Known worldwide as the headquarters for tourists on Oahu, Waikiki offers more than what meets the eye at first sight.
This legendary Honolulu neighborhood is situated along a 1.5 mile stretch along the island’s southern shore. Here, residents and tourists alike enjoy access to the area’s magnificent views including the classic one of Diamond Head Crater to the east, and its postcard tan beaches paired with the perfect Hawaiian blue sky and sun. Here, you'll find entertainment everywhere including special annual events like the Spam Jam, weekly fireworks shows, and the regular opening of new stores and restaurants. The energy here is definitely aloha-filled and makes one inevitably feel like they are living in a year-round tropical getaway.
There is always something to see, do, and enjoy in Waikiki. You can make up a day of surf lessons (or straight-up surf if you’ve already got the skills!), take your dogs to the community dog areas, enjoy a stroll through its parks, bike around, or spend a day indoors at the aquarium, zoo, or one of its art galleries. And for nightlife, this is the city of play! Have a filling meal at any of the highly-rated restaurants or enjoy a couple of drinks beachside afterward. If you need a break from the beaches, the world-famous Ala Moana Shopping Center is a few short minutes to the west.
Waikiki enjoys a rich history as a location for royals to meet and relax in the 1800s, with a few small hotels opening in the 1880s to accommodate outside visitors. It was still home to many natural wetlands in the early 1900s, which came with mosquito issues, so the Ala Wai Canal was built by locals to eliminate this concern and manage the land. This comfortable modification encouraged more tourist activity, and the area became a large resort mecca, especially following the 1970s urbanization initiative by the government, which saw a building boom.
Despite seemingly being a hub for tourists, Waikiki is much enjoyed locally by those who choose to make it their residence as well. Surprisingly its real estate is mostly comprised of small to medium-sized (3 or 4 bedrooms) apartments, and single-family homes, along with high-rise condos. There is a good vacancy rate here due to many of the homes being used for only vacation purposes. But ultimately, whether one chooses Waikiki as a place for long-term residency or as a short-term getaway, it offers the perfect mix of relaxation and city life.