5 Great Family Friendly Hikes to do in Oahu

Photo Credit: Instagram @shes.wanderthirsty

One (or five) #LuckyWeLiveHawaii reasons is the gorgeous nature filled spaces to explore and enjoy.  And so we wanted to share some of our favorite hikes that we’ve done with our family and friends.

Diamond Head
Photo Credit: DLNR Hawaii Website

Diamond Head

Diamond Head Rd

Honolulu, HI 96815  

(800) 464-2924

When one thinks of Hawaii, this iconic landmark comes to mind.  Diamond Head also known as Leahi is a must hike that has so much history attached to it.

Along with being a great way to view Waikiki in the .

300,000 year ago this iconic crater was created from a single explosive eruption according to the DNLR website.  Seriously, how many people can say casually, they’ve hiked a dormant volcano?  Um, CHECK! 

The entrance to the park is located by the Kapiolani Community College.  There is a fee to enter and hike so be prepared.

The hike has both A(concrete path and natural terrain path so use good hiking shoes.

In recent years, the park added an alternate route to the top which may take you away from entering into the old military bunker with it’s winding staircase  so decide for yourself which is preferred when you get to that ‘fork in the road’.

Park Tips & Information:

Daily 6 am to 6 pm, every day of the year including holidays.

Last entrance to hike the trail is at 4:30 pm. The gates are locked at 6:00 pm daily and all visitors must be out of the park by this time.

Photo Credit: Rew

Makapuu Lighthouse

Makapuu Lighthouse Rd,

Honolulu, HI 96825

A favorite hike for all ages.  The Makapuu Lighthouse, also known as Kaiwi Scenic Shoreline, was constructed in 1909 to provide navigational guidance to ships coming from Puget Sound, San Francisco, Mexico, Panama, and other Central American and United States ports, proceeding to Honolulu Harbor.  This helped in providing safer passage for the sea captains who would arrive to the islands at night or in bad weather.

This hike is a 2 mile round trip jaunt.  Great many places to stop and capture a picture.  If it’s a good day, you can see Molokai & Maui some 25 miles away across the Kaiwi Channel.  Can you imagine the whales that could be seen during whale season?

Park Tips & Information:

Gate opens at 7am to get your car in there closer to entrance, but if wanting to go earlier, park outside the gate.

Take water and stay hydrated.  

There are the Makapuu Tidepools that can be accessed so take a suit if you so desire.  But PLEASE, be safe.  Know what the ocean conditions are before entering the water.

PC: Hawaii Aloha Travel


7602- 7604 Koko Head Park Rd

Honolulu, HI 96825

Are you up for a challenge?  This hike definitely provides that.  During WWII, the military built a  bunker up on Kokohead crater, which was accessed by a railway that brought supplies and service members to the top.  Today, the abandoned railway lends it’s 1,000 or so steps to see an amazing sight and get a killer workout.

Park Tips & Information:

Bring water, sunscreen, good hiking shoes, hat & sunglasses.

There is a steep incline.  Take it slow and be careful on the way down as climbing 1,000 steps can make the legs a bit wobbly.

Photo Credit: Instagram: @dibbersinparadise

Lanikai Pillbox

265 Kaelepulu Dr,
Kailua, HI 96734 
If you score through Instagram and look up #Kailua, this hike will be sprinkled amongst all the other fantastic things to do in Kailua.  
Do yourself a favor and wake up early before the sun rises, get up to the first or second bunker, plop down and just wait for the brilliance that sunrise will show you.  

Park Tips & Information:

Sometimes it may rain the night before so prepare for some muddiness.  

Be kind to the neighborhood you park your car in as there is no designated parking lot for this hike.  

Picture of Manao Falls by Outdoor Hawaii
PC: Outdoor Hawaii

Manoa Falls

37 Manoa Rd,

Honolulu, HI 96822

As our other recommended hikes took you up to capture of view of the Pacific, this takes you inland through our tropical rainforest to #DestinationWaterfall.  

The 2 mile round trip path filled with bamboo and banyan trees guide you to a delightful waterfall worthy of selfies and the next family Christmas card photo. 

Park Tips & Information:

Bring mosquito spray, possibly a rain jacket, a towel, water.

It can get muddy so bring a plastic bag to put your shoes in after the hike if you want to keep the car clean. 


We hope you enjoy taking the time to visit some of these great Island hikes while visiting Oahu.  And if you live here, but haven’t had a chance to enjoy what our islands offer, it’s time to go! 


What are your favorite hikes?  Share with us on our Facebook Page! 

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