Mountain to the Sea: Honolulu Orientation City Tour

Mountain to the Sea: Honolulu Orientation City Tour

Signup for this during the IAU GA Registration Process

Welcome to Honolulu, a city of cultural diversity and historical significance. So much to see...so little time. Fear not, for the perfect morning jaunt waits as you discover and enjoy the sites of this cosmopolitan city. 

The driving tour begins at lē‘ahi or Diamond Head, easily one of Hawai‘i’s most recognizable landmarks. The stately residential area surrounding Diamond Head, Wai‘alae-Kāhala is often referred to as the “Beverly Hills of Hawai‘i”. Nu‘uanu Valley is a lush and serene botanical wonder, where an island rainforest may be experienced up close. At the valley’s end is the famed Nu‘uanu Pali, where ancient warriors once battled and modern visitors delight in the breathtaking vista for the windward side. 

Returning to the coastal road leads to a picturesque drive along the scenic Ka Iwi shore. The rugged beauty of Makapu‘u contrasts nicely with the white sand and azure surf of Hālona Point, both favorite bodysurfing spots. If the conditions are right, the Blowhole will become a photographers delight, spewing forth a geyser of ocean spray. Hanauma Bay marine preserve provides aquatic thrill-seekers with incomparable snorkeling and diving, not to mention a striking view.

From there we venture into and through historic Honolulu – exotic Chinatown, the architecturally pleasing State Capital, Washington Place – former governors residence and now site for state dinners and receptions, ‘Iolani Palace, the only royal palace in America, completed in 1882. The King Kamehameha Statue, honoring our first unifying king, the leader who brought Hawai‘i into the world family of nations. Kawaiaha‘o Church is often called the “Westminster Abby of the Pacific”, a grand building of cut coral blocks built in 1842 that conducts services in both English and Hawaiian. The Mission Houses Museum portrays missionary life in the 1830’s, while Honolulu Hale (City Hall) and the Honolulu Academy of Arts are unique examples of period architecture. Thomas Square proudly shares its unusual banyan trees, and finally Ala Moana Beach park welcomes with its spacious beach and tranquil seas.

Newfound friends, fantastic scenery, and a knowledgeable guide are the essential ingredients for a great morning driving tour and sightseeing orientation of Honolulu. Enjoy!

  • The tour is available each day, Monday - Friday, and begins at 9:00 am. Schedule:
    • 9:00 am Depart Hotel 
    • 9:15 am - 9:45 am Visit to Diamond Head Lookout 
    • 10:10 am - 10:40 am Drive Through Nu‘uanu Valley and Visit to Nu‘uanu Pali Lookout 
    • 10:50 am - 11:05 am Drive through Punchbowl Cemetery 
    • 11:15 am - 11:45 am Driving Tour Through Historic Honolulu 
    • 12:00 pm Return to Hotel
  • Fee: $25 (Tour included in Guest Registration rate or an add-on for regular registrants)
    • Cost includes:
      • Exclusive transportation
      • Tour narration by State of Hawai'i Certified Tour Guide
      • Visit to exterior lookout of Diamond Head Crater
      • Drive through Nu'uanu Valley Rainforest
      • Admission to Nu'uanu Pali Lookout
      • Drive through Punchbowl Cemetery
      • Driving through Honolulu city

Signup for this during the IAU GA Registration Process