About Honolulu, Hawaii
Honolulu is the epicenter of Hawaiian culture, the powerhouse of historical sites and home to the majority of people living in the islands of Hawaii. As the state capitol, Honolulu is the center of commerce and trade in Oahu. It is home to world-famous Waikiki Beach, which is just one of the many natural attractions that are part of this tropical paradise. Visitors head for Honolulu to soak up the Hawaiian sunshine and gaze at romantic sunsets while their toes touch the golden beaches of the Pacific Ocean. Honolulu’s year-round balmy weather ensures pleasant vacations 365 days of the year.
Things to Do
Waikiki Beach is the hub of beach action in Honolulu, hosting all forms of recreational activities like swimming, surfing and other water sports. Smaller crowds and calmer waves are found in Ala Moana Beach while Hanauma Bay is more ideal for snorkeling. Romantic itineraries are made more heart-stopping with trips to Chinatown’s open market to see the freshly cut orchids turned into bouquets or leis. Couples may also opt to join a classic Hawaiian luau gathering to find enchantment in the traditional dances and sumptuous food.
Exploring the City
Downtown Honolulu is dotted with reminders of Hawaii’s colorful past. The islands were once ruled by kings as seen from downtown’s prominent statue of King Kamehameha I that stands across the street from Iolani Palace. The imperial residence, the only house of nobility found in the US, has exhibits showing the Polynesian history of the land. Close by is the Kawaiaha’o Church, constructed from thousands of blocks of corals. Photography buffs will no doubt want to capture the best views in and around Honolulu. High above the city is Diamond Head offering captivating ocean vistas. Get into the heart of Punchbowl Crater, an extinct volcano that was once used as a sacrificial ground.
Restaurants and Dining
An excellent range of culinary styles are found all over Honolulu with its comprehensive dining scene. You’ll want to taste them all, be it Hawaiian, Portuguese or Asian. Seafood is the most popular item on the menu because Hawaii takes advantage of the freshest catch from the oceans that surround it. Downtown’s Bishop Square has a casual assembly of coffeehouses and upmarket restaurants. Wine-and-dine experiences can be had at Ala Moana Shopping Center and the Restaurant Row on Ala Moana Boulevard. Establishments within these areas serve wines from France, Australia and the mainland US. Try to catch traditional dining venues where local fare is served along with a rousing hula dance.
Oahu’s best museums are found in Honolulu. Across the State Capitol and Iolani Palace, the Hawaii State Art Museum has permanent exhibitions that show Hawaii’s diversity housed inside a building designed in Spanish Mission-style architecture. Also close by is The Mission Houses Museum, which provides a look into the time when Protestant missionaries settled in the islands in the early 1800s. Bishop Museum has several artifacts and royal heirlooms but its other collections that focus on Polynesian culture are also of major interest.
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