There is no question that Oahu is small, but it is absolutely jam packed with things to do there and it is without a doubt one of the best places in Hawaii to visit. If you get a chance to visit there are so many things to do and see and I want to show you a few of these things. It is time to find your base at one of the stunning vacation rentals in Oahu and get to ticking things off your list. Here are some of my personal favourite things that you need to do when you visit Oahu.
Go to a Luau:
A luau is a traditional Hawaiian festival that is used to celebrate almost any kind of special event, this could be weddings, birthdays or something similar. It really is an experience like no other with dancing, flowers, music, a huge fire and even an underground oven known as an imu that is used to cook the food. The imu is quite simply heated stones and a fire that are placed in a pit to slow cook things like pork and salmon. The meat is wrapped in leaves and melts in your mouth when you eat it.
Climb the Koko Head Stairs:
There is nothing quite like the feeling you get when you walk up 1000 steps and you feel like you have really worked hard and earned something. Well, you can do this in Koko Head Park on the South Shore of Oahu. The stairs were originally a railroad track and this has given birth to a truly amazing path to experience 360-degree views of the surrounding landscape. The view is definitely the reward in this case. Don’t forget to bring some water, shoes with good grip and a little bit of fitness to help you up the mountain too.
Try the Street Food:
Street food has always been my hot tip for visiting anywhere, it is cheaper, tastier and much more authentic than pretty much any restaurant in tourist areas. This is definitely a great way to experience the wonderful tastes of Hawaii and it is definitely a melting pot of culture with people from Japan, the Philippines, America and many other places coming together. On the last Friday of each month in Kakaako, there is a street food festival where many street food trucks show up with some mouth watering things to eat. My pick will always be the amazing traditional Hawaiian street food, as well as a few Japanese dishes too. This is also a perfect way to support local businesses and get a real taste of Hawaii.
Visit Iolani palace:
Up until the late 19th century, Hawaii was actually a monarchy and this palace was the home of the royal family. Today it is possible to visit this incredible place and strangely enough it is the only royal building in the United States! Here you can see where the royals lived and learn more about the monarchy in Hawaii. There are many interesting rooms, such as the throne room and the dining room. One of the most interesting rooms is definitely the imprisonment room, where the queen (Liliuokalani) lived whilst under house arrest for a total of 5 months.
Watch a Sunrise or Sunset in Oahu:
Oahu is absolutely filled with places where you can view the sunrise or sunset and you won’t have experienced anything like the one you will see in Oahu. If you can I would highly getting to a high place (Ka’au Crater is absolutely perfect for this and a great attraction on its own) and see the sun rise from the ocean or disappear into into. The views are already stunning, but a sunrise or sunset amplifies this a thousand fold. Of course, nobody should experience something like this alone so definitely bring a friend or your loved one, because it will truly be a magical experience.
Learn to Surf:
Hawaii is the home and surfing and naturally it is something that you should try whilst in Oahu. If you are an experienced surfer, it is absolutely one of the best places in the world to be, but don’t worry if you don’t know how, everyone has to start somewhere and there are a number of great beaches with calmer waters where you can learn this beloved skill of the Hawaiian people. There are a number of surf schools, so there should be a number of good value options to get learning. Waikiki beach is the classic example of a great surf beach in Hawaii and is a must visit on Oahu.
Visit the North Shore:
Oahu definitely has some quieter parts to enjoy too aside from all the action going on in this busy little island and the best place to do this is the North Shore. Here you can see the quieter countryside and beaches with very few other people on them. The North Shore is also quite famous for the tasty shrimp that is available from the food trucks that have become famous in their own right. Garlic shrimp is definitely the signature dish to try at any of these food trucks and you won’t regret it.. If you do want a little bit more excitement here you can also jump off the Waimea Bay Beach rock into the deep blue water, it is also possible to surf in the area too, which is a welcome change compared to the other more crowded beaches on the island.
Featured image by Bevis Chin