14 Oct

Day 1 – Waikiki

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Enjoy the tourist experience in Waikiki!

About Today’s Plan

The first step in your Hawaiian vacation is arriving and then going to your hotel in Waikiki (for most of you). You should check-in to your hotel and pick up supplies.

Don’t plan on traveling around the island today because you will find plenty of entertainment and good food around your hotel. Most of you will probably spend most of today at the beach. Waikiki has so much to do that you can easily spend 2-3 days here and not be bored.

Photo by Alan LightWaikiki Beach isn’t the most beautiful on the island, but it’s a welcome sight for tourists!

Watch your valuables at the beach! Hawaii is a safe place, but petty thieves like to target tourists. Leave your wallets at your hotel if you can. If you do bring them and need to leave them unattended, cover them with a hat or put them under your beach mat.

Preparation

Transportation from the airport

A8 Taxi
• 808-227-1111
• 1-800-387-1831 (toll-free US/Canada)
• 24-hour service
• airport to Waikiki = $30 (flat-rate)
• make reservations from 9am – 9pm

Use a taxi shuttle. I recommend using A8 Taxi‘s Honolulu Airport-to-Waikiki shuttle service for a flat-rate of $30. You can 4 passengers in the taxi. If you forget to reserve a taxi shuttle, you can still use a regular taxi outside the arrival area. Typical taxi fare from the Airport to Waikiki is $38, but Honolulu traffic could make it more 8O.

Use a shuttle bus. Shuttles can be cheap, but the fare is per person and it is slower than a taxi because the driver must wait for all passengers and there will be multiple stops along the way. If you do take a shuttle, I recommend making a reservation with Roberts Hawaii airport shuttle for $12 one-way or $20 round-trip, per person.

Use the public bus. The cheapest method (and slowest) is to use The Bus. However, no luggage is allowed on The Bus. Bus fare is $2.50 for adults and $1.25 for kids. The #19 and #20 buses go through downtown and into Waikiki.


Shopping list

Here are some things you should consider buying as soon as you arrive. If you’re staying in Waikiki, you can find all of these items at the ABC Stores, which are EVERYWHERE and open 24/7.

  • sunscreen/sunblock
  • rubber slippers (official footwear of beach-goers)
  • hat
  • swimsuit
  • straw beach mat or beach towel
  • floaties / inflatable water tube/ inflatable beds
  • body board
  • sunglasses
  • snacks and refreshments to bring back to your room
  • postcards

Entertainment and Activities

For those of you staying in Waikiki, there is plenty to see and do. Here are just some things that you can do in the area.

Relax at Waikiki Beach

Waikiki Beach is a short walk from every hotel. There are a lot of nicer beaches than Waikiki (which I will tell you about), but you will be happy with this one. If you have kids with you or you want to relax in your floaties, you should swim behind the wall, which is a rock wall that shields the beach from waves. During high tide, the deepest section is only about 5 feet deep.

Photo by markyegIf you’re not a strong swimmer, you can relax behind the wall.

Hike up Diamond Head Crater

Diamond Head Crater
• 6am-6pm
• $5 entrance fee (by car)
• $1 entrance fee (walk-in)

If you take a look around while you’re at the beach, you’ll notice a big mountainous formation in the distance. That’s Diamond Head Crater. It’s a small hike and it’s not a true hike, as there are a lot of concrete steps. In total, it’s about 1.5 miles. The hike has stairs and is really tame (compared to some of the other rugged hikes I’ve been on). The entrance is over 2 miles from Waikiki, so you can take the bus, walk, or catch a taxi there. If you need more directions or want to see pictures, check out Topher’s Diamond Head Hike Guide. This isn’t a great hike, but it’s the best one in Honolulu, which has only a few hiking trails.

Photo by Steve JurvetsonThis is what you’ll be hiking up

See penguins in Hawaii.

Did you know that there are penguins in Hawaii? If you walk past the main lobby of the Hilton Hawaiian Village in Waikiki, you can see penguins and flamingos hanging out in their hotel habitat. The chubby, little fellas go into their caves at night, so visit during the daytime.

The Hilton Hawaiian Village also has a beautiful man-made lagoon. You are free to see it, but you must be an actual guest to rent equipment from them.

Penguins at the Hilton Hawaiian Village

A flock of penguins at the Hilton Hawaiian Village

See other animals.

Honolulu Zoo
• 808-971-7171
• 9am – 4:30pm
• adults = $14, kids = $6

Waikiki Aquarium
• 808-923-9741
• 9am – 4:30pm
• adults = $9, kids = $4/$2


If you have children with you, you can see visit the Honolulu Zoo and the Waikiki Aquarium. Both are a short walk away from the main Waikiki area, towards Kapiolani park. The Honolulu Zoo also offers a night tour.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Ron has been living in Hawaii since the age of 5. Though it's difficult to travel when living in the center of the Pacific Ocean, Ron has still traveled to South Korea, China, Japan, Singapore, Malaysia, as well as the mainland US (Las Vegas, Hollywood, New York). His favorite place in the world is in the seat of an airplane, just before takeoff.

11 thoughts on “Day 1 – Waikiki

  1. Thank you for a great post. Could anybody get that type of information in such a perfect approach of writing? I have a presentation next week, and I’m look for such information.

  2. Pingback: Serviced Apartments In Waikiki Hawaii | hawaii - hawaiiweather

  3. Thanks for tips. Going to try them out in June. If you are ever in New Zealand, I will give you some tips.

  4. Hey great tips on here. You’ve really helped with our upcoming holiday plans. Thanks!
    One more thing though. Can you recommend any particular Luau? My wife’s keen on the idea but from what i can gather, there’s a wide range of opinions on the various choices.

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