American Holiday Search
It’s time to soak up the sun and catch up on your tan! Oahu is the third largest of the Hawaiian Islands with the biggest population in the state. Honolulu; the state capital is located on the south-eastern side of the island. Oahu is renowned the world over for its scenic beaches, surfing, lush vegetation, rich cultural heritage and as the birth place of Barack Obama.
The island offers a fusion of city and country lifestyle in dramatic landscapes and a cosmopolitan atmosphere. The city of Honolulu has a thriving cultural and art district, world class shopping and lavish resorts. On the other hand, the northern half of the island offers a more sedate way of life and an exuberant natural beauty to boost.
Oahu has a wealth of activities. It is an island where one could do everything or nothing at all; the vast natural setting provides plenty of adventures while the ritzy beaches offer indulgent relaxation. The island also has legendary historical sites, world renowned surfing and inspiring cultural institutions.
North Shore is a legendary surf mecca; it is arguably the most popular surfing destination in the world. It is located on the northern coastal area of Oahu. The area boasts fierce waves measuring up to 50 feet high. Surfers from all over the world go to North Shore to participate in several of its famous global surfing competitions which draw big crowds yearly. There are several surf schools giving lessons to both beginners and advanced surfers. The region is also known for its picturesque natural beauty; enchanting blue waters and serene beaches. North Shore is an ideal attraction for thrill seekers.
Pearl Harbour is located in Central Oahu; it is the largest natural harbour in Hawaii and a national monument. This is the site of the infamous World War II aerial attacks. The harbours has several attractions including; the USS Arizona Memorial, Battleship Missouri Memorial, Pacific Aviation Museum, USS Bowfin Submarine Museum and Park and USS Oklahoma Memorial.
Honolulu Academy of Arts has over 38, 000 pieces and is Hawaii largest fine arts museums. The museum houses Asian, Western, European and Polynesian art that is sure to thrill the most discerning of travellers looking for that perfect art work. The Shangri La is an architectural marvel with imposing seaside views. It also houses 3,500 objects of Islamic Art collected by the sophisticated heiress – Doris Duke.
Oahu also offers several family attractions. Sea Life Park Hawaii is a world famous marine park. It features; performing sea lions, dolphins, penguins and marine life interactive programs. Wet ‘n’ Wild Hawaii (400 Farrington Highway Kapolei) features 25 rides and attractions for kids and adults.
Check some amazing videos of Oahu below:
Indulge in the delectable Hawaiian local cuisine or other sumptuous treats that can be found in the large selection of eateries in Oahu. Waikiki Beach in Honolulu was once the play ground of Hawaiian Royalty. Now the beach still attracts the elite of Hawaii and visitors from all around the globe. This is the ‘it’ destination for haute cuisine made by world renowned chefs. Oahu also offers down to earth fare in the bohemian North Shore and Chinatown.
Alan Wong’s (1857 South King Street, Honolulu) gets our vote as the best restaurant on the island of Oahu. This is the place to go for fresh sea food and meat. The restaurant attracts a more stylish clientèle; making this a marvellous place to see and be seen in. From the ultra fabulous to the funk fantastic – Kau ‘Aina Sandwich Shop (66-160 Kamehameha Highway, North Shore, Haleiwa) is another place we like. This hip joint is so popular that it counts Obama as one of its patrons. I guess Mr. President likes to hang with the cool kids!
Honolulu is the epicentre of nightlife in Hawaii. The city is packed with hip bars and energetic night clubs. There are also many venues offering traditional Hawaiian entertainment like Hawaiian music and the popular hula dance. The crème de la crème flock to the exclusive clubs of Waikiki and Ala Moana. Chinatown’s establishments tend to attract an arty crowd, while North Shore is favoured by surfers and the bohemian set.
We always have a good time at Mai Tai’s (1450 Ala Moana Blvd. Suite 3247, Honolulu). We love the local music they play and the vibrant crowd that pack the place every night. Pear Ultralounge (1450 Alamoana Blvd, Honolulu) is a stylish club that attracts the trendy set, perfect for dancing the night away.
Oahu is a great place to shop, with a great selection of island style boutiques, buzzing local markets, galleries, department stores, national and international retailers and designer stores. You’ll be spoilt for choice!
Ala Moana Shopping Centre is the largest outdoor mall in the world and offers the ultimate luxury shopping. The shopping center houses some of the best American department stores; Macy’s, Sears, Neiman Marcus and Nordstrom. We are even more amazed by the large selection of posh designer boutiques; DKNY, Miu Miu, Dior, Fendi, Chanel and a lot more. What we like about Ala Mona is that they also offer more affordable brands that are popular world wide; American Apparel, J. Crew, Abercrombie & Fitch, Gap, Banana Republic and the list seems to go on forever.
We know that Tour America clients are savvy shoppers and that’s why we were very excited to discover Waikele Premium Outlets (Waipahu, Honolulu County). This is where Hawaii’s fashion connoisseurs come to bag the hot bargains! The never ending list of brands offered here include; Polo Ralph Lauren, Tommy Hilfiger, Juicy Couture, Converse and Coach. With so much variety and up to 65% discount; you can get that luxury designer piece of your dreams without breaking the bank!
What’s a holiday without an exquisite souvenir? Aloha Tower Marketplace (1 Aloha Tower Drive, Honolulu) is in a gorgeous setting, right on the oceanfront. This is a great location to buy authentic Hawaiian artwork and handcrafts. There is good selection of local shops selling colourful aloha clothing and jewellery as well as island chic home décor.
Oahu has two main seasons. Winter is November through April, while the rest of the time is summer. During the summer season, temperatures are normally in the 23 to 31 oC range. The climate is pleasant year round in Honolulu with the whole island having hot to moderate temperatures through out the year. So you can have your dream beach holiday in Oahu any month of the year!
Average Monthly Temperatures