Oahu - United States

Coordinates: 21°28′N, 157°59′W

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Discussion on Oahu

Fluffy :

ok... I am seriously sick to my stomach. Me & my sis have been planning the trip of a lifetime to Hawaii... we finally booked 2 days ago and our itinerary is as follows: 5 days in Maui and 3.5 days in Oahu. From the research i've made seems like theres much more to do in Oahu than in Maui. We're already spending SO MUCH money as it is.... & to change flights it means that we have to spend another €100 each, plus extra accomodation. is 3 days in oahu enough? 1. we wish to go shopping abit, (ive seen the Ala Moana website & I went crazy), 2. do loads of sightseeing (hiking etc), shows 3. swim with sharks (in cages) - i think this is a must ! is it a mistake to just plan 3 and a half days on this lovely island? chances are that I won't ever get to go to Hawaii in this lifetime. so..... i'd love to hear your views ! so here it is... we either extend the whole trip and get to spend a few other days in oahu. OR we spend less days in Maui, and more in Oahu.

thats_not_fair :
"Oahu is a tourist trap for the most part. Personally I would only give it 2 days max -- one for the Circle Island tour & Polynesian Cultural Center--and one for any swimming and shopping. (I live in California -- so we have the same shops as Hawaii, except for souvenir shops.) Do NOT extend you Oahu stay and no matter what , DO NOT RENT A CAR on Oahu!! There is no place to park and the public transportation is great."
aloha.girl59 :
"If those are your choices, I say extend your trip and spend more days on Oahu! There is plenty to do on Maui as well, but it's a little sleepier than Oahu. Both islands are quite beautiful and have lots to offer in terms of shopping, dining, and sightseeing. You can't go wrong with 10+ days in Hawaii. I have lived on two different islands for nearly 4 years and haven't seen anywhere near all there is to see. Try not to stress out about "doing it all" while you're here...you can't. Pick a few things you are most interested in doing/seeing and don't forget to spend some time just relaxing on the beach. PS - I disagree 100% with the person who posted above me. She said that Oahu is a tourist trap...well, she must never have left Waikiki. It's a gorgeous island with tons to do that doesn't necessarily involve crowds or traffic. Especially if you don't think you'll ever get there again, spend as much time on Oahu as possible."
MiamiMama :
"Keep it how it is, honestly. I worked onboard a cruiseship in Hawaii for a year, and pretty much lived on all the islands (visiting each once a week). Pretty much ALL there is on Oahu is SHOPPING. There is a crater, and the Pearl Harbor memorial, and SHOPPING. Ala Moana is huge, and can easily take up a day. But also check out the Aloha Tower Marketplace (if you are taking a cruise? you might be docked right next to this) or the Hawaiian Hilton Village because they have some great shops too. But in order to do loads of sightseeing - Maui IS your best bet. It is much prettier than honolulu (since Oahu is very commercialized) and has the best tourist places. I suggest renting a car most of your stay (the island can be driven in less than 2 hours total) since most car rentals are suprisingly cheap there. Definitely visit Lahaina, my favorite favorite favorite place - GORGEOUS beaches along the road to it, adorable little town (and HUGE banyan tree square) with tons of shops and restaurants, and the best luau on the islands (Old Lahaina Luau - a little pricey but SO authentic and well worth it). Visit