The state capital of Hawaii on Oahu island is a breathtaking place to relax and enjoy the sunshine. Before you know it, you’ll have a colorful lei around your neck and a cocktail in your hand, while you listen to the sound of ukeleles and admire the surfers braving the Pacific Ocean. Everything you heard about Hawaii is true, so you may as well pack that floral shirt! Honolulu is the only U.S. city to have a royal palace and it proudly celebrates its unique Polynesian cultural heritage.
Most visitors head straight to popular Waikiki Beach. Watch the skilled surfers, jump in the turquoise waters or enjoy fine dining. Visit nearby Kapiolani Park, with its Honolulu Zoo, or climb the extinct Diamond Head volcano.For great snorkeling, head to Hanauma Bay Nature Preserve or Halona Beach, better known as Eternity Beach.
Most Hawaii residents live in the economic hub Honolulu and the majority are Asian. This is reflected in the food, but you can also try traditional dishes such as “laulau” (pork wrapped in taro leaves) and “poke” (a raw fish salad). The compact downtown area offers art, temples, nightlife and designer shops. Don’t miss the Aloha Tower, a real Honolulu icon, with bay views and cafés. Browse the countless outdoor market stalls at the Ala Moana Center.
The sights in Pearl Harbor remind visitors of one of the most famous attacks of World War II. The USS Arizona Memorial straddles the remains of the sunken American war ship, and the USS Bowfin Submarine Museum displays the vessel used in the counterattacks.
The capital of the Hawaiian island group has some of worst traffic jams in the U.S., so it’s best to get around using the inexpensive buses and trolleys.
Hawaii is America’s southernmost state, and is made up entirely of islands. Some of the state’s most historic sites and major cultural attractions are in Honolulu. Enjoy this city’s distinct culture, abundance of natural beauty and year-round warm climate, and treat yourself to a tropical island stay.