5 Things You MUST Do on Oahu!

Chinaman's Hat (Mokoli'i) - Image www.runningonpixiedust.com

Hawaii has been home to many special memories for me and my husband.  We traveled to Oahu the first year we were dating and spent a week on the island, then returned three years later to honeymoon on Kauai and the Big Island.  Watching Finding 'Ohana on Netflix really made me miss those times in Hawaii - the beautiful landscape, rich culture, and yummy food!  In fact, the movie inspired me to jot down 5 must-do activities when visiting the island of Oahu.  All of these are kid-friendly, but if you're looking for some adult only time, you can certainly make them romantic outings as well!

Want to know more about the movie Finding 'Ohana?  Check out my review of the film and 20 of the BEST quotes from the movie.

Rent a Jeep

Clearly none of us are driving to Hawaii, so you have to figure out your transportation while on the island.  We prefer renting a car so we have complete freedom to explore at our own pace.  But, don't just rent any car. . .grab a Jeep!  Why?  Well, Hawaii has gorgeous weather of course which makes it ideal for top-down driving and the uninterrupted views are simply breathtaking.  A Jeep also allows you some off-roading capability.  Just be sure to respect the rules and signage in place!  Some areas are noted with dangerous terrain or private property signs.

Take a Boat Ride

Cruising Along the Hawaiian Coast - Image www.runningonpixiedust.com

You are on a beautiful island and to truly appreciate all of the wonder of nature, definitely take a boat ride around part of the island.  Whether it's snorkeling, a sail boat, or anything in between you won't be disappointed with getting out into the waters of the Pacific to see what the coastline has to offer.  We took a catamaran snorkeling cruise around the Western side of Oahu and could see the coastline where they filmed Jurassic Park.  It was absolutely stunning and, to make it even more memorable, it was Thanksgiving Day and they had a special Thanksgiving dinner catered onto the boat for our sailing.  Nothing will ever top that Turkey Day!

Hike to the Waterfalls

As you might imagine, there are waterfalls quite literally EVERYWHERE in Hawaii.  Ahead of your visit, you can do a little research on some of the most popular hikes or purchase a book to help find some hidden gems.  Our favorite guidebook is Oahu Revealed which you can find on Amazon.  There were waterfalls we visited that literally the only other people there had this book in their hands.  The author also offers books for each of the other Hawaiian islands too.

Explore the History

USS Arizona Memorial at Pearl Harbor - Image www.runningonpixiedust.com

Oahu is THE Hawaiian destination to really soak up history.  While you can find breathtaking beaches, beautiful scenery, and exciting terrain on every Hawaiian island, Honolulu is the cultural mecca of the state and offers many good choices.  Of course, Pearl Harbor is not to be missed and you can find more history and culture at the Polynesian Cultural Center or with a visit to a pineapple plantation for a tour.  These are all tourist-y things to do, but it helps you gain a better appreciation of the history of the region.

Go Inland

Posing for a quick picture while exploring Oahu - Image www.runningonpixiedust.com

When people think of Hawaii, beautiful beaches come to mind - and for good reason.  But trust me when I tell you that you are missing out if you don't head inland for some amazing hikes and exploring a bit of the unknown.  Of course, Diamond Head is a popular climb on Oahu but we also enjoyed just driving around and getting lost to see where the day would take us.  Like in Finding 'Ohana we could become our own treasure hunters exploring the places less traveled.

Have you been to Oahu before?  What are your favorite places to visit?


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