Destination guide

Aloha to O'ahu

O'ahu is the heart and soul of the Hawaiian Islands, brimming with hula, ukuleles, swaying palms, sun-kissed beaches and any other Hawaiian cliché you can think of. However, it's also the nucleus of the idyllic archipelago, boasting the state's buzzing beachside capital Honolulu, known for its thrilling nightlife, top-notch restaurants and lux boutiques. Here, you can while away your days exploring the city's offerings, snorkel beside a sea turtle, hike among the island's natural green grandeur or simply do what many other visitors do each year – kick back on a beach with a fruity cocktail, while contemplating a surfing lesson.

Things to do

Explore natural wonders and history in O'ahu

A vast volcanic tuff cone, Diamond Head is Hawaii's State Monument, and one of the island's best-known natural wonders. A 0.75-mile hike takes visitors up to the crater's rim, where they can admire far-reaching views over Waikiki and the glittering Pacific Ocean. Easier to get to but requiring an equal amount of energy is Honolulu's historic Chinatown. Tantalizingly scented by traditional noodle and dim sum eateries, the streets are home to lively bars, artsy galleries and bustling markets pedaling antiques and handicrafts. West of the capital is Pearl Harbor and the USS Arizona Memorial. Accessible only by water taxi, the moving memorial sits above the battleship's sunken hull, and honors those killed in 1941.

Activities

Sun, sea and adventure awaits in O'ahu

O'ahu is jam-packed with things to do, and unsurprisingly many activities revolve around the water. As well as those all-important hours spent basking on the beaches, here you can swim in the azure blue, catch the surf or be enchanted by shipwrecks and colorful marine life while diving or snorkeling. Those seeking big city hijinks should consider one of the vacation rentals in O'ahu's Waikiki neighborhood in Honolulu. Alongside a famous beach and energetic nightlife, it's home to some excellent restaurants and a who's who of designer stores. For those that prefer to be at one with nature, the island's verdant landscapes can be explored on foot, on horseback or by helicopter tour.

Weather

Year-round sunshine and warmth in O'ahu

Whichever vacation rentals in O'ahu take your fancy, you can rest assured the weather will be blissful wherever you stay. The island enjoys an enviable 278 days of sunshine a year, and even when the sun isn't shining it'll still be warm. O'ahu's climate doesn't vary much throughout the year, with average highs of 80-90 and average lows of 65-75, with the occasional light shower in the summer and heavier rain fall reserved for winter. While the island is situated in the tropics, both hurricanes and tornados are extremely uncommon, so it shouldn't be a concern.

Natural features

Lush rainforest, majestic mountains and golden beaches

Draped in rich rainforest and gilded with over 120 beaches, O'ahu has long held a reputation for its striking tropical beauty. Spanning 44-miles long and 30-miles across, the island isn't so large that it can't be explored by hire car, however, so if your vacation rental in O'ahu is situated away from a certain attraction it doesn't necessarily mean you'll miss out. The island is home to 2 shield volcanoes, known as the Waianae and Koolau ranges, with the highest point being Ka'ala – a huge verdant mountain, which stands at a dizzying height of 4,003 feet above sea level.

How to get there

Traveling to and around Oahu

The nearest airport is in Honolulu, HI (HNL-Daniel K. Inouye Intl.), located 9.1 mi (14.7 km) from the city center. If you can't find a flight that works for your travel itinerary, you might consider flying into Kapolei, HI (JRF-Kalaeloa), which is 12.3 mi (19.8 km) away.

What are the most popular destinations to visit in O'ahu?

There are many lovely places to stay for a holiday trip or just for a weekend in O'ahu. From HomeAway travelers, the most popular destinations to visit are:

  • Waikiki Beach: 3,476 vacation rentals
  • Turtle Bay Beach: 793 vacation rentals
  • Waialua: 816 vacation rentals
  • Laie: 949 vacation rentals
  • Kapolei: 953 vacation rentals

And HomeAway offers you the chance to discover many other popular destinations in O'ahu! Please use our search bar to access the selection of vacation rentals available in other popular destinations.

What are the main cities to discover in O'ahu?

Whether you're traveling with family or friends, here are the cities with the largest selection of vacation rentals for a holiday trip or just for a weekend in O'ahu:

  • Waialua: 816 rentals
  • Laie: 949 rentals
  • Kapolei: 953 rentals
  • Hauula: 1,010 rentals
  • Ewa Beach: 5,198 rentals

For other cities, please use our search bar to access the selection of vacation rentals available.

Near which points of interest can I spend my holidays in O'ahu?

HomeAway offers a large selection of rentals near lovely places in O'ahu. From HomeAway travelers, the most popular points of interest to stay for a holiday trip or just for a weekend are:

  • Waimea Bay: 729 rentals
  • Ko Olina Marina: 2,817 rentals
  • Banzai Pipeline: 1,389 rentals
  • Pupukea Beach Park: 1,410 rentals
  • Polynesian Cultural Center: 1,286 rentals

But there are many other points of interest around O'ahu listed on HomeAway where you can find your place to stay. Just write your wanted destination in our search bar and have a look at our selection.

Explore destinations around O'ahu

Waialua
816 vacation rentals
Laie
949 vacation rentals
Kapolei
953 vacation rentals
Hauula
1,010 vacation rentals
Ewa Beach
5,198 vacation rentals
Kahuku
985 vacation rentals
Pūpūkea
987 vacation rentals
Waikiki Beach Walk
3,460 vacation rentals
Mokuleia
511 vacation rentals
Mililani
4,986 vacation rentals
Mākaha
572 vacation rentals
Punaluu
932 vacation rentals
Waipahu
4,607 vacation rentals
Wahiawā
1,421 vacation rentals
Kawela Bay
800 vacation rentals
Pearl Harbor
5,127 vacation rentals
Aiea
4,776 vacation rentals
Makakilo
647 vacation rentals
Pearl City
4,873 vacation rentals
Nānākuli
848 vacation rentals