Honolulu, Hawaii is known for spectacular beaches, but there are plenty of scenic places scattered within a 15-mile driving radius. From picturesque hikes to lovely lookouts just off the highways you’ll find all sorts of places hidden away on the southeast side of Oahu. We list our favorite scenic spots.
A 1.6 mile roundtrip vertical hike up to the crater, Diamond Head offers breathtaking views of Waikiki Beach once you make it to the top to make the climb worth it. The park is open from 6 am to 6 pm, with the last hike starting at 4:30 pm. To beat the crowds, go early.
Diamond Head, Honolulu, HI USA +1 808-587-0300
The Manoa Falls Trail meanders along a trickling brook through a tropical, leafy forest, and the experience is like hiking through a spa. A 1.6 mile roundtrip hike with a gentle slope, this is a much milder hike than Diamond Head, and at the end you meet the spectacular Manoa Falls.
Manoa Falls, Manoa Rd Honolulu, HI +1 800-464-2924
The Spitting Cave is a marvelous, secluded, and almost otherworldly an place to visit. It draws daring cliff divers to its layered cliffs for extreme jumps and dives, but it’s also just a spectacular place to ogle at the ocean. The entrance is hidden away in a cul-de-sac and the trail down is quite steep and requires care walking.
Spitting Cave, 7 Lumahai St Honolulu, HI USA
Halona Blowhole Lookout
A natural wonder, the Halona Blowhole is made by molten lava tubes from volcanic eruptions thousands of years ago. The lava tubes flow to the ocean, and when the waves are large enough, they can send water shooting up to 30 feet high. A 20-30 minute trip from Waikiki, Honolulu and north of Hanauma Bay, Halona Blowhole is a stop worth taking.
Halona Blowhole Lookout, 8699 HI-72 Honolulu, HI USA
A beautiful place to go snorkeling and look out onto a scenic blue bay, Hanauma Bay is a must see for visiting Honolulu. You can take the Waikiki shuttle to Hanauma or rent a car and take 20-30 minute drive from Waikiki. First-time visitors are required to watch a video before entering the park so they can learn about marine life, conservation, and safety in the park.
Hanauma Bay, Honolulu, HI USA