Skip to main content
  • Bird's eye view of Prince Waikiki, the yacht harbor and Diamond Head.
Article
What to Do in Honolulu, Hawaii
January 18 ,2024

From beautiful beaches to big-city attractions, Honolulu is a coastal city teeming with opportunities for fun and exploration. The Hawaiian capital is a thriving cultural hub, complete with iconic island scenery, compelling historical sites, and an internationally inspired food scene you won’t find anywhere else. As your Honolulu home-away-from-home, Prince Waikiki puts the best of this incredible city within easy reach — whether your getaway involves shopping, sightseeing, or simply soaking up the sun on the sugar-white sands of Waikiki.

 

Of course, with so many incredible things to see, do, and taste, deciding where to begin can sometimes be a challenge — which is why we’ve rounded up just a few of our favorite things to do here in Honolulu.

Hit the Beach

 

Happy surf people having fun surfing on Waikiki beach, Honolulu, Oahu, Hawaii

 

The Hawaiian Islands are home to some of the planet’s most captivating beaches. There are more than 125 on Oʻahu alone, including the world-famous Waikiki Beach. Located just steps away from your home base at Prince Waikiki, the two-mile stretch of golden sand is known for its lush palms and calm coastal waters — the perfect setting for beginner surfers looking to hone their skills. And with its central location just steps from the world-class shopping, dining, and attractions of Kalākaua Avenue, Waikiki Beach puts the best of the city within easy reach.

 

Of course, Honolulu offers plenty of other options for sun-seekers besides the bustle of Waikiki. Just a fifteen-minute drive away, you’ll find the stunning scenery and unmatched serenity of Kahala Beach. Tucked away in a secluded cove, Kahala Beach offers incredible views of the Koko Head Crater and cliffs of China Walls, with tranquil waters that make it the ideal spot for a scuba adventure.

 

Sample the Local Flavor

 

Dinner at 100 Sails restaurant in Prince Waikiki Honolulu

 

With its cosmopolitan influences and affinity for fusion cuisine, Honolulu truly is a food-lover’s paradise. And with four incredible on-site dining options to choose from here at Prince Waikiki, you won’t have to go far to get a taste of the local flavor. 

 

Brighten your morning with a fresh, farm-to-cup Kona coffee at Honolulu Coffee Company. Delight your tastebuds with island-inspired entrees and cocktails crafted to perfection at the award-winning 100 Sails Restaurant. Or treat yourself to Japanese dining with a decidedly Hawaiian twist at Katsumidori Sushi Tokyo — the celebrated izakaya’s first location outside of Japan.

 

Of course, Honolulu offers a world of unforgettable dining beyond Prince Waikiki. Culinary explorers will delight in dining their way through Honolulu’s historic Chinatown. Established in the mid-1800s, the vibrant neighborhood is one of the oldest Chinatowns in the United States, home to bustling night markets, bubble tea shops, and restaurants serving local favorites like har gow dumplings, cold ginger chicken, and duck with fried taro. Don’t forget to pack your appetite!

 

Make Time for Remembrance

 

The Ensign flies over the USS Arizona Memorial in Honolulu, Hawaii

 

Honolulu is many things: an island paradise, a vibrant urban center, and, as the home of the USS Arizona Memorial, a place of solemn pilgrimage. A National Historic Landmark and part of the Pearl Harbor National Memorial, the monument honors the 1,177 sailors and Marines who lost their lives on December 7, 1941.

 

Watch one of the most pivotal moments in U.S. history come to life through firsthand accounts and educational exhibits at the visitors’ center. Afterward, take a short boat ride out to the marble viewing platform that straddles the battleship’s sunken hull. A striking remembrance wall, engraved with the names of the fallen, serves as a poignant reminder of the noble sacrifices made here in the defense of freedom.

 

Get the Royal Treatment

 

Night view of Iolani Palace in Honolulu Hawaii.

