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How to Find the Best Shopping Spots on Oahu

Like most people on vacation, you may be looking for the perfect piece of memorabilia to bring back home to remind you of your amazing trip to Oahu. Or you may need to find a souvenir for coworkers, friends, or loved ones back home. Either way, it’s best to carve some time out of your trip to go shopping! Check out this comprehensive guide to the best shopping spots on Oahu so that you’ll know where to go before your plane even lands! 

Excited for your trip to Oahu, you can get started with planning the perfect trip today with our free Vacation Guide! Request access to the guide, and gain insight into the best restaurants, activities, events, and more to do around Oahu and the Big Island! 

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The Top 4 Best Shopping Spots on Oahu

Ala Moana Shopping Center

Number 1 on our list is Ala Moana Shopping Center. This outdoor mall is Honolulu’s premier shopping destination, boasting over 290 stores and restaurants. Here, you’ll find everything from high-end retailers like Saks Fifth Avenue to local favorites like Hilo Hattie’s. Additionally, you will be able to attend a variety of events that range from kid-friendly experiences to cultural musical and visual performances! 

Royal Hawaiian Center

Number 2 is Royal Hawaiian Center. This is one of the largest shopping centers in Waikiki, with over 130 stores and restaurants. Royal Hawaiian Center is also home to several cultural events and shows, making it a great place to shop and experience Hawaiian culture. With the large number of amazing restaurants, the Royal Hawaiian Center is ideal for a full day at one of the best shopping spots on Oahu. 

Kailua Town

Number 3 on our list is Kailua Town. This quaint town on the windward side of Oahu is home to several boutique shops and restaurants. This coastal town is a great place to find small local business and get a chance to discover unique art and culture on Oahu! If you consider yourself a chef, we recommend stopping by Down to Earth in Kailua, where you can pick up some fresh and organic ingredients. 

Waikele Premium Outlets

Finally, number 4 on our list is Waikele Premium Outlets. This outdoor outlet mall features over 50 stores, including a number of high-end retailers. Waikele Premium Outlets is a great place to find deals on designer brands. 

Book your Getaway to the Best Shopping Spots on Oahu with Private Homes HawaiiPlace in Paradise vacation rental

Buying souvenirs and memorabilia at the best shopping spots on Oahu is great, but it’s important to have great experiences for them to remind you of! Plan out your Hawaii itinerary using our free Vacation Guide, and then book a luxury vacation rental home on Oahu! There’s a wide variety of sizes and locations for you to choose from, so you can plan out the perfect trip with proximity to everything you have planned! Browse our homes and book your Oahu getaway today! 

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Here’s How to Plan Mom’s Luxury Vacation to Hawaii

mom's luxury vacation to hawaii

Whether you’re planning for Mother’s Day, Mom’s birthday, a family vacation, or even a girls’ getaway without the kids, the islands are the place to go! Visit the land where relaxation in the tropics meets thrilling outdoor adventures. Mom’s luxury vacation to Hawaii will be a trip to remember when you follow our guide to the most luxurious, yet fun getaway for moms! 

Request access to our complimentary Vacation Guide to Oahu and the Big Island! This free tool includes the poshest dining experiences, ritzy shopping centers, relaxing spas, and stunning sights! Get the guide and start planning now! 

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Mom’s Luxury Vacation to Hawaii: Things to Add to the Itinerary 

Four Seasons Hualalai Luxury Resort Spa 

Stay in one of our luxury family-sized vacation rentals on the Big Island, and you’ll have access to luxury resorts like the Four Seasons Hualalai. You’re sure to reach your ultimate zen when upon stepping into Hualalai’s peaceful resort spa. Surrounded by lush tropical gardens, you’ll feel at peace when you experience the resort’s massage therapy treatments, apothecary treatments, skin care, and salon services. It’s time to treat yourself on the Big Island of Hawaii! 

Mauna Kea Beach Hotel Golf Course

When you visit Mauna Kea on the Big Island, you’ll enjoy 7,370 yards of lush green and competitive games of golf! The 18-hole Hapuna Golf Course offers incredible, panoramic views of the Pacific Ocean, elevated greens, and a relaxing salty breeze. Mauna Kea is a great spot for your family travels! 

Waikiki Beach in Honolulu

Dig your toes in the warm sand or catch a wave on the ever-so-famous Waikiki Beach on the island of Oahu. This beach’s calm waters are perfect for mom if she’s a beginner surfer. Plus, she’ll appreciate the magnificent Diamond Head State Monument as the perfect backdrop to any beach day. 

