Waikiki Walking Tour

Waikiki Walking Tour Part 2

Waikiki Walking Tour

If you take a right down Kalakaua Ave from Kapahulu, you’ll find yourself in a maze of high-rise hotels, tacky tourists shops, fancy restaurants, and the kind of upscale shops that have a bouncer at the door. For the most part, Waikiki can seem like a tropical playground only for the rich, but there’s plenty of cool stuff to be seen without spending a dollar.

Waikiki Walking Tour

There are hundreds of hotels in Waikiki, and while I could never dream of staying in most of them, I can stroll through the lobby, snap some photos, and imagine what the rooms would look like and what kind of people must be in them.

Waikiki Walking Tour

The first place we always pop into on a walk through Waikiki is Pacific Beach Hotel. There is a lobby restaurant with an expensive seafood buffet, but you don’t have to pay anything to take in the main attraction, a massive aquarium home to exotic fish and rays, and even mermaids. There’s a stair case where you can view the fish from. It’s pretty impressive.

Waikiki Walking Tour

Further down is the Hyatt Regency, and we love visiting their parrots. Our favorite is Mali, and African Grey. We’ve been trying to teach him to sing the Harry Potter theme for about a year now. They also have a waterfall inside their hotel, you know, as one does. No big deal.

Waikiki Walking Tour

If you come out the far end of the Hyatt and cross the street, you’ll find yourself at the Moana Surfrider. This is Waikiki’s first ever hotel, and I’m absolutely smitten with it. They have an enormous banyan tree on the beach side. There’s a bar under it, but I’ve never been brave enough to order a drink. I’m too scared to see the prices.

The next hotel is the Outrigger Waikiki which contains two of our favorite restaurants, Duke’s Canoe Club and Hula Grill. They also have some awesome art and a huge wooden canoe. 

Waikiki Walking Tour

When you see the Cheesecake Factory, cut into the shopping center that runs behind it. A little ways in, you’ll see a pathway that appears, to my eyes, to lead into a magical tropical garden. It’s actually taking you onto the grounds of Waikiki’s second and probably most famous hotel, The Royal Hawaiian. This place is fa-a-ancy. If you just look at the cars waiting at the valet, you’ll know why I always feel a bit conspicuous strolling through its beautiful lobby. If you take a few minutes to sit on one of their rocking chairs and watch the ginger sway in the breeze, nobody will come out and shout at you. 

Waikiki Walking Tour

From there, you can cut through the Sheraton parking garage and come out on Beachwalk. Head toward the ocean, then turn right and you’ll find yourself in Fort Derussy Park. You can stop into the free military history museum if you need a break from the sun, or continue your stroll past the impenetrable fortress of the Hale Koa and get yourself over the the Hilton Hawaiian Village. This is the largest resort in Waikiki, and they have a little bit of everything, including penguins.

Waikiki Walking Tour

My favorite part of this resort is the little Japanese section, which reminds me a bit of living in Taiwan. If you take your time strolling around, you’ll find some cool stuff hidden down slim alleys. You’ll definitely come back with plenty of photos.

From here, I suggest you make your way out to the shimmering blue of the Pacific and walk back with your feet in the water. Don’t forget to stop off and take a photo at the Duke statue. It’s a tourist requirement.

Waikiki Walking Tour

There is no end to the cool things you can see in Waikiki, and the people themselves provide plenty of intrigue. You could certainly spend a small fortune if you desire, but if you happen to be one of those people who doesn’t actually have a small fortune, you can still really enjoy Waikiki. Just make sure you have plenty of water and a bucket of sunscreen.

To see all the photos from our day in Waikiki, be sure to check out our Facebook page.

Waikiki Walking Tour

Waikiki Walking Tour Part 1

Waikiki Walking Tour

We live about a mile from Waikiki, one of the most popular tourist destinations on the planet. If you walk straight down the road from my house toward the sea, you can literally walk right out over the Pacific Ocean to a little pavilion at the end of a sea wall. Kids love to jump off the end with their boogie boards. They’re much braver than I am.

Waikiki Walking Tour

You have two choices once you reach the end of Kapahulu. You can turn right and head into the heart of Waikiki, full of hotels, restaurants, and shops, but today, we’re going to take a left and head into Kapiolani Park.

Waikiki Walking Tour

The park extends from Kapahulu all the way to Diamond Head. The Honolulu Zoo, Honolulu Aquarium, The Bandstand, and The Shell are all found on park land. There are also soccer fields, picnic tables, and some of the most wonderful trees you’ll ever lay eyes on. This day, we headed down the esplanade, a paved walkway that stretches right along the beach. 

Waikiki Walking Tour

We stopped off for breakfast at the Barefoot Beach Cafe, which is actually a spruced up concession stand. The food was excellent, and the view can’t be beat. Next, we check out our favorite place to spot some tropical fish along the wall in front of the aquarium, and even took a brief trip inside.

Waikiki Walking Tour

Kapiolani Park is one of my favorite places to go walking. Diamond Head is always hovering over you, and the ocean stretches on as far as the eye can see. If you go all the way to the end and just keep walking, you’ll end up in my very favorite neighborhood. We also love to host parties here. It’s much prettier than our house.

Waikiki Walking Tour

Urban hiking is one of our favorite past times, and Waikiki is our most frequent destination. My favorite thing about walking in the park is that it doesn’t cost a cent. I hope you love it as much as I do. Have you been to Waikiki? What are some of your favorite spots?

Waikiki Walking Tour

 

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Honolulu Zoo

Honolulu Zoo

Honolulu Zoo Sometimes when my daughter is visiting, we spend a lot of time playing out the whole “What do you want to do?” routine. It gets old quick. One of the fun things we decided to do this time was take our new camera to the Honolulu Zoo.

Honolulu Zoo

This is a perfect family outing for a number of reasons. First off, the admission isn’t too terribly outrageous. If you have a local ID, they give you a Kama’aina discount. But even if you’re visiting, it’s not too bad. Don’t buy food inside, though. It’s not worth the ridiculous price. Secondly, it’s not an extremely large zoo, so you can see all the animals in about three hours. It doesn’t take up your entire day, and nobody gets bored. Thirdly, ANIMALS!!!!! I’m married to someone who loves animals more than people, so you have no idea how awesome he thinks a trip to the zoo is.

Honolulu Zoo

Oh, and did I mention the zoo is located in Waikiki. If you’re here on vacation with your kids, you can easily walk to the zoo. You could even walk right across the street to the beach afterwards. How awesome is that?

Honolulu Zoo

Like all animal lovers, I feel like visiting a zoo is bittersweet. It’s always a little tough to see some of these animals confined to an enclosure, but zoos can be a great venue for conservation education. We just have to hope that the animals are being well cared for and receive plenty of enrichment to keep them stimulated. 

Honolulu Zoo

Take your family to the zoo. It’s cheap and fun. What more could you ask for?

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