Embark on a Scenic Drive around Oahu: 20 Essential Stops

Photo of Two Women on a Scenic Drive around Oahu.Oahu’s overall aesthetic allure grows more and more enticing as the island approaches a potential reopening. The thought of a scenic, full-day drive around Oahu sounds paradisiacal for those who have been away from Prince Waikiki for way too long. Oahu spans approximately 600 square miles, which adds up to a four-hour road trip with a few brief stops, including shopping, sightseeing, dining, and refueling. However, a counterclockwise drive around Oahu—as far as Prince’s concierge team is concerned—should fill an entire morning and afternoon when mapped out properly. There’s just way too much beauty to encounter.

A Full-Day Drive around Oahu: Explore the Isle

An eight to 12-hour drive around Oahu can (and should) include ample beach relaxation, light hiking, historical and cultural “research,” a wee bit of adventure, and perhaps after-dark entertainment, such as a luau. Some travelers simply prefer to hop into a rental car and drive. Others select to make three or four semi-lengthy stops, whether that be at a head-turning beach, a popular summit trail, or an activity-based ranch. The 20 essential attractions listed below are in counterclockwise “chronological order,” with breaks in Waimānalo, Kailua, Pupukea, Kapolei, and Kakaʻako.

Please note: It will take multiple trips around the island to visit all of these attractions. Also, due to COVID-19, some locations may be temporarily closed. Thus, please check the updated hours prior to departure.

  1. Ala Moana Beach
  2. Manoa Falls
  3. Photo of Waimanalo Beach. The Perfect Stop on a Drive around Oahu.Diamond Head State Monument
  4. Hanauma Bay State Park
  5. Makapu’u Point Lighthouse
  6. Waimanalo Beach (as pictured)
  7. Lanikai Pillbox
  8. Ho’omaluhia Botanical Garden
  9. Byodo-In Temple
  10. Kualoa Ranch
  11. Banzai Pipeline
  12. Sharks Cove
  13. Dole Plantation
  14. Paradise Cove Luau
  15. Coral Crater Adventure Park
  16. Hawaii Prince Golf Club
  17. Pearl Harbor
  18. Iolani Palace
  19. Kaka’ako street art murals
  20. Waikiki Beach

The Best Hotels in Hawaii: Prince Waikiki

Photo of Two Women Soaking in Prince's Infinity Pool after a Drive around Oahu.A picturesque, activity-filled drive around Oahu is precisely what the doctor ordered. There are so many hidden gems on the isle, especially along its sandy rim. And, of course, an idyllic place to start and finish each day of exploration is Prince Waikiki, one of the best hotels in Oahu (according to TripAdvisor). In fact, Prince Waikiki recently earned a 2020 Travelers’ Choice award for being the “Best of the Best”—the top one percent of businesses. On-site amenities include an oceanside infinity pool, exclusive Club Lounge, fresh island cuisines, complimentary concierge services, and golf discounts. Book now, save now, and stay later! Visit PrinceWaikiki.com to book a long-awaited escape to Hawaii’s most beloved island.