 

Long before it joined the union and became an American state in 1959, the Hawaiian islands were known as the Kingdom of Hawaiʻi — complete with kings, queens, gilded palaces, and its very own royal family. And while the Kalākaua dynasty ended in 1893 with the abdication of Queen Liliʻuokalani, the remnants of this once-powerful monarchy can still be found — if you know where to look.

 

Once the official residence of the Hawaiian royal family, ʻIolani Palace offers a compelling glimpse into this fascinating chapter of Hawaiʻi’s past. The only royal palace on U.S. soil, it offers both guided and self-directed tours where you can gaze upon ancient Hawaiian regalia, including portraits, swords, precious jewels, ornate furnishings, and golden crowns.

 

A short stroll from the palace grounds, the imposing statue of King Kamehameha I is another must-visit site for lovers of all things royal. Erected in 1883 by acclaimed neoclassical sculptor Thomas Ridgeway Gould, the 18-foot bronze likeness is one of Oʻahu’s most photographed landmarks. It pays tribute to the monarch who, in 1810, united the Hawaiian Islands, ending decades of protracted conflict and forever changing the fortunes of his kingdom.

 

Go Back in Time at Bishop Museum

 

Calling all history buffs! Bishop Museum is a must-visit destination for anyone looking to learn more about the fascinating history of the Hawaiian Islands. The museum was founded in 1889 to house the collections of Princess Bernice Pauahi Bishop, the last descendant of the royal Kamehameha dynasty. Today, it’s home to the largest collection of Hawaiian and Pacific cultural artifacts in the world. 

 

Explore immersive exhibits on early Hawaiian culture, an extensive art gallery, and an interactive Planetarium, where you can learn about the celestial navigation used by Polynesian voyagers who first settled Hawaiʻi more than a thousand years ago. Afterward, grab a picnic blanket from the Hoʻokipa Desk and enjoy an open-air lunch on the museum’s lush grounds.

 

Snap a Photo at the Aloha Tower

 

Aloha Tower on Oahu in Hawaii.

 

Looking to capture that perfect vacation snapshot to remember your Hawaiian holiday? Then head to Honolulu Harbor’s newly revitalized Aloha Tower Marketplace. Built in 1926, this iconic symbol of the Aloha State once stood as the tallest building in all of Hawaiʻi for nearly four decades. 

 

Today, the mixed-use urban space is part of the campus of Hawaiʻi Pacific University and a local favorite for dockside dining, live entertainment, and eclectic local shopping. It’s also the ideal spot to snap that perfect pic while taking in unobstructed views of the harbor from the tower’s 10th-floor Observation Deck.

 

Raise Your Game at Hawaii Prince

 

A woman overlooking a man golfing at the Hawaii Prince Golf Club during sunset.

 

Golf is a favorite pastime here in Hawaiʻi. In fact, Oʻahu is home to some of the best and most beautiful courses in the world — including our very own Hawaii Prince Golf Club. Designed by legendary course architects Arnold Palmer and Ed Seay, the 27-hole course offers three interchangeable nines that can be tailored to create a variety of playing conditions for all skill levels.

 

Located a convenient 40-minute drive from Prince Waikiki, the scenic course spans 270 acres within the lush Ewa Plain, framed by breathtaking views of the distant Waiʻanae Mountains. Play a round on the verdant fairways, take your game to the next level with a private lesson, or refuel on the open-air patio at Bird of Paradise, the club’s celebrated 19th hole. Plus, with exclusive offers and preferred rates for guests of Prince Waikiki, you can enjoy a world-class island golf experience that won’t break the bank.

 

Honolulu is Calling…

 

Fascinating history, inspired cuisine, inviting accommodations, and world-famous beaches — what’s not to like? When it comes to a holiday in Honolulu, there truly is something for every type of traveler. Explore exclusive offers and vacation packages, and start dreaming of your Prince Waikiki getaway today.

Connect With Us @PrinceWaikiki