Diamond Head State Monument

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Climbing an Icon on Oahu
If there is one geological formation that represents the island of Oahu, and perhaps the entire state of Hawaii, it is Diamond Head. This crater, formed about 300,000 years ago, prominently sits right next to Waikiki and makes its way into many skyline photos of Honolulu. Used for the military as part of the Oahu coastal defense system, there are a variety of tunnels and trails in and around the crater walls. While Diamond Head is still used by the military, one of the paths up the inside of the crater is open for tourists. Cost for entering is $5 per car, or visitors can park outside the crater for free, walk up the road into the crater, and pay only $1 per person. The view from the top is worth the short but steep hike including some steps and dark tunnels. The best time to visit Diamond Head is during the week, as the trails are quite crowded on weekends.
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Hawaiian Spotlight
Hike up the Diamond Head Crater in the afternoon to catch the setting sun. Be prepared for a steep climb up steps at the end - but it's well worth it for views like this at the end of the day!
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Sunlight Blanketing the Path
Great way to start a morning. A nice little walk to the Diamond Head peak.
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Above Oahu
Hiking up into Diamondhead crater
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Sunrise hike
Whales, F-16's in flight and majestic views are what to expect at the summit of this great walk.
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Beautiful views, nice hike
Hiked up Diamond Head with a few friends....great way to spend a day off in Waikiki.
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Hiking up Diamond Head Crater: Challenging But Not Intimidating
I hate steep hikes, but this is one of those hikes that is so inviting due to the breathtaking views of the southern Oahu coast. It's just 1.5 miles roundtrip. It's a challenging one but not intimidating, you see lots of folks from a young child to the old and even unfit folks, all trying to make their way up to the summit at their own pace. No pressure at all! Best tip is go slow, stop frequently and enjoy the views. If you can walk and climb up paved steps, then you can do it. There is a narrow tunnel with a slight incline that you have to go through. Everyone can get a bit claustrophobic inside but it's just 225 ft long. The photo above shows the switchback paths that make the ascent more gradual. One is rewarded with great views up there, and I sigh loudly as I try to breath in the beauty of everything around me :-) The top provides 360 panoramic view of the crater on one side as well as the southern coastline with turquoise waters just below the Diamond Head Lighthouse, Koko Head Crater, and the famous Waikiki Beach. It's something worth doing if you have a morning to spare in Oahu. Some go for the sunrise or the sunset too, but most people choose a less hot time of the day. Don't miss the shave ice after your hike. You'll also be rewarded with a ice cold towelette if you tell them you've just finished the hike :-) Take bus #23 from Waikiki area, $2.50 and if you return within the valid time, you get a free return on the bus. Entrance is $1 on foot.
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View from the trail
I took a solo trip to Honolulu in March of 2015. Hiking up the trail was awesome! The views were breathtaking, it was a spectacular day...
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Diamond Head

One of Hawaii's most recognizable icons, this volcanic ash cone is impressive pyroclastic stuff—a tectonic memory from an explosion half a million years ago, measuring more than 1,066 meters (3,497 feet) across and with a 231-meter (758-foot) summit. British sailors named it Diamond Head in the 1800s, mistaking calcite crystals in the crater’s soil for jewels. Despite the volcanic grandeur, the ascent isn't tough and takes most hikers just an hour. At the top, on a clear day, you can see forever.

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