Have you ever wanted to immerse yourself in the vibrant outdoor culture of Waikiki? Look no further, as we bring you a tantalizing array of the best outdoor events in this tropical paradise. From thrilling surfing competitions to sunset yoga sessions on the beach, Waikiki offers a diverse range of activities that cater to every interest and age group. Whether you are a nature lover, a sports enthusiast, or simply seeking to escape the ordinary, join us as we uncover the best outdoor events that will make your time in Waikiki unforgettable.
1. Beach Activities
1.1 Surfing Competitions
If you’re a fan of water sports and thrilling competitions, then you won’t want to miss the exciting surfing competitions held in Waikiki. Whether you’re a skilled surfer yourself or just enjoy watching the pros in action, these surfing competitions are sure to make your heart race. From the iconic Waikiki Beach to the legendary waves of the North Shore, there are numerous surfing events throughout the year that showcase the incredible talent and athleticism of surfers from around the world.
1.2 Beach Volleyball Tournaments
For those who prefer a team sport, beach volleyball tournaments offer a fantastic opportunity to soak up the sun while enjoying some friendly competition. Waikiki’s beautiful beaches provide the perfect backdrop for these tournaments, attracting both professional players and amateurs looking to have a good time. Whether you choose to participate or simply cheer on the teams from the sidelines, beach volleyball tournaments are a great way to spend a day at the beach, surrounded by the vibrant energy of the games.
1.3 Paddleboarding Races
Paddleboarding has gained immense popularity in recent years, and Waikiki is the ideal place to try your hand at this fun and challenging activity. From leisurely paddles along the calm waters to intense races that test your skills and endurance, paddleboarding races in Waikiki offer something for everyone. Whether you’re a seasoned paddler or a beginner looking for a new adventure, these races give you the chance to explore the beauty of the ocean while competing against fellow enthusiasts.
2. Cultural Festivals
2.1 Waikiki Hoolaulea
Immerse yourself in the vibrant culture of Hawaii at the annual Waikiki Hoolaulea festival. This celebration showcases the rich heritage of the islands through music, dance, arts, and crafts. As you wander through the festival grounds, you’ll be treated to live performances by talented musicians and dancers, marvel at the traditional Hawaiian crafts on display, and indulge in delicious local cuisine. The Waikiki Hoolaulea is a family-friendly event that offers a glimpse into the traditions and customs that make Hawaii so unique.
2.2 Prince Kuhio Celebration
Honoring the life and legacy of Prince Jonah Kuhio Kalanianaole, the Prince Kuhio Celebration is a cultural festival that celebrates Hawaii’s history and the achievements of Prince Kuhio. This event features various activities, including hula dances, storytelling, and cultural exhibits, that highlight the contributions of Prince Kuhio to the Hawaiian community. It’s a great opportunity to learn more about the cultural heritage of Hawaii and pay tribute to a revered figure in Hawaiian history.
2.3 Lantern Floating Hawaii
Lantern Floating Hawaii is a moving and spiritual event that takes place annually on Memorial Day. Thousands of people gather on Waikiki Beach to release lanterns into the ocean, symbolizing the letting go of past sorrows and finding hope for the future. The sight of the floating lanterns illuminating the water is both breathtaking and profound, creating a sense of peace and unity. This event encourages reflection and remembrance, providing a space for individuals to honor their loved ones and connect with others who have experienced loss.
3. Concerts & Music Festivals
3.1 Waikiki Steel Guitar Week
For lovers of music, specifically the unique and melodic sounds of the steel guitar, Waikiki Steel Guitar Week is a must-attend event. This week-long festival brings together talented steel guitarists from around the world, who captivate audiences with their soulful performances. From traditional Hawaiian tunes to contemporary interpretations, the music produced by these skilled musicians is sure to leave you in awe. If you’ve ever wanted to experience the enchanting sounds of the steel guitar, this festival is the perfect opportunity.
3.2 Ukulele Festival Hawaii
The ukulele is synonymous with Hawaii, and the Ukulele Festival Hawaii celebrates this beloved instrument in all its glory. This annual event brings together ukulele enthusiasts of all ages and skill levels, showcasing the versatility and charm of the ukulele through performances by talented musicians. From lively group performances to heartwarming solos, the melodies produced by the ukuleles create a joyful atmosphere that is infectious. Whether you’re a seasoned ukulele player or simply appreciate good music, the Ukulele Festival Hawaii is an event not to be missed.
