Natural Wonders

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Natural Wonders of Hawaii

A visit to Hawaii begs the question: what isn’t a natural wonder? Just about any of our stunning beaches and emerald-green mountains could qualify, but there are a few special places that stand above the rest. On your next visit, make some time to explore these amazing Hawaiian treasures.

Napali Coast, Kauai
Emerald-green pinnacles, hidden beaches and cascading waterfalls are just a few of the natural wonders you’ll see along this spectacular shoreline on Kauai’s North Coast. For unbeatable vistas, book a boat tour and explore the many secret sea caves. Or, make an epic approach by air with an adrenaline-pumping helicopter ride. 

Waimea Canyon, Kauai
Called the “Grand Canyon of the Pacific,” Waimea Canyon stretches 14 miles long and plunges 3,600 feet deep, providing panoramic views of crested buttes, rugged crags and other geologic features of Kauai's dramatic interior. Neighboring Kokee State Park offers another 45 miles of incredible hiking trails, plus an informative natural history museum.

Leahi (Diamond Head), Oahu
This state monument has become an iconic symbol of Hawaii, and the backdrop for countless photos snapped on Waikiki Beach. Dubbed “Diamond Head” by 19th-century British sailors who mistook glittering calcite crystals for diamonds on the crater’s slopes, Leahi is also an accessible day-hiking destination with some of the best views on Oahu.

Puu Pehe (Sweetheart Rock), Lanai
Rising 80 feet from the ocean at the meeting place of Manele Bay and Hulopoe Bay, this unusual rock formation is steeped in Hawaiian lore of a lovesick god—giving it its nickname, “Sweetheart Rock.”

Hana Highway, Maui
The journey is the destination on this scenic (and sometimes white-knuckle) drive through some of the state’s most spectacular scenery. The legendary Hana Highway (HI-360) twists and turns through rainforests, waterfalls and dramatic seascapes, connected by more than 50 bridges and 600 curves. Start early and plan on lots of stops en route to the peaceful town of Hana, a quaint holdover of old Hawaii. 

Papohaku Beach Park, Molokai
At three miles long and up to 100 yards wide in some spots, this secluded beach in rugged West Molokai is one of the largest white-sand beaches in Hawaii.

Maunakea, Island of Hawaii
Take a stargazing tour atop the largest sea mountain in the world, measuring over 33,000 feet from the ocean floor. Here, experts and visitors are treated to a show few have experienced; at this elevation, and because of the clear air and minimal light pollution, the stars can light the sky like glitter.