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One Day in Oahu without a car-needs to include the aquarium!

C W
Vancouver
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One Day in Oahu without a car-needs to include the aquarium!

Hi All!

We will be visiting Oahu for one day (8am arrival & flight out at 10pm) in April 2014 and am looking for a sample itinerary. We will be coming over from Maui. The main reason for coming is to go to the aquarium. Yes, I know there is an aquarium on Maui, but we have special reasons for needing to visit the Waikiki one. We will not have a car either, so I would need tips on transport to the aquarium for opening (I believe 9am?) and then where should we go after that for the remainder of the day. Would it be advisable just to rent a car for one day to have more flexibility? Kinda like the idea of getting off the plane and just using public transport tho, but if there are must-see's in our one day that aren't accessible by public transport then we'd be open to renting a car. (Also, is public transport expensive? A quick car rental search shows about $35/day)

Thanks all !

California
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1. Re: One Day in Oahu without a car-needs to include the aquarium!

OK ... I'll take your word on this, LOL! Coming from Vancouver and visiting Waikiki's aquarium does sound a little odd.

Get a car. Really ... unless you want to hang out on Waikiki all day ... a car is a good idea. Many visitors move heaven and earth to visit Pearl Harbor - and it would be easier to do that with a car, given that you don't have to be back to the airport until 8:00 pm.

The Bishop Museum or Iolani Palace are both great ideas for after the Aquarium ... and then you could go back to Waikiki and have dinner. You can get to either on the bus.

And the cheapest way to get to Waikiki from the airport (since you won't have luggage) is on the bus as well. $2.50 each way, exact change. A cab is considerably faster, but will cost about $35 - $40.

There are enough "must-sees" on Oahu to fill a few months.

Kapaa, Hawaii
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for Maui, Hana, Oahu
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2. Re: One Day in Oahu without a car-needs to include the aquarium!

If you don't have luggage you can take the public transportation called TheBus from the airport to the aquarium. It sits right in Waikiki. From there you can walk into the middle of Waikiki, see the ocean, visit the shops, and eat. If you want to go anywhere else on the island the best thing to do would be to rent the car. How long do you plan on being at the aquarium?

C W
Vancouver
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3. Re: One Day in Oahu without a car-needs to include the aquarium!

Hahaha, yes our reason for wanting to see the aquarium is because my other half's profession is in the aquarium business here in Vancouver, and we are both very interested in seeing other destinations' exhibits (plus this side trip will be comped anyway woohoo!)

I do not know how big the aquarium is so I am unsure how long we would spend there? Just enough time to see everything adequately (especially if its a nice sunny day we wont linger im sure lol)

Ok, so we could catch the bus right at the airport to bring us to Waikiki center/aquarium for $2.50 pp, and from there can walk somewhere for lunch (Any happy hour close by?) and then browse the shops / hang at the beach (I am assuming the beach is walking distance as well?) and continue on to The Palace (Looks great!) before heading somewhere for dinner & then take the same bus back to the airport after sunset?

Saint Cloud...
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4. Re: One Day in Oahu without a car-needs to include the aquarium!

The only way you will make it to the 9am opening is by cab or a Hawaii23.

Do you have to be there right at the opening?

Figure 10 minutes or so to the bus stop. Another 10 minutes average waiting for the bus and an hour to get to the Waikiki Aquarium.

Renting a car will be close. If there is no long line to rent a car, you might make it to the aquarium by 9am. Takes about 25-30 minutes to get from the airport to Waikiki Aquarium.

If it is a weekday, you'll catch the end of rush hour.

C W
Vancouver
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5. Re: One Day in Oahu without a car-needs to include the aquarium!

We don't HAVE to be there at opening, I was just wanting to start the day off running to make the most of it.

Hmm an hour on a bus each way to Waikiki hey ....

Santa Monica, CA
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6. Re: One Day in Oahu without a car-needs to include the aquarium!

As it's a business expense, why not take a cab! While on Oahu, perhaps check out Pearl Harbor. Go to the Things to Do tab for more options, too.

Saint Cloud...
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7. Re: One Day in Oahu without a car-needs to include the aquarium!

Rent a car. Go to Pearl Harbor first, then National Cemetery of the Pacific & then the aquarium.

Read the Top Question on the right, Driving tours. You can easily take Driving tour #3 from Pearl Harbor to Waikiki and the aquarium.

California
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8. Re: One Day in Oahu without a car-needs to include the aquarium!

Really ... I agree with Dusty. Go to Pearl Harbor first. Get reservations for the Arizona Memorial on-line -- for around 10:30. Spend as much time as you wish at Pearl Harbor, then head to the Aquarium. Spend the rest of the day on Waikiki ... take your time.

Alternate plan - catch the bus to the Aquarium from the airport ... then the bus to Iolani Palace ... head back to Waikiki for gawking and dinner ... then back to the airport.

Saint Cloud...
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9. Re: One Day in Oahu without a car-needs to include the aquarium!

BLBL is correct.

If you go to Pearl Harbor and take the USS Arizona Memorial tour, you need to pick up advanced reservation tickets at the visitors center an hour or more before your tour.

www.recreation.gov/tourDetails.do…

If you get there earlier, you can spend more time at the visitors center museum that is not part of the official tour. Or you can tour USS Bowfin.

Reserving a 10am tour for USS Arizona Memorial would be fine. It gives you plenty of time to take the bus or rent a car.

After USS Arizona Memorial tour, it would take about 1/2 hour to get to Waikiki Aquarium.

If you take Driving tour #3, you will not be more than 30 minutes from Waikiki Aquarium no matter where you are on the driving tour.

You can go directly to Waikiki Aquarium from Pearl Harbor Visitors Center and then take Driving tour #3 in reverse.

It will cost around $50-$60 or so to rent a car for the day including any taxes, fees & gas. Go for the car rental. You can see much of Honolulu for very little $$.

Is this just a day trip from Maui or are you going back to Canada at 10pm?

Either way, renting a car will be the best $50-$60 that you spend on Oahu. You'll get to see USS Arizona Memorial, National Cemetery of the Pacific, drive by Iolani Palace and other historical sites, Ala Moana Beach Park, Waikiki and drive into Diamond Head crater & back out.

Edited: 05 February 2014, 02:46
Philadelphia, PA
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10. Re: One Day in Oahu without a car-needs to include the aquarium!

Well, the others are the experts here, but I'll chime in on time spent at the aquarium. My son loves fish (thanks to his first visit there) and we spend about 2 hours just staring & staring at them. That's probably on the high end of time spent there for most. If your husband is investigating operations and what not, it could take more, but normally only about an hour or so. If you have an interest in seeing Pearl Harbor, renting a car would be best. Otherwise, BLBL's alternate plan of Aquarium>Waikiki Beach>Iolani Palace sounds nice, but I would substitute a taxi to and from the airport instead of a bus if he can expense it for work!