If you had only one Hawaiian island to visit, Oahu might just be the perfect choice. With sensational beauty, unforgettable natural sights like Nuuanu Pali, the world-famous Waikiki Beach and the vibrant city thrills of Honolulu, your honeymoon in Oahu truly gives you the best of all Hawaiian worlds. Aptly nicknamed The Gathering Place, Oahu is the third largest island in the volcanic archipelago that makes up the U.S. state of Hawaii, and it is by far the most popular with tourists. Here you’ll find the metropolis of Honolulu, the state’s capital and center for the majority of the population. Couples will find a bounty of five-star hotels and restaurants, contemporary culture and exceptional shopping. All this adds up Oahu having a more energetic vibe than the typical Hawaiian serenity and peaceful bliss.
While you could easily spend all your time in Honolulu, you’d be missing out on Oahu’s many other wonderful charms. Not far from Waikiki are many relaxing pockets to spark your romance with fewer crowds and ample quiet. Also, the Koolau and Waianae mountain ranges offer great hikes and gorgeous beauty. Waikiki Beach is certainly a must-see location, but even more secluded white sand beaches, flavorful beach towns and water-sport excitement reside on the North Shore. And sprinkled throughout the island are miles of pineapple fields, walking trails and simply stunning tropical scenery.
There’s never a loss for awesome activities to do on your honeymoon on Oahu that will satisfy you’re every whim and expectation of being in a tropical paradise. Soaking in the sun on pristine sandy beaches, hiking verdant trails, snorkeling crystal-clear waters, walking in volcanic craters, even paying homage to a tragic chapter of American history at Pearl Harbor, Oahu lays out big city action and local delights, yet always uniquely Hawaiian.
The other Hawaiian Islands focus on relaxation in paradise. Oahu on the other hand is bursting with activity. Your honeymoon on Oahu presents you with horseback riding, stunning sightseeing, dozens upon dozens of great local restaurants and eateries, surfing, parasailing, whale watching and so much more. Yet you also have the benefit of Honolulu, a bustling metropolis with big city attractions. Oahu is a one-stop adventure to suit any type of honeymoon you can dream up, and the best part is the majority of it can all be done at minimal expense.
Oahu is broken up into sections that each have unique appeal. In addition to Honolulu, you’ll likely want to visit North Shore Oahu, which is the surfing mecca with big waves and touristy spots; Pearl Harbor with its beautiful views and historical significance; Waikiki, Oahu's main resort area with luxury galore and its world-famous beach; and then Windward Oahu, one of the most impressive destinations on the island with gorgeous azure bays, emerald valleys and rigid mountains, all just 15minutes from downtown.
- DISCOVER SUNKEN MYSTERIES. You can find snorkeling and diving tours from Waikiki that bring you to the numerous fascinating wrecks of ships and airplanes that were sunk during World War II.
- LACE UP YOUR HIKING BOOTS. Diamond Head State Park is among the top spots to hike with exceptional views of Honolulu and beyond.
- KAYAKING FOR THE BIRDS. On the Windward side, try kayaking to beach of the bird sanctuary on the Mokulua Islands where wildlife is on display from exotic birds to a multitude of turtles.
- GOLF YOUR HEART OUT. While all the islands offer great golfing, Oahu has dozens of excellent courses, most of which are not affiliated with a hotel or resort. That means you can enjoy your favorite pastime without dropping exorbitant amounts of money to get on the greens.
- SEE THE USS ARIZONA MEMORIAL AT PEARL HARBOR. For a somber look back at the pivotal attack on Pearl Harbor that brought the United States into World War II, the USS Arizona Memorial offers a 2½-hour tour to the ship, which lies 6 feet below the ocean’s surface. It’s an incredible and indelible moment that you won’t forget.
- REACH NEW HEIGHTS. Give your honeymoon in Oahu a whole new perspective soaring through the sky. Glider rides are a surprisingly affordable way to see the breathtaking sights of the island as you gently drift through the air currents.Gliders have no engines so you experience Oahu’s majestic beautyin almost complete silence.
- HEAD OUT ON THE HIGHWAY. A driving tour on the Pali Highway offers an immense amount of natural splendor. There’s simply no spot that isn’t a superb opportunity for an incredible photo. A particular highlight is the spectacular Pali Lookout.
- GO TO WAIMEA. What would an Oahu honeymoon be without a day of complete and utter relaxation in the sun? Waimea is the absolute perfect location for sun worshippers of all kinds to soak up the tropical warmth in a picture postcard setting.
- VISIT A FARM. Oahu has its fair share of coffee and macadamia nut farms and outlets, but many offer tours that give you a wonderful peak inside native Hawaiian culture, plants and much more, usually at a very reasonable cost of entry.
Tips and Advice
- AVERAGE TEMPERATURE: 80 degrees F. Any time of the year is perfect to visit Oahu.
- AREA CODE: (808)
- TIME ZONE: Hawaii Standard Time (GMT-10 hours). Hawaii is 5 hours behind the US East Coast, 6 hours behind during Daylight Saving Time.
- LANGUAGES: English, Hawaiian
- GETTING AROUND: You’ll have no problems getting around Oahu with easy access to car, moped and motorcycle rentals, plus shuttles and taxis. Also available is Oahu’s public transportation system known as TheBus, with reasonable rates and extensive routes. What’s more, Oahu has four trolley lines on the Waikiki Trolley system that make dozens of stops.
- CURRENCY: U.S. dollar
- ELECTRICITY: 110-volts, the same as continental United States
HELPFUL HONEYMOON HINTS
- SEAT BELT LAW: Hawaii has a very strict seat belt law. Be sure that the driver and all passengers are buckled up.
- START OFF RIGHT: Celebrate your honeymoon on Oahu with a lei greeting for you and your love upon arrival at the airport. Set the mood by arranging one with a call to (800) 367 5183 or at www.alohaleigreetings.com.
- GET IN THE HAWAIIAN SPIRIT: “Aloha" means hello, goodbye and love. It’s a wonderful expression so say it often!
- DRESS: Be prepared to dress casually on Oahu. You’ll find sandals, bathing suits and informal clothing all around you, even at dinner. In fact, only a handful of upscale restaurants require a jacket for dinner.