For nearly 3 decades, this 1,875-acre park has lured visitors with activities from cliff diving and hula performances to kayaking and ATV tours. In 2008, the Office of Hawaiian Affairs took over and formed a nonprofit corporation, Hiipaka, to run the park, with an emphasis on perpetuating and sharing the “living Hawaiian culture.” A visit here offers a lush walk into the past. The valley is packed with archaeological sites, including the 600-year-old Hale O Lono, a heiau dedicated to the Hawaiian god Lono, the god of peace, fertility, and agriculture. The botanical collection has 35 different gardens, including super-rare Hawaiian species such as the endangered Kokia cookei hibiscus. The valley is also home to fauna such as the endangered alae ula, or Hawaiian moorhen; look for a black bird with a red face cruising in the ponds. The 150-acre Arboretum and Botanical Garden contains more than 5,000 species of tropical plants. Walk through the gardens (take the paved paths or dirt trails) and wind up at 45-foot-high Waimea Falls—bring your bathing suit and you can dive into the cold, murky water. The public is invited to hike the trails and spend a day in this quiet oasis. Check the website for potential closings due to weather.
59–864 Kamehameha Hwy, , Haleiwa, HI
Our Rating Neighborhood North Coast Hours Daily 9am–5pm Transportation Bus: 52 Phone 808/638-7766 Prices $16 adults, $12 seniors, $8 children 4–12 Web site Waimea Valley
Map59–864 Kamehameha Hwy, Haleiwa HI Oahu
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.