6 Fun Things to Do in Honolulu With the Extra Summer Hours

Don’t let the summer days become a summer daze.
Photo: Katrina Valcourt 


Working 8 to 5 in the middle of winter makes daylight fun a difficult proposition. Westside-to-Town commuters know the shorter days typically mean watching the sunrise on the way to work and seeing it set on the way home. Don’t allow yourself to waste away the summer days watching Netflix in your dark room. Fortunately, summer is here and the days are long, so shake off the winter slumber and join sun-kissed surfers, beachgoers and sports enthusiasts by getting outside and using the extra hours of summer. Carpe diem!


Dawn patrol

Most often associated with surfing, dawn patrol consists of getting up early to hit it hard before heading to work. Surfing isn’t your thing? Check out the dawn patrol dog walkers and kite boarders on the beach. With sunrise circling 6 a.m. this month, it shouldn’t be too difficult to slam some weights at the gym, paddle in circles at Ala Moana Beach Park or crochet on the front porch and still make it into work on time.


Daytime is money

If you’re looking to score some extra cash, there are several ways you can work up a side hustle this summer.


Sign up to drive for Uber or Lyft. Peak driving times are between 5 and 8 a.m., so pocketing a little extra dough for a rainy day might be the perfect way to enjoy the sunrise. With school out for summer, traffic has thinned out enough to maintain sanity during morning rush hour. The best part—Lyft is currently offering $300 just to sign up.


Write a short story or novel. Not everyone loves getting crisped by the sun. Spend the extra daylight hours writing in the air conditioning. Self-publishing on Amazon can create an unexpected revenue stream for those with a little creative expression.




House-sit for a relative or friend. Many families take the opportunity to travel during the summer and more often than not pets still need to be fed and floors still need to be vacuumed. Ask around—or check the internet—and let people know you’re available to look after their homes for a few weeks while they enjoy all-you-can-eat lobster on a European cruise without you. So maybe you’re not rafting the Colorado this summer, but at least you’re pocketing a little extra cash or enjoying a staycation of your own.


Post-work beach sessions

Get in to the office early to make time to hit the beach for a couple hours before sunset. A beach day during the weekend doesn’t last longer than a couple of hours before sunburn and sand rash kick in anyway, so the couple of hours of daylight after work are enough for some much-needed meditation time. If you’re a little more actively inclined, strut your stuff at the Fort DeRussy volleyball courts, or join a free yoga or CrossFit group.


Find the most beautiful sunset on the island

One of the Islands’ best perks is the countless vantage points for watching the sunset. If you’re a townie, watching celestial rays of sunlight filter through the Koʻolaus on the Windward Side is sure to inspire gratitude. The aptly named Sunset Beach on the North Shore offers a different sense of wonder as the sun begins to dip below the horizon. Of course, Waikīkī and Ala Moana beach sunsets are no small feat of nature, so don’t take them for granted. Kakaʻako Beach Park offers great views without having to get sandy.


Go snorkeling

The North Shore and Leeward Side are usually calm and glassy during the summer, so grab your mask and snorkel and check out the reefs that shape some of the world’s most famous waves during the winter. An up-close-and-personal look at Pipeline’s cavernous volcanic reef will give you a new respect for the surfers getting tossed over the lip of the 30-foot monsters that shake the beach every winter.


North Shore Swim Series

If you’re in shape—or looking to get in shape—then start hitting Kaimana or Ala Moana before work for quick swims to train for the North Shore Swim Series, hosted by Surf N Sea. The swim races are at least a mile long and sometimes include swimming through a little bit of surf, so be ready for a challenge.


While this list is nowhere near complete, you get the idea. Whatever your interests, summer offers a little bit of something for everyone, so get some sunscreen—without oxybenzone to save the reef—and enjoy the extended daylight while we still have it.