The North Shore of Oahu

If your mother has seen her fair share of waves, you can take her to the North Shore of Oahu for an advanced surfing session. The North Shore offers some of the best surfing in the world, so she won’t want to miss out on its ginormous swells. 

Learn About Hawaiian Culture 

One of the top things you need to do during your luxury Hawaiian vacation is immerse yourself in the culture of the locals. Attend some of the festivals or luaus, and you’ll learn so much about the history of the islands, as well as the food, music, hula dancing, and much more! Some of the most exciting Oahu or Big Island events include the Kuhio Beach Hula Show, the Aloha Festival, and Mele Mei, a celebration of Hawaiian music! 

Unwind in the Best Luxury Hawaiian Vacation Rentals 

There’s no better place to relax and unwind than in your Private Homes Hawaii vacation rental. After a day of discovering the magic of the Hawaiian islands, kick your feet up by a glowing private pool with gorgeous volcano views or ocean views. You won’t have to lift a finger for dinner because there are great options for private chef experiences so that you can refuel and recharge for a new day of adventures on the islands. Check our availability, and pick your favorite Oahu or Big Island vacation home today! 

4 of the Most Romantic Restaurants on Oahu

romantic restaurants oahu, glass of wine in intimate restaurant

Editor’s Note: Due to COVID-19, check to see if restaurants are open before you visit. 

Seatotable cuisine, astounding flavors, breathtaking views, and a great atmosphere are just some of the things you’ll find while dining at the romantic restaurants of OahuCelebrating an anniversary? A honeymoon? Maybe a birthday with your special someone? Take your honey to Hawaii for the most romantic and relaxing getaway. Below, you’ll find some of the most romantic spots on the island. 

But first, make sure to take a look at our free Vacation Guide. This tool includes a list of all our favorite restaurants, bars, outdoor recreation, and historic sights. Request access to the guide for an easy way to get started on planning your Hawaiian getaway. 

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The Best Romantic Restaurants on Oahu

1. La Mer

The award-winning, La Mer, is the only AAA Five Diamond and Forbes Five Star restaurant in Hawaii. Dress to the nines and make your way to one of the most elegant places to dine. You and your sweetheart will enjoy the ultimate fine dining experience while indulging in phenomenal, internationally acclaimed dishes from the south of France. 

2. Alan Wong’s 

Located on King Street of downtown Honolulu, this highly acclaimed restaurant is a must when visiting Oahu. This unique restaurant allows you to watch the chef prepare your meal out of fresh, local ingredients. Try the delicious macadamia-nut-crusted lamb chops, but just make sure that you save some room for dessert! They’re known for the “Coconut” dish, a coconut milk-based Hawaiian dessert served in a chocolate shell with fruits. 

3. The Beachhouse at the Moana 

For spectacular view of the Pacific Ocean, you have to try The Beachhouse at the Moana. This ocean-side restaurant not only boasts amazing views, but also incredible menu options for the perfect romantic dinner. Some of those options include Alaskan king crab legs, Maine lobster tail, steak, and delicious soups and salads. Don’t forget to pair your meal with your favorite wine off their extensive wine list. 

4. Pa’akai 

Another must-try romantic experience is the Pa’akai restaurant on the North Shore of Oahu. The appropriately named restaurant translates to, “sea salt” and sits right along the ocean. You must try the Big Island Kampachi with hearts of palm and shiitake mushrooms as it’s one of their signature dishes. 

For dessert, we recommend that you try the Checkerboard Haupia Ice Cream Cake for a taste of authentic Hawaiian flavors. Then, pair it with one of their unique dessert wines like the Haupia Pie or Chocolate Truffle wine. 

exterior of oahu vacation rental with pool and purple skyUnwind in the Best Hawaii Vacation Rental 

After an exquisite and satisfying romantic dining experience on the island of Oahu, head back to your luxury vacation rental for a little R&R. Our Private Homes Hawaii vacation rentals offer the highest quality vacation experience for the ultimate romantic getaway. 

Choose your favorite rental on Oahu for top-notch amenities, glowing pools, and wrap-around balconies with breathtaking sunset and ocean views. You’re sure to fall in love with our beloved island in Hawaii and want to return to your favorite vacation rental year after year. So, what are you waiting for? It’s time to give your sweetheart the romantic getaway they deserve. Check our availability and book your trip today! 

