How to Spend the Perfect Day in Honolulu

Start your day with an early-morning hike at Diamond Head and end with cocktails at a local bar.
 

Photograph by Brooklyn Dombroski.

A lively collection of walkable neighbourhoods, Honolulu is far more than Waikiki and the downtown shopping district most visitors see. From the urban street art and brewpubs of industrial-chic Kakaako to lush Manoa with its grand homes and gardens, this capital city on Oahu is as multicultural and eclectic as the people who built it.

6 a.m.

Photograph by Stelios Michael/Alamy.

Be at the gate when it opens to hike Diamond Head—the trail will be clear and you’ll have one of the best sunrise views on Oahu.

8 a.m.

Eat breakfast at Koko Head Cafe in Kaimuki, which serves up creative combinations such as a breakfast bruschetta with fruit and macadamia yogurt and baked volcano eggs with Portuguese sausage.

9:30 a.m.

Photograph by Brooklyn Dombroski.

The calm waters of Ala Moana Beach Park are perfect for a surf lesson with Let’s Surf HI.

11 a.m.

Photograph by Theodore Trimmer/Shutterstock.

Wander the stalls of Chinatown’s outdoor Oahu Market, where you’ll feel like you’ve visited every country in Asia.

12:30 p.m.

Photograph by Lianne Rozzelle.

Dig into The Pig and the Lady’s sublime Pho French dip banh mi sandwich—the slow-roasted brisket, hoisin sauce and rich pho broth come together perfectly.

1:30 p.m.

Photograph by 7maru/Shutterstock.

Tour grand Iolani Palace, home of Hawaii’s last reigning monarchs. This ornate building has been restored to its palatial grandeur and features original furnishings.

3 p.m.

Mural in Kakaako district by artist Dulk, photograph by Jasper Wong.

Easily one of the city’s coolest neighbourhoods, Kakaako is bursting with vibrant murals. Take a self-guided tour and admire these colourful creations (maps available at powwowworldwide.com).

4:30 p.m.

Join the lively scene at Honolulu Beerworks. Order a Bavarian soft pretzel along with a Kewalo’s Cream Ale.

6:30 p.m.

Sunset in Waikiki is a must. At House Without A Key, watch the sun fade away while dining on local dishes and listening to strains of Hawaiian music.

9 p.m.

Get a taste for Honolulu’s nightlife at Bevy, a local-favourite bar known for its inventive cocktails.

[This story appears in the November 2019 edition of WestJet Magazine.]

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