How to hike up to the summit of Diamond Head crater – Just don’t do it wearing flip-flops!

Diamond Head Crater
Source: Wikipedia

By Lakshmi:

Who? Anyone who is traveling to Oahu, loves to hike, has a sense of adventure and wants to be rewarded with some spectacular views.

What? Trail to the summit of Le’ahi also commonly known as Diamond Head Crater.  The hike is .8 miles in length each way and walking to the summit and back will take about 2 hours.  I would term the trail to be of moderate intensity.

How? The Diamond Head Summit Trail is located within Diamond Head State Monument in Oahu.  The entrance is between Makapu’u Avenue and 18th Avenue.  Entrance fees are $5 per car or $1 per walk in visitor.  Guided tours are also available daily through many local companies.

Why?  On our trip to Oahu, we spent a significant amount of time each day on Waikiki beach.  Wherever we were on the beach, Diamond Head was always a permanent fixture in our view.  So, one day, after relaxing at the beach, my husband and I decided to walk over to see how far Diamond Head was.  Since we had no hiking plans, we just took off in our flip flops from the beach and arrived at the base of the Diamond Head Summit Trail.

Having walked the distance, we looked at each other enquiringly to see if the other would somehow agree to simply hike the summit right there and then.  Without saying a word, we had paid our entrance fee and were on our way up the trail in the worst footwear for hiking!

The initial portion of the hike did not seem like a big deal, since the surfaces were paved.  Soon this changed, as the walk seemed steeper, the surface we were treading on getting more uneven, leading up through some steep stairs and a long lit tunnel.

But, somehow we made it to the top and the jewel of a view we were rewarded with was priceless.  It was an absolutely magnificent 360 degree panorama of one of the most beautiful places on earth.   We paused there for some time, just soaking in everything.

The descent was precarious, and walking in our flip-flops made us feel like we were both stupid and brave.

If you’d like to learn more about Diamond Head Crater and hiking the trail, click here:

Hiking Diamond Head

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