Oahu ATV Tours You Need to Experience for the Best Adventure

vacation guide oahu, hawaii, big island

Not many people can say they’ve gone on a jungle expedition across the famous land of the dinosaurs! Oahu ATV tours are a unique way to explore Hawaii and its renowned movie filming locations. Speed through the highs and lows of the jungle, scenic valleys, and rocky roads of Oahu. Or, count the recognizable sites from some of the most popular Hollywood movie classics.

Before you put the all-terrain vehicle in gear, make sure you plan out your adventurous week in Hawaii! We’ve created the ultimate Vacation Guide for your trip. Unlock the free guide for access to the best attractions on Oahu and the Big Island of Hawaii!

The Best Oahu ATV Tours

Kualoa Ranch

Some of the best tours on Oahu are on Kualoa Ranch. It’s a fun place to get down and dirty, driving through muddy paths leading to the ocean. We recommend their ATV Adventure Package. This all-inclusive package is perfect for those wanting to drive a single-passenger ATV. You can expect an hour-and-a-half of adventures as well as an all-you-can-eat buffet!

Raptor Tours

Other fantastic options include their multi-passenger ATV Raptor Tours. Raptors can hold two to six people, and children over five can ride with an adult as well! When you take this exciting tour, you can witness the beauty of the 1,000-acre Kaʻaʻawa “Jurassic” Valley.

There are several different Raptor Tours to choose from. You can opt for the One-Hour Raptor Tour, Two-Hour Raptor Tour, or Two-and-a-Half-Hour Raptor Tour, which includes lunch.

Hawaii’s Best Movie Tour

Hawaii’s Best Movie Tour is a hit for any classic movie buff. This tour doesn’t include an ATV ride, but you can hop aboard a vintage bus before arriving at some of the most well-known film locations. Ka’a’awa Valley is known as Hollywood’s Backyard and is home to 50 classic movie film sites. This tour is one-of-a-kind. You’ll be able to take pictures with the famous fallen tree from Jurassic Park and walk in the footsteps of Godzilla!

Other movies and shows filmed on Kualoa Ranch include 50 First Dates, Hawaii 5-0, and Lost.

Have a history buff in your group, too? This tour also takes you to a WWII army bunker built into the side of a mountain! Then, you can learn about the fascinating and rich history of the island by checking out the Kualoa WWII artifacts and exhibits!

purple sunset over palm trees and private poolRelax With Private Homes Hawaii

When it’s time to turn the engines off and have a good night’s rest, head back to your luxury vacation rental on Oahu. Private Homes Hawaii offers the best vacation homes in paradise! Select from a variety of large homes near the beach that can accommodate the whole family.

Book our Mokulua Aina – Lanikai rental in Kailua and enjoy a property surrounded by lush greenery, palm trees, and tropical flowers. This is a 30-day-rental, so you’ll have plenty of time to explore the island. Plus, it’s right on the Lanikai Loop, which is close to beaches, hiking trails, and the center of Kailua Town! Check our availability and start planning your tropical vacation today! Adventures await!

Top 3 Things to Do on Oahu With Toddlers

Discover the best things to do on Oahu with toddlers

Hawaii is a dream destination for many people who love to travel, and for good reason. The landscape of the islands of Hawaii are like nothing you’ve ever seen before. Lucious jungle mountains, crystal clear ocean waters, and black sand beaches are all common aspects of Hawaii. Oahu is one of the islands frequented by visitors because it features some of the most popular beaches, including Lanikai and Kailua beach. You can also experience the city life of Waikiki while visiting Oahu. However, traveling with little ones can limit the type of activities you can do. Not to worry, we’ve compiled a list of our favorite things to do on Oahu with toddlers to ensure you and your kids have the best time.

As you begin planning your trip to Hawaii, be sure to request a complimentary copy of our Vacation Guide. Inside, you’ll discover local recommendations on all the best aspects of the Hawaiian islands. Find out where to dine, shop, and explore. 

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Our Favorite Things to Do on Oahu With Toddlers 

Swim with Dolphins

The unique ecosystem of the Hawaiian islands means that there is an abundance of beautiful and unusual marine life. If you’re visiting any of the islands, you should definitely plan to experience some of the islands’ water habitat. If you’re traveling with young ones, there are few better ways to help them discover the island’s sea life then by swimming with dolphins. One of the most popular places for this is at Dolphin Quest. You can choose from a variety of experiences to get exactly what you’re looking for. The Wee Family, Fins, and Fun package is designed for children between the ages of zero and four. This experience allows your child to stay outside the water while still petting and interacting with dolphins. You can also opt for a number of other packages designed for all ages. These experiences allow you and your family to get into the water together and have a more close-up encounter with these beautiful animals.

