While in Hawaii, we decided to go and do the famous Diamond Head hike.
Diamond Head Crater is the remains of an extinct volcano with the highest point of the hike being 760 feet. Diamond Head’s Hawaiian name is Le’ahi. After the Pearl Harbor attacks, the military used it as a lookout post installing pillboxes and foxholes to prevent Hawaii from future attacks.
The trail is around 2.5 kilometers (1.5 miles) with almost 200 steps and a steep uphill tunnel.
Initially, we were not sure if we would be able to do it as there were mixed reviews of the kid friendliness of the hike but after doing lots of research, we decided that we would do it with the worst case scenario being returning in the middle if it was not doable.
As suggested by many people, we wanted to start the hike early in the morning so got there by 8am. It was around 15 minutes’ drive from our apartment. We drove through Kapiolani Park (located at the end of Waikiki) headed towards Diamond Head on Kalakaua Boulevard. It was a beautiful drive that turns into Poni Moi Road and follows the Diamond Head Road going through a tunnel that leads to the center of the Diamond Head Crater where the hike begins.
We thought we beat the traffic and would be the first few people but we were so wrong.
Once we got to the car park, we found that the car park was already full and they asked us to come back later.
We were so disappointed and returned the carpark outside the tunnel which was full as well. We waited for a few minutes there and decided to go back and check again. Luckily the carpark was open and we were allowed to go in after paying $5.
We put our on sunscreens and started our hike. At the start of the hike, there is a sign that said most people take 1.5 – 2 hours to hike to the summit and back.
Chhori started to walk with us but after 5 minutes she wanted us to carry her. I and AS looked at each other and wondered if we were going to be able to hike or not.
AS decided to carry her first and did the first part of the hike. First half is not very bad at all and we saw lots of kids, older people going or returning from the hike. There were so many people on the trail and we saw parents carrying babies in baby carriers as well.
After around 30 minutes of the hike, I took Chhori and continued our walk. I really enjoyed the hike despite feeling a little hot.
Then came the famous and very steep 99 steps. I told AS I am going to climb the steps in one go carrying Chhori.
AS was worried that I might have to stop and take it slow but me and Chhori counted each step and made it to the top in one go.
Once we climbed the steps, I was tired and waited for AS and my friend to catch up before making our way through another tunnel and up a staircase to the summit.
It was so good to see the wonderful view from top of the crater. We took heaps of photos and rested for a while before trekking down which was much easier than climbing up.
Overall we had a great day and an amazing experience.
Few things to remember if you are going for this hike
· Make sure you carry enough water and sunscreen
· Go as early as possible to escape the heat and parking drama
· Make sure to wear comfortable shoes
· It is possible to do this hike with kids but be prepared to carry them or turn back if needed
Take care everyone,
M from nepaliaustralian