Aloha Stadium is the biggest sports venue in Hawaii. The stadium main tenant is the University of Hawaii Warriors college football team, but it is perhaps more famous as the site of the NFL's annual Pro Bowl since 1980. Aloha Stadium also hosts college football's Hawai'i Bowl and the Hula Bowl from 1975 to 1997 and in 2006. The stadium also welcomes high school football throughout the fall.
It's most attended event is the swap meet, which is held in the stadium's parking lot every Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday. Just what is a swap meet, anyway?
The stadium, which opened in 1975, seats 50,000 spectators, and was built with moveable grandstands to allow for different sports and concert configurations.
The stadium is outdated and there are plans to either significantly remodel the field or build a replacement stadium in the coming years.
Most people already know that Hawaii is a great place to surf. Its location in the central Pacific makes conditions ideal for surfing as well as body surfing, body boarding, stand-up paddle surfing. If you are planning a trip to Hawaii, how can you find out where the waves are and the best places to go during your stay? This tip aims to answer that question and more.
Location, Location, Location...
Hawaii gets swells from a variety of sources and at any given time waves are arriving from several directions.
For southern shores including Waikiki, distant storms in the southern hemisphere send swells to the islands during the summer months. There is usually at least some small surf on these shores year-round.
The northern shores get swells from winter storms in the northern pacific, and are typically flat during the summer months.
The western shores are similar to the northern shores. Winter pacific storms can send surf here depending on the location of the storm. These shores are also flat during the summer.
The trade winds are almost always generating waves for the eastern shores, although they are usually small and choppy.
The temperature of the ocean ranges from the low 70's (22 Celsius) in the winter to about 80F (27C) in the summer. This means that you will never need a wet-suit, and might want to wear a rash-guard that offers UV protection instead.
Surf Reports and Forecasts
There are several web-sites that offer reports and surf forecasts. Getting familiar with the terminology should be your first step. Most sites report wave height as the size of the breaking wave-face in feet and the Hawaiian scale is rarely used. The swell period is indicative of the energy contained in the wave, and larger period swells result in higher and better quality waves compared to swells with shorter periods. Periods below 9 seconds generally indicate locally generated, low quality wind-waves.
I recommend the following sites:
The National Weather Service page Surf Forecast for O`ahu provides an excellent summary and background information on current and upcoming conditions.
Surfline provides surf reports, forecasts, and even webcams of popular surfing spots. Basic information is free, but extended forecasts and premium features require a paying a subscription fee.
Stormsurf.com. This free site provides interesting animated maps showing current and future conditions for seas, wind, and surf. They also have in-depth tutorials on surf forecasting.
Places to go body boarding on Oahu
“Walls” – this is body boarding spot in Waikiki. It is located immediately surrounding the cement pier near the intersection of Kalakaua and Kapahulu Blvds. The water is somewhat protected by outer reefs, so the size of the surf is perfect for beginners and experts alike. It gets crowded but remains a fun place to go. Park nearby for free in the Kapiolani Park / Waikiki Shell parking lot or pay at in the Honolulu Zoo parking lot. See this video of the action at Walls.
Kalama Beach Park, Kailua – located on Windward Oahu in the center of Kailua Bay, this spot, nearby “Shorebreak” at beach access 89B, and "Castles" at beach access 89A get the easterly surf generated by the trade winds. Conditions are usually 2-4 feet and choppy with an onshore breeze, but 5-6 foot waves are possible when the trade winds are strong.
Sandy Beach – located on eastern Oahu between the blow hole and Makapuu Pt., this one of the best but most dangerous places to body board due to the hazardous shorebreak conditions.
Places to go surfing on Oahu
Canoes and Queens – These are the surf breaks in Waikiki. They are very crowded even when the surf is small. Both breaks are located off Kuhio Beach park, with Queens to the left of Canoes as you face the water.
Castles in Kailua (beach access 89A) is a good spot for longboarding.
Don't go out in conditions that are beyond your ability handle. Beginners should follow these guidelines
Pick a location with 1-2 foot wave faces
Surf with a buddy or near a lifeguard
Consider taking a lesson
The box jellyfish typically arrive 8-10 days after a full moon on the southern shores of Oahu and a sting can be painful and irritating. Although they typically descend to deeper depths during the day, they are sometimes reported on the surface of the water. The Waikiki Aquarium has a good page which predicts their arrival.
Portuguese Man-o-War are small jellyfish that float on the surface of the water and are sometimes seen in the waters on eastern Oahu.
Equipment: You'll need a surfboard, body board and fins, or a stand-up paddle board. Rent or bring your own. For learning to surf, rent a soft-bodied (foam) longboard at least 8 feet in length.
Large surf and the surfing season predominates the north shore of oahu from october till march. See lots of world contests and World class surfers challenge the surf at surfing spots all over the north shore.
Be sure to heed the warnings posted by lifeguards at the beach. The surf here can be Very Dangerous
Equipment: Camera/ Binoculars/ sunscreen
If you are heading to a surfing contest, Make sure not to hold valuables in your car.
There are fun runs, fun walks and running events almost every weekend in Honolulu. Participating is a way to see the nice views of Honolulu, burn off those extra calories and mingle with the locals. A great way to see Honolulu by foot. Check the local paper or internet for upcoming events.
Equipment: Bring your running shoes and sorts.
A great way to spend a few hours is to watch the locals ride the waves. There is a jetty on Waikiki and from there you get a great view of them riding the waves.
In November 2001 my husband went to see a football game at the Stadium. This photo was taken at the game.
Upon arrival to the Halekulani you are greeted at the desk and assigned a staff member to tour you...more
We stayed at this hotel with a 3 month old in December of 2011. We were the last one to check in...more
The best part of this hotel is.......location! The Park Shore is located right by the Honolulu Zoo...more