Your Destination Guide to Oahu

Destination Guide Oahu - Your Destination Guide to Oahu, HI

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© Brock Roseberry

Known for its hauteur and great beaches, the windward side of Oahu is still your average Hawaiian suburb, filled with kids on the streets, luaus on the lawn, and the quiet living that exists outside of Waikiki's bustle.

If the palaces in Downtown did not fulfill your need for glamour, take a trip to Kahala, where the richest of the rich make their homes. Huge, manicured lawns introduce even bigger houses, quiet and shaded. This is probably what comes to mind when you think of "living in Hawai'i." High-paying tourists agree, as this is home to the Waialae Country Club and the five-star Kahala Hotel. If you creep through these shady streets, you'll come to secluded beaches with rock walls and reefs.

For the more traditional beach, hit up the soft, powdery sands of Kailua, home to one of the top beaches in the world, Lanikai Beach. Not only is the area great for beach bums, but also water sports such as kite surfing, kayaking, and body boarding. A little further south are the calmer waters of Waimanalo. Like south-central Oahu, this area has a large military presence, keeping the community small and quiet, but not quite so local as the leeward side of the island.

Oahu | Windward

  • Ka'a'awa
  • Located just north of Kane'ohe, the small town of Ka'a'awa can be found on a narrow belt of land nestled between towering, green mountains and a calming, blue ocean.
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  • Kahala
  • A drive through Honolulu's suburb of Kahala is a tour of Oahu's priciest real estate. Bubbling fountains, swimming pools, wrought iron gates and sculpted lawn statues are easily visible from the street – often all at the same house.
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  • Kailua
  • Change doesn't come very often to Kailua, which is exactly how the people of this beach community prefer it. Residents enjoy the privacy of their peaceful suburbia and fight to preserve Kailua's rustic roots.
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  • Waimanalo
  • Waimanalo has no nightclubs, outlet malls, or gaudy tourist spots. Waimanalo is a sprawling, country-side community that reveres simplicity and seclusion. For residents, a wild night out typically means gathering the neighborhood together for a luau stuffed with great food, music, and friends.
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