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North Shore

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North Shore, Oahu

If the perfect wave exists, you’ll find it on Oahu’s North Shore. The towering, glassy winter waves of this legendary surf mecca draw the best surfers in the world, while smaller and gentler summer waves are better for beginners. Stretching for more than 7 miles, the beaches of the North Shore host the world’s premier surfing competitions during the peak winter months, including the biggest of them all, the Vans Triple Crown of Surfing (November - December). Waimea Bay, Ehukai Beach (Banzai Pipeline) and Sunset Beach are great places to sunbathe and stroll along the shore—just leave surfing the huge waves to the pros because they can be very dangerous for inexperienced surfers.
 
The months between November and February are the best times to see big wave surfing.  The massive waves can sometimes swell up to thirty feet or more—dangerous even for experienced surfers—so always heed warning signs. From May to September, the waves subside, creating a more tranquil atmosphere for surfing and swimming.
 
Roughly a one-hour drive from Waikiki, the North Shore is also home to a variety of accommodation options, including condo rentals and the exclusive beachside Turtle Bay Resort. Take a little road trip to the charming surf town of Haleiwa Town, where you can shop, eat like a local and cool off with rainbow-flavored shave ice. Continue your drive to Laie to visit the Polynesian Cultural Center and the old plantation town of Kahuku.

Regional Map of Oahu

Oahu
Honolulu
Honolulu photo
The state capital and largest city in Hawaii, Honolulu is a unique combination of tropical glamour and buzzing international metropolis, where sandy shores meet city streets.
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Central Oahu
Central Oahu photo
Gain a unique perspective on World War II with a visit to Pearl Harbor, or explore the island's agricultural traditions at the Dole pineapple plantation.
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Leeward Coast
Leeward Coast photo
This area on Oahu's west side is home to rural towns, off-the-beaten-path beaches and one luxurious resort area, Ko Olina.
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North Shore
North Shore photo
Rub shoulders with champion surfers and laid-back locals on Oahu’s North Shore, the big wave surfing capital of the world.
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Windward Coast
Windward Coast photo
It’s only a short drive from Honolulu to enjoy the highlights of Oahu’s lush Windward Coast, including the peaceful Byodo-in Temple and adventurous Kualoa Ranch.
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One of the most recognizable beaches in the world, Waikiki was once a playground for Hawaiian royalty. Today, millions of visitors visit these shores every year.
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Take an easy hike to the top for panoramic views of Waikiki, Honolulu and the Pacific Ocean.
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Downtown Honolulu and Chinatown are Oahu’s centers for government, business and arts,with dining and nightlife around every corner.
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Kapahulu is a small neighborhood next to Waikiki where you find eclectic shops and some of Honolulu’s best local food.
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National Memorial of the Pacific honors sacrifices of America’s Armed Forces.
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Visiting Peal Harbor is an experience that will be etched into your soul forever, and offer you a new perspective on World War II. Known the world over as a "date which will live in infamy," the devastating events of December 7, 1941 changed the course of history.
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Kaena Point is a scenic and sacred spot where, legend says, the souls of ancient Hawaiians would jump off into the spirit world to meet the souls of their ancestors.
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The most popular beach on the Leeward Coast offers ocean-lovers a long stretch of golden sand to play or relax.
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This laid-back surfer town offers beautiful beaches, tasty local restaurants and food trucks, cool shops and plenty of shave ice.
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This beloved beach is popular with locals and visitors alike, and was an influential surf spot during the dawn of big wave surfing in the 1950s.
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Hike to this scenic point on Oahu’s easternmost tip for incredible views and whale watching during the winter.
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Nuuanu Pali Lookout is one of Oahu’s most popular scenic spots, with panoramic views of the Windward Coast and the Koolau Mountains.
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Valley of the Temples Memorial Park houses Byodo-in, a stunning replica of a Japanese Buddhist Temple set in a lush forest.
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North Shore Highlights

Haleiwa Town

Haleiwa Town

This laid-back surfer town offers beautiful beaches, tasty local restaurants and food trucks, cool shops and plenty of shave ice.

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Waimea Bay

Waimea Bay

This beloved beach is popular with locals and visitors alike, and was an influential surf spot during the dawn of big wave surfing in the 1950s.

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