Neighborhoods on Oahu

 

Waikiki

Waikiki remains Oahu’s most iconic tourist attraction, but it is also home to a diverse and vibrant residential neighborhood. This community of condominiums shares the 2-mile stretch of urban Waikiki with visitors from all over the world. Residential life in Waikiki has morphed from a small community of surfers and artists in the 1960s to an urbanized neighborhood of high-rises after a $100 million initiative by several private developers in the 1970s. Family-oriented attractions in the area include the Honolulu Zoo, Waikiki Aquarium, and the famous Waikiki shoreline with its soft sand and gentle surf. Although much of the district is hotels and condominiums, several nearby open spaces remain available for residents to leisurely enjoy greenery. Kapiolani Park serves as a practice arena for various sports and activities that local teams utilize year-round. The park also features tennis courts and an archery range that is available to the public. The Kapiolani Bandstand and Waikiki Shell offer concert venues for rising, local artists and nationally recognized acts to share their music and message with the people of Hawaii. The school district in Waikiki offers several elementary school options (Waikiki Elementary, Ala Wai Elementary, and Thomas Jefferson Elementary), which feed into the Kaimuki High School and Kalani High School complex districts.

 

 

Millilani

Mililani Town in central Oahu was originally vast sugar cane fields until the 1960s when Castle & Cook began development to create a new suburban area to meet the island’s extensive housing needs. The result was a master-planned community that is known for its close-knit neighbors and boasts titles like an All American City (1986) and Money Magazine’s best places to live (2007). The Mililani Town Association has enacted a set of rules and guidelines for the neighborhood to keep the area safe and well-kept, and to maintain high property value in the community. The association also sponsors several recreational centers—some equipped with pools or tennis courts—throughout Mililani Town, plans various family programs and activities, and has enacted a neighborhood watch. Some of the programs highlighted are martial arts, hula, tennis, dance, exercise, and health classes; as well as specialized activities for seniors and young children. Other highlights include a 72-par, 18-hole golf course and shopping center to meet the leisure needs of residents. Mililani Town Center hosts several mega-stores like WalMart, Star Market and Longs Drugs. Additionally, there are over a dozen eateries, beauty and health venues, clothing stores, and even a movie theatre. The Mililani complex is made up of several elementary schools, which all feed into Mililani Middle School and Mililani High School.

 

Kakaako

The residential area of Kakaako consists of several scattered condominiums amidst the older industrial buildings and undeveloped sites. However, the Hawaii Community Development Authority has begun a master plan for the 600-acre district that will create a dynamic neighborhood aimed at establishing an economically and socially viable community. Through assistance by the government and members in the private sector, HCDA seeks to revitalize Kakaako with more residential accommodations, parks, open spaces, and recreational facilities. The redeveloped community is geared toward being environmentally-friendly, with pedestrian-oriented infrastructure. Until the master plan is completed, residents of Kakaako can still enjoy access to leisure areas like Kewalo Basin Park and Kakaako Waterfront Park. Kewalo Basin is a commercial harbor adjacent to a park frequented by surfers, fishermen, divers, swimmers, and joggers. The 30-acre Kakaako Waterfront contains rolling, grassy mounds that lead to an oceanfront promenade equipped with picnic areas and comfort stations. Next door, is the Hawaii Children’s Discovery Center, a facility geared towards challenging children to develop all of their senses to better understand the world around them. Kakaako is also home to the new University of Hawaii Manoa John A. Burns School of Medicine where the cafeteria, Café Kulia, offers delicacies crafted by the culinary students of Kapiolani Community College to the general public during the week. Additionally, every Monday the City and County’s People’s Open Market at Mother Waldron Park offers locals the opportunity to purchase agricultural and aquaculture products at about 35 percent below general retail costs.

 

Makiki

A close-knit community, Makiki, is in the core of Honolulu that mainly consists of older houses and apartment complexes. As a centralized location in Oahu’s most urbanized city, Makiki is kept clean and safe by its residents and through the work of Hui O Makiki, a nonprofit organization of neighbors who address issues like graffiti eradication and fostering a strong sense of community among residents. Makiki hosts multiple locations that promote family-oriented activities for residents. The Hawaii Nature Center, an organization dedicated to nature education since 1981, offers guided hikes, nature adventures, and earth care projects on weekends. Makiki District Park provides a spacious, open arena in the busy neighborhood and is equipped with tennis and basketball courts, a skateboard ramp, swimming pool, and playground. The nonprofit group, Friends of Makiki Library, run the reading room and lending library for recreational literary enjoyment of the district, a testament to the close-knit ties that hold the community together. Several churches of various denominations are located within Makiki and many of them offer free or low-cost services to residents like senior center classes, tutoring for students, discussion groups, and community-oriented activities like hiking or board games. The Makiki Shopping Village offers residents convenient access to several casual eateries, a video rental venue, wine shop, and a small corner market stocked with groceries. Schools in Makiki are part of the Roosevelt complex, and it is also home to the illustrious, private Punahou School.

 

Salt Lake

The residential area of Salt Lake is comprised of high-rise condominiums, mid-rise town-dwellings, and houses that were built during the construction boom of the 1960s. The suburban area is alternately referred to as Aliamanu because of its close proximity to a nearby crater that shares the name. The name “Salt Lake,” however, is derived from the crater the area actually resides—Alia Pa’akai, or “salt pond.” Salt Lake is a green neighborhood community with ample access to parks despite the many urbanized dwellings in the area. Salt Lake District Park, the largest in the neighborhood, has various hiking trails that lead up and around the Aliamanu and Alia Pa’akai craters. The park also houses basketball and tennis courts, playing fields, a gymnasium, and a 50-meter swimming pool. Salt Lake Municipal Park hosts the People’s Market on Saturday mornings, a venue that gives residents the opportunity to purchase agricultural and aquaculture products directly from local businesses. The Salk Lake Shopping Center is the centralized commercial venue of the district. There are large chain stores like Safeway, Longs Drugstore, and McDonalds, as well as a slew of smaller, locally-based eateries and service store. Salt Lake is home to one of the most acclaimed public schools on Oahu, Moanalua High School. MHS opened in 1972 to meet the growing educational needs of the Salt Lake community and has gained reputation for its academic excellence over the years—even being dubbed by the Honolulu Advertiser as “the private school of public schools.” Aliamany Elementary and Middle Schools feed into Moanalua High.

 

Hawaii Kai

In the 1960s, Henry J. Kaiser dreamed of creating a California marina-style community and began dredging the area of the Maunalua fishpond and Kuapa wetlands. The result was the transformation of Hawaii Kai from a “country area” used for farming into one of the most affluent communities on Oahu. Hawaii Kai is considered one of the premier suburban areas of the island and includes single-family residences, townhomes and condominiums. West Marina is the neighborhood in Hawaii Kai in direct vicinity to Koko Marina, from which it gets its name. The marina area itself is surrounded by a variety of restaurants and other services including supermarkets, fitness centers, and even medical facilities so that the 12-mile trek to downtown Honolulu is rarely necessary for residents. There is also a movie theatre, ample playgrounds, and nearby golf courses and tennis courts available for recreational use. For outdoor and water sports, Maunaloa Bay is frequented by residents and visitors alike for water skiing, boating, and canoe paddling. Additionally, Hanauma Bay—a nature preserve which remains one of the top attractions on Oahu—is just a short drive up the road. West Marina is part of the Kaiser complex with several elementary schools and Niu Valley Middle School feeding into Kaiser High School.

