South Oahu Scenic Beaches & Hiking Tour
GPS Guided Driving TourTurn by turn directions & historical stories
About 45 Miles
Easy Redemption Process
Free & Fun Extras
GPS Guided South Shore Oahu Self Driving Beaches and Hiking Tour
This self-led GPS guide will help you explore Oahu’s South and East shores. Customize your experience from totally accessible to a full-blown swim and hiking tour with facts and turn-by-turn directions. You can even hike the Lanikai Pillboxes and visit Hanauma Bay! We included all the classics plus a few attractions not covered on traditional Oahu hiking tours.
- Best Southern Beaches: Options to explore beaches at Hanauma Bay, Eternity Cove, Bellows, Kailua, and Lanikai Beaches.
- Oahu Hiking Tour: You can experience hikes to the top of Diamond Head, Koko Crater, Makapuu Lighthouse, and Lanikai Pillboxes.
- Food Options: Koa Pancake House, Leonards Malasadaʻs, Onoʻs Steak and Seafood, Buzzʻs Steakhouse, Teddyʻs Burgers, and much more.
- Historical Locations: Diamond Head, Black Point, Kahala, Hawaii Kai, Hanauma Bay, Kailua, “Lanikai,” Koolau Volcanic Locations, Bellows, and Marine Corps Base Hawaii.
- Scenic Delights: Amelia Earhart Lookout, Koko Crater Gardens, Halona Blow Hole, Makapuu Lookout, Kaneohe Bay, Hoomaluhia Botanical Gardens
GPS Guide for Oahu Beaches and Hiking Tour Details
Did you know that even on a private tour, guides cannot take you to Kailua or Lanikai Beaches? Itʻs true. Just like those tours, we begin outside Waikiki on the Diamond Head Crater slopes. But unlike those tours, you can access to the most famous spots on the southern shoreline.
The best part of this Oahu beaches and hiking tour, other than the obvious, is the ride. A good guide with engaging stories and an absolutely incredible view. We give you turn-by-turn directions to some of the most famous spots on the island. Then you can decide which hidden gems you want to explore.
You can even enjoy the Pearl Harbor GPS-led self-driving tour if you get early tickets to the Arizona Memorial. This Pearl Harbor tour is an easy addition to this South Shore hiking tour and costs half as much as a regular one! Use those savings to see other great attractions in Hawaii. It also makes a great addition to our other Oahu self-guided driving tours.
GPS Guide for Oahu Beaches and Hiking Tour Highlights
Here are just a few highlights, stop options, and GPS guide previews for Oahu Beaches and Hiking Tour facts. The route was designed and researched by Halia Tours and Transportation, a five-star private tour Company. It is designed to mimic the experience of an Oahu Mini Circle Island Tour while giving you the freedom and flexibility of your own vehicle. Local residents share stories through the worldwide traveler app VoiceMap.
Customize this tour from fully handicapped accessible to a multiple-day adventure-packed excursion. All the while enjoying some of the best beaches and hikes in the world.
Start this GPS Guided driving tour at the Amelia Earhart Lookout outside the Diamond Head Crater. Weʻll give a brief overview of the area and expectations for the day.
From the lookout, you can see the Black Point neighborhood, Doris Dukeʻs mansion at Shangri La, surfers, and maybe even some whales in the winter.
Drive past the Black Point neighborhood where Gomer Pyle, otherwise known as Jim Neighbors, used to live. That is also where the Shangri La Mansion and Museum is located.
Then admire the beautiful architecture in the Kahala neighborhood as we begin our drive towards the Kalanianaole Highway and Halona Blow Hole.
We will point out the famous Gingerbread House of Kahala as we drive through the Kahala neighborhood. It is a vacation rental located on the slopes of Diamond Head.
The vacation rental is extremely popular, so if you want to stay here, you must plan at least a year in advance.
Have the option to visit the Kahala Resort, a favorite escape for the rich and famous. There is also a public beach just outside the hotel, which is great for photos.
Jack Lord made the Kahala Hotel famous when the original Hawaii Five-0 program debuted. Weʻll share stories about more celebrities that have visited the Kahala.
Hear stories about the Waialae Country Club, which hosts the Sony Open. It is a private club, so you must be a member to play the course.
Learn about local pros, what was there before the course, and a bit of World War 2 history. You will see the course by the Kahala Hotel as we drive towards the Halona Blow Hole.
As we drive from Kahala to the Halona Blow Hole on the Kalanianaole Highway, weʻll share stories about who the highway is named after.
His name is Jonah Kuhio Kalanianaole Piikoi. He was a Prince and royal heir to the throne in the Kingdom of Hawaii and later a Territorial Delegate to Congress.
Along the road from Diamond Head to Halona Blow Hole is the Bayer Estate. Better known as the Hawaii Five-0 House featured in the reboot.
You cannot see it from the road, but we will give you tips on where to park and respectfully see it from a distance for the die-hard fans.
Two shopping centers in Hawaii Kai offer a massive variety of options. There is excellent local food and a couple of gas stations to fuel your vehicle.
Some of our favorite places here are Koa Pancake House, Teddyʻs Bigger Burgers, and the Leonards Mobile Malasada Wagon.
Learn about Lokoia Kupaa, or Native Hawaiian Fishponds, as we drive through Hawaii Kai. These unique food management systems would have covered this entire area.