Attend a Luau

An important part of Hawaiian culture, the luau is a wonderful way to spend an evening on Oahu with the family. You’ll discover a number of luau venues across the island including Tao Luau. During the luau, you’ll dine on slow-roasted pork and traditional coconut pudding before settling around the fire to learn more about the island’s unique culture. This is one of the best things to do on Oahu with toddlers as they’ll get to enjoy the outdoors and Polynesian culture.

Visit Hanauma State Park

One of the most beautiful state parks on the island, Hanauma is an excellent place for visitors of all ages. Of course, there are some hiking trails for older, more advanced hikers, but there are plenty of easy loops as well. You can bring your little ones along to splash around in the shallow, crystal clear waters of the park’s beach. 

Experience the Vacation of a Lifetime with Private Homes Hawaii Rentals Place in Paradise vacation rental

When you’re headed to the islands of Hawaii, you’ll want a beautiful and comfortable places to stay each night. Private Home Hawaii has everything you need with properties on both Oahu and the Big Island. After you’ve spent the day exploring all the best things to do on Oahu with toddlers, you can come back to the Place in Paradise 90/TVU-0248 property. This two-story house has five bedrooms and five and a half bathrooms. It also features a gorgeous outdoor patio where you can enjoy breakfast as you gaze out at the bay. From here, you’ll have easy access to all the best restaurants and activities the island has to offer.

So, what are you waiting for? Browse our catalog of available properties and book your Hawaiian getaway today!

Revel in a Sense of Serenity at the Byodo-In Temple on Oahu

Byodo-in Buddhist Temple at the Koolau mountains in the Valley of the Temples in Oahu, Hawaii

beautiful black sand beach on the big island of hawaii aerial view. text reads exploring hawaii access our vacation guideNestled at the foot of the Ko’olau Mountains, the Valley of the Temples Memorial Park draws people year-round. The non-practicing Buddhist Byodo-In Temple on Oahu captivates visitors and locals alike with its serene atmosphere. It’s the perfect place to meditate, relax, and revel in the natural beauty of the surroundings. Continue reading to learn more about the temple. Then, check out our complimentary Vacation Guide for more attractions to add to your list of things to do and see on the island!

All About the Byodo-In Temple on Oahu

History & Significance

Built in 1968, the Byodo-In Temple serves as a replica of the over 950-year old Byodo-In Temple in Uji, Japan, which also happens to be a United Nations World Heritage site! The construction of the Oahu replica commemorated the 100th anniversary of the first Japanese immigrants to arrive in Hawaii. Visitors from around the world spend time admiring the beauty and tranquil aura at this unique attraction.

How to Spend Your Day

If you include a visit to the temple in your Oahu itinerary, be sure to check out the following highlights of the temple:

The Amida Buddha

Admire the golden Buddha, named Amida, located within the temple. The famous Japanese sculptor, Masuzo Inui carved this marvelous figure. Be sure to take your shoes off before entering the Hoo-do, or Phoenix Hall, because it is considered a place of worship!

Bon-sho (Sacred Bell)

The Bon-sho, Sacred Bell, was cast with a mixture of bronze and tin in Osaka, Japan. The tone of the bell is said to cleanse the mind of evil and temptation and resounds with a message of deep calm and peace.

The Meditation Pavilion

Spend time pondering your visit, admiring the beautiful scenery, or thinking about the next Oahu excursion on your to-do list beneath the Meditation Pavilion. You can find it on a hill behind the temple.

The Wildlife

Koi make their home in the ponds throughout the property. Guests can purchase fish food from the gift shop to feed the fish! Additionally, visitors can expect to see peacocks, black swans, turtles, frogs, and other animals on the temple grounds.

The Tea House Gift Shop

What used to be a traditional Japanese tea house is now a gift shop that sells miniature temple bells, Buddha statues, local artists’ works, and more!

Events & More

Be sure to check the temple’s events calendar! They often host concerts, classes, workshops, and more throughout the year.

Hours & Admission

Hours: 8:30 a.m.-5:00 p.m. The last entrance to the grounds is at 4:45 p.m.

