Honolulu, with its sunny beaches, rich culture, and vibrant life, is a dream place for many travelers.

But when you get there, one question might come up: Can you travel around Honolulu without a car? The answer is yes, you can. Honolulu offers many ways to see its beauty without needing to drive. Buses, bikes, and simply walking can get you to most of the amazing places this city has to offer.

So, what can you do in Honolulu without a car? Lots. From beaches to hikes, shopping to museums, there’s a whole world to explore.

Things to Do in Honolulu Without a Car

Visit Waikiki Beach

Waikiki Beach is where the heart of Honolulu beats with vibrant energy. Here, the sand feels like powder under your feet, and the ocean looks like a vast expanse of sparkling blue gems. This beach isn’t just for sitting and admiring; it’s a playground for water sports enthusiasts. Whether you’re up for surfing, paddleboarding, or just want to swim, Waikiki has it all. The beach is lined with shops where you can rent gear or grab a bite.

How to reach

You can easily walk to Waikiki Beach from many hotels in the area. If you’re staying farther away, the bus system in Honolulu is reliable and can drop you close to the beach.

Hike Diamond Head

Diamond Head offers an adventure for those who love to explore nature and crave stunning views. The hike to the crater’s summit is moderately challenging but worth it. Once at the top, you’re rewarded with panoramic views of Honolulu and the ocean. It’s a perfect spot for memorable photos. Remember to bring water and wear comfortable shoes.

How to reach

The bus service from Waikiki can take you to the Diamond Head State Monument’s entrance. From there, signs will guide you to the start of the trail.

Explore the Honolulu Zoo

The Honolulu Zoo is a wonderland for animal lovers. Home to over 900 animals, it offers a glimpse into the world’s diverse wildlife. The zoo is well-organized, making it easy to navigate through different habitats. It’s an educational and fun outing for families, offering insights into conservation efforts.

How to reach

Situated at the eastern end of Waikiki, the zoo is a short walk from the beach. Buses also run regularly from various parts of Honolulu to the zoo.

Discover the Waikiki Aquarium

The Waikiki Aquarium is a portal to the underwater world of the Pacific. Here, you can see colourful fish, corals, and even sharks up close. The aquarium focuses on marine research and education, making your visit both informative and fascinating. It’s a great place for families and anyone interested in marine life.

How to reach

Located next to Waikiki Beach, the aquarium is easily reachable by foot from most parts of Waikiki. If you’re coming from further away, public buses drop off nearby.

Stroll Through Kapiolani Park

Kapiolani Park is Honolulu’s green oasis. It’s vast, with plenty of space for picnics, sports, or just lazing around. The park also hosts various events, from concerts to art shows, making it a hub of activity. Its location near Diamond Head provides a stunning backdrop.

How to reach

The park is at the end of Waikiki and is easily accessible on foot from there. Buses are also available from different parts of the city.

Experience the Iolani Palace

Iolani Palace tells the story of Hawaii’s royal history. It’s a unique experience to walk through the only royal palace in the United States. The palace is beautifully preserved, with guided tours available to take you back in time. It’s a must-visit for history buffs.

How to reach

Located in downtown Honolulu, the palace is a short bus ride from Waikiki. Many bus lines stop near the palace.

Browse the Ala Moana Center

Ala Moana Center is a shopper’s paradise. It’s the largest open-air shopping centre in the world, offering everything from high-end brands to local shops. There’s also a wide selection of eateries. It’s more than just a place to shop; it’s a place to experience the local lifestyle.

How to reach

You can catch a bus from Waikiki to the Ala Moana Center. It’s a quick and direct route, making it convenient for a day of shopping.

Enjoy the Art at the Honolulu Museum of Art

The Honolulu Museum of Art is a treasure trove of artistic expression. With collections spanning from traditional Asian and Hawaiian art to contemporary works, it offers something for every art lover. The museum also hosts workshops and events, adding to its cultural offerings.

How to reach

The museum is a short bus ride from Waikiki. The bus system in Honolulu makes it easy to get there without much hassle.

Visit the Pearl Harbor National Memorial

 Pearl Harbor National Memorial
An aerial view of the USS Arizona Memorial with a US Navy (USN) Tour Boat, USS Arizona Memorial Detachment, moored at the pier as visitors disembark to visit and pay their respects to the Sailors and Marines who lost their lives during the attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941.

The Pearl Harbor National Memorial is a sombre reminder of World War II’s impact. Visiting the memorial gives you a deeper understanding of the events of December 7, 1941. The site includes the USS Arizona Memorial, museums, and exhibits. It’s a profound educational experience.

How to reach

While a bit farther, buses run from Honolulu to Pearl Harbor. It takes some planning, but public transport can get you there without a car.

Eat Local Delicacies at a Farmer’s Market

Honolulu’s farmer’s markets are a feast for the senses. The KCC Farmers Market, for example, offers fresh produce, artisanal foods, and local specialities. It’s a great place to taste the flavours of Hawaii and meet local farmers and chefs.

How to reach

The KCC Farmers Market is accessible by bus from various parts of Honolulu. A short ride can lead you to a world of delicious discoveries.


1. How easy is it to navigate Honolulu without a car?
Navigating Honolulu without a car is quite straightforward thanks to its efficient public transportation system, TheBus, which services most tourist attractions. Additionally, many of Honolulu’s most popular sites are within walking distance from each other, especially in the Waikiki area. Bike rentals and ride-sharing services are also readily available for more convenience.

2. Are there any affordable transportation options in Honolulu for tourists?
Yes, there are several affordable transportation options for tourists in Honolulu. TheBus offers extensive coverage around the city and to major attractions at a low cost. There are also trolley services that cater to tourists, providing an enjoyable way to see the sights. Bike-sharing programs, like Biki, offer an economical and healthy way to explore the city.

3. Can I visit the beach without needing a car in Honolulu?
Absolutely! Many of Honolulu’s beaches, including the famous Waikiki Beach, are easily accessible without a car. These beaches are located close to many hotels and can be reached on foot, by bus, or bike. Public access to beaches is excellent, ensuring everyone can enjoy the sand and sea.

4. What cultural experiences can I enjoy in Honolulu without a car?
Honolulu is rich in cultural experiences that are accessible without a car. You can visit the Iolani Palace, the only royal palace on U.S. soil, or explore the rich history and art at the Bishop Museum and Honolulu Museum of Art, all accessible by public transportation. Additionally, the city hosts various cultural festivals and events throughout the year that are often within easy reach.

5. Is it possible to explore the natural beauty of Honolulu without driving?
Yes, you can explore Honolulu’s natural beauty without driving. There are several hiking trails, like the Diamond Head Crater hike, that offer stunning views and are accessible by public transit. Public gardens and parks, such as Kapiolani Park and the Foster Botanical Garden, provide a glimpse into the island’s lush landscapes and are easy to visit without a car.