Lahaina at night too, its so much different and has a wonderful nightlife. Try to see the sunrise on Kaleakala. Breathtaking. Inspired George Harrison (here comes the sun). Definitely drive the "Road to Hana", amazing winding roads and gorgeous oceanside views, cliffs, waterfalls....wow. Kahalui is also a cute town in Maui, great mall also, Queen Kaanapali, outdoors, two stories. I would look into visiting Ka'anapali also. And try Kahlua pork. Mmm. My best advice to you is do everything on your own. Tourism is a business, remember that. Almost NONE of the tours/guided activities are worth it, its just as easy and more adventurous to get in a car (or walk!) and see everything yourself. The only things worth paying for really are like parasailing, or helicopter tours... Also don't spend too much time in Whalers Village or ABC stores. Same crappy junk, overpriced. Visit local areas. Unless cheap tourist ashtrays are your thing of course :) Overall my suggestion is just to keep your plans as is. Trust me 3.5 days is enough on Oahu. Its so much more of a "port" than a city anyway. Most residents of hawaii live there. Almost all cruiseships begin and end their trips there. The major airport is there. Its a hub yes, but not a very exciting get away type hub. Go shopping there definitely. Amazing stores, SO pricey though, but you will also see SO many beautiful asian and island pacificer people shopping, EYE CANDY like you've never imagined lol. I would spend at least half a day at Waikiki - just so say youve been, but its more of a surf/overcrowded type beach, the beaches on Maui are more colorful and less crowded. (although the skyline on oahu is SO impressive especially at night, and speaking of night, NIGHTLIFE IS THE BEST in Honolulu, so enjoy that compared to maui) But definitely Maui is worth 5 days. Good luck and enjoy your visit - feel free to email me pictures or let me know how you liked some things if you try anything I suggested! (I miss hawaii SOOO much can you tell?? haha) Oh and the plane ride, no matter what, sucks. It is never fast enough. At least the honolulu airport is open-air and very very pleasant. But seriously, if you get air-sick, bring a sleeping pill or dramamine. 8-9 hours on a plane is terrible (I flew it twice while 2 months pregnant!! morning sickness!!) Anyway, rambling. Hope I could help! Any more questions feel free to ask! Aloha :D"
Mag R :
"Hey, that's more than enough, if you research it all sounds like making your time not long enough but don't worry, it's not so hectical going in Hawaii, sit back and feel the joy of looking forward to a wonderful trip"
kmunis :
"I just went to both islands last year and I much preferred Maui, but I was there for the beach and relaxing. We did the usual in Oahu, mai tai at sunset on Waikiki, Pearl Harbor, etc, but Honolulu felt very much like a city and not an island paradise. We stayed at Ko Olina on Oahu to avoid the crowds at Waikiki and while it was nice, Maui was just so much more beautiful and more of what I imagined when I pictured Hawaii in my mind. I would keep your itinerary as is. Some things I recommend: Lanikai Beach on Oahu - simply gorgeous The Arizona Memorial - it takes your breath away, even my 6 year old was touched by it Old Lahaina Luau on Maui Haleakala sunrise - if you can get up at 3am its worth it If your schedule allows and your Maui hotel is near Lahaina or Ma'alaea, I recommend taking a day trip on the ferry to Lanai. We stayed on this island and it was my favorite but it is very, very quiet. However Hulopo`e Bay is gorgeous and has some great snorkeling and I even got to swim with the spinner dolphins. I would highly recommend a day trip if you can squeeze it in."
