Manana: An Essential Hiking Experience in the Heart of Oahu

Manana starts at the end of Pearl City and offers one of the best views on the island after a long trek through a diverse group of plant life. Featured in the center of the island, Manana is a 12 mile loop with many climbs and an excellent ridge section that leads to its summit. August and September may be the best times of the year to complete the trail as that is when the strawberry guava will be in season. On my last trip just a week ago, I saw well over 200 ripe fruits near the trail head alone. Although this is long trail, you will be walking in the shade the majority of the time. Once you get to the open ridge section, you will very likely be surrounded by clouds and it is also often very windy. Although the clouds make the journey easier, it makes the view seen here extrememly rare. The summit is often completely surrounded in clouds. But, on rare day or moment it is clear, you will be provided with an excellent view of the windward side of the island that stretches to Makapu’u, the Eastern most point on the island.

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Papa’iloa Beach: A Playground for Turtles

I have a friend that is from Hawaii, but moved away to the mainland for graduate school. He mentioned to me that he had never seen a Hawaiian Sea Turtle in action at the beach while he lived on the islands. I was blown away because they are so numerous … if you know where to look. One of the places on Oahu where you are guaranteed to have an encounter with a turtle is at Papa’iloa Beach in the North Shore town of Haleiwa. The beach is actually tucked away behind residential homes and so it is often the perfect place for a secluded beach experience.

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Hanauma Bay: A Great Place For Snorkeling

Hanauma Bay (pronounced “ha-na-OO-mah”, in Hawaiian) is one of those places that you must visit when vacationing in Hawaii. Hanauma Bay is located on the southeast coast of the Island of Oahu. Hana means ‘bay’ and uma means ‘curve,’ hence the translation of Curved Bay. It’s basically the next door neighbor to Koko Crater, remember that place where you can get a crazy good cardio workout?

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Koko Crater Arch and Stairs, 2015 by Marvin Chandra

Koko Crater

The back of Koko Head Park (423 Kaumakani St.) on the East side of Oahu features Koko Crater, one of three craters on the island along with Diamond Head and Ka’au. This one is of interest for people looking for great views of the East and South side of the island as well as a great and short workout. The crater houses a botanical garden that is very vibrant during the Spring season which complements the surrounding expansive view from the top. But getting to the top is not an easy task. The most common way to reach the top is to take a long set of stairs. Although this is a safer method than climbing the ridge (see: Arch), it may be the most strenuous way to reach your goal.

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Aloha World!

Welcome to Exploration: Hawaii. This is the official website of the Oahu Adventure Dudes (we are still in discussions on this name). Exploration: Hawaii is your new guide to some of the most exciting and thrilling things that you can do in the 50th state.

Who are the Oahu Adventure Dudes? We are a group of friends who are into doing a lot of fun stuff in Hawaii. We are students and alumni from the University of Hawaii at Manoa and all we want to do is have some adventurous fun in this beautiful state.