Oahu, Hawaii

Imagine scrambling up the 100,000 year old volcanic cone of Diamond Head Crater for an amazing view of Waikiki Beach - or sinking into soft white sands of Kailua Beach, then body boarding on its turquoise water - or reveling in sophisticated nightclub lofts and the arts scene of Chinatown. This is Oahu - land of the sacred Fire Goddess Pele, untamed tranquil beauty, and the center of nightlife in Hawaii.

Make your way in downtown Honolulu through side streets packed with herbalists, shops, antiques, and historic Japanese and Chinese temples. Food adventures are everywhere. Try the Eurasian, Vietnamese, Malaysian, Cuban, or French places. The Kapahulu neighborhood near Waikiki is known for some of the best local flavors. Go up to Kahuku on the North Shore for succulent platefuls from roadside shrimp trucks...and the winter sight of legendary 20-foot waves.

People know Oahu as the surfing mecca of the world. But the wonders along walking trails are among its secret treasures. Leave the city behind on the forested drive to Pali Lookout. Stand in invigorating wind on the lookout to see the magnificent Windward Coast. You can hike down parts of the old Pali highway, picking fresh guava fruits off the trees as you go.

Travel just 25 miles from Waikiki to the Leeward Coast for a stunning reward. The last sandy beach at the northern end of the road is beautiful Yokohama Bay. Locals come here to fish and swim. It's a different and less known world of Oahu's coast. It is yours to discover.

Next Stop: Oahu

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