In Honolulu, student groups have the unique opportunity to experience the wonder of visiting a foreign country without sacrificing the convenience of traveling within the United States. The biggest city on Oahu, the most populated of the Hawaiian Islands is one of the most popular travel destinations in the world. Honolulu is a particularly desirable destination for student travel with its astonishing assortment of museums and cultural landmarks, profusion of attractions and activities, and of course, its natural beauty.
Student Group Tours in Honolulu
All Hawaii Tours, the longest established tour group in Hawaii, has dozens of tours designed to maximize the Hawaiian experience and show students groups all that Honolulu has to offer, from ghost tours, volcano expeditions, and whale watching, to luaus and submarine tours of the ocean floor. The company’s “Obama Tour” showcases the 44th president’s favorite local spots from his childhood as well as the places he frequents when visiting the state.
Honolulu’s Best Student Attractions
Oahu is surrounded on all fours sides by miles and miles of white-sand beaches. The most famous is Waikiki Beach, on the south side of the island. fifteen minutes from downtown Honolulu, Waikiki is Hawaii’s most popular beach and receives over four million visitors each year. The beach is equipped with lifeguards, concession stands, picnic areas, showers and public restrooms.
For student groups looking to enjoy the beach without the crowds, Hanauma Bay and Makapu’u beach are two wonderful alternatives. Hanauma Bay is nestled between two dormant volcanoes and features an array of tide pools, that provide fantastic viewing of native sea life. Makapu’u Beach, located on the east side of Oahu, also features a number of tide pools and a historic U.S. Coast Guard lighthouse, and calm, clear waters perfectly suited for body-surfing and body-boarding. Most beaches and state parks in Hawaii offer free admission.
Attractions for School Trips in Honolulu
There are more than enough ways for student groups to learn about Honolulu’s rich and diverse culture as well as some important pieces of US history. The most well known historical attraction in Hawaii is Pearl Harbor. Visitors and student groups can view the USS Arizona, and a museum devoted to the attack on Pearl Harbor. There are many choices for educational student tours provided by the museum as well as a WWII flight simulator that allows students to experience a realistic dogfight and air attack.
Student groups will also enjoy learning more about the colorful history and exotic culture of Oahu at Iolani Palace. As the only royal palace on US soil, it showcases some of the royal family’s personal possessions as well as guided tours through its ornate rooms.
A visit to the Bishop Museum offers student groups the opportunity to view over one million Hawaiian artifacts and royal family heirlooms. The museum also features hands-on science exhibits specifically geared toward the student visitor. The Bishop Museum also offers educators lesson materials available before their planned student group trip, and special rates for guided tours. (Education Department Office: 808-848-4168).
Honolulu Student Group Dining Options
Due to its overwhelming popularity as a destination for student travel, Honolulu is particularly accommodating to large groups. Most dining options feature outdoor seating and buffet style serving, one favorite is the Plantation Café. Located in the lobby of the Ala Moana Hotel, the Plantation Café is capable of accommodating large groups in a casual family dining atmosphere, with breathtaking views of Waikiki Beach (808-955-4811).
Performing Student Travel Programs in Honolulu
The association responsible for coordinating music festivals throughout Hawaii offers a “Student Performers Exchange” for visiting school bands and chorale groups. This program allows visiting students to perform at Hawaiian schools and venues, plus the opportunity to meet and collaborate with Hawaiian student performers.
Honolulu’s Student Friendly Festivals & Events
For a unique glimpse into Hawaiian culture, plan a school trip during one of Honolulu’s many festivals. Hawaiians celebrate all aspects of their beautiful state with dozens of festivals all year round. The most highly anticipated of these are the Aloha Festival, which lasts the entire month of September, and the Honolulu and Pineapple festivals in March and May, respectively.
A school trip to Honolulu is the perfect way to introduce students to an exotic culture, without the hassle of international travel. The beautiful natural landscape, along with the rich and diverse history of the state, makes it both a pleasurable and educational student travel destination.