The colorful flamingos welcome you as soon as you enter the grounds of the Honolulu Zoo. Nearby, over 160 other species of tropical birds also show off their bright plumage. Continue on for close encounters with impressive giant reptiles such as Komodo dragons, crocodiles and iguanas, before visiting the giraffes, meerkats, cheetahs and aardvarks.
The 42-acre (16-hectare) grounds of the Honolulu Zoo are divided into three main areas: the Tropical Forests, the Pacific Islands and the African Savannah. Within these areas you will see over 250 different mammal, reptile and bird species in areas designed to closely replicate their natural habitats. Keep an eye out for the nene, an endangered local goose, and the ancient-looking Galapagos tortoises. You won’t miss the Asian elephants in their large enclosure. Visit the Zoo Gardens to see some of the local flora and fauna of Hawaii.
If you are visiting with children, head to the central area of the zoo. This is where the popular “Keiki” (Children’s) Zoo is located. Kids can interact with a number of animals, including pot-bellied pigs, tortoises and llamas. Close by, you’ll find a playground and the ever-popular tiger enclosure.
The zoo allows you to bring in your own food and alcohol-free drinks, and you can also buy lunch at the Kapahulu Market, where a range of outlets serve options to suit every palette. If you buy a drink from here, you are entitled to free refills for the duration of your visit.
If you visit between June and August, the zoo can make for an attractive evening destination as well, as it hosts a popular concert series featuring local and international musicians. Check the website for a schedule of what’s on.
The Hololulu Zoo is located within Kapiolani Park, between Waikiki Beach and Diamond Head. It’s open daily, except Christmas. Admission is inexpensive, and its parking lot only charges a small amount per hour. There’s free parking at the Waikiki Shell stadium.
Overlooking Kapiolani Park and Diamond Head, across from Honolulu Zoo, this 19-story Honolulu hotel is located less than a block away from Waikiki Beach.
Just a block from the sand, surrounded by fine dining and boutique shopping, is the Hilton Waikiki Beach. It’s 4 miles (6.4 km) from downtown Honolulu, and a 20-minute cab ride from the airport. It’s a 30-minute bus ride to the memorials of Pearl Harbor, and 7 minutes to the base of Diamond Head.
A block from Kapiolani Park and its tennis courts, and a block from a family-friendly beach, this hotel on the corner of Kuhio Avenue is close to Waikiki's adventures and one mile from Diamond Head.
One block away from the world famous Waikiki beach with calm ocean waters and endless water activities, this island-style hotel is 4 blocks from Kapiolani Park and about 4 miles from downtown Honolulu.
The Alohilani Resort Waikiki Beach is across the street from Waikiki Beach. Nearby attractions include Honolulu Zoo and Waikiki Aquarium, just 3 blocks away, and the Hawaii Convention Center is within 2 miles.
Located across the street from Waikiki Beach and 2 blocks from the Honolulu Zoo, this Aston hotel is on Waikiki's main thoroughfare, with easy access to shops, restaurants, and attractions.
With lush gardens, ponds, and waterfalls, this 22-acre Honolulu destination resort is fronted by several acres of Waikiki Beach; offers views of iconic Diamond Head Crater; a weekly Polynesian extravaganza includes traditional dance and fireworks.
Across the street from sheltered ocean waters and a sandy beach, this resort hotel is 5 blocks from Kapiolani Park, the Honolulu Zoo and the Aquarium, and within a half-mile of Ala Wai Golf Course.