Six must-try experiences in Hawaii’s Waikiki

You can thank us later!

Hawaii’s Waikiki is the perfect holiday destination, whether you are into relaxing on white sandy beaches, or you would like more of an activity-filled trip.

Shop ’til you drop; visit picturesque landmarks; surf, snorkel and swim in the turquoise waters of Waikiki Beach; or hike to the crest of Diamond Head Crater. 

There is something for everyone – from honeymooners, to families, to lone travellers.

Here are our top picks of what to do in Hawaii’s Waikiki:

1. Surf’s up!

Waikiki Beach is considered the birthplace of recreational surfing, so a surf or a surf lesson is an absolute must.

Dozens of surf schools line the beaches of Waikiki, where ideal beginner surf conditions can be found nearly every day. Most schools will provide some on land instruction as well as all of the gear you’ll need to enjoy the water.

More advanced surfers can hire a surfboard to hit the waves solo.

Diamond Head Crater
Diamond Head Crater (Credit: Instagram)

2. Diamond Head Crater

Diamond Head Crater is one of Hawaii’s most impressive natural wonders.

About a 15-minute drive from Waikiki, it provides a scenic morning or afternoon hike on the edge of the crater of a 300,000-year-old volcanic “tuff” cone. 

Take a challenging hike up to the ancient Diamond Head volcanic crater summit and enjoy breathtaking panoramas of the lighthouse and the scenic Oahu coastline.

The 2.5km round-trip walk to the summit is well worth the effort for the sublime views.

3. Have a sunset cocktail and hula pie at Duke’s

With a sweeping view of Waikiki Beach, there is no better place on O’ahu to sip on a mai tai or sample hula pie than at Duke’s Waikiki. Named after Duke Kahanamoku, who popularised surfing around the world and won five Olympic gold medals for swimming, this bar pays homage to the man.

Original photos of Duke and memorabilia line the walls, which is within the Outrigger Waikiki Beach Resort – a must-stay hotel.

You can also walk up the road to see Duke’s statue, also on the same stretch.

4. Night time yoga on a stand-up paddle board

Yoga Kai Hawaii’s tagline is: “Take your practice to the next level – sea level”.

Forget your mats, as certified yoga instructors lead you through a session … on stand-up paddle boards floating on the crystal blue waters of Hawaii.

Whether you are new to yoga, stand-up paddling, or experienced in both, you will find that practicing yoga on a paddle board offers strength, balance, mindfulness and brings lots of laughter into your day.

With the sky above, sea below, and surrounded by nature – the salty air will leave you in the most blissful state.

Book a night-time session for some extra namaste.

5. Lei-making classes

The art of lei making is demonstrated at a variety of locations – from resorts to shopping centers – throughout Hawaii but if you are staying at the likes of the incredible Outrigger Reef Waikiki Beach Resort and Outrigger Waikiki Beach Resort, such classes will be held for you.

Leis are used as a symbol of affection. They are often given to someone upon arriving or leaving or presented during a special time of celebration such as a birthday or special dinner. 

You can choose between making a traditional lei that is worn around the neck, or a haku lei – a flower crown.

(Credit: Outrigger)

6. Hawaiian vow renewal ceremony

Say “I do” all over again in paradise with the rising sun, the ocean and the beach as your witnesses.

Outrigger Waikiki Beach Resort and Outrigger Reef Waikiki Beach Resort hold complimentary vow renewal ceremonies for guests by implementing “Ho’ao Pa’a” – the ancient custom by which a couple is bound in lasting union.


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