9 Best Things to do in Waikiki

Waikiki is an iconic tourist destination on the South shore of Oahu and a must-visit during your time on the island. 

Many people call the neighborhood home during their trip to Oahu. Whether you’re staying here or passing through, don’t miss these must-do activities.

Visit Google Maps to see all of our top things to do in Waikiki

Waikiki Beach

A sandy shoreline stretches along the coast of Waikiki Bay. The water here is calm and warm and the coastline will give you great views of Diamond Head or the city skyline and famous Honolulu hotels. 

The beach is usually poppin’ with people playing music, catamarans docking and leaving, and surfers passing through but swimming in the bay is peaceful.

Sunrise & Sunset

Both sunrises and sunsets are epic in Waikiki. The sun sets into the ocean and the sun rises over Diamond Head. 

Sunsets are usually very busy on the beach with people clearing out shortly after. Sunrises can be surprisingly calm.


You can find great snorkeling on the same stretch of sand at Queen’s Beach just past the Waikiki Wall. 

Pick up snorkel gear from a local dive shop before you go, or you can usually find a cheap set at the ABC stores. 

Watch the Fireworks

The Hilton Hawaiian Village hosts a free fireworks show every Friday at 7:45. Find a viewing spot on the beach between Ala Moana Beach and Outrigger Beach Resort. 

If you want to upgrade the fireworks show, take an evening catamaran cruise and watch them from the bay.

Take a Tour

Some of the best tours and experiences depart from popular Waikiki. A few of the highlights include: 

  1. Whale watching tours (from December to April)
  2. Swim with dolphins
  3. Snorkeling Tours
  4. Surfboard and SUP rentals
  5. Surf lessons
  6. Sunset catamaran cruise
  7. Doors off helicopter tour
  8. Circle Island Tour


A traditional luau is a must on any visit to Hawaii. Watch an evening show that features traditional Hawaiian dances and performances while you eat classic Hawaiian dishes like Kalua Pork. 

Choose from one of the Waikiki luaus for a performance close to home. 

Sky Waikiki Raw & Bar

Sip creative cocktails and eat killer seafood on top of the city at the Sky Waikiki Raw & Bar

With views of Diamond Head, The Royal Hawaiian, and the bustling streets below it’s the perfect way to spend an evening. 

Beach Eats

Head to Duke’s Waikiki, Mai Tai Bar (in the Royal Hawaiian), or the Hula Grill for beachside eats in Waikiki. 

Watch the sunset while you eat and listen to nightly live music at Duke’s.

Hike Diamond Head

Technically just outside of Waikiki, the Diamond Head hike is a must-do activity nearby. It’s about 2.5 miles from Waikiki so you can make the walk or take a quick uber to the trailhead. 

From the summit you can see all of Waikiki and beautiful ocean views.

Oahu Cooking Classes

Oahu Cooking Classes

Take a deeper dive into Hawaiian food and culture while you learn to make traditional Hawaiian dishes.

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