone National Park and Oahu in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Yellowstone National Park $74
    Oahu $237
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Yellowstone National Park $148
    Oahu $474
Compare Hotels in Yellowstone National Park and Oahu

Looking for a hotel in Yellowstone National Park or Oahu? Prices vary by location, date, season, and the level of luxury. See below for options and compare which is best for your budget and travel style.

Hotels in Yellowstone National Park


Hotels in Oahu


Kayak helps you find the best prices for hotels, flights, and rental cars for destinations around the world. Compare prices for multiple destinations when planning your next trip.


Our Analysis
We've analyzed the average and typical hotel prices based on guest reviews, star ratings, and hotel amenities here: Yellowstone National Park Hotel Prices and Oahu Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Yellowstone National Park $37
    Oahu $21

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Oahu

Also for Oahu, here are a few examples of actual transportation services:

  • Departure Transfer: Airport Shuttle From Ko'olina To Honolulu Airport: $53
  • Honolulu Airport & Ko Olina Hotels Private Transfer by Passenger Van(14 ppl): $170
  • Honolulu Airport (HNL) to Honolulu / Waikiki - Round-Trip Private Transfer : $93
  • Luxury Transfer Between Ko Olina and Honolulu Airport, Vice Versa: $240
  • Airport 1-Way Transfer to Honolulu: $60
  • Full-Day Island Highlights Tour with Transfer: $136
  • Honolulu Airport Private Transfer: $70
  • Honolulu Harbor Cruise Terminal Transfer: $105
  • Ko Olina or Kapolei to Airport Private Transfer: $100
  • Private Transfer Waikiki to Honolulu Airport HNL by Executive SUV: $148
  • Private Transfer from Beach Resorts to Honolulu Airport HNL by Executive Sedan: $157
  • Private Transfer from Honolulu (HLN) Airport to Ko Olina: $129

Is it cheaper to fly into Yellowstone National Park or Oahu?

Prices for flights to both Oahu and Yellowstone National Park change regularly based on dates and travel demand. We suggest you find the best prices for your next trip on Kayak, because you can compare the cost of flights across multiple airlines for your prefered dates.





Food
  • Food Meals for one day
    Yellowstone National Park $46
    Oahu $52

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Oahu

For Oahu, here are some samples of tours and activities related to meals and dining experiences:

  • 2-Hour Dinner Cruise in Honolulu: $97
  • Moonlight Dinner Cruise in Honolulu: $106
  • Sunset Dinner Cruise in Honolulu: $125
  • Honolulu Sunset & Fireworks Dinner Cruise: $129
  • Ka Moana Luau Dinner and Show at Aloha Tower: $129
  • Honolulu Food Tour & Beautiful Sights: $170
  • Germaine's Traditional Luau Show & Buffet Dinner: $191
  • Waikiki Walking Food Tour Eat Like a Local: $199
  • Nova Five Star Sunset Dinner and Jazz: $225
  • Traditional Canoe Sunset Cruise with Dinner: $250
  • Private Sunset Dinner Horseback Ride: $251

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Yellowstone National Park $34
    Oahu $27

Tours and Activities in Yellowstone National Park

Here are a few actual costs in Yellowstone National Park for available activities, ticket prices, and tours:

  • 5-Day Winter Yellowstone Wildlife Tour: $3,349
  • 6-Mile Geyser Hiking Tour in Yellowstone with Lunch: $182
  • DISCOUNTED*FAMILY FRIENDLY* Yellowstone”THE VOLCANO” Tour BY:CWA : $200
  • E-Bike Tours in Yellowstone National Park: $200
  • Early Morning Guided Kayak Tour: $125
  • Full-Day Guided Yellowstone Day Tour: $299
  • Lake Yellowstone Half Day Kayak Tours Past Geothermal Features : $135
  • Lamar Valley Safari Hiking Tour with Lunch: $182
  • Self-Guided Grand Teton National Park Driving Tour: $8.99
  • Small-Group Sunset Kayaking Tour on Lake Yellowstone : $150
  • Yellowstone 3-day Tour Round-trip From Salt Lake City: $1,088
  • Yellowstone 4-day Tour Salt Lake City with Airport Pickup: $1,168

Tours and Activities in Oahu

For Oahu, here are a few prices for actual activities, tours, and tickets provided by various companies:

  • Heart of Waikiki Walking Tour with Audio Tour Guide: $5.00
  • Historic Downtown Honolulu Walking Audio Tour Guide: $5.00
  • Walk The Deck of The USS Arizona Virtual Reality Tour: $5.99
  • Pearl Harbor Virtual Reality Center Tour: $6.99
  • Historic Honolulu Smartphone Audio Walking Tour: $7.34
  • Official USS Arizona Memorial Narrated Audio Tour: $7.99
  • Honolulu Historic District a Smartphone Audio Walking Tour: $8.99
  • Commander's 1-Hour Official Pearl Harbor Narrated Multimedia Tour: $9.99
  • 15 Minutes Air Raid Pearl Harbor Virtual Reality Tour: $9.99
  • Honolulu's Waikiki Self-Guided Walking Audio Tour: $9.99
  • Honolulu's Backyard Rainforest Driving Tour: $9.99
  • USS Arizona Memorial Captains Narrated Multimedia Tour: $13

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Yellowstone National Park $19
    Oahu $6.47

Sample the Local Flavors in Oahu

Also in Oahu, these are the prices for nightlife and alcohol related activities from various tour providers:

  • Whiskey Tour - Ko Ľolau Distillery - Kailua, Hawai'i 96734: $25
  • WINERY OENO Island Style Wine Tasting: $39
  • History Tour Pub Crawl in Waikiki: $45
  • Waikiki History Tour Pub Crawl: $45


When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Yellowstone National Park and Oahu, we can see that Oahu is more expensive. And not only is Yellowstone National Park much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. So, traveling to Yellowstone National Park would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in Yellowstone National Park and be able to afford a more luxurious travel style by staying in nicer hotels, eating at more expensive restaurants, taking tours, and experiencing more activities. The same level of travel in Oahu would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Oahu than you might in Yellowstone National Park.

If you're trying to decide if either of these two destinations are within your price range, also see Is Yellowstone National Park Expensive? and Is Oahu Expensive?.