The Island of Oahu: Highlights & Overview

The yellow hibiscus is the flower associated with the island of Oahu.
Official flower of Oahu: Ilima
This regional map of the island of Oahu is handy and helpful.

The Island of Oahu

Oahu is the third largest island in the Hawaiian island chain and referred to as “The Gathering Place” 

The population on Oahu is over 1 million residents.

The Island of Oahu is by far the busiest of all the islands.

With all the people and the hustle and bustle way of life, Oahu highways and roads notorious for traffic.


The bulk of the hotels are in the Waikiki area. There is no shortage of places to stay regardless of your budget.

If you decide to stay on the North Shore, there are a couple of hotels to choose from along with duplex lodging options.

The Disney Hawaii Resort is located on the West side along with a few other hotels.

You are best off renting an AirBnB if you want to stay on the East side.


The Daniel K. Inouye International Airport is Oahu’s main airport, Airport Code: HNL

It is a main airline hub in the Pacific for many airline companies so this airport gets busy.


There are several options on how to get around on Oahu.

The best option is to rent a car.

If you are on a budget and don’t want to rent a car you can utilize the bus services. It is pretty efficient and you’ll be able to go almost anywhere you want. You’ll just have to plan your adventure endeavors around the TheBus schedule.

It’s easy to get a ride using ride share companies such as Uber or Lyft.

There are a few taxi services to choose from but the most popular taxi company is Charley’s Taxi.

Main Attractions on the Island of Oahu


Waikiki is world famous for Waikiki Beach made popular because of Duke Kahanamoku.

Duke Kahanamoku was a Olympic competitor in swimming who made the ancient sport of surfing popular.

If you have the means, try and stay at one of the hotels along the beach and request the ocean view.

Aside from the beach, Waikiki has many stores for shopping and restaurant selections.

If you want to learn how to surf, Waikiki beach is the perfect beach to give it a go.

Waikiki beach is one of the main attractions associated with Oahu.
Waikiki Beach

Pearl Harbor

On December 7, 1941, Pearl Harbor was surprised attacked by the Japanese. The attack on Pearl Harbor was the beginning of World War 2.

Pearl Harbor’s historical significance and the sacrifices many men and women gave is worth a visit.

In addition to the USS Arizona memorial, be sure to check out the other historical sites such as the Battleship Missouri, Pacific Fleet Submarine Museum, and the Aviation Museum.

Pearl Harbor and the USS Arizona.
USS Arizona Memorial in Pearl Harbor

Sunset Beach

Sunset beach is one of Oahu’s best surf breaks. During the winter months, the waves can get up to 30+ feet which is quite a sight to see.

During the summer, the ocean is the complete opposite. There are no waves and its so calm. That’s when you’ll want to jump in for a swim.

The Vans World Cup of Surfing competition takes place at Sunset Beach. If you are on island during a surf competition, definitely check it out. Its amazing how brave those men and women are.

As long as it’s not cloudy, you’ll be able to watch Sunsets that will take your breath away.

Sunset Beach on the island of Oahu is where many surf competitions are held. Sunset beach also displays awesome sunsets.
Banzai Pipeline
PC: Phillip B. Espinasse 

Summary of the Island of Oahu

Oahu is a busy island with many people and lots of traffic. There are lots of lodging options, especially in the Waikiki area. Getting around is easy and there are different options. Waikiki, Pearl Harbor, and Sunset Beach should be somewhere on your itinerary.