Although only the third largest of the Hawaiian Islands, Oahu is the most populated and most visited due to its striking beauty and abundance of activities. Home to the capital city of Honolulu and a surfer’s paradise on the North Shore, Oahu has everything visitors could desire from a tropical, sand-filled vacation destination. Make your way to Oahu for the sights, swimming, and surfing, all while taking in a little history along the way, and you certainly will be pleased with your well-rounded trip on this popular island.

A vacation to the Hawaiian Islands means plenty of time spent at beautiful, white sand beaches and a trip to Oahu undoubtedly will be no different. While there are many gorgeous places to throw down a towel and listen to the sounds of the waves rolling in, two places stand out for their remarkable sights and crystal clear water. Hanauma Bay is the perfect place to view the numerous ocean life that thrive close to the shore, particularly sea turtles and colorful fish, either by snorkeling or scuba diving. However, it is a well-known tourist destination so expect large crowds and plenty of noise when venturing here on a warm sunny day.

Waikiki Beach fronts the shores of Waikiki, which is located on the southern shore of Oahu and houses the famous Diamond Head on its east side. This two mile stretch of sand is the picture perfect image of what visitors expect from a Hawaiian beach with its high-rise forests, numerous hotels and resorts, and masses of tourists spread out among the sand. Waikiki Beach is an ideal location for sunning, swimming, snorkeling, surfing, but most of all canoeing. For the ultimate Oahu and Waikiki Beach experience, plan a trip out to sea on an outrigger canoe and rid the waves next to the surfers while soaking in views of the city and Diamond Head.

Diamond Head is quite possibly the most famous volcanic crater in the world and is a worthwhile hike for vacationers who want to take in unparalleled views of the Island. The hike to the rim is considered easy to moderate and requires visitors to climb stairs, walk trails, and make their way through an unlit tunnel (don’t forget your flashlight!). Once the top is reached, however, visitors can enjoy views from Waikiki to Koki Head and of the Pacific Ocean.

Oahu’s North Shore is famous for its massive waves that draw world-class surfers here year after year. In the winter, the high surf’s waves can rise to over 25 feet before rolling over due to the swells coming out of the stormy North Pacific. While surfing is popular at places such as Sunset Beach and Waimea Bay Beach Park (where waves have been reaching over 50 feet in recent years), the North Shore also offers great swimming and snorkeling opportunities to summer visitors at Ali'i Beach Park.

No Oahu outdoor adventure is complete without a trip to Honolulu to view the USS Arizona Memorial at Pearl Harbor. Pearl Harbor holds a special place in our nation’s history and is an important tourist destination even for those who were not alive when the attacks occurred. Every visitor will find the tour of the Arizona Memorial thoughtful and informative, while the addition of the Battleship Missouri and USS Missouri Memorial further highlights the historical importance of this area.

On the spectacular island of Oahu, the right accommodations can make the difference between an ordinary Hawaiian adventure and an amazing Oahu experience. Oahu vacation rentals are located throughout the island, surrounded by its numerous breathtaking features such as the Pacific Ocean, Diamond Head, and lush green forests. The choice between a sterile hotel room that you want to escape every morning and a cozy vacation rental that invites you to soak in the beauty of the island is an easy one, so begin your search for the perfect vacation rental today and surround yourself with all that is stunning in Oahu. has the most comprehensive selection of vacation rental homes on the Internet. For an alternative lodging option, consider Oahu vacation rentals for your next trip to the Hawaiian Islands.
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