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First time visiting Honolulu.

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First time visiting Honolulu.

Hi. This will be our first time visiting Honolulu. We will arrive on December 26th and leave January 2nd. We already bought our tickets for Pearl Harbor. We are curious, what are some other things we will want to see/do? But yet, we don't want to be super busy. I thought about a day trip to Big Island through Hawaii Tours. They take you over the live volcano. Its a reasonable price. I want to get pointers from you more experienced people.

NSW Australia
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11. Re: First time visiting Honolulu.

Hi there,

sorry to say that going over the top of the Volcano was to tme an

expensive and thorough disappointment and a waste of time.

I should have gone to Turtle Bay and had a good meal at the Hotel

and touraround to North Shore on the way back to Waikikikikiki...NWF

Kapaa, Hawaii
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for Maui, Hana, Oahu
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12. Re: First time visiting Honolulu.

The best snorkeling on Oahu will be off limits because it's on the north shore and as you now know, the surf will be too large for snorkeling. The best places left would be the windward side, Kioana Beach Park, Hanauma Bay and the MLCD (Marine LIfe Conservation District) in Waikiki.

No more sugar plantations on Oahu. The only one left in the state is on Maui.

Iolani Palace and the Bishop Museum are always worth a visit.

ps. there are no theme parks in Hawaii!!

Edited: 9:23 pm, August 23, 2013
Saint Cloud...
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for Oahu
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13. Re: First time visiting Honolulu.

While, you'll see some steam and sulfur vents at Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, you are unlikely to see live lava on a day trip.

Read the Top Questions on the right side of the page. Driving tours, websites, maps, etc.

Go to the Oahu forum. Use the search on the Oahu forum: trip report

Read 15-20 trip reports.

Order the free travel planners for Hawaii and the Island of Oahu. You can also read them online.




You'll miss all the Christmas dinners, parades and craft fairs. Walk through some of the hotel lobbies. They are nicely decorated. Royal Hawaiian and Moana Surfrider are nicely decorated for Christmas. Sheraton Princess Kaiulani Hotel always a huge gingerbread village in the lobby.

Honolulu Hale (city hall) on S. King St. has a really nice Christmas display outside and a Christmas tree & wreath display inside. Free parking at night in the parking garage behind Honolulu Hale. Starts beginning of December. Ends about 1st weekend in January.

Google: Christmas display Honolulu Hale


Use the search on YouTube: Christmas Honolulu Hale

Lots of info on this thread. Much of it is in the Top Questions now. But you might find some useful info:


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14. Re: First time visiting Honolulu.


Great advise from BLBL, we loved the hike up Diamond Head Crater very enjoyable, We went to Haunama Bay very early and used Snorkelfest they were fantastic and we didn't have to worry about car parking and believe me it gets very busy there.

Having a car is fantastic and I loved just being able to stop when we could, we did call into Dole Plantation for a nice Dole Whip a toilet stop a quick whiz around the maze and then left with some nice Pineapple Candy but not worth a day trip.

Pearl Harbor is great loved the time we spent there very thought provoking.

If your into hiking Koko Crater is also a great walk

We considered doing the day trip over to the Big Island but it just seemed a waste of a day and a long day at that to be spending most of the time on a bus when we come back we will fly over and do what BLBL suggested rent a car and do it at our own leisure even stay a night but this obviously isn't possible with such limited time you have.

The best advise I can give is make the most of this beautiful holiday destination.


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15. Re: First time visiting Honolulu.

I agree with the poster who suggested more time at the beach and driving around, less at paying for expensive commercial attractions (I don't put Bishop Museum or Iolani Palace in that category though). I'd skip the luau, but find places to see Hawaiian live music and dance. There are many opportunities for this, often free.


16. Re: First time visiting Honolulu.

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