Cruise · Hawaii · North America

What to See Outside of Honolulu Hawaii in One Day

What to See Outside of Honolulu Hawaii in One Day

Honolulu is beautiful, but there is more to see on the Hawaiian island of Oahu. So, what can you see outside of Honolulu in one day?

A lot! I went on a private tour with friends that live in just outside Honolulu and I was surprised how different the coast line is.

I got to Honolulu by cruise ship as it was the second port of call on the Hawaii and French Polynesia cruise. The cruise terminal is in the city centre so it is easy to get to Ala Moana Beach and Waikiki.

My friends took me on a short loop tour that started at Ala Moana Beach. It is a lovely beach and so close to all the city high risers, such a contrast and it is only a short 10 minute (depending on traffic) drive from the cruise ship terminal.

We then drove through Waikiki. Waikiki is full of high-end stores and hotels and has a long sandy beach. The perfect place to shop, relax on the beach or for a cocktail!

Then we headed up to Diamond Head which is full of multi-million-dollar homes with sea views. Popped into the Kahala Hilton to see the dolphins and stingrays.

We continued the Kalanianaole highway toward Koko Head, to see the blowhole. The coastline changed into more rustic feel as it was rocky with crashing waves. It was so different from Honolulu Bay and Waikiki.

Then to more stunning viewpoints of Makapuu viewing lot above Makapuu beach known for body surfing (without a board!) and Waimanalo known for pristine beaches used by the locals.


In Kailua was a gorgeous beach called Lailua beach. I dipped my toes in the water and then had lunch at Buzz Steak House. The food was fantastic, I had a fish burger and it was delicious.

I went to my friend’s home and had a refreshing glass of POG which is Passion Fruit, Orange, Guava juice. You must try in while in Hawaii, it is so good!

While driving around the scenery was beautiful with green mountains and lots of trees and we saw areas where they filmed Jurassic Park.

Then it was back to the ship and I managed it see more than the Ala Moana mall!

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What to Wear

It is always warm in Honolulu so shorts and t-shirt and flip-flops combo is always good and this is what I wore on the day I was there. Also, sunglasses and a hat. Below are some great Hawaiian clothing themed ideas:

Essential Info

  • Weather: Year round 20*C – 31*C
  • Language: English and Hawaiian
  • Currency: US Dollars
  • Recommendations: Wear sunscreen and insect repellent. Bring your camera or smart phone and portable phone charger and selfie stick! Drink lots of water, so bring your own water bottle to refill.


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I hope you have enjoyed reading about what to see outside of Honolulu in Hawaii, please share on Facebook and Pinterest so your friends and family can read too. Sharing is caring!

Have you been to Honolulu? What would you recommend doing?

Happy Travels

Love Lucy x

What to See Outside of Honolulu Hawaii in One Day

(L. Williams is a participant in the Amazon EU Associates Programme, an affiliate advertising programme designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to, at no extra cost, to you).

18 thoughts on “What to See Outside of Honolulu Hawaii in One Day

  1. I’ve been to Oahu, too. Yes, the coastline is very different, like you said. There are rougher areas for surfing and then the smooth shallow waters – amazing. I was surprised how much there was to see besides the coastline like a farm where they explained us when which people migrated to Hawaii (I knew of course about the Japanese and the Chines, but didn’t know before that there was so much Portuguese migration). Then there is this big pineapple farm with the pineapple shaped maze – did you get there? That’s so much fun. Anyway, Oahu was really nice and interesting.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I am hitting up the city and Hawaii next summer for the first time (going for two week stay) and cant wait to get out there. Found this post very very useful. Cant wait to see the amazing landscapes. Loving the photos here. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  3. We used to live on Oahu and absolutely loved it! Many people argue that it is too much of a “big city” for vacationers but we argue that there is so much to see and do for everyone! The Koko Head hike is a steep and sweaty climb but with amazing views at the top. And Makapu’u Tide Pools are perfect for an afternoon soak! Hope you get more time on the beautiful island on your next visit!

    Liked by 1 person

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