The Hawaiian Islands receive more than seven million visitors per year and the forecasts show that the arrivals will increase over the next years. During the long history of tourism on the Hawaiian Islands the focus has been on mass tourism and attracting more visitors. Tourism being the major economic sector in the State has caused an economic dependency on tourism, as well as serious impacts on the local environment and the local population. The importance of sustainable forms of tourism has been theoretically realized by the Hawai?i Tourism Authority, but the essential action plans are still missing. Core aspects of Community-based tourism are implemented in the Tourism Strategic Plans, which is why it can be assumed that this form of sustainable tourism would be an adequate option for the Hawaiian Islands. Two case studies ? in the communities of Hana, Maui and Waimanalo, O?ahu- illustrate the potentials and challenges of Community-based tourism in the close proximity to the mass tourism industry and isolated from the developed areas. Questionnaires, answered by residents and visitors, interviews with key informants and an analysis of strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats revealed the potentials and challenges of Hana and Waimanalo. A more negative attitude towards tourism development was found in Hana, but serious social issues and a lack of interest could be a barrier for development in Waimanalo. Despite different geographic conditions and a difference in the development of tourism, the communities show similarities in regards to preconditions and both seem to have potential for the implementation of Community-based tourism.