 

Kapolei

Kapolei is one of the fastest growing areas in the state of Hawaii, and was developed to become the “second city” of Oahu to meet the needs of an expanding population that could no longer be accommodated in the general Honolulu area. This master-planned community was meant to be an alternate urban center where residents could live, work, and play. To achieve this, Kapolei has become the site of many new homes, a business park, medical park, government services complexes, and houses the state’s largest industrial park. The residential community in Kapolei consists of single-family homes, townhomes, and executive homes with amenities like marinas, golf course access, and community recreation centers. Residents never have to travel far to get the necessities that they need. Between the many new developments like Kapolei Shopping Center, Kapolei Entertainment Center, and the Kapolei Parkway Shops, residents can find venues to eat out or shop for groceries for home-cooked meals, rent videos or make it a night out at the 16-theatre movie complex. The Kapolei complex is made up of four elementary schools which feed into Kapolei Middle and High Schools. Pearlridge is home to one of Oahu’s largest high-rise condominium markets, and also hosts a number of townhome locations as well. Most of the residential area is within a few blocks from Pearlridge Shopping Center, the state’s largest enclosed mall. Large chain stores like Macy’s, Inspiration Furniture, Sears, Borders Books and Music, and Toys R Us anchor the shopping center and it is also home to 16 theatres, 12 full-service restaurants, 2 food courts, 2 arcades, a miniature golf course, and an emergency clinic.

 

Pearlridge

Pearlridge is also near Pearl Country Club which offers golfers a challenging course overlooking sights like Pearl Harbor, the Arizona Memorial, the USS Missouri, and the Waianae Mountain Range. The country club offers tee times, access to a driving range and practice putting greens year-round to residents. Pearlridge is part of the Pearl City complex with eight elementary schools feeding into Highlands Intermediate, then Pearl City High School. Pearl City High School is noted for its exceptional music program, and its concert and marching bands have been invited to play at various national and international venues.

 

Makakilo

Makakilo is a community on the hillside of the Waianae Mountains that began development in the 1960s. The styles of accommodations in the area range from the newer single family homes in Royal Ridge, recently developed townhomes in Westview at Makakilo Heights, and a variety of older, more reasonably priced homes. Residents of this neighborhood enjoy cooler temperatures because of their elevation on the mountain, as well as panoramic scenes of the Ewa community below them and ocean view stretching out to the horizon. Makakilo Shopping Center provides residents with Malama Market for groceries, a handful of small restaurants, and a dental office. A short drive down the hillside into Kapolei also allows access to the slew of shops in the Kapolei Shopping Center including an additional market and drug store, an auto parts store, and dry cleaning services. The Hawaiian Adventures Waterpark is near this area for aquatic frivolity suitable for children and adults. There are a number of parks in the neighborhood for recreation including Makakilo Neighborhood Park, Makakilo Community Park, Makakilo Heights Neighborhood Park, and Mauka Lani Neighborhood Park. Makakilo shares the Kapolei Complex school district and gives parents the options of four elementary schools which all feed into the newly built Kapolei Middle and High Schools.

 

Ala Moana

Ala Moana is a community of high-rise condominiums and low-rise apartments located in the heart of Honolulu, with access to both urban necessities and plenty of outdoor leisure activities. The district hosts multiple high-end, luxury condominiums offering views of the lush mountains on one side and the calm waters of the Pacific Ocean on the other. Ala Moana is highly accessible by foot or bicycle, with attractions like a beach park, boat harbor, multiplex theatre, and shopping center all within walking distance of most of the condominiums. At the heart of the area is Ala Moana Shopping Center, the nation's largest open-air mall. Big name department stores that anchor the mall include Macy's, Sears, Neiman Marcus, and Nordstrom, but the mall houses over 200 stores ranging from high-end fashion to casual wear. A number of eateries varying from the food court to fine-dining options are available in the shopping center; as well as nightlife venues at the Mai Tai Bar and Pearl Ultralounge. The Victoria Ward Centers are a short jaunt away and also offer a wide variety of restaurants, smaller boutique shops, and the megaplex Ward Theatres. Ala Moana Beach Park is a 76-acre stretch that inclues a gentle beach perfect for swimming, bike paths, picnic areas, and comfort stations for the general public. Adjacent to the park is Ala Wai Yacht Harbor where a variety of patrons moor their boats for recreational sailing.

 

Waipio Gentry

Waipio Gentry is a small community of less than 4,000 units that consists of a mixture single family and townhouses. During construction, many of the residences built were meant to provide homes for new, start-up families and the clean, tidy neighborhood reflects this intention. The Gentry Waipio Community Association has rules for homeowners about maintenance of property and others to ensure that the family-friendly atmosphere is preserved. There is commercial and industrial area in the district where residents can find the wholesale store Costco, several car sales stores, and several strip malls for daily necessities. The vibrant Patsy Mink Central Oahu Regional Park is a popular recreational spot for many residents. The park was renamed for the late congresswoman Patsy Mink who championed issues like women and minority rights during her terms in Washington D.C. The park grounds are a spectacular 269-acres and include walking paths, 20 tennis courts, four youth baseball fields, four regulation-sized baseball fields, four softball diamonds, and an Olympic-size swimming pool in the Veteran’s Memorial Aquatic Center. Residents of Waipio Gentry often frequent the nearby Waikele Premium Outlets where over 50 retail shops, numerous restaurants, and other stores that provide hardware and general supplies are available. Waikele is part of the Waipahu High School complex, and the Pearl City-Waipahu complex-area. The nearest elementary school, Waikele Elementary, feeds into Waipahu Intermediate and High Schools.

 

Punchbowl

Punchbowl is an older community housed on the slopes of and the area surrounding the large crater by the same name, which houses the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific. The residential area is mainly single-family homes with scattered apartment buildings that offer cooler temperatures because of the elevation, as well as scenic views of the communities below stretching to the shoreline. The neighborhood is centrally located in Honolulu, which gives residents quick access to the freeway in both directions. There are also direct routes to the downtown area where the business district, a large post office, the State Capitol, City Hall, and Oahu’s other state and federal government buildings are located. It is also close to most of the nightlife, shopping, and restaurant options condensed in the metro section of Honolulu. Within the district are a handful of small mom-and-pop grocery stores that service the community. The Nuuanu Shopping Plaza is a small complex with a Laundromat, florist, and several restaurants—including the famous Hungry Lion Coffeehouse. Punchbowl is part of the Roosevelt Complex school district. The closest schools are Pauoa and Lincoln Elementary, which feed to either Stevensen or Kawananakoa Middle Schools, and then into Roosevelt High School.

 

Moiliili

Moiliili is a small but culturally rich district that is made up of close-knit neighbors who are active in various community projects throughout the year. In the early days of development, the area was home to many different ethnic groups, which led to a cultural amalgamation of events, shops, restaurants and services for residents. Today there are still a variety of different people who reside in the neighborhood, enhanced by students attending the University of Hawaii at Manoa that sits on the outskirts of Moiliili. There are a variety of businesses alive and well in Moiliili including a slew of restaurants of different backgrounds, florists, and supermarkets. Star Market has long been a grocery provider to residents, and recently a Japanese-based store, Nijiya Market opened its doors to provide locals with access to specialized Asian products. The Moiliili Community Center is the central hub of neighborhood activity, and brings residents together for cultural-themed events to foster community relations. The programs are geared towards every age group from children’s activities, teen-focused volunteer opportunities, adult leisure classes, and elder care services. A popular program that MCC offers are Japanese language classes with daily lessons in culture, writing, and speaking for children up to the sixth grade level.

 

McCully - Kapiolani

Kapiolani Boulevard is a large, main road on Oahu with multiple high-rise apartment and condominium buildings along its stretch. There are older homes in the surrounding neighborhood as well, and the area largely intersects with the Moiliili and McCully districts. Kapiolani is in the center of the urban Honolulu area and residents have access to a variety of shops and activities, including the island’s largest mall, Ala Moana Center. There are also a variety of smaller business complexes in close proximity. The McCully Shopping Center is a two-story compound with dry cleaning and salon services, women’s clothing shops, and diverse restaurants that serve Chinese, Japanese, Thai, and Italian cuisine. Kapiolani Boulevard ends near the Market City Shopping Center that hosts a Foodland for grocery needs, a storage center, and the Pet’s Discount store. There are also several restaurants including the favorite Gina’s Bar-B-Q for local Korean plate lunches, and the Formaggio Wine Bar for late night drinks. This neighborhood is part of the Kaimuki Complex school district, which has seven elementary schools and two middle schools that feed into Kaimuki High School.

