Honolulu travel guide

The Big Pineapple

Honolulu tourism | Honolulu guide

You're Going to Love Honolulu

Honolulu is known for its magnificent beaches and outstanding scenery. This seaside paradise is an oasis of exotic flowers, unique wildlife, volcanic peaks and iconic sights.

Located on the beautiful island of Oahu, Honolulu is the largest city in the state of Hawaii. Visitors come for some of the world’s best diving and surfing spots as well as for its laid back ambience.

Don’t be fooled by the relaxed atmosphere – Honolulu is huge and each district has its own distinctive character. Chinatown is one of the most visited parts of the city and the area boasts some of the island’s best restaurants.

Internationally acclaimed museums, galleries, superb shopping malls and entertainment facilities – there is something to appeal to everyone in Honolulu.

Top 5 Reasons to Visit Honolulu

There are lots of great reasons to plan a break in Honolulu, whether it's for a short or long stay.

What to do in Honolulu

Sun-kissed beaches, impressive sunsets, hula dancers and more – Honolulu has it all - but there are some things you really should not miss.

When to Visit Honolulu

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2 travellers Flight to Honolulu 3 nights at hotel
Median hotel rate + Median airfare from United Kingdom

No matter when you visit, you will enjoy sunshine and temperatures ranging from 75F to 80F. September to November is generally considered the best time to visit Honolulu. Hotel rates are a little lower than during the peak tourist season (December to March). Peak season is the most popular time for surf enthusiasts and accommodation prices tend to rise with demand. It can be a little humid from May to August but less crowded beaches and lower prices make spring an attractive option.

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When the weather is nice in Honolulu

How to Get to Honolulu

Airports near Honolulu

HNL Honolulu

Airlines serving Honolulu

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Where to Stay in Honolulu

You’ll find everything from boutique and luxurious spa hotels to bed and breakfasts and holiday apartments in Honolulu. Check out the high rise mid-range and luxury hotels that make up Waikiki’s iconic skyline or look for affordable accommodation further afield like Plumeria Hostel or Manoa Inn in Manoa-Makiki.

Popular Neighborhoods in Honolulu

Most popular hotel in Honolulu by neighbourhood

Kuliouou-Kalani Iki

Where to stay in popular areas of Honolulu

Most booked hotels in Honolulu

How to Get Around Honolulu

Honolulu is a large, spread out area, so it’s worth thinking about how you’ll get from A to B. There is a good public transport system, and the city’s roads are easy to navigate.

The Cost of Living in Honolulu

Honolulu is a paradise for shoppers. Each district has its own attractions, and you’ll find everything from local markets to luxury shopping malls and designer stores. Although the city is considered to beone of the most expensive in the US, it’s still cheaper than New York.

Honolulu’s hottest shopping streets

Treat yourself to a little retail therapy at the Royal Hawaiian Shopping Center or DFS Galleria or wander amid banyan trees at the International Market Place in Waikiki. Head to Downtown to look for exotic delicacies and the famous hundred-year egg at Oahu and Maunaukea markets. Koko Marina Center and the Kahala Mall in Eastern Honolulu are less expensive than Waikiki malls, and the Aloha Stadium Swap Meet in Western Honolulu (Wednesday, Saturday, and Sunday) is a great place to find local arts and crafts at reasonable prices.

Groceries and Other Necessities

Pick up food for your holiday apartment or shop for necessities in supermarkets. Some of the best include Safeway on Beretania St. and Kapahulu Avenue, Don Quijote, Costco, Foodland and Times.

Cheap meal
Cheap meal
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A pair of jeans
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Single public transport ticket

Where to Eat in Honolulu

Hawaii’s diverse cultural mix has influenced the city’s cuisine. The Hawaii Regional Cuisine movement advocates the use of locally produced ingredients. Restaurants include Alan Wong’s Pineapple Room in the Ala Moana Center, Roy Yamaguchi’s Roy’s Hawaii Kai and Roy’s Waikiki, and George Mavrothalassitis’ Chef Mavro.

The Zippy’s restaurant chain is incredibly popular in Honolulu and their signature chili is served in lots of original ways. Genki Sushi is another local favorite – be prepared for shouts of "Irrashaimase!" (welcome in Japanese) as you enter. Every visitor to Honolulu should try shaved ice; Waiola Shave at 2135 Waiola St is the oldest, and reputedly the best, shaved ice shop in the city – President Obama is a regular customer.

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