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Highlights of Honolulu & O’ahu

O’ahu is the most populous of the Hawaiian islands, and its conjoined hubs are the city of Honolulu and the world-famous Waikīkī Beach. The vast majority of visitors make Waikīkī their base, venturing out on day trips to take in Honolulu’s many cultural attractions, Pearl Harbor, and other parts of the island. The family-friendly beaches and parks of the South Shore and Kāne’ohe District are in striking distance of Honolulu, while diehard surfers head for the North Coast. The Polynesian Cultural Center is also an easy day trip from the city.

1 Pearl Harbor

The World War II site draws 1.5 million visitors each year, including veterans and relatives of those who died. The warship USS Arizona is now a memorial. 

2 Bishop Museum and Planetarium

This state museum in Honolulu offers a fascinating insight into Hawaiian culture. Its Science Garden represents the unique Hawaiian land divisions called ahupua’a. 

3 Capitol District

Chinatown, the modern State Capitol, and an old mansion that was once the home of Queen Lili’uokalani are just some of the attractions of this historic district in Honolulu. 

4 Iolani Palace

The palace was built for King Kalākaua and Queen Kapi’olani in the 19th century and was later the seat of government. It is now restored and open to the public. 

5 Hawai’i Maritime Center

Down by Honolulu Harbor are a number of fascinating exhibits about Hawai’i’s maritime history, as well as a great viewing point from the top of Aloha Tower. 

6 Honolulu Academy of Arts

 Arts of the Islamic and Oriental worlds are strong points of this museum, as well as 15,000 works by American and European artists. Polynesian works are displayed, too. 

7 Kalākaua Avenue

Kalākaua is Waikīkī’s main thoroughfare, running along the ocean right up to the crater of Diamond Head. Halfway along the avenue are the “Pink Lady” and the “White Lady” – two landmark, oceanfront hotels with famous bars. 

8 South Shore

The South Shore of O’ahu has among its attractions several popular beaches, walking trails over Koko Head, and an underwater park at Hanauma Bay. 

9 Kāne’ohe District

A stunning region northeast of Honolulu, Kāne’ohe has a scenic coastline, lush gardens, state parks, and a Japanesestyle temple to explore. 

10 Polynesian Cultural Center

 On the north shore of O’ahu, this center is the place to explore the rich traditions of Polynesia, such as the pageantry and cuisines of Hawai’i, Tahiti, Tonga, and other Pacific islands. 

Highlights of Honolulu & O’ahu Highlights of Honolulu & O’ahu Reviewed by MELANIE INFINITY on January 11, 2020 Rating: 5

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