Oahu is cosmopolitan Waikiki and high-profile beaches. But it is also wild and sacred with hidden waterfalls; native animals; pristine forests and exotic shocks of foliage.
THE MODERN HONOLULU has carefully curated a collection of authentic Oahu outdoor activities that teach and promote conservation of Hawaii’s rare ecology. Simply ask our concierge to share our recommendations for Oahu eco-tours, including our hand-selected tour operators.
Take a train ride through Dole history, solve the mystery of the Pineapple Garden maze and indulge in pineapple ice cream.
Break from the beach at any of Honolulu Botanical Gardens’ five sites around Oahu.
What’s your ranch fantasy? Riding horseback? Hiking? Letting the Ocean Voyage Tour transport you?
Kualoa Ranch is a name we frequently drop – a working cattle ranch where Kualoa Mountain cliffs tumble into tropical gardens, secluded beaches and the Ka’a’awa Valley (you may recognize the scene from Jurassic Park or Lost). Rumble along jungle trails and across stream beds on horseback or an all-terrain vehicle (narrated tours are also given by bus).
Oahu Nature Tours is another one of our favorites. These small-group excursions illuminate the ecology and history of the places to see in Oahu, from sacred Waimea Valley and its Waimea Waterfall to elevated rainforests, the Manoa Waterfall and Diamond Head. (The 45-minute hike to Diamond Head’s 763-foot summit rewards with a panorama of ocean, shore and mountains.)
If you’re curious about animal interactions, THE MODERN HONOLULU has ample connections. Consider a custom bird-watching tour, whale-watching cruise or a swim with dolphins (or sea turtles).
There’s still much to see on land – just ask us. For now, we’ll leave you with one further suggestion: a visit to Dole Plantation, a classic Hawaii tour on Oahu. You could challenge yourself to decoding the plantation’s three-acre maze (though as 14,000 native plants define its paths and secret stations lure you to its heart, you may find calm in the pursuit). Outside of the labyrinth, the plantation garden tour is rejuvenating. Bring your camera to capture blooming hibiscus and Hawaii’s native koa trees, soaring some-100 feet above you.
“If you are visiting between November and February, don’t miss Waimea Bay on the North Shore where the island’s top surfers take on 30-foot waves”