 

Diamond Head

The Diamond Head community is a luxury area consisting of high-end condominiums and opulent residences along the coastline and areas surrounding the infamous landmark. This area is known as “Hawaii’s Gold Coast” because of the prime location that gives residents unobstructed, scenic, oceantfront views of the vast Pacific. This is the upscale neighborhood that houses mansions like Doris Duke’s Shangri-La and the expansive estate featured on MTV’s The Real World: Hawaii. Those who reside in this lavish community have ample access to outdoor activities. The Diamond Head State Monument has a hiking trail that leads up to the iconic crater and the grounds of the state park that surrounds it is equipped with rest stations and picnic areas. Additionally, the sprawling green grasses of Kapiolani Park are located a short jaunt away. The park serves as a practice field for various local sports teams year-round, and has tennis courts and an archery range available to the public. Kapiolani Park grounds also include the Waikiki Band Stand and Waikiki Shell Arena where local artists and nationally known musicians perform on a regular basis. Diamond Head sits on the outskirts of Waikiki so the hustle and bustle of the tourist locale are absent from the luxury neighborhood, but residents can still take advantage of the many restaurants and shopping options of the two-mile strip.

 

Donwtown Honolulu

Downtown Honolulu is mainly a business district although it does include a number of high-rise condominiums for residential occupation. Downtown is further divided into four sub-districts: Capitol District, Central Business District, Chinatown, and Waterfront. The first two areas are mainly business areas with high-rise office buildings and most of Oahu’s state and federal government buildings compacted into the 12-block area. The latter two districts hold the residential buildings. Downtown has many historic buildings that have played roles in the development of Hawaii’s progress towards statehood and economy sustainability. Aloha Tower Marketplace—home to the iconic clock tower overlooking the harbor—has a variety of boutique shops, restaurants, and nightlife options available. Downtown itself has a slew of eateries of wide variety and price range that cater to the business crowd during the week, but most of these close after the lunch rush or in early evening. The exotic neighborhood in Chinatown offers fresh produce and fish daily, many restaurants featuring Asian cuisine, dozens of florists filled with fresh flowers and leis, and shops that import goods from the East. Downtown is highly accessible by foot or by the local bus system because of the condensed business and residential areas. On the outskirts of downtown, there are also large chain stores like Longs Drugstore, Safeway, and a Kmart.

 

Ewa

The Ewa District began as a plantation town surrounded by fields of sugar cane, but overtime has been developed into a slew of residences to meet the growing housing needs of Oahu. The development of the Ewa community began with the opening of Campbell Industrial Park, which brought a slew of jobs in it’s petroleum refineries, steel fabrication plant, and cement plant. Soon thereafter developers began construction residential units consisting of a variety of housing units. There are single- and multi-family projects in the original development of Soda Creek and in areas like the Sun Terra project. Plentiful townhomes with spacious grassy lawns are available in Palm Villa and Palm Court. For residents who need more space, the townhouses of the Arbors project are the ideal location—additionally, there are recreational centers and swimming pools available for residents to utilize. There is a small condominium unit in the Sunrise subdivision as well. An ever-growing number of subdivision are developed in Ewa Gentry each year and the Ewa by Gentry Community Association has created community guidelines, rules, and regulations to keep the area safe and neat. The association is also in charge of the Ewa Gentry Community Center where classes on hula, karate, yoga, and a variety of aquatic activities are offered. Additionally, there are abundant social functions to foster community togetherness among neighbors..

 Soda Creek is one of the first projects started in Ewa and is a single-family home project that will eventually have a total of 8,000 units of single and multi-family projects Soda Creek is near to many new developments like Kapolei Shopping Center, Kapolei Entertainment Center, and the Kapolei Parkway Shops, residents can find venues to eat out or shop for groceries for home-cooked meals, rent videos or make it a night out at the 16-theatre movie complex. This area is also where Hawaiian Waters Adventure Park is located, a favorite spot for local residents and visitors alike. Soda Creek is part of the Ewa community’s Campbell Complex school district that includes seven elementary seven elementary schools that feed into Ilima Intermediate and Campbell High School.

 

Lanikai

Lankai on the Windward side of Oahu is a beachfront neighborhood of single-family homes along one of the island’s most popular beaches. The soft, white sands and calm waters of Lanikai Beach is the biggest perk of the community, which draws a number of locals and visitors to its shores as well. The scenic beach area is perfect for swimming, sunbathing, kayaking, and picnics on the weekend. In nearby Kailua Town, Lanikai residents can find just about every kind of shop or service. The cluster of businesses in the middle of Kailua town include a slew of restaurants in every variety and price range, small boutiques and a Macy’s department store, and services from dog day care to graphic design. Additionally, there are physicians, dental offices and law offices so there is rarely a need to make the 30-minute drive over the Pali Highway or Likelike Highway to Honolulu. Lanikai is part of the Kailua Complex school district, which includes six elementary schools that feed into Kailua Intermediate and then Kailua High School. Olomana School and Ke Kula O Kamakau Lab, a charter school, are also in the district.

 

Kailua Town

The residents of Kailua Town on the Windward side have a cohesive community with most services and necessities contained within the neighborhood so that their distance from the city of Honolulu is rarely a problem. Kailua Town has a number of restaurants, parks, schools, libraries, and shopping venues condensed in the main business center, with plentiful residences surrounding the hub of activity. Additionally, homeowners enjoy the close proximity to Kailua Beach, one of the most popular beaches on Oahu. The beach and surrounding beach park are ideal for picnics, swimming in the gentle waters, sunbathing on the white sand, and is known as the windsurfing capital of Oahu. The center of Kailua Town has restaurants in every ethnicity and price range open for breakfast, brunch, lunch, and dinner. The diverse shops in the area include boutiques and department stores, supermarkets and drugstores, and every kind of service or repair available from computers to plumbing. Kailua Town also has local dentistry and physician practices in its scope. The strong sense of community in Kailua has also led residents to form various local clubs for tennis, running, senior activities, hiking, bicycling, and a number of organized youth sports. The Kailua-Kalaheo Complex consists of eight elementary schools, Kailua Intermediate, and Kailua and Kalaheo High Schools. There are also several private school options available in the district, including Le Jardin Academy.

 

Waipahu

Waipahu is a historic section of the island of Oahu that has undergone various reinventions to meet the changing times. It began as a fishing village in early days, became a wetland farm area, and then a plantation town when the sugar boom hit Hawaii. Today, remnants of the old plantation era remain throughout Waipahu in the form of buildings that have been preserved for cultural and educational purposes. This site is known as the Hawaii Plantation Village and serves as a living museum to commemorate the years when sugar reigned and inevitably shaped the history of Hawaii. Waipahu has several shopping venues which contain grocery stores, restaurants, and a variety of services for residents in the area. The Waipahu Shopping Plaza Shopping Center, Waipahu Shopping Village Shopping Center, Waipahu Town Center Shopping Center, and Westgate Shopping Center are contained within the area. Waipahu also has several parks for leisurely recreation and they are popular places for family get-togethers on weekends. Honowai Neighborhood Park, Waipahu Cultural Garden Park, Waipahu Field all have spacious green areas for residents to enjoy. Hans L’Orange Park was originally established as a playing field in 1923 and is the home of the West Oahu CaneFires, a minor league baseball team. Waipahu has it’s own school complex that includes five elementary schools which feed into Waipahu Intermediate and High Schools. The charter school Hawaii Tech Academy is also located in this school district.