JustMe68_86 :
"You really need at least a full week on Oahu to see & do everything here. Especially if this might be your only trip to Hawaii. Alot of the attractions take a full day (Polynesian Culture Center) and alot of them take up 1/2 or more of your day (Arizona Memorial, Diamond Head, Snorkeling, Wale Watching) then if you want to go to beaches plan on at least a full day at Waikiki and a full day in Haleiwa (north shore). Then you might want to plan a day just for driving around, sight seeing, hiking, exploring (waterfalls, lighthouses). 1 or 2 days for shopping (Ala Moana, Waikiki, Honolulu). Traffic can be really bad. You need to plan at least 1-2 hours of driving to get between one end of the island to the other. Which will eat up your short time you are here. If I was you, I would spend the 5 days on Oahu and 3.5 days on Maui. Maui is gorgeous, but less stuff to do then Oahu."
jimbojones :
"I stayed on oahu for 5 weeks last year north shore side though pretty much surf all day or kick back. If your not into surfing at all 1 day max is good for this side. There is so much to see though it ould be hard to do in 3 days"
bridgetmary :
"I think your itinerary sounds great, and that you have got a great plan mapped out. I would enjoy the five days you have in Maui. It's such a beautiful island, and if you are there for any less than that you may miss out. For example, to truly experience Maui you need to drive up to Haleakala Crater and watch the sun rise. From there you can see the Big Island, it's absolutely breathtaking. You also should spend at least one day and one night in Hana, the drive there is the most beautiful drive (they say) in all the Hawaiian islands! Be sure to sample the banana bread at Halfway to Hana, a little shack that is along the way, on the Road to Hana (the drive there is like it's own trip!) Hana is my favorite place in the world, it is a tropical paradise. You won't have a complete trip to Maui unless you go there. Trust me! Here is a link with a bit more info about it: Also, buy the book "Maui Revealed." You'll find it at any bookstore in the travel section. I've used it many times, and my friends in Maui keep a copy in their house for reference. It's a great tool to have for your trip. And if you like the Halfway to Hana banana bread, you'll flip for the homemade loaves they make on the west coast of Maui, in Kahakuloa, which suppossedly has the world's best banana bread! Here's how to find it: Have a fabulous trip, I hope this helped."
Anna P :
"You might want to take one day off Maui and add to Oahu (shouldn't be a problem, there are tons of flights each day between the islands). What do you want to do? - there are outdoor activities on both islands--Maui has the Haleakala Crater, Iao Valley and other areas. Keep up on the shark activity--there is pressure to reduce the amount of it as it attracts the sharks too close to where people surf. There is a world-class oceanarium on Maui; the one on Oahu is good but much smaller (near Waikiki). - shopping would be best on Oahu, but I would spend maybe a day total doing that (Ala Moana plus Waikiki). - some interesting parts of Maui: you can spend a day going to a lavender farm, a goat cheese farm, and a winery--all in the beautiful upcountry Maui (beautiful views). On Oahu, a trip to the Polynesian Cultural Center (you can get a PCC bus from Waikiki) is interesting if a bit touristy (a look at 5 Polynesian cultures with hula, fire dancing, etc. and a luau)."
jettoblack :

