From Waikiki to Diamond Head to Pearl Harbor, Oahu’s treasures have been etched in the American psyche since before Hawaii became a state in 1959. Yet there’s so much more. Between its translucent waters and mountain ranges, Hawaii’s third-largest island offers all the makings of a tropical paradise mecca — balmy temperatures and year-round sunshine, dining worthy of a food maven's palate, enough shopping to fill another suitcase (or two), white sandy beaches for do-nothing lounging, a just-right infusion of museums, arts and historical culture, and hiking and soft adventures to brag about back home.
While the lights of Honolulu’s Waikiki suggest a big-city vibe, Oahu thrives on its time in the sun, up early for sunrise surfing and beach walks and then rolling up the sidewalks a couple of hours after the moon rises. Beyond Waikiki, discover sweet beach towns like Kailua on the windward coast, the famed surfing beaches of Oahu’s North Shore, and a throwback to simpler times in rarely visited rural communities like Waimanalo and Waianae.
Whether you’re searching for the identifiable locations of Jack Lord’s original Hawaii Five-0, tracing World War II history in sacred sites around Pearl Harbor or wandering the verdant back roads and less-visited beaches, Oahu will deliver.