 

Waianae

The Waianae Coastline is known for it’s beautiful beaches, fertile valleys, and small community lifestyle that residents have sought to keep as untouched by development as possible. Waianae is one of the few places on Oahu where people still farm products like vegetables, flowers, and livestock in substantial numbers. The residents pride themselves for maintaining a community that is still deeply tied to the cultural ways of Old Hawaii and Waianae is home to numerous multigenerational families. Waianae residences consist of single- and multi-family homes, apartment buildings and condominiums which are highly affordable. As the community has shied away from over-development of pristine Waianae, only a few high-end luxury homes dot the coastline. Waianae remains a rural area with plenty of beach access and open areas at Wai‘anae Field, Waianae Regional Park, Kaupuni Neighborhood Park, and Pililaau Community Park. The Waianae Mall Shopping Center is anchored by the popular Longs Drugstore and provides residents with a handful of restaurants and services as well. The Waianae Coast Comprehensive Health Center is a unique facility that focuses on health services with a strong, traditional native Hawaiian foundation. Many residents in the Waianae have come to prefer the health center since it’s opening 30 years ago because of their preference to keep lifestyles with a strong influence of their past and heritage. This area is part of the Waianae-Nanakuli Complex school district, which includes six elementary school options that feed into Waianae and Nanakuli Intermediate and High Schools. There are also several charter schools in this area which focus on native Hawaiian traditions and values.

 

Royal Kunia

Royal Kunia is the most recent addition of homes to Central Oahu. This master-planned community was developed by Castle & Cooke to provide affordable single-family and condominium townhomes to the island’s expanding population. The residences in Royal Kunia are designed to include plenty of open spaces for recreation and to take advantage of the scenic ocean, mountain, and ravine views. Within the district, residents have a variety of shopping options. Times Supermarket provides daily grocery needs, and there is also a WalMart for just about everything else. The Royal Kunia Shopping Center is a strip of shops that also provides locals with quick-eat restaurants like Sumo Sushi and Starbucks. Royal Kunia Country Club is equipped with an 18-hole golf course that prides itself on being the most scenic courts on Oahu. For green spaces, residents can visit the new Royal Kunia Community Center and Royal Kunia Park. This neighborhood is geared towards being a family-oriented community and the Royal Kunia Community Association has set rules and guidelines to keep properties in the area neat and safe. To promote cohesiveness among neighbors, the community association plans various activities and seasonal events for families to come out and get to know one another. The organization also has put together an active neighborhood watch that posts any criminal activity on a website to keep residents informed.

 

Kahala

Kahala is an upscale neighborhood that contains some of the most expensive beachfront property in the nation, and one of the wealthiest communities on Oahu. The area has long been a destination frequented by royalty, movie stars and the rich and famous. The community is made of mansion-like houses with sprawling grounds and ample public access to quiet beaches along the Kahala Coast. The Waialae Country Club has a stunning 18-hole course and driving range for golf aficionados, and is the location that hosts the Sony Open in Hawaii. The luxurious Kahala Hotel and Resort is frequented by residents for its world-class spa and dining options. More restaurants and a number of boutiques are also available at Kahala Mall, a nearby shopping center that contains most of the commercial property in the district. Kahala Mall hosts Macy’s department store, Barnes & Noble bookstore, and has a small movie theatre as well. There is also a new Wholefoods Market for grocery shopping at the mall, and a Times Supermarket nearby. Kahala is part of the Kalani Complex school district which includes five elementary schools that feed into Kaimuki Middle School and Kalani High School. Waialae Public Charter School is also located within this district.

 

Enchanted Lake

Enchanted Lake is a subdivision in Kailua that encompasses the area around Kaelepulu Pond from which the neighborhood gets its name. Like the rest of Kailua, Enchanted Lake hosts a diverse, close-knit community of neighbors who are invested in the well-being of the neighborhood and their neighbors. Kalepulu Pond is the centralized point of activity for many Enchanted Lake residents, especially those who have lakefront property. Swimming, fishing, and boating all among the aquatic activities offered, and the Enchanted Lake Residents Association has created guidelines to regulate these activities to protect waterways and the local wildlife that also call it home. Within the subdivision is Enchanted Lake Shopping Center where residents enjoy a number of local restaurants mixed with chain venues like Starbucks and McDonald’s. The shopping center is anchored by a Safeway for convenient grocery shopping and a handful of service providers like the Enchanted Lake Massage Clinic. Residents can also make the short drive to Kailua Town, which hosts a wide variety of eateries and shops consolidated in the main commercial center. Enchanted Lake is part of the Kailua-Kalaheo Complex, which consists of eight elementary schools, Kailua Intermediate, and Kailua and Kalaheo High Schools. There are also several private school options available in the district, including Le Jardin Academy.

 

Waialua

Waialua is a quiet town on Oahu’s famous North Shore that hosts a close-knit, small-town community. This former plantation town is in the process of going through new development for new businesses in the old Waialua Sugar Mill. Residents have voiced their desire to keep much of the community’s country character intact so overdevelopment of the residential have is unlikely. This undeveloped and historic area hosts the North Shore Surf & Cultural Museum. Presently, the Waialua Sugar Mill has a handful of retail shops, eateries, and services housed on property. The mill is also the site of the weekly Waialua Farmer’s Market where residents can find vendors selling fresh produce, flowers, and a variety of locally made goods. As the North Shore has some of Hawaii’s most beautiful and untouched beaches, Waialua is an ideal location for a variety of water sports. Swimming, snorkeling, fishing, sailing, scuba diving, and surfing are popular recreational activities for residents of the area. Kaiaka Bay Beach Park and Haleiwa Aii Beach Park are two venues for such activities, as well as favorite sites for family picnics or parties. Waialua is also located the Turtle Bay Resort, where a world-class golf course with a stunning 36 holes is available. The Waialua Complex school district is made up of Haleiwa and Waialua Elementary Schools, and Waialua High & Intermediate School.

 

Nuuanu Valley

Most of the residential units in Nuuanu are contained within Nuuanu Valley, where ample rainfall ensures that backyards and surrounding areas are lush with tropical vegetation year-round. The district is largely made up of single family homes, which a handful of high-rise condominium and apartment building scattered in the region just outside of the valley. Pali Highway cuts through Nuuanu, which gives residents here direct routes over to the Windward side of Oahu, a quick entry point to metro Honolulu and the business district, and convenient access to the H-1 freeway. Because of its location right outside of the urban area of Honolulu, Nuuanu residents can enjoy all the shopping, restaurant, and nightlife venues of the city while maintaining quiet suburban life. Ala Moana Shopping Center and the Victoria Ward Centers are within a short drive of most Nuuanu homes, and there is a small shopping center within the area. The Nuuanu Shopping Plaza is a small complex with a Laundromat, florist, and several restaurants—including the famous Hungry Lion Coffeehouse. The Nuuanu YMCA provides a variety of programs including martial arts and personal training. There is a health and fitness center, gymnasium, and swimming pool on the facility’s grounds as well. Nuuanu is part of the Roosevelt Complex school district that includes six elementary schools, Stevensen and Kawananakoa Middle Schools, and Roosevelt High School.

 

Kaimuki

Kaimuki is an older neighborhood on Oahu—in fact, a bulk of the residential and commercial properties are over 100 years old and many of the homes are owned by multigenerational families. A community of spacious single-family homes, many of the properties in this area range around 5,000 square feet with only a few of them being whittle down to smaller areas by residents over the years. Kaimuki has most of its homes clustered together on block after block of hilly street. The commercial areas are contained separately, mostly along Waialae and Kapahulu Avenues. This allows residents to enjoy all the conveniences of close restaurants and services without ever-present noise throughout the day. Both main streets have a large variety of restaurants in every ethnicity and price range and many, like Rainbow Drive-Inn, are traditional local haunts that every generation in Hawaii frequent. Aside from the multiple shops and eateries that line Waialae and Kapahulu, there are several clusters of commercial businesses including Market City Shopping Center, and the Avenue Shops at Safeway Center, a handful of new shops that is anchored by the largest Safeway in the state.There are also several community parks that are equipped with basketball courts and large open spaces for recreational use. The Kaimuki Complex school district consists of seven elementary schools, Washington and Jarrett Middle Schools, and Kaimuki High School. The grounds of Kaimuki High School also house the Kaimuki Community School, a learning center for adults.

