There is a ridiculous amount of things to do in Hawaii! So much that you are guaranteed to have an amazing time! O'ahu is a mix between capital city with tall buildings and vast jungles. Understand that this article is what we did or know about! There's so much more, but this is the tip of the iceberg that will give you an idea of what you'd love to do when you visit.
When we were in Honolulu, we got the Go Card for Oahu. These Go Cards give you the ability to pay a flat rate and do up to 30+ attractions all included. You have the option to pick your time frame: 1, 2, 3, 5, or 7-day passes. We chose the 3 day pass. At full price, it is $249. Currently it’s 25% off at $199.20 per adult. This pass allows you to pick one premium attraction and then do as many other attractions you’re able to find time for.
For our premium attraction, we skipped the Luau, swimming with turtles, or the dolphin encounter to instead go on a sunset dinner sail on a catamaran. We sailed out by Diamond Head and had a wonderful dinner (they made sure to have vegetarian options for me). It was so relaxing and romantic; we had a wonderful time! I highly recommend.
For our other attractions we went on the All of Oahu in One Day Tour, Makapu’u Lighthouse Hike, and a Jungle Jeep Expedition Tour of Kualoa Ranch. The card offers the Pearl Harbor tours and museums, a shuttle to hike Diamond Head, the Polynesian Cultural Center, paddle-boarding, kayaking, snorkeling, biking, and various museums, hikes, and tours. We found that the card was definitely worth the money and saved us at least $50. One thing frustrated me about the Go Card. I really wanted to do more on it, but then the sun would go down and there was no more time. Or we weren’t able to go to some of the locations without a car because it was on the other side of the island.
If you’ve never been to Oahu before, you should definitely go on the All of Oahu in One Day Tour. We went to various lookouts and saw the view; two of those places being Hanauma Bay and the Nu’uanu Pali Lookout. We stopped for lunch, went to a family-run macadamia nut farm, went to the Mormon Temple, and to the Dole Pineapple Plantation.
The next day, we got a shuttle to Kualoa Ranch so we could go on the jungle tour. They have that, a movie tour, horseback riding, a catamaran tour, etc. It’s a really beautiful place over there where they film many movies and shows. The jungle tour was exciting! Although it wasn’t called the movie tour, we still got to see many movie sets, such as Jurassic World, Jumanji, King Kong, and a new Netflix show. The ranch has a decent food court and cute gift shop. We walked across the street and found a picturesque little beach with a perfect view of the Chinaman’s Hat Island.
One morning we got shuttled to the Makapu’u Lighthouse hike. It wasn’t quite a hike considering the path was very nicely paved, but it was steep. The view was gorgeous!! We really enjoyed it!
On our way back, our shuttle driver recommended we eat at Leonard’s bakery and try their hot malasadas, which are like soft donut holes. They had a food truck on the way. It was amazing! We also went by Ono Seafood, which was a highly recommended place to us. Matt being the only fish-eater in our two-person party, enjoyed it! We made it back to Waikiki. We spent the rest of the day at the beach. Matt found a place to rent a boogie board to surf. I relaxed. Later we went shopping and to the Cheesecake factory in town. There’s all the stores you could ever want right there.
The last day, my Marine cousin picked us up, showed us his base, and took us to Waimea Bay. If it’s crowded, you may have to park across the street at the Waimea Botanical Garden parking. The beach is gorgeous and a nice place to snorkel. Just be careful of the huge waves from the north shore. On the surrounding beaches and bays, they do some of the largest surfing competitions on the globe. Beware if one is happening during your visit, because it will create a lot of traffic on the loop around the island. I really enjoyed my spot on that beautiful beach for the afternoon.
For a late lunch we went down the road to Fumi’s shrimp food truck. The guys got shrimp while I got an açai bowl from next door. We all really enjoyed our food. We love the little food trucks and trying food the place we are visiting are known for.
I hope this was helpful. Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org and share with us what you did in O'ahu!