Visiting Oahu? Take a hike up Diamond Head State Monument

For some of the best views in Oahu, take a hike up Diamond Head Crater.

Just some info on hiking Diamond Head Crater?

  • An extinct saucer shaped crater, formed about 300,000 years ago and it’s a National Landmark.
  • One of the most widely recognized hikes on Oahu
  • Diamond Head Crater climbs about 560 feet up to the summit.
  • .8 mile hike to the top
  • Once at the top, enjoy a panoramic view that extends over half of the island.
  • Open 6am-6pm but the last entry to the trail is at 4:30pm
  • $1 admission per person for pedestrians or $5 per car
  • The trail starts on a paved trail but will soon turn into a dirt path, uneven in some spots and the last 10th of a mile is all stairs and very steep.
  • There are a number of lookout points where you can rest a bit before continuing up to the top.
  • The first set of stairs is just a few minute walk after the first look out and this is the shorter one– only 74 stairs.
  • After climbing the first set of stairs, you’ll be at the entrance of the 225 foot long tunnel.  It’s dark so bring a flashlight with you.
  • Once you get out of the tunnel, the 2nd set of stairs, this one longer with 99 steps will be just ahead.  There’s a rest area and look out point after exiting the tunnel so you can catch your breath before heading up this steeper set of stairs.
  • After a bit more of a climb, you’ll soon be at the observation center at the summit with some fantastic views of Waikiki and Oahu.

Insider Tips:

  • Best at sunrise (thanks to cooler morning temperatures)
  • Great whale-watching from December to March for a $1 admission!
  • Bring water and sunscreen.  There are no water fountains along the hike and there is very little shade.
  • Don’t pass up the visitor’s booth for some interesting history, it’s role in World War I and, of course, bathrooms, water fountains and some vending machines.
  • Wear comfortable walking shoes.  This is not a hike to do in flip flops (or Hawaiian slippers)
  • You will get some fabulous views from the top of the crater so make the effort to go to the top.

My Vacation Lady is a Hawaii Destination Specialist so if you are interested in a vacation or honeymoon to Hawaii, contact us.  Our personal approach to vacation and honeymoon planning can turn an OK trip into a great experience!

About the Author:

Mindy Gilbert of My Vacation Lady has been helping clients, just like you, plan their dream vacations, cruises and honeymoons since 1994.