Admission: General Admission: $5, Seniors: $4, Children: $2

They offer group rates as well!

Stay in a Private Homes Hawaii Vacation Rental

Private Homes Hawaii Niuki Property ocean views The Byodo-In Temple on Oahu is just one of the many exciting things to do and see on the island. Make the most of your dream vacation by staying in a Private Homes Hawaii vacation rental! Revel in the luxury of an oceanfront home with sweeping views of the Pacific in our Niuki home, situated in Honolulu. Whether you’re enjoying the salty air on the lanai or admiring the lulling waves from inside, this home sets the scene for an unforgettable tropical getaway!  

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Here’s Why You Need to Visit the 8 Best Oahu Breweries

a colorful flight of beer found at one of the best oahu breweries

Imagine yourself on a tropical island. How would you like to spend your time? Maybe you’d like to take in the breathtaking views of the surrounding ocean, mingle with the local crowd to learn about the best places to visit, and sample some of the tastiest craft brews produced in Hawaii. When you visit one of the best Oahu breweries, you can experience all of the above! Order a flight of beer to sample the flavors of Hawaii and chat with some of the people who live on the island to get awesome input on some of their favorite beaches and outdoor adventures.

If you’re planning a trip to Oahu anytime soon, you should consult our handy Vacation Guide. Between touring all the best Oahu breweries, you’ll have so much to see and do. Guests use our planner to find:

  • The best restaurants on the island
  • Everyone’s favorite hiking trails and nature tours
  • Exciting attractions, festivals, and events
  • Adventurous outdoor and watersport activities

8 Oahu Breweries You Have to Check Out

  1. Lanikai Brewing Company

Don’t miss the opportunity to check out the Lanikai Brewing Company tasting room! Swing by in the afternoon for a few brews at this quaint location in Kailua. You won’t regret it.  

  1. Waikiki Brewing Company

In Hawaii, nobody does it better than the locals. If you’re in the mood for a unique Oahu beer tasting, visit the Waikiki Brewing Company and treat your taste buds to an Aloha Spirit Blonde Ale, a Black Strap Molasses Porter, or an Ala Moana Amber!

  1. Grace in Growlers

Get your hands on some tasty bubbly beverages at Grace in Growlers. Buy beer by the ounce and pour it yourself at Hawaii’s first and only self-serve craft beer tasting room located in Kailua.

  1. Kona Brewing Co.

Celebrate the spirit of “Aloha” with your friends and a chilled glass of beer in hand at Kona Brewing Co.’s Oahu location at the Koko Marina. Taste the flavors of Hawaii and admire the island’s breathtaking beauty. If green-living is important to you, you’ll be glad to know that this company values Mother Earth and brews their beer sustainably by using solar energy, and on-site gardens.

  1. Beer Lab HI

From triple IPAs and mild ambers to sour ales and imperial stouts, the rotating menu at the Beer Lab in Honolulu keeps you on your toes. Experiment with different tastes and revel in the hoppy aromas that fill the air.

  1. Honolulu BeerWorks

Support a local, beer-loving community at a friendly, neighborhood brewpub. Honolulu Beerworks makes the perfect location for laughing about fond memories and creating new ones, all while enjoying delicious, craft beers. Order the perfect bite to eat to accompany your drink and make the most out of your experience!

  1. Aloha Beer Company

Aloha Beer Company is a locally-owned and operated brewery that proudly serves tasty ales and lagers to their guests in Honolulu. Relax on the brew deck, feel the saltwater breeze, and sample the tasty craft beers this brewery has to offer.

  1. The Brewseum

For a unique experience, swing by the Brewseum which serves as a brewpub and a museum. Peruse Hawaiian WWII memorabilia while sipping on a pint of beer. Climb the stairs up to the second level and step into a 1940’s-style speakeasy. After, watch the sunset in the distance while overlooking the island on the lanai.

Uber Home to Your Private Homes of Hawaii Vacation Rental

After a long evening drinking tasty craft beers, chatting with friends, and making memories amid a gorgeous Hawaiian backdrop at one of the aforementioned Oahu breweries, call an uber back to your Private Homes of Hawaii vacation rental. Our homes boast unparalleled comfort, breathtaking views of the surrounding ocean, and convenient access to all there is to see and do on the island.

