Put These on Your Hawaiian Itinerary: Our Favorite Top 9 Experiences in Oahu

April 3, 2023

Aloha! Are you planning a trip to the beautiful island of Oahu? If so, get ready for an unforgettable adventure filled with stunning beaches, breathtaking scenery, and endless opportunities for fun and relaxation. To help you make the most of your time on this tropical paradise, we’ve put together a list of our top 9 favorite experiences in Oahu. From hiking to water sports to indulging in delicious local cuisine, there’s something for everyone on this must-see itinerary. So grab your sunglasses and sunscreen – let’s dive into the best that Oahu has to offer!

Introduction to Oahu

When it comes to island life, few places compare to Hawaii. And when it comes to Hawaiian islands, none are as diverse and packed with things to do as Oahu. From world-famous Waikiki Beach to the wilds of the North Shore, Oahu has something for everyone.

In this article, we’ll share our top experiences in Oahu, perfect for adding to your Hawaiian itinerary. So whether you’re looking for adventure, relaxation, or a little bit of both, read on for our top picks for what to do in Oahu.

1. Snorkeling in Hanauma Bay

Snorkeling in Hanauma Bay is one of the most popular activities on Oahu. The bay is home to a wide variety of fish, making it a perfect spot for snorkelers of all levels of experience. Visitors can rent snorkeling gear at the park or bring their own. There are also plenty of opportunities to see turtles and other marine life while snorkeling in Hanauma Bay.

2. Take a Helicopter Ride

If you really want to see everything that Oahu has to offer, there’s no better way than from the air. A helicopter ride will give you a bird’s eye view of the island, from the dramatic cliffs of the North Shore to the sandy beaches of Waikiki. You’ll also get a chance to see some of the most famous landmarks on the island, including Diamond Head and Punchbowl Crater. Just make sure to book your flight in advance, as helicopter rides can be very popular during peak tourist season.

3. Visit the North Shore Beaches

If you’re looking for breathtaking views and amazing photo ops, the North Shore beaches are a must on your Hawaiian itinerary. With miles of white sand beaches and turquoise waters, the North Shore is a paradise for beach lovers. Take a drive up the coast to experience some of Hawaii’s most beautiful scenery.

Make sure to stop at Sunset Beach, Pipeline, and Waimea Bay. These world-famous surf spots offer great waves for beginners and experienced surfers alike. If you’re not a fan of crowded beaches, head to Laniakea Beach or Turtle Beach for a more secluded experience. And no trip to the North Shore would be complete without seeing the iconic Hale’iwa surfing village.

4. Attend a Traditional Lūʻau

A lūʻau is a Hawaiian feast that typically features roasted pig, poi (a taro root dish), and other local delicacies. It is also a popular tourist attraction, as it offers visitors a chance to experience traditional Hawaiian culture.

If you’re interested in attending a lūʻau while you’re in Hawaii, Oahu is the place to be. There are several lūʻaus held on the island each week, so you’ll have plenty of chances to catch one. To find a luau near you, check out the Lūʻau of Hawaiʻi culture page on gohawaii.com.

5. Participate in Water Sports

Assuming you’re referring to the ocean, there are plenty of water sports to take part in while in Hawaii. Snorkeling and diving are two of the most popular activities as the island’s waters are teeming with colorful marine life. Surfing is also huge in Hawaii – Oahu’s North Shore is a mecca for big wave surfing. Other popular ocean activities include stand up paddle boarding, kayaking, and wakeboarding.

If you’re not a fan of the ocean, don’t worry – there are plenty of other options for water-based fun. Hawaii is home to numerous freshwater streams and rivers perfect for swimming, tubing, and fishing. And of course, no trip to Hawaii would be complete without a dip in one of the state’s many natural hot springs!

6. Explore Waikiki’s Nightlife Scene

When the sun sets on Waikiki, the party is just getting started. There are plenty of bars and nightclubs to keep you entertained throughout the night. For a more laid-back atmosphere, head to one of the many beach bars dotting the shoreline. Here, you can enjoy tropical drinks while listening to live music or watching the sunset. If you’re looking for a more lively scene, check out some of the popular clubs in Waikiki, where you can dance the night away.

7. Hike the Manoa Falls Trail

The Manoa Falls Trail is one of the most popular hiking trails on Oahu. The trailhead is located in Manoa Valley, just a short drive from Honolulu. The trail is well-marked and easy to follow. It winds through the rainforest and eventually leads to the stunning Manoa Falls. The falls are 150 feet tall and are one of the most beautiful waterfalls in Hawaii. The hike takes about 2 hours round-trip, and it is a great way to get some exercise and see some amazing scenery.

8. Tour Pearl Harbor and USS Arizona Memorial

If you’re interested in American history, then a visit to Pearl Harbor is a must. You can tour the museum, see the USS Arizona Memorial, and even take a boat ride out to the USS Missouri.

The Pearl Harbor Visitor Center is open daily from 7:30 am to 5:00 pm. Admission is free, but you will need to purchase a ticket for the boat ride out to the memorials. Tickets can be bought online or at the visitor center.

The USS Arizona Memorial is one of the most popular attractions at Pearl Harbor. The memorial commemorates the 2,403 lives lost when the ship was sunk during the attacks on December 7, 1941. The memorial is open from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm and admission is free.

The USS Missouri is another popular attraction at Pearl Harbor. The ship was used in World War II and the Korean War and was decommissioned in 1992. You can take a tour of the ship from 9:00 am to 3:00 pm. Admission is $20 for adults and $10 for children ages 5-12.

9. Enjoy the Kualoa Ranch Experience

Kualoa Ranch is one of the most popular attractions on Oahu. This 4,000-acre working ranch offers a variety of activities and tours that allow visitors to experience the best of Hawaii. From horseback riding and ATV tours to hiking and ziplining, Kualoa Ranch has something for everyone.

Visitors can also enjoy a variety of cultural activities at the ranch, such as luau performances and hula shows. The ranch is also home to a number of animals, including horses, pigs, chickens, and ducks. Visitors can learn about the ranch’s history and culture while enjoying the beautiful scenery.

Kualoa Ranch is an essential part of any Hawaiian itinerary. Whether you’re looking for adventure or just want to relax and enjoy the beauty of Hawaii, Kualoa Ranch is the perfect place for you.


With its incredible beaches, stunning views and adventurous activities, Oahu is an amazing destination for a Hawaiian vacation! From the breathtaking North Shore to the exciting Honolulu nightlife, there is something for everyone on this beautiful island. We hope that our top 9 experiences in Oahu have given you some ideas of fun things to do during your stay. So what are you waiting for? Pack your bags and get ready for an unforgettable trip to Hawaii!

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