Nowhere sums up the spirit of Hawaii more powerfully than its world-famous beach – so grab your swimming gear and prepare to be wowed by Waikiki!
It may sound like a cliché, but Waikiki really does epitomise the picture-postcard perfection of Hawaiian beach life. Palm-fringed sands, crystal-clear waters and endless azure skies provide the backdrop for the beautiful people to show off their toned bodies and sporting skills, or just lie back and soak up the sun.
Waikiki’s fame chiefly rests on its reputation as a surfers’ paradise, a legacy of the legendary Hawaiian-born Olympic swimming champion Duke Kahanamoku, whose giant statue dominates the promenade. "The Duke" is credited with spreading the global popularity of the sport, and it’s easy to see why both novice and more experienced surfers continue to be drawn to this idyllic stretch of Pacific coastline. Sheltered by a natural reef, the waves are gentle enough for beginners and there are several schools based on the beach where you can sign up for lessons. Afterwards, watch in amazement as the experts effortlessly ride the rollers further offshore or show off their mind-boggling circus skills with a spot of tandem surfing.
If you prefer your entertainment a little more passive, find a shady spot under a palm tree and settle back to watch the world go by. There’s always something interesting to see at Waikiki, from hula competitions and outrigger canoe races to free Friday evening firework displays. Take a dip in the warm lagoon or stroll along the promenade admiring the never-ending fashion parade. As the day draws to a close, people flock from far and wide to marvel at the spectacular sunset, before enjoying a meal or a drink in one of the popular bars and restaurants nearby or dancing the night away in the pulsating clubs.
Waikiki’s popularity makes it a magnet for visitors all year round so, if you want to escape the crowds, head for the quieter stretches bordering Kapiolani Park. In either case, whether you prefer a more peaceful vibe or like to pitch yourself right into the action, there’s no better place to learn the true meaning of Aloha than right here on Waikiki Beach.