Are you ready for a little adventure during your time in Oahu? Lying on the beach and sipping cocktails is great, but you might also be eager to explore a little more.
The best way to explore Oahu is to rent a vehicle, so that you can go beyond the main beach hotspots and enjoy the off-the-beaten track side of the island. Having your own car allows you to explore at your own pace and make the most of your time.
When you head outside of Honolulu and Waikiki, you’ll discover wild scenery, peaceful and welcoming Hawaiian villages and even a dormant volcano. Once you leave the main developed areas you’ll be amazed at the quiet, sparsely populated tranquillity of the rest of the island.
Here are five great adventures you can have when you look beyond Oahu:
Snorkeling in Hanauma Bay
Hanauma Bay is known as one of the best snorkeling beaches in the world, so bring your mask and fins.
It’s very popular, so make sure that you go as early in the day as possible to ensure you get a parking spot. In fact, it is so popular that it is closed one day per week in order to give the coral reef a rest – so make sure that you plan accordingly.
You will need to pay a fee to snorkel there, but it is worth it. You will be dazzled by the brightly hued array of vibrant and strange tropical fish beneath the crystal clear water.
Hike Diamond Head
Bring your hiking shoes and get your blood pumping with this uphill trek.
You’ll climb up 760 feet to the top of the hill and be rewarded with stunning views all the way back to Waikiki. On a clear day you can see forever – gazing out at the blue horizon while listening to the waves crashing below.
Diamond Head is an invigorating climb but it’s not Everest – if you are of moderate fitness you can achieve it and no special equipment is required (just plenty of water and a camera to capture the stunning vistas).
>It takes about an hour to reach the summit and half that time to return. You might want to bring a snack and sit for a while at the top, or head back down to keep driving.
Maunawili Falls Trail
Go on a walkabout along this gorgeous trail, which is set deep into the lush jungle.
You’ll wander down shady trails and over babbling streams until you reach a sparkling waterfall. This spot is popular with locals and tourists, as people love to jump off the ledge into the cool refreshing water of the pool below. It’s an ideal place to take a picnic and simply relax in the shade and sweetly scented air of the rainforest.
Turtle Beach (Laniakea Beach)
As you drive up the North Shore toward Haleiwa, you’ll pass Turtle Beach. This spot is where turtles come to feast on the algae that grows on the rocks and you can watch them in their slow moving progress across the sand.
You can also spot some of them floating in the waves in the shallow parts of the water. Don’t miss this delightful opportunity to see these beautiful creatures up close.
The Mokulua Islands (Viewed From Lanikai)
One of the most spectacular views of the Mokulua Islands is from the beaches of Kailua or Lanikai, two of the best beaches on the island. These vantage points are often not very crowded and the stunning vista will make you never want to leave.
>When you do decide it’s time to head back, the Pali Highway is the fastest route back and you can stop at Iolani Palace on your way, the only palace in the USA and an intriguing introduction to Hawaii’s culture.
The easiest way to explore Oahu
If you want to really make the most of your time away from the beach, have a look at the GyPSy Guide Driving Tour Apps for Oahu. You’ll get to hear professional-quality audio tours as you drive around this amazing island.
And that way, you won’t miss any of the top things to see in and do while on the road.