 

Temple Valley

Temple Valley is a subdivision of Kaneohe on the Windward side of Oahu nestled in the crevices of the Koolau Mountain Range. The neighborhood gets its name from the Valley of the Temples Memorial Park, a tranquil and picturesque piece of property where many residents of Buddhist, Christian, and Shinto background are laid to rest. The Windward side gets ample amounts of rain year-round so the valley is always plush and vibrant with tropical foliage. This community houses Temple Valley Shopping Center where residents can pick up groceries at the Times Supermarket, catch a movie at the large multiplex theatre, or browse the other small shops and restaurants in the area. There is also Windward Mall further in Kaneohe and a handful of smaller strip malls to provide the community with a variety of restaurants and services from banking to auto repair. Temple Valley is part of the Castle Complex school district which consists of eight elementary schools, King Intermediate, and Castle High School.

 

Coconut Grove

Coconut Grove is a subdivision of single-family homes in Kailua on the Windward side, a cohesive community with most services and necessities contained within the neighborhood so that their distance from the city of Honolulu is rarely a problem. The neighborhood is known for its quiet streets and tranquil atmosphere. Near by Kailua Town has a number of restaurants, parks, schools, libraries, and shopping venues condensed in the main business center, with plentiful residences surrounding the hub of activity. Additionally, homeowners enjoy the close proximity to Kailua Beach, one of the most popular beaches on Oahu. The beach and surrounding beach park are ideal for picnics, swimming in the gentle waters, sunbathing on the white sand, and is known as the windsurfing capital of Oahu. The center of Kailua Town has restaurants in every ethnicity and price range open for breakfast, brunch, lunch, and dinner. The diverse shops in the area include boutiques and department stores, supermarkets and drugstores, and every kind of service or repair available from computers to plumbing. Kailua Town also has local dentistry and physician practices in its scope. The strong sense of community in Kailua has also led residents to form various local clubs for tennis, running, senior activities, hiking, bicycling, and a number of organized youth sports. The Kailua-Kalaheo Complex consists of eight elementary schools, Kailua Intermediate, and Kailua and Kalaheo High Schools. There are also several private school options available in the district, including Le Jardin Academy.

 

Kapahulu

Kapahulu is a subdivision of the Kaimuki community along the busy strip of Kapahulu Avenue. Residences in this area are a mix of single- and multi-family homes with a handful of small apartment complexes as well. The length of Kapahulu extends towards Waikiki and the avenue is lined with a wide variety of restaurants, shops, and service providers. Most of the residential area litters either side of the main street. Kapahulu has direct access to recreational activities like family trips to the Honolulu Zoo, tee times at the Ala Wai Public Golf Course, and the sprawling open spaces at Crane Park that are equipped with basketball courts, baseball and softball fields, picnic area, playground, and community center. As it is an older neighborhood, Kapahulu is home to many eateries that have been local favorites for decades—iconic Rainbow Drive-Inn, Leonard’s Bakery with their malasadas, and Waiola Shave Ice—as well as trendy new venues including Burgers on the Edge and Wasabi & Nadaman. There are slew of restaurants in the area in just about every ethnic style and price range. There are ample service providers from animal care to tailoring, shops that sell everything from dive equipment to running shoes, and a major chain store, Safeway—the largest in the state.

 

Kalama Valley

A subdivision of the upscale Hawaii Kai community, Kalama Valley is a niche secluded from the bustling business district in Honolulu for quiet suburban lifestyles while still being centrally located for easy commutes. Kalama Valley is made of predominately single-family homes with a handful of condominium townhouses that are relatively high-priced because of their location within Hawaii Kai. Kalama Village Center is a small mall with a convenience store and a single Thai restaurant within the valley. Residents do have the option of making the quick drive further into Hawaii Kai where the Hawaii Kai Towne Center and Koko Marina have a large variety of supermarkets, multiplex theatres, ample food venues, and a wholesale distributor, Costco. Kalama Valley has its own community park that is equipped with basketball courts, but a wide variety of outdoor recreation is available nearby. Sandy Beach is a popular bodyboarding spot because of the big waves and lack of tourists, Makapu’u Beach is a quiet spot, and the Makapu’u Lighthouse hiking trail is a leisurely walk frequented by whale watchers. Additionally, Queen’s Gate Golf Course is available for golf aficionados looking to work on their swing. Kalama Valley falls into the Kaiser Complex school district. There are six elementary schools which feed into Niu Valley Middle School and Kaiser High School.

 

Palolo Valley

Palolo Valley is an older, multi-ethnic residential area that spans the entire width and depth of the surrounding valley with reasonably priced single-family homes. The mountain end of the valley is still used for agricultural purposes where crops and orchids are farmed. The valley is densely populated and includes a low income housing complex and this often gives outsiders a hesitation in approaching the community. However, longtime homeowners have come to appreciate the quiet, friendly area. There is a Zen Buddhist Center within the valley, as well as Palolo Chinese Home for the elderly. There are small convenience stores scattered within Palolo, but most of the commercial needs are met by the myriad of restaurants, stores, and services stationed along Waialae Avenue on the outskirts of the valley. There are grocery stores, gas stations, and a large variety of eateries in broad price ranges available for residents up and down the hilly Waialae. In the back of the valley, there is a hiking trail that leads to a waterfall and Ka’au Crater, a favorite hike of residents from all over the island. At Palolo District Park, residents can find open spaces, basketball courts, and a playground for recreational use. The park also hosts Summer Fun Programs for children and teens when they are out of school and is the site of the yearly Palolo Pride celebration each September.

 

Kaheka

Centrally located in the hustle and bustle of Honolulu, lies the small residential area of Kaheka. This area is made up of single family homes and a number of smaller, older apartment buildings. Residents of Kaheka are close to the business district of downtown and a short distance away from multiple freeway entrances for commuting during the work week. The commercial center of Kaheka is Don Quijote, a large 24-hour grocery and supermarket, and the sorrounding eateries that share its complex. Local residents favor the large, Japan-based store for it’s large variety of Asian products that mainland chain stores like Safeway just don’t stock. Don Quijote sells produce, fresh fish and seafood products, groceries, and also has a pharmacy on property. In the same neighborhood, there are a large variety of small restaurants, as well as bars and lounges for those looking for nightlife options. A favorite local haunt located in Kaheka is Hawaiian Brian’s, a large pool hall with an arcade area. Residents are also in close proximity to Ala Moana Shopping Center, which is the largest mall in the state of Hawaii and has numerous department stores, clothing stores, restaurants, and a post office. Additionally, there is a WalMart and the wholesale distributor Sam’s Club within walking distance from most residences.

 

Aiea Heights

Aiea Heights is a community of single-family homes and scattered townhouses which sit at an ideal location overlooking Pearl Harbor for ocean and sunset views. This community provides residents with attractive homes in a moderate price range and allows a fairly short commute to military personnel and civilians who do business in Pearl Harbor Naval Base, Camp Smith, and Hickam Airforce Base. The residential community has the benefits of close proximity to parks, ball fields, dental and medical practices, and ample shopping venues. At the bottom of Aiea Heights is the Aiea Shopping Center where residents can enjoy chain establishments like McDonald’s and Starbucks alongside small businesses serving local fare. This small shopping complex is where Aiea Bowl is located, one of the few bowling alleys left on Oahu. There is a small strip mall across the street where more local eateries and salon services are offered. A little further away is the Pearlridge Shopping Center, a facility with large chain stores like Macy’s, Inspiration Furniture, Sears, Borders Books and Music, and Toys R Us as anchor stores and home to 16 theatres, 12 full-service restaurants, 2 food courts, 2 arcades, a miniature golf course, and an emergency clinic. The Aiea Complex school district consists of five elementary schools, which feed into Aiea Intermediate and Aiea High Schools.

