The Most Beautiful Places to See on Oahu

Beholder beware, everyone agrees that Hawaii is beautiful. No question about it. But what are the most beautiful places to see on Oahu? These 5 scenic locations are on my top list of beautiful places to visit in Hawaii. Read these tips and discover Oahu’s most beautiful locations.

1. Waimanalo Beach

One of Oahu’s longest stretches of sand is also one of the most beautiful beaches. Waimanalo Beach, located in East Oahu with its white sandy shores and gorgeous mountain backdrop, is a favorite among locals and visitors. Hawaiian singer IZ was most likely singing about Waimanalo in his famous song, “White Sandy Beach of Hawaii”. Tip: The beach is less crowded on the weekdays. Find your own slice of paradise and spend a day at this picture-perfect beach. Learn more here.

2. Byodo-In Temple

What may seem like an unlikely landmark in Hawaii—a Japanese Buddhist temple—is actually one of Oahu’s most remarkable, breathtaking places to visit.  The Byodo-In Temple, built to commemorate Japanese cultural influence in the islands, is a hidden gem of scenic, serene beauty. Located in Kaneohe and tucked against the gorgeous Koolau mountain ridges in the Valley of the Temples, the Byodo-In is a great place to photograph because of its bright red columns and giant golden Buddha. Tip: Buy fish food at the gift shop and feed the colorful koi fish in the pond. It’s lots of fun! Learn more here.

3. Waikiki (especially at sunset)

Busy as it is throughout the day, Waikiki is a great place to watch the sunset. People walking along Kalakaua Ave. stop to watch the sky turn into a brilliant orange painting. Tiki torches light up along the boardwalk. Friends grab drinks at beachside bars as surfers ride the last of the day’s waves before the sun dips below the horizon. At this time of day, Waikiki is one of Oahu’s most beautiful places to be no matter what you’re doing—surfing, socializing, or simply stopping to admire the beauty of Hawaii. Tip: Every Friday, enjoy free fireworks on Waikiki Beach. Yup, free! Learn more here.

4. Ka’a'awa Valley (Kualoa Ranch)

On Oahu’s east side is one of Hawaii’s—and Hollywood’s—most scenic locations is Ka’a'awa Valley, where Kualoa Ranch is located. Scores of blockbuster movies have been filmed in Ka’a'awa Valley. The best part? Visitors have access to the valleys green valleys and mountain trails. Check out the variety of activities at Kualoa Ranch for horseback rides, ATV adventures, movie tours and more in Ka’a'awa Valley. Tip: Book your Kualoa Ranch activities online in advance. Learn more here.

5. Makapu’u Lookout

Along Oahu’s south shore is a scenic lookout with panoramic views of Waimanalo Beach and Rabbit Island. A favorite stop for novice hikers, avid painters and local fisherman, Makapu’u Lookout is a must-see site on Oahu for its captivating beauty. Stay here a while and marvel at the deep blue ocean and distinctive offshore islands. Tip: The hike to the Makapu’u Lighthouse is easy, but bring a light jacket in the afternoon because the winds are strong as you near the lighthouse. Learn more here.

What do you think are the most beautiful places on Oahu?

Tell us in a comment below or tweet us at @discoverhawaii.

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