This popular hike in the Ka Iwi State Scenic Shoreline offers some of the best sea views on O’ahu, a photogenic lighthouse, and a special bonus from December through April; migrating humpback whales—lots of them, just off shore. It’s the easternmost point of O’ahu, affording views southwest back to Koko Crater and Koko Head, and northwest along Waimanalo Bay, over several islands protected as sanctuaries for sea birds. The dramatic spires of the Ko’olau Mountains poke up out of the clouds behind. The walk is sunny and shadeless, but open to the sea breeze. Take water and sunscreen. Take binoculars too, if you have them.
Start the gentle climb up a hill covered with koa haole, kiawe (mesquite), and prickly pear cactus, enjoying ever-improving views back toward the rocky coastline toward Koko Head. If you are here between December and April and notice an excited group of people staring out to sea, you can bet you’ll see humpback whales blowing, breaching, and doing whale things.
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