Aug 16

Diamond Head Trail- Oahu

Diamond Head in the BackgroundKaren and I visited Oahu on our first trip to Hawaii.  We figured there would be more things to see and do there then at some of the other Hawaiian Islands and it is partially right, but now that we have visited the Big Island we have since come to the conclusion that looking for things to do is the wrong mindset when you are visiting Hawaii.  You have to get into the Aloha spirit and the relaxed Hawaiian pace of life.  The next time we go (and hopefully we will be going back soon) we will take a much more relaxed view and just go to enjoy the people, the climate, the ocean, and more specific what is in the ocean.  Despite our changed view we still look back fondly on our time in Oahu doing all the touristy things like hiking the Diamond Head Trail.

Every day that we were in Oahu we basically would snorkel in the morning and then adventure around the island.  One day we decided to go ahead and hike up the Diamond Head Trail.  We reach the parking lot around 4:20 not knowing they stop taking admission at 4:30.  The admissions lady advised us to come back the next day, but since we already had plans we went ahead and paid.  She warned us it would probably take about an hour to two to do the hike and we needed to get out by six or they would lock the gate, which meant our car would be stuck there overnight.  We decided to go for it! View on a cloudy day

Karen and I took off walking fast and we were quickly passing small groups of people on our way up.  It was amazing to see that a lot of them were wearing sandals.  The trail is somewhat paved, somewhat rocky.  Overall I would say that it is a little rough but very doable if you wear the right shoes, and bring water.  Be prepared to go up many steps because the trail gains 560 feet from the crater floor to the summit.  We breezed through, but of course that was when we were a little bit younger and in better shape, and the fear of not being able to drive back to our hotel that night kept us to a brisk pace.

We stopped at the lookout, drank some of the water that we had brought with us, took a few photos and then moved on.  The only thing about the hike that we did not like were the tunnels.  Karen is a little bit claustrophobic but she toughed trough.  My wife is a real trooper when it comes to those things.  After the long tunnel was another set of stairs to climb and then another tunnel and more stairs, but we finally made it.
Kenny in Tunnel

At the top we had our picture taken by a nice family and then we took theirs for them.  We soaked in the views as much as we could and then headed back down towards the bottom hoping that gates were not locked yet.  We both had conveniently forgotten to bring a watch so we briskly walked back down stopping at the lookout one last time and finally made it to the bottom.  Karen and I breathed a sigh of relief when we saw the gates were still open and when we reached our car and saw the clock we realized we still about twenty minutes left.

Karen and I highly recommend taking the Diamond Head Trail, but if we ever did it again we would go in the morning.  The lighting would have been so much better then and it would have been a lot less crowded.
Karen at the OverlookDiamond Head Trail
Located right next to Waikiki on Diamond Head Road between Makapu’u Avenue and 18th Avenue
Cost as of 2011 $5.00 per vehicle or $1.00 per person
Hours of operation are from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. all year long
For more information visit their website at http://www.hawaiistateparks.org/parks/oahu/index.cfm?park_id=15

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1 comment

  1. freda phillips

    Whew….. It makes me tired just reading about that hurry stress. But it looks very pretty.

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