20 Great Oahu Hikes


(page 5 of 6)

Hikes with History



Heading West on the H-1 toward Aloha Stadium, take the Stadium/Aiea Exit onto Moanalua Road. Turn right on Aiea Heights Drive and follow it until it loops around in Keaiwa Heiau State Park, where the trail is located. Parking and facilities should be plentiful here.

Aiea Loop Trail

Difficulty | *
Length | 5 miles
Wet/Dry | Wet

Hunting for an ancient heiau? Wondering where to find wreckage from a World War II bomber? This trail at the end of Aiea Heights Drive has a variety of sites for history buffs, and the path is suitable for hikers of all abilities. For a more modern vignette, check out the bird’s-eye view of the H3. When you’re finished, pavilions make this the perfect place to picnic, post-hike.

Kamananui Valley Road.

Photo: cory yap

Kamananui Valley Road

Difficulty | **
Length | 7 miles round trip
Wet/Dry | Wet

Finding petroglyphs on Oahu is hard, but you can check some out on a boulder just off this path in Moanalua Valley. Add in some old carriage bridges and ruins from the former Damon Estate, and you’ve got a great hike made even better by fascinating archaeological sites. Experienced hikers: Motor past the official end of the trail to find the legal(ish) backdoor route to the top of Haiku Stairs, along with some of the most treacherous ridge hiking on the island.


Traveling west on the Moanalua Freeway, take the Moanalua Valley/Salt Lake/Red Hill exit onto Ala Aolani Street. Continue on Ala Aolani until the street ends. Park in the lot next to the basketball courts. Proceed by foot on the dirt path to the trail.



Heading north on the Pali Highway, turn right onto Nuuanu Pali Drive. Shortly after the hairpin curve, look for a concrete bridge and a sign on the right that reads “Please Kokua No Dumping” just before it. The trail starts just before the bridge. Parking is limited, so consider other spaces in the residential area before the trailhead.

Judd Memorial Trail & “Jackass Ginger” Pool

Difficulty | *
Length | 1.5 miles
Wet/Dry | Wet

This hike’s a quick one, with a sweet swimming hole just past a grove of banyan and mango trees. All were planted by territorial forester Charles S. Judd decades ago. The trailhead is off Nuuanu Pali Road near Reservoir No. 2. Apparently, a donkey was tethered there in the early 20th century, surrounded by (you guessed it) a bunch of ginger.

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