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1. Diamond Head Trail

Aerial view of Honolulu and the Diamond Head crater
The Koʻolau Range is estimated to be about 2.6 million years old, while Diamond Head (the crater) was only formed 400,000 to 500,000 years ago.

Diamond Head is the name of an immense circular crater that dominates the Honolulu skyline just beyond Waikiki Beach. This ancient tuff cone is part of Oahu’s volcanic field and one of the state’s most iconic landmarks.

Starting from the west side of the crater, you’ll start your ascent up a sidewalk path that transforms into rocky switchbacks leading to the first lookout over the Pacific Ocean. From there the first set of steep stairs starts, leading to a 225-foot tunnel, after which another series of steep steps will take you to the bunker at the top of the crater rim.

A spiral staircase will take you to the top, where you can enjoy the panorama of the island and the ocean. You’ll also find a small railed walkway with an excellent view of the crater floor. This is by all means a short and easy hike, but some people underestimate it to the extent that they come in flip-flops or don’t carry enough water. If you don’t want to sprain your ankle or faint from dehydration, come prepared.

About the author
Nandor Szotak
Hawaii hiking guide and founder of Hungaro Explorer

Nandor is an avid hiker on Oahu and owner of Hungaro Explorer. Hawaii has been home for many years and in that time he has volunteered in a Hawaiian trail and mountain club, volunteered as search and rescue, and has helped with local trail maintenance. Whenever he is in nature, Nandor's first priority is respecting the land he is on and the people who lived there long before him.

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