Oahu activities

chimommy

Mouseketeer
Joined
May 23, 2010
Hello-

We will be in Oahu 8 full days (not including arrival and departure days). We have a few things we want to do while there. Wondering if anyone can give me some tips on putting some sort of itinerary together? We want to visit Kualoa Ranch, Pearl Harbor, Diamond head, Waimea Valley/falls, maybe Laniakea Beach? Anyone have other suggestions? Could I put any of these activities on the same day? Any restaurants we should try? Thanks for the help!!
 

dachsie

DIS Veteran
Joined
Feb 13, 2014
Depending on what you do at Kualoa Ranch, you could do that and Waimea Falls on the same day. Or Waimea and Laniakea Beach on same day with Northshore. I would also say do Diamondhead first thing in the morning and then go to Lanikai or Kailua Beach on southeast side of Island. Another thing to do would be snorkel in Hanuma Bay
 

jeff_h

Mouseketeer
Joined
Feb 25, 2017
If you will have a car to drive wherever you want, be sure to make a stop at Pali Lookout for 30-60 minutes, nice scenery and it's like standing in a wind tunnel.
 
  • Kathlini

    Doing Disney since 1978
    Joined
    Aug 10, 2019
    Here are our favorites. We’ve been 9 times and it’s like coming home 😊. Diamond head. Do this the first day first thing. Coming from the mainland the time change will have you up super early. Take a protein bar and Leave at 6:00 to 6:30 you will be early to Diamond head. There will be plenty of parking, plenty of light and the sun will just be coming up. It won’t be crowded and you will be done by 8:30. Obvi weekends have less rush hour but heading back to Disney you will be going out of the city. Stop at the Pali Lookout only if it’s a clear day often it’s cloudy and you can’t see anything. If you like the early rising. Then get up and hit Pearl Harbor the next morning super early. We take coffee and a snack and then are done by 10 and have brunch. The Punchbowl cemetery is one of the most beautiful places on earth. You can go anytime. It’s always quiet the sunsets are difficult to put into words. The entire WWII pacific battles are displayed in massive mosaic tiles. People picnic up there and do the honor walk to the top it’s not strenuous. There are fireworks at the Hilton on Friday evenings. A great way to see them is to park across from the Hale Koa and walk through there is a park between the Hale Koa and the Hilton. If you are going to drive around the H3 is gorgeous and Kailua is a cute town. Boots and Kimos is wonderful for breakfast or lunch especially if you have any NFL fans. The best Segway tour is in Kailua. You can also kayak on that side of the island to the island that was the setting for Gillian’s Island and you just look down and it’s turtles everywhere. If you are military active or retired you can go over to Bellows which I think is e prettiest beach on the island. If you aren’t military I think it’s open Friday afternoon to Sunday.(pic). For excellent snorkeling where you just walk out into the water and look down to amazement, go over to Hanauma Bay and while you are there do the light house hike, You could start early one morning and hit Kailua and then down to light house and Hanauma Bay. There are food trucks that serve lunch along the way. The plate lunch is a big thing. While you are away from the resort try some Moco Loco. An island favorite. Have fun. For any Catholics (or anyone interested in a incredibly spiritual service ) the tiniest church with the kindest people is right up the road at St Rita’s. We went to Christmas Services and they are the most welcoming in all my travels. Our kids were blown away. They combine traditional Hawaiian music and language. Have fun. You are going to have such an amazing time.
     

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    nkereina

    Last chance to lose your keys.
    Joined
    Feb 11, 2009
    Kualoa Ranch, Pearl Harbor, Diamond head, Waimea Valley/falls, maybe Laniakea Beach?
    We did all of these - trip report is in my signature.

    I would definitely do Waimea Valley and Laniakea Beach together. They are close, and frankly neither were very long stops for us. We did these two on the same day we explored Haleiwa and visited the Dole Plantation.

    Kualoa Ranch took up a whole morning for us. We did the VIP Movie Tour. We left Aulani at 6:45 and got there around 8:15 due to traffic. Our tour started at 9 and finished around 11:30. We then had lunch there, which I highly recommend. Even if you don't do the VIP Movie Tour, doing a two tour package will still eat up a good part of the day. After we were done at the Ranch, we went to Kailua and spent some time at Kailua Beach, which was awesome.

    Pearl Harbor and Diamond Head are both best done early in the morning. Diamond Head gets hot and crowded later in the day and parking can be difficult as it fills up. With Pearl Harbor, if you're unable to secure tickets online in advance, its recommended to arrive early to ensure you get a tour time (they run out sometimes) and so that you don't get a tour time late in the afternoon that you'd have to kill time before. Personally, I would do these on separate days. Also keep in mind that for Diamond Head, we finished early (around 11am) and really needed to come back to shower/change before doing anything else. We were in workout clothes and very sweaty!
     
