Honolulu is Hawaii's capital city, and the energy and vibrancy of this beautiful place have attracted visitors from around the world for many years. There are a multitude of things to do in Honolulu, from soaking in the sun at the world famous Waikiki Beach to visiting the solemn memorial at Pearl Harbor there is an activity for anyone with any budget. Here are some of the most popular places to visit in Honolulu.
If you're visiting Honolulu with children, a trip to the Honolulu Zoo is a must. Featuring a rainforest, a petting zoo, and a variety of animal habitats, the zoo hosts 750,000 visitors per year. It was first established in 1874 by Hawaii's king as a 300 acre park. Open daily from 9am to 4:30pm, it's fun for the whole family. The Waikiki Aquarium is another great thing for kids to do. Located next to a living coral reef, the aquarium allows visitors to come face-to-face with beautiful and unique tropical creatures. The exhibits focus on the tropical sea life that can be found in the Pacific, and more than 320,000 visitors see the remarkable species on display every year. A visit to Pearl Harbor can be a valuable educational experience, teaching children about the nation's involvement in World War II. The USS Arizona Memorial is the top tourist attraction in Hawaii, with 1.5 million visitors annually. The visitor's center is open every day from 7:30am to 5pm, and the boat trips begin at 8am.
Amateur historians will enjoy visiting the Bishop Museum, Hawaii's State Museum of Natural and Cultural History. This beautiful museum features exhibits that highlight the different regions of Hawaii as well as the history of the cultures across the Pacific. The traveling exhibits change regularly, and might feature anything from dinosaurs to Mars, and the science aspect of the museum is interactive, providing fun for everyone.
And, of course, don't forget about Honolulu's amazing beaches. Waikiki Beach is the inspiration for a multitude of surf songs with reason; the surfing there is sublime, and during the summer months the waters are calm enough for even novice swimmers to swim safely. The sand is gorgeous, and the climate can't be beat, with little rain and sunny skies for most of the year. For those who are looking for a quieter beach scene, Kuhio Beach is considered to be a calmer part of Waikiki. With its water-breaking wall, the water is partly sheltered and ideal for beginning swimmers or young children.