We all know about Diamond Head and Pearl Harbor in Oahu, but there’s some more unique landmarks also worth checking out. Sometimes its fun to get away from the most popular tourist attractions in Honolulu and take in some of the more hidden gems on the island or some of the less talked about destinations.
Narrowing down everything to do on Oahu can be difficult. From amazing beaches, nightlife, hiking trails, festivals, and big wave surfing, there’s so much to see on Oahu. If you’re looking to explore some of the authentic side of Oahu, a Circle Island Tour takes you from Honolulu to the North Shore and back, hitting a bunch of fun landmarks on the way.
Here are just some of unique landmarks we think are worth checking out for anyone visiting Oahu:
- Byodo-In Temple
Located at the foot of the Ko'olau Mountains, the Byodo-In Temple is a non-denominational Buddhist temple. As a part of Oʻahu’s Valley of the Temples Memorial Park, the Byodo-In Temple is a smaller-scale replica of the 950-year-old Byodo-in Temple in Uji, Japan.
- Dole Pineapple Plantation
On the North Shore, the Dole Plantation started out as a simple fruit stand. Now the Dole Pineapple Plantation offers a variety of family fun activities including the Pineapple Express Train Tour, Plantation Garden Tour, and Pineapple Garden Maze. They have a country store with gifts, local favorites, foods and refreshments including the world famous DoleWhip.
- Waimea Valley
Waimea Valley is considered a sacred spot with deep roots to Hawaiian history, culture, and spirituality. It offers beautiful flowers, rare plants, cultural significant sites, and a breathtaking 30-foot waterfall. The North Shore Eco-Fun Waterfall Tour is the perfect way to see Waimea Valley.
- Iolani Palace
The Iolani Palace is national historic landmark and the only official royal residence in the U.S. From 1882 to 1893, the Iolani Palace was the residence of Hawaii’s last two monarchs: King Kalakaua and his sister, Queen Liliuokalani. . The palace is open to the public for guided tours and offers special events and festivals through the year.
- Aloha Tower
Located in Pier 9 at Honolulu Harbor, the Aloha Tower is beacon for tourists in Oahu. Great views and a great way to spend an afternoon of shopping in Hawaii. The Aloha Tower is also one of Honolulu’s best community spaces with an observation deck, dining, marketplace, and more.
- Pali Lookout
On the windward side above the Pali Highway tunnels, the Nu´uanu Pali Lookout provides a panoramic view of Kaneohe, Kaneohe Bay and Kailu. It’s known for strong tradewinds, and is a favorite sightseeing destination.
- Halona Blowhole Lookout
The Hālona Blowhole is one of Oahu’s must-see scenic stops. The Halona Blowhole is like Hawaii's own version of Old Faithful and sprays surf through a narrow lava tube shooting water 30 feet in the air. It’s a natural wonder created though thousands of years molten lava formed from volcanic eruptions.
- Polynesian Cultural Center
One of Hawaii’s most popular attractions, the Polynesian Cultural Center is a Polynesian-themed theme park. It features 6 authentic villages representing Hawaii, Fiji, Aotearoa (New Zealand), Samoa, Tahiti, and Tong. The center provides action-packed evening shows with fire, songs, dancing and featuring over 100 Polynesian performers. It’s a convenient way to experience Hawaii’s history and catch an authentic luau.
If you want to take in unique landmarks like the Byodo-In Temple, reserve an IMI Tour in Oahu today.