  • JustinFecteau

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Aug 20, 2019
    My wife and I just spent 8 nights on Oahu and had an amazing time. We did 3 nights at Aulani and 5 nights at an Airbnb in Kailua. Our absolute favorite thing we did was the Lanikai Pillbox hike, which is relatively easy but offers the best views of the island. Restaurant wise, our favorite meal of the trip was dinner at Haleiwa Joe's (Haiku Gardens location). The restaurant almost feels like a tree house and has beautiful views looking out at the mountains. They do not take reservations and are always busy but the wait is enjoyable as you can wander around the connected gardens. We avoided Waikiki/Honolulu entirely except for a single meal. Our brief time in the city was by far our least favorite part of the trip, but I understand that opinions differ on this.
     

    Pixie_Dust

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Feb 10, 2000
    Hello-

    We will be in Oahu 8 full days (not including arrival and departure days). We have a few things we want to do while there. Wondering if anyone can give me some tips on putting some sort of itinerary together? We want to visit Kualoa Ranch, Pearl Harbor, Diamond head, Waimea Valley/falls, maybe Laniakea Beach? Anyone have other suggestions? Could I put any of these activities on the same day? Any restaurants we should try? Thanks for the help!!
    We did a lot of those things with the Go Pass, as well as the Bishop Museum and a catamaran sail.
    I love Monkeypod across the street from Aulani for the discounted food and live music during happy hour.
    There's a chocolate company near Lanikai -- they sendsome nibs to the rum company (on the way to the north shore, they also have a tasting) and then make a rum flavored chocolate bar while the rum company makes a chocolate flavored rum.
    All the farmer's mkts are great, especially the one at the old sugar mill where there are more shops as well (coffee tour behind the souvenir shop). Find the shaved green papaya at that farmer's mkt. They have it with cherry tomatos and dressing -- I think of it as the island answer to coleslaw. Speaking of food, first stop should be Costco for a giant, inexpensive pineapple and lots of other island foods/gifts, even poke. We have that with the green papya salad, some Maui chips, and POG (a gallon from Costco!)
    Monkeypod stocks some local beer (tropical fruit in some), and we found the makers, who also had tastings (super fun, and I don't even like beer -- but I do like local and artisanal foods). Also found the best malasada place recommended by locals, Pipeline -- on certain days and times they have ice cream-stuffed malasadas. All this requires lots of driving, all over the island.
    I wouldn't miss the free, culturally enriching hula show near Duke's statue in Waikiki. We also found a beachfront bar and restaurant at one of the fancy hotels with live music and hula around sunset. Beautiful!
    Loved Waimea falls, went to the luau there.
     

    Pixie_Dust

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Feb 10, 2000
    Forgot to mention the stadium flea market is fun and such good prices on gifts and souvenirs. Too much on north shore to mention, love browsing the galleries, food finds. Anything with haupia or lilikoi is going to be great imo.
     
  • dachsie

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Feb 13, 2014
    We did a lot of those things with the Go Pass, as well as the Bishop Museum and a catamaran sail.
    I love Monkeypod across the street from Aulani for the discounted food and live music during happy hour.
    There's a chocolate company near Lanikai -- they sendsome nibs to the rum company (on the way to the north shore, they also have a tasting) and then make a rum flavored chocolate bar while the rum company makes a chocolate flavored rum.
    All the farmer's mkts are great, especially the one at the old sugar mill where there are more shops as well (coffee tour behind the souvenir shop). Find the shaved green papaya at that farmer's mkt. They have it with cherry tomatos and dressing -- I think of it as the island answer to coleslaw. Speaking of food, first stop should be Costco for a giant, inexpensive pineapple and lots of other island foods/gifts, even poke. We have that with the green papya salad, some Maui chips, and POG (a gallon from Costco!)
    Monkeypod stocks some local beer (tropical fruit in some), and we found the makers, who also had tastings (super fun, and I don't even like beer -- but I do like local and artisanal foods). Also found the best malasada place recommended by locals, Pipeline -- on certain days and times they have ice cream-stuffed malasadas. All this requires lots of driving, all over the island.
    I wouldn't miss the free, culturally enriching hula show near Duke's statue in Waikiki. We also found a beachfront bar and restaurant at one of the fancy hotels with live music and hula around sunset. Beautiful!
    Loved Waimea falls, went to the luau there.
    Where is the old sugar mill where the farmer's market is located?
     

    Amw1064

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jan 29, 2012
    In Waikiki, surf lessons, catamaran sail, and outrigger canoe ride. I really recommend the outrigger canoe ride, $25 and nothing better.

    alohabeachservices.com leahi.com
    Yes! Loved our catamaran sail and outrigger canoe ride. They are both in my Aulani video in my signature.
     

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