President and CEO
Hawai‘i Lodging and Tourism Association
Aloha Kakou, Summer is here, and one of the questions I frequently get asked from visitors and friends alike is, “What should we do while we’re in Waikiki?” I typically find myself responding with, “There’s a lot to see and do here. What kind of things do you enjoy?”
It is always a tough question to answer properly, since there is so much to experience in Waikiki from outdoor activities, such as surfing and outrigger canoe paddling, to historical walking tours, cultural learning opportunities, exciting shows, rejuvenating spa treatments, great restaurants and world-class shopping. A big part of Waikiki’s appeal is that there is truly something for everyone to enjoy regardless of your age and at a pace that you set from the moment you get off the airplane.
Another reason people love Waikiki is the fact that there always seems to be something new and exciting going on.
I recently had the opportunity to see Waikiki’s brand new stage production “Te Moana Nui: Tales of the Pacific” at the Pacific Beach Hotel. It was fantastic. Through the artistry of song, dance and brilliant costumes, the enchanting stories of the South Pacific and her people told nowhere else in the world are brought to life on stage by Tihati Productions.
Before seeing the show, I was told it was ideal for those who may be visiting Waikiki for the first time or seasoned travelers in search of something new. “Te Moana Nui” (which means the vast ocean) was unlike anything I’ve seen before and beautifully tells the story of our people in a captivating way.
Finally, a visit to Waikiki wouldn’t be complete without taking in a culture, music or culinary festival. A few to consider include:
Prince Lot Hula Festival (Moanalua Gardens), July 19, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Ukulele Festival (Kapi‘olani Park), July 20, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Duke’s OceanFest (Queen’s Surf), August 16-24 Hawaiian Slack Key Guitar Festival (Kapi‘olani Park), August 17, 12-6 p.m.
Hawai‘i Food & Wine Festival (various locations), August 29-September 7
For all of these reasons, and many more, you can see why Waikiki has been a favorite resort playground for more than a century. Take advantage of these great experiences and make this a summer to remember forever.