3.3 Aloha Festivals Waikiki Hoolaulea
As part of the larger Aloha Festivals, the Waikiki Hoolaulea is a music festival that celebrates the diversity and spirit of Hawaii. This free event features live performances by renowned Hawaiian musicians, showcasing a range of genres from traditional Hawaiian chants to contemporary pop. With food booths offering a variety of local delicacies and craft vendors displaying their wares, the Waikiki Hoolaulea creates a lively and festive atmosphere that truly embodies the aloha spirit. It’s a fantastic opportunity to immerse yourself in the local music scene and experience the joy and warmth of Hawaiian culture.
4. Fireworks Shows
4.1 Friday Night Fireworks at Hilton Hawaiian Village
Every Friday night, the night sky above Waikiki is painted with dazzling bursts of color as the Hilton Hawaiian Village puts on a spectacular fireworks show. Whether you’re enjoying a romantic evening stroll on the beach or dining at one of the oceanfront restaurants, the Friday night fireworks are a captivating sight that adds a touch of magic to the Waikiki skyline. Grab a blanket, find a cozy spot on the sand, and witness the sky come alive with vibrant explosions that are sure to leave you in awe.
4.2 New Year’s Eve Fireworks at Waikiki Beach
Ring in the New Year in style with the breathtaking fireworks display at Waikiki Beach. As the clock strikes midnight, the night sky is illuminated with a spectacular show of lights and colors, creating a truly memorable start to the year. Join the festive crowd gathered along the beachfront and feel the energy and excitement in the air. As the fireworks light up the sky, take a moment to reflect on the past year and embrace the fresh beginnings that lie ahead.
4.3 Fourth of July Fireworks Spectacular
Celebrate Independence Day in true patriotic fashion with the Fourth of July Fireworks Spectacular in Waikiki. This annual event showcases a dazzling display of fireworks set against the backdrop of the Pacific Ocean, creating a mesmerizing spectacle that brings joy to all who witness it. Grab a picnic blanket, pack a tasty spread of snacks, and settle in for an evening of sparkles and pops as you enjoy the festivities under the starry skies of Waikiki.
5. Sports Events
5.1 Honolulu Marathon
Calling all running enthusiasts! The Honolulu Marathon is one of the world’s most iconic marathons, attracting thousands of participants from around the globe. This challenging yet rewarding race takes you through the scenic streets of Honolulu, offering breathtaking ocean views and a vibrant atmosphere that is hard to beat. Whether you’re a seasoned marathon runner or simply looking to challenge yourself, the Honolulu Marathon is an event that will push your limits and leave you with a tremendous sense of accomplishment.
5.2 Hawaii Open Tennis Tournament
Love a good game of tennis? The Hawaii Open Tennis Tournament brings world-class tennis players to Waikiki, showcasing their skills in an exhilarating tournament. From powerful serves to strategic rallies, the matches are filled with excitement and intensity. Whether you’re a fan of the sport or a casual observer, watching these athletes give it their all on the tennis court is a thrilling experience that is sure to keep you on the edge of your seat.
5.3 Na Wahine O Ke Kai Canoe Race
Experience the thrill of one of Hawaii’s most treasured water sports – outrigger canoeing – by watching the Na Wahine O Ke Kai Canoe Race. This all-women’s race spans the treacherous Kaiwi Channel, testing the strength, endurance, and teamwork of the paddlers. As you cheer on the teams from the shores of Waikiki, you’ll witness the determination and resilience required to conquer the ocean. The Na Wahine O Ke Kai Canoe Race is not only a testament to the physical capabilities of the athletes but also a celebration of the strong bonds and community spirit that make this race so special.
6. Farmers Markets
6.1 Kapiolani Community College Farmers Market
Support local farmers and artisans at the Kapiolani Community College Farmers Market, a bustling market that showcases the best of Hawaii’s agricultural and culinary offerings. Here, you’ll find a wide array of fresh fruits, vegetables, flowers, and local delicacies that highlight the diverse flavors of Hawaii. Stroll through the market, sample delicious treats, and chat with the farmers and vendors as you learn more about the rich agricultural heritage of the islands. Help support sustainable farming practices and take home a taste of Hawaii to savor and enjoy.
6.2 Waikiki Farmers Market
Located right in the heart of Waikiki, the Waikiki Farmers Market offers visitors and locals alike the opportunity to purchase fresh produce, artisanal products, and unique crafts. This vibrant market brings together farmers, growers, and artists who are passionate about promoting sustainable practices and sharing their love for the land. Explore the various stalls, engage in friendly conversations with the vendors, and choose from an impressive range of local goods that embody the essence of Hawaii.
