O'ahu, HI
Hawaii
By Danielle Swink

O'ahu, also known as “The Gathering Place” is the perfect place to enjoy the great diversity of the Hawaiian Islands. Most commonly known for the capital of Honolulu and the sky blue beaches of Waikiki, O'ahu boasts many more sights and adventures for travelers. If you would like more information on Honolulu visit this link (http://www.whatscheaper.com/honolulu_hawaii.php); keep reading to discover the rest of the island!

Vacationers can fly into the Honolulu International Airport (HNL) to frequent the island. WhatsCheaper.com can assist with booking your flight reservations by following this link (http://www.whatscheaper.com/flight.php). From there you can rent a car and make your way to your hotel. WhatsCheaper.com can also assist with booking your hotel reservations by following this link (http://www.whatscheaper.com/hotel.php) to our hotel finder.

As one would expect; scuba diving and snorkeling opportunities abound here. If you are new to snorkeling WhatsCheaper.com recommends travelers don’t miss Hanauma Bay; this horseshoe shaped bay, located east of Honolulu is a Nature Preserve and offers excellent snorkeling as well as education opportunities in the Marine Education Center. Scuba divers have a plethora of dive sites to choose from; the Leeward and Windward sides of the island offer many wrecks to choose from as well as coral reefs while the North Shore offers an opportunity to view turtle cleaning stations and small caverns.

For many travelers, Hawaii is synonymous with surfing. Good surfing can be found all over the island but perhaps none as good as the North Shore. Waves during the winter on the North Shore are best left to professionals since they easily reach a height of 30’ and can often be hard for seasoned surfers to handle. World class competitions are held in November and December each year and offer an excellent opportunity to watch the best surfers in the world. The beginning surfer will find the waves far gentler from May – September on the North Shore and year round along the Leeward and Windward shores.

Outdoor adventures await those who want a little time out of the water. Skydiving can be found in Waialua, parasailing is offered all around the island, and hiking trails ranging from beginner to intermediate offer the chance to explore the interior portion of the island as well as the shoreline. If hitting the green is more your style, visit one of the 40 public and private courses around the island; a January visit will coincide with a PGA tournament. WhatsCheaper.com knows that sightseers will enjoy the Dole Pineapple Plantation and pineapple maze as well as the Hawaii Plantation Village to see more of the impact pineapple growing has had on the island.

If you are a history buff; there is much to see and learn as you tour the island. Hawaiian history can be found at ‘Iolani Palace as well as Kawaiah’o Church and Mission Houses; the former home and chapel of Hawaiian royalty. U.S. military history can be seen at the numerous military bases on the island but none as clearly riveting as the Pearl Harbor Memorial where visitors can see the remains of many of the ships sunk on that fateful day. Another must see is the Polynesian Culture Center; located on the northeast side of O'ahu, the PCC showcases the many islands of Polynesia and offers the largest evening show in the world!

Dining out on O'ahu is full of options; from fine dining to hole-in-the-walls, you will find it all. Many of the restaurants use locally grown crops, locally raised cattle, and fish either caught by local fishermen or raised at the nearby fishery. The use of local resources ensures visitors with the freshest ingredients for their meals. Enjoy a luau, dine at one of the many restaurants that offer an ocean view, or swing by the shrimp truck while roaming the island. A day in the sun isn’t complete until you enjoy an authentic Hawaii Shave Ice (not shaved but actually shave), visitors will often find lines of locals and tourists alike waiting for their treat bit the wait is well worth it!

The Gathering Place is much more than just Honolulu.  Feed your adventurous side and explore this lovely Pacific gem. Let WhatsCheaper.com help you book your vacation today!

MUST SEE IN O'ahu, HI LIST:

  • 1. Hanauma Bay
  • 2. North Shore
  • 3. Skydiving in Waialua
  • 4. Dole Pineapple Plantation
  • 5. Marine Education Center
  • 6. Polynesian Culture Center
  • 7. Lanikai Beach
  • 8. Ko Olina Lagoons
  • 9. Makapu'u Beach
  • 10. Kailua Beach Park

O'ahu, HI EVENT CALENDAR:

  • 1. Moanikeala Hula Festival - January
  • 2. Lei Day Celebration - May
  • 3. We Are Samoa Festival - May
  • 4. Summer Concert at the Polynesian Cultural Center - July
  • 5. Obon Festival - July
  • 6. Te Mahana Hiro'a Tumu O Tahiti - July
  • 7. Haleiwa Arts Festival - July
  • 8. Vans Triple Crown of Surfing - November/December

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