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Things to do in Diamond Head

Things to do in Diamond Head

Diamond Head, a defining feature of the Honolulu skyline on the island of Oahu, Hawaii, offers an array of activities that captivate visitors with its natural beauty, historical significance, and recreational opportunities. From hiking its famous crater to exploring its beaches and nearby attractions, this guide unveils the best things to do in Diamond Head to make the most of a visit to this iconic destination.

Hike the Diamond Head Summit Trail

A visit to Diamond Head wouldn’t be complete without hiking the Diamond Head Summit Trail. This 0.8-mile trail leads to the summit of the crater, offering panoramic views of Waikiki Beach, Honolulu, and the vast Pacific Ocean. The trail, which is moderately challenging, involves navigating steep inclines, staircases, and a tunnel, making it an adventurous yet rewarding experience.

The hike typically takes between 1.5 to 2 hours round trip, depending on one's pace and the number of stops along the way. It is advisable to start early in the morning to avoid the midday heat and to ensure a parking spot. Hikers should bring water, sunscreen, and a hat for sun protection.

Visit Diamond Head State Monument

Diamond Head is not just a hiking destination but also a state monument that preserves the volcanic tuff cone and surrounding areas. The Diamond Head State Monument offers educational exhibits about the geological formation and history of the crater, which was formed over 300,000 years ago. Visitors can learn about the military history of Diamond Head, which served as a strategic lookout point during World War II.

The monument’s visitor center provides maps, information, and souvenirs, making it an excellent starting point for those who want to understand Diamond Head’s significance before exploring further.

Relax at Diamond Head Beach Park

Diamond Head Beach Park offers a serene alternative for those who prefer a more relaxed activity. Located on the southeastern side of the crater, this beach park is less crowded than the more famous Waikiki Beach, providing a peaceful setting for sunbathing, swimming, and picnicking. The beach is known for its tide pools and excellent conditions for surfing and snorkeling.

Although the beach park is more rugged and less developed, its natural beauty and tranquility make it a favorite spot for those looking to escape the hustle and bustle of Honolulu. It's a great place to unwind after a morning hike up the crater.

Explore the Kapiolani Community College Farmers Market

Just a short distance from Diamond Head, the Kapiolani Community College (KCC) Farmers Market is a must-visit for food enthusiasts. Held on Saturday mornings, this market features a wide variety of fresh, locally grown produce, artisanal goods, and delicious prepared foods. From tropical fruits and vegetables to Hawaiian specialties like poke bowls and malasadas, the market offers a taste of local flavors.

The market also provides an opportunity to interact with local farmers and vendors, gaining insight into Hawaii’s agricultural practices and food culture. It is an excellent stop to gather provisions for a picnic at the beach or a hike up the crater.

Tour the Diamond Head Lighthouse

Perched on the cliffs of Diamond Head’s southeastern shore, the Diamond Head Lighthouse is a historic landmark that has been guiding ships since 1917. While the lighthouse itself is not open to the public, its striking presence and the surrounding views make it a worthwhile stop. The lighthouse is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and is an excellent spot for photography.

Visitors can walk along the scenic Diamond Head Road to reach the lighthouse and enjoy coastline views. The area around the lighthouse is also a popular spot for whale watching during winter when humpback whales migrate through Hawaiian waters.

Enjoy Outdoor Activities at Kapiolani Park

Adjacent to the base of Diamond Head, Kapiolani Park is Honolulu’s largest and oldest public park. It offers ample space for various outdoor activities, including jogging, picnicking, and playing sports. The park is home to the Honolulu Zoo and the Waikiki Shell, an outdoor amphitheater that hosts concerts and events.

Kapiolani Park’s open spaces and picturesque surroundings make it an ideal spot for families and individuals looking to enjoy a leisurely day outdoors. The park’s proximity to Diamond Head and Waikiki Beach allows visitors to easily combine activities in one day.

Dine at Local Restaurants

After a day of exploring Diamond Head and its surroundings, visitors can enjoy a meal at one of the many local restaurants in the area. From casual eateries to fine dining establishments, the culinary scene around Diamond Head offers something for every palate. Popular options include fresh seafood, Hawaiian fusion cuisine, and traditional Hawaiian dishes.

Elevate Your Living Experience with Elise Lee

Diamond Head is a multifaceted destination that blends natural beauty, historical depth, and various recreational activities. Whether hiking to the summit, lounging on a quiet beach, exploring local markets, or delving into the area's cultural offerings, visitors will find plenty of things to do in Diamond Head that cater to all interests. This iconic crater and its surroundings offer a memorable experience, showcasing the best of what Oahu has to offer.

Ready to make Diamond Head your home? Whether you're seeking a luxury condo with breathtaking views or a charming beachfront home, contact Elise Lee today to find your dream property in this iconic destination.

Work With Elise

Elise brings a fresh, creative international perspective to her Luxury Real Estate, Concierge & Interior Design career. She chairs the Honolulu Board of Realtors® City Affairs Committee, is on the Board of Directors for the Hawaii Economic Association, an Officer in the Confrérie de la Chaîne des Rôtisseurs Hawaii Bailliage.