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Honolulu Neighborhood Guide

Honolulu Neighborhood Guide

Although it exudes an easy “hang loose” vibe, there’s much more to Honolulu than sunny beaches. From historic Chinatown to lush Manoa and edgy Kaka’ako, Honolulu’s diverse neighborhoods have plenty of appeal. Explore beyond the beach by diving into our picks of Honolulu’s most interesting districts.

Waikiki

Near synonymous with Honolulu, Waikiki is where you’ll find most of the hotels and resorts on Oahu, as well as shopping, restaurants, bars, and more to appeal to the many tourists who congregate here. Sure, it gets crowded, but Waikiki Beach is famous for a reason. Soak up the sun then get out into the water with a surfing lesson or sunset sail.

Chinatown

One of the oldest Chinatowns in the United States, this is the place to spend some time off the beach exploring temples, antique stores, art galleries, and lei makers. It’s also a great neighborhood for eating and drinking, which you can discover on a food walking tour.

Ala Moana

West of Waikiki, Ala Moana Beach Park attracts swimmers, stand-up paddleboarders, and picnickers to its relatively calm setting in front of the Ala Moana Shopping Center, where you’ll find a broad range of shops and restaurants. While in the area you can also visit Aloha Tower Marketplace, Iolani Palace, and the Bishop Museum.

Kaka’ako

Honolulu’s postindustrial warehouse district, Kaka’ako is one of the trendiest spots in town. A big draw is the street art that covers many of the district’s surfaces, courtesy of the annual Pow! Wow! street-art festival. You’ll also find swanky nightclubs and drinking establishments here.

Kapahulu

Some of the island’s best eateries are to be found in the residential neighborhood of Kapahulu, home to Leonard’s, the long-running bakery that sells malasadas (similar to doughnuts), as well as the much-loved Side Street Inn. Its proximity to Diamond Head makes Kapahulu a sure bet for a posthike snack.

Manoa

This lush valley is best known as the home of the University of Hawaii, but visitors also come to Manoa to hike to Manoa Falls. The hike to the 150-foot-high (46-meter-high) cascade is one of the island’s easiest and most accessible. 

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6 Tours and Activities

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Waikiki Trolley Hop-On Hop-Off Tour of Honolulu

Waikiki Trolley Hop-On Hop-Off Tour of Honolulu

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588
Discover Honolulu with a 1, 4 or 7days hop-on hop-off tour and see all the top attractions at your own pace. Step aboard a double-decker bus or open-air trolley to pass the capital city’s best restaurants and shops, historic sites and renowned scenery. Choose from multiple routes, marveling at Diamond Head on the Blue Line or explore Chinatown on the Red Line. Upgrade to include all of the lines on your ticket.
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  • 1 to 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$25.00
From
$25.00

Waikiki Sunset Cocktail Cruise

Waikiki Sunset Cocktail Cruise

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324
View the Hawaiian sunset from the deck of a luxury catamaran during this 1.5-hour cruise from Oahu. Glide along the coastline from Waikiki towards Diamond Head while enjoying the vibrant colors of the island sunset, appetizers, two alcoholic drinks and unlimited non-alcoholic drinks.
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  • 1 hour 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
From
$96.75
From
$96.75

Majestic Circle Island Eco Tour from Waikiki
Likely to Sell OutLikely to Sell Out

Majestic Circle Island Eco Tour from Waikiki

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825
If you have just one day to explore Oahu, the Circle Island Drive is a must—taking in all the island’s highlights in just one day. This full-day tour from Honolulu visits Nu’uanu Pali, Byodo-In Temple, Tropical Farms Macadamia Nut Farm, the Dole Plantation, and Waimea Valley. Hotel pickup and drop-off is included.
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  • 7 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$132.46
From
$132.46

Waikiki and Diamond Head Segway Tour

Waikiki and Diamond Head Segway Tour

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26
Experience Waikiki and Diamond Head on a three-hour, small-group Segway tour. Explore the island and get local insights without the hassles of walking long distances, public transportation, or driving. See the Hilton Lagoon, learn the history behind the Moana Surfrider Hotel, and see the Waikiki War Memorial Natatorium. This tour is ideal for visitors who want to maximize their time on the island and learn some local history.
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  • 3 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$157.07
From
$157.07

Waikiki Panorama Sail

Waikiki Panorama Sail

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29
Set sail for beautiful Waikiki, the beachfront neighborhood of Honolulu, on this guided, 90-minute tour along the south shore of the island of Oahu in Hawaii. Beginning from the Kewalo Harbor waterfront, head down to Ala Moana Beach Park to Waikiki and the volcanic tuff cone Diamond Head. Along the way, look for Hawaii’s famous green sea turtles and other marine wildlife. Snacks, two free bar beverages and unlimited non-alcoholic drinks are provided.
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  • 1 hour 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
From
$75.01
From
$75.01

Surf HNL: SURF Lessons at Ala Moana Beach!!!!!! FREE TRANSPORT
Likely to Sell OutLikely to Sell Out

Surf HNL: SURF Lessons at Ala Moana Beach!!!!!! FREE TRANSPORT

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Learn to surf in one of the world’s most iconic locations—Honolulu. Head to Ala Moana Beach and join a small group of first-time surfers to begin your lesson. Learn surfing techniques and ocean etiquette right on the sand and then take to the water to try and catch your first wave. Adequate swimmers ages 12 and above are encouraged to join.
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  • 1 hour
  • Free Cancellation
From
$119.00
From
$119.00