Natural Wonders of Oahu
From scenic mountain vistas to spectacular beaches, Oahu’s landscape is filled with incredible natural beauty.
Leahi (Diamond Head)
Diamond Head State Monument, called Leahi (brow of the tuna) in Hawaiian, sits along the skyline just beyond Waikiki and is one of Hawaii’s most famous landmarks. Formed more than 100,000 years ago, the 760-foot tuff crater was used as a strategic military lookout throughout the 20th century. Today it’s a popular hiking destination with panoramic views of Waikiki and Honolulu.
Stretching more than seven miles, the beaches of Oahu’s North Shore include Waimea Bay, Ehukai Beach (Banzai Pipeline) and Sunset Beach. The North Shore is a legendary surf mecca, attracting the world’s best during the winter months, as it hosts a number of top big-wave competitions.
Hanauma Bay Nature Preserve
With clear blue waters and lively reefs full of colorful fish, Hanauma Bay on Oahu’s eastern tip is considered one of the island’s best snorkeling destinations. Beyond the colorful sea life you’ll also find an education center with exhibits, information and a theater presentation detailing Hanauma Bay’s transformation from volcanic crater to Hawaii’s first Marine Life Conservation District.
Koolau Mountains (Nuuanu Pali Lookout)
Take a short 20-minute drive north of Waikiki up the Pali Highway to the Nuuanu Pali Lookout for breathtaking views of the Windward Coast. Thousands of feet high, the towering Koolau mountain range stretches across Oahu’s northeastern side creating beautiful valleys and tropical rainforests.