Experience the best things to do in Oahu, Hawaii. Explore these top tourist attractions in this popular summer destination! Featured photo of Samoa Performers at Polynesian Cultural Center by Daniel Ramirez under creative commons.
Ah, Oahu. The sun, surf, and sand of this Hawaiian slice of paradise are usually more than enough to draw tourists to its idyllic shores. But for those looking for something to do apart from chilling by its incredible beaches, there are seven things that we think you absolutely must not miss out on. Check out these sights that you should cross off your bucket list during your visit!
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Sea Life Park
This vast marine mammal park is also home to a bird sanctuary and aquarium. It is one of the best tourist attractions in Oahu and is focused on educating the public about marine conservation, the Sea Life Park offers incredible marine experiences where you can swim with dolphins, explore coral reef projects, and trek to see sea lions and baby dolphins. Gasp in awe at the Shark Caves, or get friendly with their penguins – it’s a must-see for the whole family! Get your Sea Life Park ticket or see more with GO Oahu Pass!
Polynesian Cultural Center
The Polynesian Cultural Center is a family-centered cultural theme park and living museum, where you can visit six villages representing the unique cultures of the Pacific Islands. Feast like a king and enjoy an authentic, delicious Polynesian luau. Learn the symbolic story of Mana and Lani in the incredible Ha: Breath of Life show, a visual and aural experience using special effects, animation, dance, and music! Buy ticket
Pacific Fleet Submarine Museum at Pearl Harbor
This 13,000-square-foot museum will take you on an incredible journey into Navy undersea duty, using interactive exhibits and numerous wartime artifacts. Try your hand at the mock submarine mission, or marvel at the USS Bowfin, which was launched a year after the attack on Pearl Harbor and nicknamed the “Pearl Harbor Avenger.”
USS Arizona Memorial
The USS Arizona Memorial is the final resting place of 1,102 of the 1,177 people killed on the USS Arizona during the attack on Pearl Harbor. Take the audio tour of the Memorial and Center Exhibits, and visit the Remembrance Circle along the shoreline. The memorial is a perfect tribute to ensure the service of the fallen sailors and Marines is never forgotten. Get your ticket now
Be respectful when you visit this historical nature park and its beautiful botanical gardens, as the valley has deep cultural and religious significance for Hawaiians! The valley’s gardens have one of the best collections of Polynesian flora in the world, holding 35 distinct collections and many rare or endangered species! Don’t forget to check out the waterfall and the hibiscus evolutionary garden during your visit!
The Diamond Head Stone Monument is Hawaii’s most popular state park. Go on a hike along its incredible trails to the edge of the 300,000-year old crater. As you make your way to the edge, you’ll be treated to breathtaking views of Honolulu and the Pacific. You can also stop by the famous Diamond Head Lighthouse during your trek! Buy ticket online
Pacific Aviation Museum
Now known as the Pearl Harbor Aviation Museum, this museum has incredible guided tours to educate visitors about the fateful attack on Pearl Harbor, covering over 75 years of Pacific aviation history. Take a peek at over 50 different kinds of aircraft or check out the exhibits in the hangars. Our recommended upgrade for your visit: trying the Fighter Ace 360 Flight Simulator! Skip the line, buy your ticket now.
Hawaii is popular for its vibrant and romantic sunsets, and one of the best ways to enjoy it is by joining an evening cruise at sea. There are many options to choose from at Oahu’s harbors. Travelers can choose a cruise depending on their budget and other preferences. This activity is one of the best things to do in Oahu.
Secret Island Beach at Kualoa Ranch
Located in Kualoa Ranch, the Secret Island is a private beach tucked behind Molii Fishponds and nearby to Kaneohe Bay. It’s a popular TV and movie set location due to its relaxing vibe. AT Secret Island, you can do kayaking, canoe riding, standup paddling, and many more water activities.
Dole Pineapple Plantation Tour
Dole Plantation is a large pineapple and exotic fruit farm in Hawaii. It’s also one of Oahu’s most popular tourist attractions, welcoming more than one million visitors a year. Get your ticket online.