 

Pearl City

Pearl City gets its name from the discovery of oysters laden with the iridescent gems in the Pearl River. It is a large, older community of several subdivisions of single-family homes. The area was once used for a variety of farming—watercress, rice, and taro in the lowlands as well as pineapple and sugarcane on the hillside—and harvesting seafood in the area around the shoreline. These industries led to the multi-ethnic residential settlement of Pearl City. There are a number of strip malls outside of the residential area along the stretch of Kamehameha Highway consisting mostly of small local restaurants and fast-food venues. Pearl City is also a short distance away from the Pearlridge Shopping Center, a facility with large chain stores like Macy’s, Inspiration Furniture, Sears, Borders Books and Music, and Toys R Us as anchor stores and home to 16 theatres, 12 full-service restaurants, 2 food courts, 2 arcades, a miniature golf course, and an emergency clinic. The Pearl City District Park has ample open areas and a swimming pool for recreational use. The Pearl City complex has eight elementary schools feeding into Highlands Intermediate, then Pearl City High School. Pearl City High School is noted for its exceptional music program, and its concert and marching bands have been invited to play at various national and international venues.

 

Manoa Valley

Manoa Valley is a lush, fertile area with frequent showers and abundant rainbows lacing the skies. The community consists of older single-family homes done in traditional New England style architecture and known for their charisma and charm. The tree-lined streets and spacious yard areas that accompany many properties flourish in the misty rains of the valley. Manoa prides itself on its close-knit neighbors and strong community ties, making it an ideal deal place for families. Manoa Marketplace is a cluster of small boutique shops, a variety of multi-ethnic restaurants, and anchored by a Safeway and Longs Drugstore to serve the community’s needs. Next door to the shopping complex is Manoa Valley Theatre where year-round performances are given. For outdoor recreation, a favorite hiking trail of many locals from around the island starts at the back of the valley and leads to Manoa Falls. There are also the sprawling green lawns of Manoa District Park where children’s football, soccer, and baseball leagues practice during their respective seasons. The park facilities also include a gymnasium for volleyball and basketball, tennis courts, and a swimming pool. The nonprofit community organization Malama O Manoa oversees preservation efforts in the land and seeks to celebrate the cultural diversity and heritage of all residents in historic Manoa Valley. A popular event put together by the group is a biennial walking tour that highlights properties on the State Register of Historic Homes.

 

China Town

Chinatown is an exotic and diverse subdivision of the downtown Honolulu area. A community of high-rise condominium and apartments, Chinatown has long been a historic hub linked to commercial activity since the days Chinese immigrants began to move off the plantation lands. In recent years, Chinatown has battled problems with crime and unsightly buildings in need of serious repair. Fortunately, a city-based push to encourage local businesses to clean-up and take back the area has turned into a complete renaissance effort. Chinatown offers fresh produce and fish daily, many restaurants featuring Asian cuisine, dozens of florists filled with fresh flowers and leis, and shops that import goods from the East. After the clean-up of Chinatown began, numerous art galleries began to open shop in the area, as well as upscale restaurants and bars like Indigo, Bar 35 and 39 Hotel. The presence of these new businesses led to the establishment of First Friday, a monthly event to encourage the community back into Chinatown to enjoy local artists and feature the smaller restaurants. Additionally, The Hawaii Theatre Center received a complete restoration and is beginning to reclaim its former glory as a gathering spot for locals. Chinatown also closes down sections of its streets to create space for block parties and residents can always count on a spectacular event every Chinese New Year.

 

Punahou

Punahou is a subdivision of Makiki in metro-Honolulu that consists of older single-family homes and aging apartment complexes. Today, it is most well-known for being the area where President Barack Obama’s grandmother, Madelyn Dunham, owned a residence in the Punahou Circle Apartments. Thus, the President lived here from the time he was in the fifth grade until obtaining his high school diploma, as the apartment complex is near the illustrious Punahou School. President Obama also returned to the Punahou Circle Apartments to visit his grandmother while he was the Illinois junior senator and made stopovers during his campaign for President, most notably when Dunham fell ill and passed away shortly before the election. The Punahou neighborhood is centrally located close to several freeway entrances for those who need to commute to work. It is a family-friendly area that benefits from the recreational park access and community programs at Makiki District Park a short distance away, as well as being highly accessible via the local bus system by foot. This community is also in close proximity to the commercial sections of Makiki, Manoa, and Moiliili so residents are provided with a slew of multi-ethnic restaurant venues and ample services. Within this area is Punahou School, an institute that provides education from kindergarten through 12th grade, is a private institution well-known as being a challenging college-prep school and for its nationally recognized sports program. This neighborhood is also part of the Roosevelt Complex school district.

 

Aina Haina

Aina Haina means “Hind’s Land” in the native Hawaiian language, and is so named after the Hind-Clarke Dairy (and founder Robert Hind) which was a staple business in the area during early years of development. Today the community that sits nestled in Aina Haina valley is a close group who deeply invested in the recreational and commercial development of their home. This neighborhood consists largely of single-family homes that stretch from Kalanianaole Highway to deep into the valley. The Aina Haina Shopping Center provides residents with options for grocery shopping, several restaurant options, banks, a hair salon, and a conveniently located gas station. In recent years, community members have been concerned with the vitality of the shopping center after years of wear have taken their toll on the structure. There are ongoing plans to renovate the aging building and community members have a very strong presence in the procedures. The neighborhood has a strong community association that has been bringing residents together to address the issues that impact them all. The 40-year-old Aina Haina Community Association consists of concerned citizens who volunteer their services for the betterment of the district. This area falls into the Kaiser Complex school district that includes five elementary schools, Niu Valley Middle School, and Kaiser High School. Holy Nativity School, a private co-ed school run by Holy Nativity Episcopal Church, also accepts students from age 3 to 6th grade.

 

Waialae iki Ridge

Waialae Iki Ridge is home to a premier gated community of executive homes that began development in 1986. This location graces residents with spectacular scenic views of Kahala, Diamond Head, and Oahu’s south shore. Another perk is instant access to the cool trade winds that bluster along the ridge. Restaurants and a number of boutiques are available at Kahala Mall, a nearby shopping center that contains the most condensed area of the commercial property. Kahala Mall hosts Macy’s department store, Barnes & Noble bookstore, and has a small movie theatre as well. There is also a new Wholefoods Market for grocery shopping at the mall, and a Times Supermarket nearby. This community is also a short drive from the Niu Valley Shopping Center and the Aina Haina Shopping center, smaller complexes that offer their own charming restaurants and service options. Further along Kalanianaole Highway are Koko Marina and Hawaii Kai Towne Center where a large variety of shops and restaurants can be found. The Waialae Iki Community Association ensures that property values are maintained with a set of guidelines for residences, scheduled maintenance, and is responsible for the upkeep of roads and shared community infrastructures. There is a private recreation club, tennis courts, and an entertainment center available for residents on the property.

 

Wilhelmina Rise

Wilhelmina Rise is a hillside neighborhood above Kaimuki. It retains a mixture of older and newer mid-priced homes, all of which are known for their architectural charm and personality. The elevation on the hillside allows for weather that is mostly sunny and dry, and, of course, gives residents scenic views of the land and ocean sprawling beneath the rise. Most of the commercial needs are met by the myriad of restaurants, stores, and services stationed along Waialae Avenue at the bottom of Wilhelmina Rise. There are grocery stores, gas stations, and a large variety of eateries in broad price ranges available for residents up and down Waialae. A number of service agencies litter Waialae including gas stations, nail and hair salons, and small repair stores. Kahala Mall is also in close proximity to this community. The mall has market options like Wholefoods Market and Times Supermarket, a number of boutique shops, and even a small multiplex movie theatre. Wilhelmina Rise is part of the Kalani Complex school district which includes five elementary schools that feed into Kaimuki Middle School and Kalani High School. Waialae Public Charter School is also located within this district.

 

Kapalama

Kapalama is a close-knit community settled by Hawaiians and part-Hawaiians in the early 1900s. The residential area consists of medium-priced single- and multi-family homes. It is a highly-populated district that shares much of its space with various commercial and retail venues. As Kapalama is an older district, many of the businesses remain small mom-and-pop shops that are known for a wide variety of local fare or well-established groceries and markets that are the heart of the community. At these venues, local residents can find many unique cooking ingredients that are used in island favorites, but not likely to be carried at mainland chain stores like Safeway. There are several small strip malls that run along Dillingham Boulevard with a nice selection of multi-ethnic restaurants and local service providers. Additionally, there is a Costco wholesale warehouse available for bulk purchases as well. The Kalihi-Palama Health Center is an affordable, full-service clinic that seeks to meet the community’s health needs and promotes a number of educational and awareness programs for residents. Kapalama is part of the Farrington Complex school district that includes eight elementary schools, Kalakaua and Dole Intermediates, and Farrington High School. Honolulu Community College also shares the grounds of Farrington High School.