Is it unreasonable to take an early-morning (8am or so) flight from Oahu to Big Island (Hilo), rent a car at the airport, drive to the volcano crater area and spend a few hours there, then be back to the airport in time for a late evening (8pm or so) flight back to Oahu? I'm going with my family of 5 (including 1 toddler) and am trying to get a volcano/lava view in my trip without breaking the bank. We already have 2 hotel rooms reserved in Honolulu for every night of our trip, so I don't want to pay for another 2 hotel rooms on Big Island. Is this crazy, or doable? Thanks! We'll be in Honolulu 12/24-12/28. I noticed that a lot of the flights listed on iflygo.com and other inter-island carriers are already sold out for that week. :( I'm worried that if I wait until I get there, it will be too late or too expensive to go. If I just go to the hotel concierge and arrange the flights and tours from there, won't it cost a fortune? What are my options?

Irish :
"That's a great idea. The Big Island is not a good place to be at night."
Tamara :
"Not unreasonable. You can take a flite from HNL to Hilo in the a.m. either rent a car ( I suggest you arrange for a tour with a private guide w/car) or arrange for a bus tour. It is better to do a tour because you are not familiar with the area, and you miss a lot of background info and history. You certainly can return in the evening. There many flights during the day to and from these destinations."
bob_scott45 :
"Great idea, except for the driving part. My wife and I went there a few years ago and that particular trip was our favourite. Contact one of the local tour companies (i.e. 'Roberts' used to work out of Oahu) who fly you to Hawaii where you are met by a bus and tour guide. You will leave your hotel about 6:00 am and arrive back later that evening. You may pay a bit more, but you are there and back in one day, won't miss the major sights, and don't have to stay over. Aloha!!"
boomer gal :
"The logistics of doing it on your own could be difficult. I agree that doing a tour, while it will cost more, is absolutely worth it."
soccerref :
"It's certainly possible. You can either rent a car and grab a map from the rental agency or arrange to get on a tour bus and do it that way. I would suggest you rent the car though since you have a family of 5 and the tour price is by person. It's an easy drive up there and you can stop and look at the scenery any time you want. Be advised though, with the exception of the active flow (which may or not be accessible on the day you go depending on the weather conditions) there is really not much to see in the park itself beyond old lava flows and lava tubes (bring along your flashlight and your jacket as it's dark and cold in the tubes). Also, since Volcanoes National Park is part of the National Park system it will most likely be closed on Christmas Day so you might want to make sure before you head up there. Good luck and happy travels!"
zudmelrose :
"I googled "volcano tours hawaii" and clicked on the link below. Note they start your day at 5:00am and it will end back in Honolulu probably around 9:00 to 10:00 that night. You said you have a toddler. Might be too long a day. Do some research of the other tour companies. Letting them drive may be the way to go."
Music chic :
"I did the volcano, waterfalls, etc in one day on the big island and we had to drive from one side to the other and we certaintly didn't get an early start. So if you take an early flight, get a car, and go you should be fine. You just will be very tired, but it is def. doable."
Smoochy :

Going next week and I've picked up several ideas from this board and other places. I'd like to know if anyone has been to any of the following recently (say the last 6-9 months) and IF/WHY you did or did not like it (specifics please...cleanliness, service, value, taste). If you had others to add, please feel free. We will be all over the island so location doesn't matter as long as it is Oahu and any type of food in any price range is also fine. Just looking for some of the best food in Oahu. Haleiwa Eats Ryan’s Grill at Ward Center d.k. Steak House Sansei Seafood & Sushi Bar Vino Italian Tapas and Wine Bar Matters of Taste Molly’s Smokehouse Singha Thai Cuisine Chai’s Island Bistro Don Ho’s Davey Jones Ribs Chart House Seafood Village Royal Steak & Seafood Noboru Japanese Restaurant Chez Paul Nick’s Fishmarket Canoe’s Chef Mavro Kaka'ako Kitchen Keneke's The Pyramids Pagoda Quintero's

S V S :
"My favorite place to eat when we are in Oahu is Duke's in the Outrigger hotel in Waikiki. The restaurant has a great view of the beach and is a lovely place to eat day or night. The salad bar is great and the fish is always fresh and delicious. My favorite by far is the cashew chicken that you can get off the bar menu. It is the thing I look forward to the most! Aloha and enjoy!"
Josh W :
"Try Cheeseburger's in Paradise! It's outstanding. Also try The Cheesecake Factory, simply great. A word of advise though to the vacationer....everything taste great in Hawaii!! Last word of caution...be careful not to leave anything behind in the taxis (cameras, glasses, etc), because you can consider them LOST. We lost our camera with phenominal pics and probably will never get it back!! PS Did anyone find a camera with Hawaii pics? You can have camera, I just want pics!!!!!!!!!!!"
Dignan :
"Nick's Fishmarket ROCKS. Great food, excellent service. I go every time I go home, HIGHLY recommend."

 

Comments on Oahu

calvin20
Date: 2008-02-05 17:21:45

I've been to Maui twice and it's such a beautiful place. It's the perfect blend of scenic wonders but without all the crowds of Oahu.


avante
Date: 2008-02-05 17:21:45

Hawaii hotels. Covering Hawaii, Kauaii, Maui, Oahu, etc.


champ_rock
Date: 2008-02-05 17:21:45

2-for-1 Airfare from LAX and SFO!*Promo Code: PL- NL


Boulder
Date: 2008-02-05 17:21:45

Two former golf club employees are charged with theft and cruelty to animals in the death of a pet dog the owners say was cooked and eaten. An Oahu grand jury indicted Saturnino Palting, 58, and Nelson Domingo, 43, both of Kalihi.




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