Not only did they make harvesting fish easier, but the ingenious design also promoted the spawning and reproduction of fish on an unmatched scale worldwide.
Driving to Halona Blow Hole, you will see Koko Crater and Hanauma Bay. Guests who have reservations to snorkel can pause the tour and visit the bay.
If itʻs open, you can also pull in for a picture from the lookout. Weʻll share stories about both volcanic tuff cones.
Drive along the breathtaking Ka Iwi Coastline, along South Eastern Oahu. The view was featured in several movies and itʻs easy to see why.
Along the way, weʻll give some tips for parking at either the Lanai Lookout or Halona Blow Hole. Weʻll also share some stories along the way.
Stop and visit the Halona Blow Hole on Oahu. Formed by waves being forced up through a hole in the lava rock. Sometimes it sprays up to 30 feet or 10 meters.
The blow hole may depend on waves, but the view never disappoints. Check out Eternity Cove while you are there. You may recognize it from the movies.
Learn about Sandy Beach, otherwise known as ʻBreakneck Beach.ʻ Found between the Halona Blow Hole and Makapuu Lookout on the South Shore.
Weʻll tell you how it earns that name and share some stories about the area. You also have the option to visit the Koko Crater Botanical Gardens.
Guests can add a hike to the Makapuu Lighthouse on the way to the lookout. It is a relatively easy, paved hike to the top.
The Makapuu Lookout is located just past the entrance to the hike. The view from here is one of our favorites on the whole island.
Guests also have the option to visit the Sea Life Park Aquarium to check out the dolphins, sea lions, sharks, turtles, and more.
It was also where Adam Sandlerʻs character worked in the movie 50 First Dates. Thatʻs where the sea lion gave him the okay to hook up with Drew Barrymore.
Visit some of the best restaurants and souvenir shops on the island of Oahu in Waimanalo Town. It is a close-knit, mostly Native Hawaiian Community.
It is also home to one of the longest white sand beaches on the island of Oahu. If youʻre traveling on a Weekend or Holiday, we recommend visiting Bellows Beach.
Did you know Hawaii had cowboys before the Wild West? Itʻs true. You will drive past the Waimanalo Polo Club, where you will see the horses.
As you do, we will share the story of the first Hawaiian Cowboys ever to be invited to the Frontier Days Rodeo in Cheyenne, Wyoming.
Learn about where the United States got its first prisoner of war during World War II. A submarine pilot crashed on the beach when his navigational equipment failed.
While it is still Military today, they allow public access on the weekends and holidays. Thatʻs where we recommend swimming if you are touring during those days.
Hawaii Hidden Treasures is found at the end of Waimanalo Town. There is a gas station and ice cream parlor in the same complex.
The souvenir shopping is excellent, and prices are just as good. They also have clean restrooms that they are happy to let you use.
Hawaii is home to some fascinating plant species. Weʻll share the story of the Naupaka Kahakai as we drive towards Kailua.
Apart from Aloe Vera, it is probably the most helpful plant for your Hawaiian vacation. Weʻll share a few common uses during the drive.
The Lanikai Pillbox Hike is one of the most popular on the island. It is relatively easy, but there are a few tricky spots, so be prepared.
Locals love hiking up to the top and watching the sunrise over ʻthe Mokʻs.ʻ Easily cool off with a dip at the beach a couple of blocks away.
While you have probably heard about Lanikai Beach, did you know that it is a made-up place name? Weʻll help guide you through the neighborhood while sharing its story.
Place names in Hawaii are essential, and you will also learn a little about the Hawaiian language in this section. Not to mention, weʻll offer some helpful parking advice.
Kailua Beach is absolutely gorgeous. Typically calm and primarily flat, there are lifeguards stationed at this beach.
We recommend stopping to swim here or at Lanikai Beach next door if you are traveling during the weekdays.
After departing Kailua Town, we are going to the Koolau Distillery. It is located in the Kapaa Rock Quarry and is owned and operated by retired Veterans.
The two Marines make the whiskey with Hawaiian volcanic water and American ingredients. They also partnered with Manoa Chocolate if you have a sweet tooth.
Before heading to Hoomaluhia, we take a last stop at the Kaneohe Bay Scenic Lookout. From here, you can see all the way to Kualoa.
We will share stories of what you see in the bay and give you a few last reminders for Hoomaluhia Botanical Gardens.
Important Oahu Beaches and Hiking Tour Information
- Diamond Head to Hanauma
- Diamond Head to Halona
- Halona to Makapuu Lookout
- Makapuu to Lanikai Drive
- Lanikai to Kailua Beaches
- Lanikai to town of Kailua
- Kailua Tow to Koolau Distillery
- Koolau Distillery to Hoomaluhia
- Sunset winter vs summer
Suggested Routing and Itinerary
The GPS Guide and Oahu Beaches and Hiking Tour by Audio Tour Hawaii is the perfect Half Day Tour. There are several different options for guests wanting this length of the tour.
- Drive through only takes 2-3 hours, but you will want to make several stops along the way.
- If you want to participate in even one swim or hike on tour, you will want to set aside a half day.
- If you want to stop and sample some of the local food options along the route, give yourself at least half a day to complete the tour.
Not Just for Visitors
New to the Community? Represent a school group or local organization? Even tour companies looking for a way to save money on employee training will love the AT.Hi experience. We offer Kamaaina Pricing and free, fun retention quizzes for all our tours. Why should visitors get to have all the fun?