 

Kalihi

Kalihi residential area consists of medium-priced older houses and aging apartment buildings. It is a highly-populated district that shares much of its space with various commercial venues, car repair shops,industrial businesses. Part of the district moves up into the crevices of Kalihi Valley, while the other stretches down into the commercial area near Kapalama. The bulk of activity in Kalihi is centered around the Kamehameha Shopping Center. This venue is anchored by Longs Drugstore and Star Market for daily necessities and also houses a number of restaurants and fast-food stores. WalGreens recently opened a location across the street from the shopping center after the historic Kamehameha Bowling Alley was closed and torn down. Family activities in the district include a variety of parks (many equipped with basketball courts) for open spaces, as well as the Bishop Museum, which seeks to preserve traditional Hawaiian artifacts and cultural pastimes. The Kalihi-Palama Health Center is an affordable, full-service clinic that seeks to meet the community’s health needs and promotes a number of educational and awareness programs for residents. Kalihi is part of the Farrington Complex school district that includes eight elementary schools, Kalakaua and Dole Intermediates, and Farrington High School. Honolulu Community College also shares the grounds of Farrington High School.

 

Keolu Hills

Keolu Hills is a subdivision of single-family homes in Kailua on the Windward side, a cohesive community with most services and necessities contained within the neighborhood so that their distance from the city of Honolulu is rarely a problem. Kailua Town has a number of restaurants, parks, schools, libraries, and shopping venues condensed in the main business center, with plentiful residences surrounding the hub of activity. Additionally, homeowners enjoy the close proximity to Kailua Beach, one of the most popular beaches on Oahu. The beach and surrounding beach park are ideal for picnics, swimming in the gentle waters, sunbathing on the white sand, and is known as the windsurfing capital of Oahu. The center of Kailua Town has restaurants in every ethnicity and price range open for breakfast, brunch, lunch, and dinner. The diverse shops in the area include boutiques and department stores, supermarkets and drugstores, and every kind of service or repair available from computers to plumbing. Kailua Town also has local dentistry and physician practices in its scope. The strong sense of community in Kailua has also led residents to form various local clubs for tennis, running, senior activities, hiking, bicycling, and a number of organized youth sports. The Kailua-Kalaheo Complex consists of eight elementary schools, Kailua Intermediate, and Kailua and Kalaheo High Schools. There are also several private school options available in the district, including Le Jardin Academy.

 

Newtown

Newtown is a subdivision of Pearl City includes newer homes and condominiums. The area was once used for a variety of farming—watercress, rice, and taro in the lowlands as well as pineapple and sugarcane on the hillside—and harvesting seafood in the area around the shoreline. These industries led to the multi-ethnic residential settlement of Pearl City. There are a number of strip malls outside of the residential area along the stretch of Kamehameha Highway consisting mostly of small local restaurants and fast-food venues. Pearl City is also a short distance away from the Pearlridge Shopping Center, a facility with large chain stores like Macy’s, Inspiration Furniture, Sears, Borders Books and Music, and Toys R Us as anchor stores and home to 16 theatres, 12 full-service restaurants, 2 food courts, 2 arcades, a miniature golf course, and an emergency clinic. The Pearl City District Park has ample open areas and a swimming pool for recreational use. The Pearl City complex has eight elementary schools feeding into Highlands Intermediate, then Pearl City High School. Pearl City High School is noted for its exceptional music program, and its concert and marching bands have been invited to play at various national and international venues.

 

Hawaii Loa Ridge

Hawaii Loa Ridge is an upscale, gated community that houses millionaire estates. One of the most prized features are the spectacular views of the ocean, Diamond Head crater to the west or Koko Head crater in the. It is an exclusive neighborhood where even those with the means to personally design their homes must get approval from the developer’s review board to ensure that all estates meet specific guidelines and requirements so as not to block the treasured view of others’ lots. Residents do have the option of making the quick drive further into Hawaii Kai where the Hawaii Kai Towne Center and Koko Marina have a large variety of supermarkets, multiplex theatres, ample food venues, and a wholesale distributor, Costco. Additionally, Kahala Mall hosts Macy’s department store, Barnes & Noble bookstore, and has a small movie theatre as well. There is also a new Wholefoods Market for grocery shopping at the mall, and a Times Supermarket nearby. This community is also a short drive from the Niu Valley Shopping Center and the Aina Haina Shopping center, smaller complexes that offer their own charming restaurants and service options. Hawaii Loa Ridge is part of the Kaiser complex with several elementary schools and Niu Valley Middle School feeding into Kaiser High School.

 

St. Louis Heights

Saint Louis Heights climbs the 483-foot Wa'ahila Ridge and is filled with older single-family homes. The location and elevation give residents stunning views of the ocean, Manoa Valley, and Waikiki. Most of the residential area is located up on the hillside, but there are an impressive amount of commercial activity at the base of Saint Louis Heights that give homeowners ample restaurant and service options. The nearest commercial areas are contained along Waialae and Kapahulu Avenues. This allows residents to enjoy all the conveniences of close restaurants and services without ever-present noise throughout the day. Both main streets have a large variety of restaurants in every ethnicity and price range and many, like Rainbow Drive-Inn, are traditional local haunts that every generation in Hawaii frequent. Aside from the multiple shops and eateries that line Waialae and Kapahulu, there are several clusters of commercial businesses including Market City Shopping Center, and the Avenue Shops at Safeway Center, a handful new shops that is anchored by the largest Safeway in the state. This neighborhood falls into the Kaimuki Complex school district, which consists of seven elementary schools, Washington and Jarrett Middle Schools, and Kaimuki High School. The grounds of Kaimuki High School also house the Kaimuki Community School, a learning center for adults. There is also Saint Louis School at the base of the residential area, a private, all-boys academy.

 

Niu Valley

Niu Valley houses a mid- to high-priced community in the ridges of the Ko'olau Mountain’s far eastern foothills. The weather on the eastern coast of Oahu is drier and sunnier, which compliments the many beach access points available. Kalanianaole Highway is the access point to get in and out of Niu Valley, and the area sits between commercial venues of Kahala Mall and the upscale centers in Hawaii Kai. Restaurants and a number of boutiques are available at Kahala Mall, a nearby shopping center that contains most condensed area of the commercial property. Kahala Mall hosts Macy’s department store, Barnes & Noble bookstore, and has a small movie theatre as well. There is also a new Wholefoods Market for grocery shopping at the mall, and a Times Supermarket nearby. This community is also a short drive from the Niu Valley Shopping Center and the Aina Haina Shopping center, smaller complexes that offer their own charming restaurants and service options. Further along Kalanianaole Highway are Koko Marina and Hawaii Kai Towne Center where a large variety of shops and restaurants can be found. Niu Valley is part of the Kaiser complex with several elementary schools and Niu Valley Middle School feeding into Kaiser High School.

 

Maili'

Maili is a small subdivision in Waianae, a small community lifestyle that residents have sought to keep as untouched by development as possible. Waianae is one of the few places on Oahu where people still farm products like vegetables, flowers, and livestock in substantial numbers. The residents pride themselves for maintaining a community that is still deeply tied to the cultural ways of Old Hawaii and Waianae is home to numerous multigenerational families. Waianae residences consist of single- and multi-family homes, apartment buildings and condominiums which are highly affordable. As the community has shied away from over-development of pristine Waianae, only a few high-end luxury homes dot the coastline. Waianae remains a rural area with plenty of beach access and open areas at Wai‘anae Field, Waianae Regional Park, Kaupuni Neighborhood Park, and Pililaau Community Park. The Waianae Mall Shopping Center is anchored by the popular Longs Drugstore and provides residents with a handful of restaurants and services as well. The Waianae Coast Comprehensive Health Center is a unique facility that focuses on health services with a strong, traditional native Hawaiian foundation. Many residents in the Waianae have come to prefer the health center since its opening 30 years ago because of their preference to keep lifestyles with a strong influence of their past and heritage. This area is part of the Waianae-Nanakuli Complex school district, which includes six elementary school options that feed into Waianae and Nanakuli Intermediate and High Schools. There are also several charter schools in this area which focus on native Hawaiian traditions and values.