Whether you’re touring all the breweries in Oahu, exploring the surrounding waterfalls and beaches, or celebrating Hawaiian culture at an annual Oahu event, you’ll be happy to return to our gorgeous Mala Huna property. Discover this oasis of a home for yourself and have the vacation of a lifetime. Book your stay today!

Everything You Need to Know About Diamond Head in Hawaii

Gorgeous view of Diamond Head, Waikiki Beach, and Honolulu Shoreline at sunset

Many people know that Hawaii boasts diverse landscapes and gorgeous scenery. The islands manage to surprise locals and visitors alike with their lush jungles, ethereal beaches, impressive waterfalls, snowy mountaintops, expansive craters, and majestic volcanoes. Diamond Head embodies Hawaii’s natural appeal in a single hike. This state park on Oahu allows visitors to soak in the distinct topography of lava-rock formations and tropical foliage. You don’t want to miss an opportunity to visit one of the most unique destinations in the world.

Visiting Diamond Head, Hawaii deserves a top spot on your bucket list. Explore all that Oahu has to offer. From hiking and biking adventures to fine dining and sightseeing, the fun never stops. Download our free vacation guide that local experts created to help smooth out your itinerary. Within, you can find the best recommendations that travelers swear by. You deserve to experience the vacation you’ve always dreamed of.

All About Diamond Head, Hawaii

Geologists categorize Diamond Head as a volcanic tuff cone, which means they are characterized by their deep-seated magma reservoir and high rims above the crater floor. Locals call the volcano Lēʻahi, in reference to the ahi, or tuna, because the ridgeline resembles the shape of a tuna’s dorsal fin. The close proximity to Honolulu resorts, hotels, and vacation homes makes it a favorite excursion on Oahu. Visitors and locals both harbor respect and awe for this Natural National Monument.

What to Expect From the Hike

What makes Diamond Head the hiker heaven that it is? There’s something to be said about climbing up to the top of a 300,000-year-old volcanic crater. While the hike length isn’t very long, the hiking difficulty can be challenging to some because of the steep ascent. Bring water to ensure you stay hydrated! Also, be aware that the trail often passes through areas of jagged rock. Comfortable shoes make all the difference in the world. Near the end, visitors face 99 steps before they reach the very top of the monument.

At the top, the Diamond Head rewards you with breathtaking, panoramic views of the island. Look out over the vibrant streets of Honolulu, the cerulean blue Pacific, and the fluffy white clouds colliding with the horizon. Experienced athletes and casual climbers both agree that this hike rewards every step you take with unparalleled views. Expect the hike time to reach two hours, roundtrip.

Where to Go After the Hike

Every Oahu itinerary should include hiking to the top of Diamond Head, Hawaii. It makes the perfect morning activity before diving into more outdoor adventures or dining experiences for the rest of the day. Reward yourself with a relaxing afternoon on Waikiki Beach or head back to your Private Homes of Hawaii vacation rental to get ready for an exciting Oahu event!

hale pohaku private homes of hawaii property

Stay in our gorgeous Hale Pohaku property located on the oasis that is Oahu. Our beachfront home captures the essence of Hawaii through tasteful decor and sophisticated design. Step onto the white, sandy beach for a leisurely stroll after a long day of fun. The island is beckoning. Book your stay today!

The Best Oahu Itinerary for a 5-Day Vacation

Make a visit to Haunama Bay part of your 5-day Oahu Itinerary

For such a small island, Oahu boasts endless adventure. Experience the meaning of “Aloha” while basking in the sun’s rays and surrounded by crystal blue Pacific waters. Planning the perfect trip to your dream destination can be overwhelming. We’ve designed the perfect 5-day Oahu itinerary that allows you to enjoy the best the island has to offer. Between volcanic exploration and deep-sea snorkeling, enjoy sweeping views. Life is too short not to follow your dreams. It’s time to take that leap!

Our 5-day Oahu itinerary serves as a great starting place when planning your trip. For more details and suggestions, download our complimentary vacation guide!

Your Go-To 5-Day Oahu Itinerary

Day 1: Hike Diamond Head Trail and Explore Honolulu

Waikiki turtle near diamond head craterWith so many things to do in Oahu, be sure to fuel up with a hearty breakfast. Hikers from around the globe gather on the island to experience Diamond Head, one of the most beautiful natural wonders the planet has to offer. Sweeping, panoramic views span the blue horizon and the colorful city below.

