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Honolulu Travel Guide, Hawaii

Honolulu is settled on the Pacific with beautiful scenery, dramatic cliffs and the extinct volcanoes. It became famous after the Europeans came and explored its value and it developed into Kamehameha's capital and the economic center of the island.

People come here not only for the scenery as there are plenty of beautiful spots around Hawaii, they come mostly to relax, enjoy a late breakfast, a relaxed stroll, some time browsing through stores, and later, dine at leisure. The pace of life in Honolulu reflects a time, when not everything had to be done "yesterday” and every season is beautiful. In spite of the glamorous image the city is quiet most of the activity being concentrated in Waikiki.

The city with its surrounding areas can be easily visited thanks to the wonderful public transportation system. Downtown is also an easy place to get around as it is surprisingly small. It’s not so close to the shore, built around a spacious plaza on King Street and among its most important attractions are the Iolani Palace, built in 1882 and the state capitol.

If you go towards the shore you won’t find a nice beach to walk along for too long as lately there has been a lot of constructions going on. The Aloha Tower is one of the buildings you can visit there. It is a good place to have a bird’s eye view of the city and shop or dine at some of the fine restaurants.

The Hawaii Maritime Center is another building on the shore and hosts Hawaii's seafaring past with exhibits from ancient times to 19th century, the replica Polynesian canoe Hokulea being one of them.

When you say Honolulu you don’t actually think about fine arts, but much to some tourists’ surprise there are plenty examples on display in the Academy of Arts. Some of the greatest artists have some works on display: Van Gogh, Gauguin, and Monet, just to name a few and there are also some great depictions of Hawaii and ancient Chinese ceramics and bronzes.

Besides fine arts you can view exhibits of genuine Polynesian culture at the Bishop Museum that is home to a large anthropological collection, floors of one of Hawaii's oldest houses, Japanese samurai armor and a full-size sperm whale. Kids can also enjoy exhibitions to suit their taste and a visit to the planetarium will keep them happy for the rest of the day.

You don’t have to be an American to have heard about Pearl Harbor either from history classes or from the movie. The greatest American military and naval disaster made Pearl Harbor famous. Located west of Waikiki, the once principal base for the US Pacific fleet is now closed to visitors. The only thing you can see is a simple white memorial that you can visit for free. Among its visitors are many Japanese that can even read about their side of the story.

Another visited site around Honolulu is the small island of Waikiki separated from it by the sea and a canal. It is mostly a commercial place and the main entertainment is shopping, surfing sunbathing and strolling along the beach that is somehow different from other Hawaiian beaches, thin, small and crowded, but a pleasant escape from the mad rush resort. There is even something interesting to see, the Waikiki Aquarium that hosts sharks and monkfish seals and reef fish.

Waikiki is the centre of Honolulu's nightlife that welcomes fun-thirsty tourists. The entertainment includes listening to live music of some of the local singers, attending some special events at downtown's Hawaii Theater or hang out in some of the bars.

Honolulu offers an unrivaled combination of dreamy beaches, high-quality accommodations and a wide diversity of shopping, dining, nightlife, and nearby activities -- most of them exceptional values.

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Read our members' reviews about Honolulu


  • lindamuraKayak and hiking on Molokai
    review by lindamura posted more then 30 days ago
    Outdoor explorers, eco-seekers, ocean adventurers – welcome to Molokai – an island that’s unequivocally “Hawaiian By Nature”. A sign at the airport - “Slow Down, This is Molokai!”- is your first clue that folks here live and love life at a very different...
  • lindamuraMaui is the best
    review by lindamura posted more then 30 days ago
    Maui the magical island that has been named 'Best Island in the World' time and time again. Crystal waters, golden beaches, beautiful scenery, tropical breezes, swaying palms, award-winning cuisine and world class resorts just to name a few. Maui's diversity will amaze and delight you....
  • lindamuraHawaii for golf addicts
    review by lindamura posted more then 30 days ago
    Hawaii is the ultimate golf vacation destination. It’s a combination of Hawaii's year-round summer climate, pampering world-class resorts, and more than 80 world-class golf courses on six uniquely different and beautiful islands: Kauai, Oahu, Molokai, Lanai, Maui, and Hawaii’s Big...
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Read our members' travel tips about Honolulu


  • eratoArnold's in Honolulu
    travel tip by erato posted more then 30 days ago
    Arnold's is a very sweet campy tiki bar on Saratoga road across the street from a post office. The bar is small, but there are great things in it from good, some of the best, cocktails to live blues, country and rock music in the...
  • SandroPearl Harbour
    travel tip by Sandro posted more then 30 days ago
    Pearl Harbour is an absolute must see in Honolulu. First you arrive to the Visitor Center and from there boats take you to the actual memorial. Visitor Center is also amazing, there are a lot of things to see from pictures to the objects...
  • islandhopperZanzabar Nightclub
    travel tip by islandhopper posted more then 30 days ago
    Great night spot in Waikiki, it's the best place to go when you are in Honolulu, especially on Friday nights. There is always great music, wonderful cocktails and the best staff I ever met in a nightclub. They also have a VIP room for...
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Honolulu City Ratings

  • Rating81%
    City Rank131
     
  • History & Culture: rated for 67%
  • Night Life & Entertainment: rated for 83%
  • Family & Fun: rated for 90%
  • Outdoors Activities: rated for 87%
  • Food: rated for 83%
  • Sightseeing: rated for 80%
  • Shopping: rated for 75%
  • Public Transportation: rated for 85%
  • Must visit this place: rated for 90%
  
 

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Recent Honolulu flights found by Travelgrove users

  • $435Delta Airlines flight Delta Airlines 
    FromToDepartureTime
    Vancouver, BC (YVR)Honolulu, HI (HNL)06/08/201406:10 pm
    Honolulu, HI (HNL)Vancouver, BC (YVR)06/12/201410:18 pm
    flighthub.com check price
  • $496Alaska Airlines flight Alaska Airlines 
    FromToDepartureTime
    San Jose, CA (SJC)Honolulu, HI (HNL)05/30/201408:55 am
    Honolulu, HI (HNL)San Jose, CA (SJC)06/08/201402:10 pm
    cheapoair.com check price
  • $571Multiple Airlines flight Multiple Airlines 
    FromToDepartureTime
    San Diego, CA (SAN)Honolulu, HI (HNL)05/17/201407:00 am
    Honolulu, HI (HNL)San Diego, CA (SAN)05/23/201403:20 pm
    expedia.com check price
 
 
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