 

Halawa

Halawa is a small area in central Oahu that is part of an ahupuaa of the same name (division the breaks the land into sections running from mountain to ocean) that has been a culturally and historically important spot for Native Hawaiians for hundreds of years. Most of Halawa Valley is undeveloped, although those who wish to preserve the area have been greatly upset by the pollution in Pearl Harbor at the ocean end of the valley, as well as the construction of the H-3 freeway that cuts through sacred spots. The residential section of Halawa is disjointed because the H-3, as well as other freeway on-ramps, off-ramps, and overpasses circumvent the area. Halawa also has a large industrial section, and encompasses parts of Pearl Harbor at the base of the valley. Residents appreciate the close access to the freeway when they need to make the commute to town, but there are a number of businesses and restaurants a short distance away as well. Halawa has especially close proximity to Aloha Stadium, the main area for many major sports events on Oahu; most notably, it is the home field of the University of Hawaii Warrior football team. The stadium also hosts a local swap meet weekly where a variety of goods are sold. A small shopping plaza is near the stadium where a number of fast-food spots, eateries featuring local fare, small shops, and the island’s only ice skating rink can be found.

 

Makaha

Makaha is a residential area on the Waianae Coast that shares the quiet, sleepy town feeling like the rest of Waianae. There are stunning views of the Waianae Mountain Range, and direct access to the pristine coastline as well. Waianae is one of the few places on Oahu where people still farm products like vegetables, flowers, and livestock in substantial numbers. The residents priVillage Park

Village Park is a subdivision in Waipahu that consists of single- and multi-family homes, as well as townhouse units. Today, remnants of the old plantation era remain throughout the neighborhood in the form of buildings that have been preserved for cultural and educational purposes. This site is known as the Hawaii Plantation Village and serves as a living museum to commemorate the years when sugar reigned and inevitably shaped the history of Hawaii Waipahu has several shopping venues which contain grocery stores, restaurants, and a variety of services for residents in the area. The Waipahu Shopping Plaza Shopping Center, Waipahu Shopping Village Shopping Center, Waipahu Town Center Shopping Center, and Westgate Shopping Center are contained within the area. Waipahu also has several parks for leisurely recreation and they are popular places for family get-togethers on weekends. Honowai Neighborhood Park, Waipahu Cultural Garden Park, Waipahu Field all have spacious green areas for residents to enjoy. Hans L’Orange Park was originally established as a playing field in 1923 and is the home of the West Oahu CaneFires, a minor league baseball team. Waipahu has it’s own school complex that includes five elementary schools which feed into Waipahu Intermediate and High Schools. The charter school Hawaii Tech Academy is also located in this school district.

 

Waiau Ahupuaa

Waiau Ahupuaa is a section that stretches from the mountains down to Pearl Harbor at and the surrounding ocean area. Part of Waiau cuts through the Keaiwa Heiau State Recreation Area with most of the residential units in an area between Waimalu and Pearl City. Many residents enjoy the grounds of the 384-acre park area within the recreation site. There are four campsites available and the State Parks office sells permits for their use at the reasonable price of $5. The camping area includes picnic areas, restrooms and covered pavilions with barbeque grills. The park grounds are also the location of the popular Aiea Loop Trail, a 4.8 mile trek that offers stunning views of Pearl Harbor, the Waianae Mountain Range, and Diamond Head. There are a number of small strip malls outside of the residential area along the stretch of Kamehameha Highway consisting mostly of small local restaurants and fast-food venues. The Pearlridge Shopping Center is also available for shopping at department stores like Macy’s and Sears, as well as a number of shops joined by the state’s only monorail system. Waiau is in the Pearl City complex that includes eight elementary schools feeding into Highlands Intermediate, then Pearl City High School. Pearl City High School is noted for its exceptional music program, and its concert and marching bands have been invited to play at various national and international venues.

 

Wailuna

Wailuna is a community above Pearl City, and near the Waiau neighborhood. There is a mixture of large single-family homes and townhouses in this district. This area has especially close proximity to Aloha Stadium, the main area for many major sports events on Oahu; most notably, it is the home field of the University of Hawaii Warrior football team. The stadium also hosts a local swap meet weekly where a variety of goods are sold. A variety of small strip malls are located within Pearl City that offer fast-food venues and small local eateries. Wailuna also has access to the many shops and department stores at the Pearl Ridge Shopping Center. Recreational activity can also be found on the 384-acre grounds of Keaiwa Heiau State Recreation Area has campsites and the famous Aiea Loop Trail. The State Parks office sells permits for their use at the reasonable price of $5 and camping areas includes picnic areas, restrooms and covered pavilions with barbeque grills. Wailuna is in the Pearl City complex that includes eight elementary schools feeding into Highlands Intermediate, then Pearl City High School. Pearl City High School is noted for its exceptional music program, and its concert and marching bands have been invited to play at various national and international venues.

 

Lualualei

Lualualei is a subdivision of Waianae that consists of single-family homes, apartments, and condominiums. There is also a section dedicated to Hawaiian Homestead Lands in this area. There are stunning views of the Waianae Mountain Range, and direct access to the pristine coastline as well. Waianae is one of the few places on Oahu where people still farm products like vegetables, flowers, and livestock in substantial numbers. Recreational activities in this area is largely centered around outdoor activities. Lualualei is near two camping grounds, Camp Timberline and Camp Mokuleia. There are several hiking trails including the Honouliuli Contour Trail, Dupont Trail and Mokuleia Trail. There are streams and the Lualualie Reservoir are also popular lounging areas for locals. The Makaha Golf Course is an 18-hole world-class course that also has a country club on the grounds. This area is part of the Waianae-Nanakuli Complex school district, which includes six elementary school options that feed into Waianae and Nanakuli Intermediate and High Schools. There are also several charter schools in this area which focus on native Hawaiian traditions and values.

 

Wahiawa

Wahiawa’s ethnic makeup closely follows that of the plantation contract laborers who were brought to the islands and settle in the neighborhood over 100 years before. In 1998, this proud community celebrated its centennial and the residents pride themselves on the diverse amalgamation of people in the area. Wahiawa is a historic, older community that consists of mostly single-family homes. In recent years, there has been a growing number of military personnel settling in the neighborhood as well because of the close proximity to Schofield Barracks and Wheeler Army Airfield. There are a large variety of restaurants that mirror the diverse ethnic make-up of the community. Residents enjoy eateries in just about every style, and many are older establishments that have been around for decades and attract locals from all over Oahu. There Wahiawa State Freshwater State Park is a tranquil open space surrounded by the Hawaii Country Club Golf Course (also open to residents to use). Wahiawa is part of the Leilehua Complex school district. There are seven elementary schools that feed into Wahiawa and Wheeler Middle Schools, then into Leilehua High School.ers who were brought to the islands and settle in the neighborhood over 100 years before. In 1998, this proud community celebrated its centennial and the residents pride themselves on the diverse amalgamation of people in the area. Wahiawa is a historic, older community that consists of mostly single-family homes. In recent years, there has been a growing number of military personnel settling in the neighborhood as well because of the close proximity to Schofield Barracks and Wheeler Army Airfield. There are a large variety of restaurants that mirror the diverse ethnic make-up of the community. Residents enjoy eateries in just about every style, and many are older establishments that have been around for decades and attract locals from all over Oahu. There Wahiawa State Freshwater State Park is a tranquil open space surrounded by the Hawaii Country Club Golf Course (also open to residents to use). Wahiawa is part of the Leilehua Complex school district. There are seven elementary schools that feed into Wahiawa and Wheeler Middle Schools, then into Leilehua High School.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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