6.3 Haleiwa Farmers Market
Venture to the North Shore and experience the Haleiwa Farmers Market, a charming market that captures the laid-back spirit of Hawaii’s countryside. Surrounded by beautiful natural landscapes, this market is a treasure trove of fresh produce, homemade treats, and handmade crafts. From farm-fresh fruits and vegetables to delectable baked goods and unique souvenirs, the Haleiwa Farmers Market has something to entice every visitor. Enjoy the warm community atmosphere as you shop, and don’t forget to savor the local flavors by indulging in some freshly prepared food from the market’s vendors.
7. Yoga & Wellness Activities
7.1 Beach Yoga Classes
Find your inner Zen with beach yoga classes that offer the perfect blend of relaxation and physical activity. Picture yourself practicing yoga on the soft sands of Waikiki Beach, surrounded by the soothing sounds of crashing waves and the gentle touch of a refreshing ocean breeze. Whether you’re a seasoned yogi or just starting your journey, these classes cater to all levels and provide a serene and peaceful environment to align your mind, body, and spirit.
7.2 Stand-Up Paddleboard Yoga Sessions
Take your yoga practice to a whole new level by combining it with the serene art of stand-up paddleboarding. Stand-Up Paddleboard (SUP) yoga sessions in Waikiki offer a unique and exhilarating way to connect with nature and challenge your balance. Picture yourself gracefully balancing on a paddleboard as you gracefully flow through yoga poses, all while surrounded by the stunning beauty of the ocean. It’s an experience that combines the tranquility of yoga with the thrill of being out on the water.
7.3 Outdoor Meditation Events
Escape the hustle and bustle of everyday life and find peace and serenity at outdoor meditation events in Waikiki. Whether it’s a guided meditation session on the beach or a silent meditation gathering in a lush park, these events provide a space for deep relaxation and inner reflection. Breathe in the fresh air, delve into a state of mindfulness, and let the stresses of life melt away as you immerse yourself in the present moment. These outdoor meditation events offer a wonderful opportunity to reconnect with yourself and find a sense of calm amidst the beauty of nature.
8. Waikiki Art Walks
8.1 First Friday Art Walk
Celebrate the vibrant art scene of Waikiki by participating in the First Friday Art Walk. On the first Friday of each month, the streets of Waikiki come alive with creativity as galleries, boutiques, and local businesses open their doors to showcase the work of talented artists. Take a leisurely stroll through the lively streets, browse through the eclectic artwork on display, and engage with artists as they share their inspirations and stories. The First Friday Art Walk is a dynamic and engaging experience that allows you to immerse yourself in the vibrant art and culture of Waikiki.
8.2 Third Thursday Art Walk
Similar to the First Friday Art Walk, the Third Thursday Art Walk is another opportunity to explore the diverse art scene of Waikiki. On the third Thursday of each month, art enthusiasts gather to appreciate the works of local artists, musicians, and performers. Stroll through the charming streets, visit galleries and pop-up exhibitions, and marvel at the creativity on display. The Third Thursday Art Walk is a wonderful way to support local artists, gain insight into their creative processes, and experience the artistic pulse that beats through the heart of Waikiki.
8.3 Kaka’ako Art Walk
Venture beyond Waikiki and discover the burgeoning art district of Kaka’ako, a neighborhood that showcases the colorful and dynamic street art of Hawaii. The Kaka’ako Art Walk offers visitors the chance to explore this vibrant community, taking in the striking murals and installations that adorn the walls of buildings. As you wander through the streets, you’ll witness the transformation of urban spaces into outdoor galleries, where local and international artists leave their mark. The Kaka’ako Art Walk is an exciting and unconventional way to experience art, providing a unique perspective on the creative expressions that define the spirit of Hawaii.
9. Ocean Events
9.1 Waikiki Roughwater Swim
If you’re looking for a thrilling and adrenaline-pumping challenge, then the Waikiki Roughwater Swim is the event for you. As one of the world’s premier ocean swims, this race covers 2.38 miles between Ala Moana Beach Park and the shores of Waikiki. Join hundreds of swimmers from around the world as you navigate the open waters, battling waves and currents to reach the finish line. The Waikiki Roughwater Swim is not only a physical feat but also a celebration of the ocean and the camaraderie among swimmers who share a passion for the water.