Stop through Honolulu for a light and refreshing lunch at Uncle Clay’s House of Pure Aloha. While in the city, check a few things off your list. Visit the Pearl Harbor and WWII Monument or visit the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific. Before heading back to your Private Homes of Hawaii vacation rental, have dinner in the city and try a tasty poke bowl.

Day 2: Kayak, Snorkel, and Catch the Sunset

Make kayaking and snorkeling your next big Oahu excursions. Take a tour that requires paddling through the waves in a kayak. The Hanauma Bay Nature Preserve welcomes you to explore coral reefs and diverse marine wildlife. Expect to see sea turtles, colorful fish, and a vibrant underwater ecosystem. After a few hours of snorkeling, grab a quick bite at a nearby cafe.

Spend a few hours lounging on the beach and then head west towards to Kaena Point. The sunsets from the most western point of the island inspire and make for an amazing photo op. You’ll remember this moment for the rest of your life. Vibrant reds and pinks paint the sky above lava shorelines and tidepools. After the sun sets and the moon rises, indulge in a little Honolulu nightlife. Make reservations ahead of time at a Japanese restaurant like Nanzan Giro Giro or an Asian-Hawaiian fusion establishment like Alan Wong’s Restaurant for a taste of Hawaii’s fine-dining scene.

Day 3: Chase Waterfalls and Indulge in Authentic Cuisines

Manoa Falls on OahuNo Hawaii vacation is complete without discovering the best waterfall hikes on Oahu. Hike through lush Hawaiian jungles and encounter towering trees and rushing waterfalls. For large groups and families, consider hiking the Maunawili Falls trail or check out the popular Manoa Falls. If you’re up to the challenge of a more strenuous hike, the Lulumahu Falls appeal to your adventurous side. Explore bamboo forests and come face-to-face with a 50-ft waterfall.

After exerting so much energy in the hot sun, take the time to unwind a little. Dine in luxury, sip fine wine, and soak in gorgeous ocean views. Choose between some of the best restaurants on Oahu. From Vietnamese noodles dishes and vegan pho to Japanese-Peruvian cuisine and authentic Hawaiian food, the dining options leave nothing to be desired.

Day 4: Relax, Meditate, and Soak Up the Sun

Your body needs some tender love and care as you near the end of your vacation. Start your day with a relaxing massage or facial at a highly-acclaimed spa. Once you’re feeling renewed, embark on a journey to the Byodo-In Temple in the Sacred Valley of the Temples. Admire the beauty and surround yourself with a sense of calm in this meditative setting.

Absorb the healing qualities of the salty ocean and humid air. Allow yourself plenty of time to kick back on one of Oahu’s best beaches. You don’t want to miss the opportunity to visit the most popular beach in the world. Waikiki once served as a playground for Hawaiian royalty and, thanks to Duke Kahanamoku, became the birthplace of modern surfing. Listen to the sound of the tide roaring in, feel the sun’s warmth on your skin, take a surfing lesson, and savor each moment you have left on the island.

Day 5: Celebrate Hawaiian Culture

Dive into Hawaiian culture by attending an Oahu annual event. Enjoy an exciting hula show, explore local artwork, or take part in some of the major food festivals. You can also visit the Honolulu Art Museum or the Polynesian Cultural Center to learn even more about Hawaii.

Wrap up your vacation by spending your last evening in nature. Check out Sunset Beach, Haleiwa Beach Park or Waimea Bay and appreciate the natural beauty of the island. By this point, you may already have a return trip in mind.

Make One of Our Vacation Homes Your Hawaii Home

Niuiki Hawaii Kai Private Homes Vacation RentalOur 5-day Oahu itinerary leaves room for flexibility and adaptation depending on your lifestyle preferences. However you choose to spend your time on the island, be sure to spend your nights in a high-quality home. Our vacation rentals boast comfort, quality, and stunning tropical views.

Our Niuiki property provides a soothing environment to rest your head between big adventures. Located halfway between Kahala and Hawaii Kai, this location is ideal for those who wish to see all Oahu has to offer.

10 Exciting Oahu Excursions You Need to Experience

See a beautiful sunrise over Hanauma Bay on an Oahu Excursion

Have you ever noticed that the most strenuous hikes can yield the most rewarding views? Maybe it’s because not as many people are willing to make the trek. Perhaps it’s the satisfaction of achieving your goal. The promise of exciting excursions on Oahu attracts adventurers and nature lovers from around the world. From otherworldly crater hikes and kayaking expeditions to daring zip line tours and underwater journeys, the possibilities on this small island are endless. Whether you’re looking for the perfect day tour for you and the kids or an all-inclusive, private tour of diverse Hawaiian landscapes, you’ll find the perfect fit.

