Haokea Dr., Kailua
A coral reef off the shore of Lanikai Beach protects the water from big tides and waves, so this is a local favorite for a calm, relaxing swimming. The safe, warm water also makes it good for snorkeling—there are plenty of reef fish to be seen, and there are turtles once in a while, as well. And though it does get a bit crowded on the weekends, the stunning view of the Mokulua Islands and the powdery, white sand make for excellent sunbathing (though you’ll want to come early in the day, before the afternoon sun slips behind the mountains to the West, and also before all of the parking spots are taken). Note: It’s a great place to watch the sunrise.
Maunawili Falls Hike
1201 Kelewina St., Kailua
This hiking trail in Kailua is great for hot days because it’s almost entirely covered by trees and foliage. The trail itself follows a creek up the hillside through a lush forest until you arrive at a swimming hole that features a lovely waterfall and a few great jumping-off points for brave cliff jumpers. A few words to the wise: The trail can get muddy when the creek is high, so wear appropriate shoes. It’s also a good idea to pack some bug spray.
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