9.2 Duke’s OceanFest Waikiki
Named in honor of the legendary Hawaiian waterman, Duke Kahanamoku, Duke’s OceanFest is an annual celebration of ocean sports and Hawaiian culture. This week-long event features a wide range of ocean-based competitions, including surfing, paddleboarding, swimming, and more. From fun and lighthearted events for amateurs to high-stakes contests for professional athletes, Duke’s OceanFest offers entertainment for both participants and spectators. Immerse yourself in the rich heritage of Hawaii’s ocean activities and witness the incredible athleticism of the participants as they pay homage to the legacy of Duke Kahanamoku.
9.3 Waikiki Tandem Surfing Championships
Witness the grace and skill of tandem surfing at the Waikiki Tandem Surfing Championships, where couples take to the waves and perform breathtaking acrobatic maneuvers on a single surfboard. Combining elements of dance, gymnastics, and traditional surfing techniques, tandem surfing showcases the incredible balance, trust, and synchronization between partners. As you watch the competitors glide across the waves and execute impressive lifts and spins, you’ll be amazed at the seamless coordination and artistry displayed. The Waikiki Tandem Surfing Championships are a testament to the beauty and creativity that can be achieved through teamwork and a deep connection with the ocean.
10. Family-Friendly Events
10.1 Waikiki Holiday Parade
Kick off the holiday season with the festive Waikiki Holiday Parade, a vibrant procession that fills the streets of Waikiki with excitement and cheer. Floats adorned in dazzling holiday decorations, marching bands playing joyful tunes, and costumed performers create a spectacle that delights both young and old. The Waikiki Holiday Parade is a wonderful opportunity for families to come together, create lasting memories, and embrace the magic of the holiday season.
10.2 Keiki Hula Show
Experience the rich cultural heritage of Hawaii through the enchanting art of hula at the Keiki Hula Show. This family-friendly event showcases the talent and grace of young hula dancers as they perform traditional Hawaiian dances. Immerse yourself in the beauty of their movements and the melodic sounds of Hawaiian music that tell stories of the islands. The Keiki Hula Show is a celebration of Hawaiian culture and a reminder of the importance of passing down traditions to the younger generations.
10.3 Waikiki Sandcastle Competition
Let your inner child come out to play at the Waikiki Sandcastle Competition, a whimsical event that turns the sandy shores of Waikiki into a gallery of magnificent sand sculptures. Watch as teams of artists transform ordinary sand into incredible works of art, sculpting intricate details and whimsical characters. The competition offers a fun and interactive experience for the whole family, with opportunities to build your own sandcastle and participate in other beach activities. The Waikiki Sandcastle Competition is a playful celebration of creativity and imagination, allowing everyone to embrace their inner artist and marvel at the beauty that can be created with a humble bucket of sand.
In Waikiki, there is an abundance of outdoor events that cater to a wide range of interests and passions. From thrilling surfing competitions and beach volleyball tournaments to cultural festivals that celebrate the rich heritage of Hawaii, there is always something exciting happening in this vibrant beachside community. For music enthusiasts, Waikiki offers an array of concerts and music festivals that showcase the unique sounds of the islands, from the soulful melodies of the steel guitar to the playful tunes of the ukulele. And let’s not forget about the spectacular fireworks shows that light up the skies of Waikiki, providing a magical experience for both locals and visitors alike.
Sports enthusiasts will find plenty to cheer for, with events such as the famed Honolulu Marathon and the Hawaii Open Tennis Tournament, where world-class athletes compete in exhilarating matches. For those looking for a more relaxed pace, Waikiki also hosts a variety of outdoor activities focused on wellness and relaxation, including beach yoga classes and stand-up paddleboard yoga sessions. These activities allow you to connect with the tranquil beauty of the ocean and find inner peace.
Art lovers can explore the vibrant art scene of Waikiki through the various art walks that take place each month. These events provide the opportunity to admire the creativity and talent of local artists, as well as engage in conversations with them and gain insight into their artistic processes. And for those who crave ocean adventures, Waikiki offers a range of exciting ocean events, from the challenging Waikiki Roughwater Swim to the Duke’s OceanFest, where water sports and Hawaiian culture are celebrated.
Families are not left out of the excitement either, with family-friendly events such as the Waikiki Holiday Parade and the Keiki Hula Show that create lasting memories for everyone to cherish. And of course, who can resist the whimsical joy of the Waikiki Sandcastle Competition, where sand sculptors transform ordinary sand into extraordinary works of art?
No matter what your interests may be, there is something for everyone in Waikiki. So whether you’re a local looking for new experiences or a visitor hoping to make the most of your time in paradise, be sure to keep an eye out for these exciting outdoor events. Embrace the vibrant energy of Waikiki and immerse yourself in the beauty and culture that the area has to offer. From thrilling competitions to tranquil wellness activities, Waikiki has it all.