I’m sure I’ve said this a million times on this blog by now, but whether you live on O’ahu or you’re just visiting, you have to go hiking. Trust me, the hiking trails in Honolulu are far too beautiful to not explore. If you aren’t a big fan of going long distances or you have little hikers with you, it can be a little intimidating trying to pick which hikes to go on because there is SOOOOO much to choose from. To save you the trouble of figuring it out, I have picked out 5 fun hiking trails in Honolulu that are 1 mile or less. Let’s dive in!
Pu’u Ohia – 0.9 miles
Let’s start this list off with the furthest trail from the downtown area. Located about 7 miles outside of Waikiki, Pu’u Ohia trail is well worth the drive. Shoot, the drive to the trail is almost as beautiful as the views on the trail. Take your time driving up Mt. Tantalus and be prepared to snap some truly unique photos of the entire Diamond Head crater.
On the trail, you will also be able to catch sneak peaks of the city through the trees. While there is no “view at the top”, this trail is still worth your time because there is a rather large bamboo forest. How many times do you get to say you’ve hiked through a bamboo forest, you know? For more information on what to expect and what to pack, check out my detailed post on this trail here.
Tantalus Arboretum – 0.3 miles
If you still have energy after Pu’u Ohia, I highly encourage you to stop by the Tantalus Arboretum Trail. This trail is also located on Mt. Tantalus and you will pass it on your way back to the city anyway so why not?!
Tantalus Arboretum is a super chill and easy trail that toddlers will easily be able to conquer alone. Again, there is no “view at the top” here, but the trail is breathtaking regardless. There are various species of trees, berries, and wildflowers to view along the way. The conditions of this trail are very similar to Pu’u Ohia so be sure to pack appropriately.
Kaniakapupu Ruins – 0.4 miles
Kaniakapupu is located about 7 miles outside of the downtown area. The Kaniakapupu Ruins is an easy trail with slight elevation gain that leads to some truly remarkable history. This trail was listed as a 1.9 miler on alltrails.com, however, my GPS clocked it at just under 0.4 miles round trip to just view the ruins and get back.
If I had to pick one hike from this list that is an absolute must, it would be Kaniakapupu Ruins. Not only is it short, but you will have the opportunity to interact with a very important part of Hawaiian history. Kaniakapupu was once home to King Kamehameha III and his queen Kalama. You also get to walk through a small bamboo forest which is a fun little added bonus.
Judd Trail – 1.1 miles
Located a whopping 0.6 miles away from the Kaniakapupu Ruins is another super fun, quick and easy trail. Judd Trail is listed at 1.1 miles on alltrails.com so I figured that was close enough to 1 mile or less to include it (plus it is so close to the previous trail that it would be a shame to miss such a fun trail).
I have talked about Judd Trail before and my opinions of it are still the same. This trail really has everything you could want out of a hiking trail. Beautiful scenery, check. Easy terrain, check. A waterfall, check. A swimming hole, check. Our family even likes to pack a picnic and eat among the beautiful trees. Even though this trail is a bit on the longer side, I promise you will be glad you ventured out and tried it.
Alapena Pool – 0.5 miles
If the idea of walking a mile is unsettling to you, but you still want all of the fun of Judd Trail, you have to check out Alapena Pool! Alapena Pool trail is located the closest to the downtown area at about 5 miles away. Parking can be found at the back of the Nuuanu Memorial Park and the trail head is on the left hand side of the back of the lot.
There is seriously so much to love about Alapena Pool. There are multiple waterfalls (one of them pictured in the featured image of this post), beautiful rock faces, and of course a giant swimming pool! If you are feeling brave enough, you can even climb to the top of the rock and jump off. All of this in just half a mile with barely any elevation change makes Alapena Pool a definite top contender on this list.
That’s It For 1 Mile Or Less Hiking Trails In Honolulu!
I hope this list is really helpful for any upcoming trips or hiking plans you may have. I tried to keep this list somewhat organized so you can try to squeeze in a few (or all) of them in one day without driving out of your way. If you have been on any of these trails before, I would love to hear about your experiences in a comment below!
As always, please share this post if you love what you’ve read or think a friend would love it. Follow me on social for some fun behind the scenes photos of our trips to these trails. From the bottom of my heart, thank you so much for taking the time to read about our adventures out in Our Happy Place 🙂