Planning out your entire trip can be overwhelming. Before getting too stressed out, be sure to download our free vacation guide! You’ll find the best recommendations for Oahu excursions, cultural events, dining options, and more. Our local experts meticulously crafted this planner for travelers to rely on throughout the duration of their stay. What are you waiting for? Embark on your adventure today!

The 10 Best Oahu Excursions

1. Oahu Grand Circle Day TourByodo-in Buddhist Temple at the Koolau mountains in the Valley of the Temples in Oahu, Hawaii

The Oahu Grand Circle Island Day Tour takes you to must-see attractions around the island in just one day. You’ll see the Byodo-In Temple, the Dole Plantation, and the world-famous surf spot, Waimea Bay.

2. Oahu Atlantis Submarine Adventure

Looking for the perfect kid-friendly experience that doesn’t require getting wet? The Oahu Atlantis Submarine Adventure takes you to the depths of the ocean. Delight in panoramic views from under the sea featuring vibrant fish, coral reefs, and even sea turtles.

3. Diamond Head Crater Adventure

For an intimate encounter with one of nature’s geological wonders, book a tour with Diamond Head Crater Adventure. You’ll spend three hours climbing one of Hawaii’s most famous volcanoes with valuable commentary provided by a local hiking expert. Once you reach the summit, you’ll have spectacular views of Waikiki Beach, one of the best beaches on Oahu.

4. Ultimate Pearl Harbor Circle Island Tour

History buffs love the Ultimate Pearl Harbor Circle Island Tour. Your guide will share information about Pearl Harbor and the USS Arizona Memorial. You’ll also see other main attractions on the island such as North Shore beaches, the Hukilau Marketplace, and Halona Blowhole.

5. Oahu Shark DiveHammerhead shark near Oahu

Are you an adrenaline junkie? If so, it’s time to cross shark diving off your bucket list! The Oahu Shark Dive with North Shore Shark Adventures allows you to come face-to-face with these majestic sea creatures from the safety of a professional-tier cage.

6. Kualoa Ranch Zipline Tour

The Kualoa Ranch Zipline Tour is a 2.5-hour excursion that allows you to zoom through treetop canopies. Get a birds-eye view of Oahu’s breathtaking landscapes while you fly through the air. You’ll also learn about native plants and wildlife from your adventure guides.

7. Hanauma Bay Snorkeling Adventure Half-Day Tour

Dive into an underwater expedition with the Hanauma Bay Snorkeling Adventure Half-Day Tour. Explore coral reefs and encounter colorful schools of fish in the Bay’s crystal-clear waters.

8. Kaneohe Bay Kayak and Snorkeling Tourcolorful coral reef with sea turtle and fish in Oahu

Venture away from Oahu towards Coconut Island on the Kaneohe Bay Kayak and Snorkeling Tour. Paddle yourself out to the barrier reef near Kaneohe Bay. Snorkel with marine wildlife such as sea turtles, manta rays, and fish. You’ll learn about Hawaii’s ecosystems and ancient cultural sites!

9. Ultimate Circle Island Adventure with Waimea Waterfall

For an all-inclusive trip around Oahu, join the small group Ultimate Circle Island Adventure with Waimea Waterfall tour. Spend an entire day snapping photos of the island’s most stunning natural attractions. The enchanting waterfalls and magical landscapes will leave you breathless.

10. North Shore and Circle Island Tour

The North Shore and Circle Island Tour is a seven-hour guided excursion that leads you around Oahu’s northern shores. Discover the fabled Valley of the Temples and observe native birds and foliage. You’ll even have a chance to spot sea turtles on Turtle Beach!  

The Best Places to Stay

kailua house ocean breeze private homes of hawaii rental There’s no shortage of things to do on Oahu! From adventurous escapades to relaxing in the sun, the island is calling you to embark on the vacation of your dreams. Browse our list of vacation rentals and find the perfect home away from home where you can rest between Oahu excursions.

Our Ocean Breeze home in Kailua is ideal for small families or couples looking to spend their Oahu vacation tucked away in a private oasis. Wake up to a gorgeous beach sunrise and fall asleep to the sound of the ocean waves breaking just steps away from the house. After one night, you’ll never want to leave.