Waikiki Beach Surfing

Waikiki entered into worldwide fame as a great surfing spot when its first hotel was built in 1901. Over the years, Waikiki Beach surfing has featured prominently in film and television. Today, it is an iconic Oahu beach among surfers who come from around the world to rides its waves.

Best Places to Surf Waikiki

Best Places to Surf Waikiki
Best Places to Surf Waikiki

The south shores of Waikiki, located within the city limits of Honolulu, offer a wide range of surfing opportunities for beginners and intermediate surfers, from Canoes to Queens to Threes. When the water levels are just right, the beach is bustling at Canoes with beachgoers, surfers, canoes, and boat tours for the ideal rolling waves; long boards are best on the waves at this beach. First time surfers benefit from the mellow break on Queens beach stretching out before the majestic statue of Duke Kahanamoku, a Hawaiian celebrity who is credited for spreading the sport most widely. Surfers who have experienced the safety of low water levels are encouraged to venture out to Threes, where the surf is a bit higher and the break is a little more restless, and the new "wings" can be tested with more independence. Some of the best Waikiki beach surfing experiences are unplanned and impromptu sessions when paddling at random on the surf board.

Waikiki Surf Lessons

Waikiki Surf Lessons
Waikiki Surf Lessons Image: tinou-bao (flickr)

Waikiki Beach surfing lessons are offered to beginners on just about every beach.  One of the best beaches for learning the very basic surfing techniques is Queens; the first part of the break, where the water is shallowest is known as "Baby Queens," where pupils can remain in the safety of the low waters and still walk back to shore while riding the waves if need be. Canoes is one of the best places to begin your surfing journey with low rolling waves, and it is filled with surfing experts who rent boards and provide lessons. These professional surf teachers are known as "Beach Boys."

Diamond Head Surfing

Diamond Head Surfing
Diamond Head Surfing Image: Alicia0928 (flickr)

One of the most popular places on Oahu for surfers is Diamond Head, especially at the cliffs and the lighthouse, because the break is consistent, and there are a variety of peaks, attracting crowds of surfers. High performance waves are generally fewer in number than the mellow waves; however, the beach and surf are crowded on good days, and the expert waves can be dominated by surfers, so visitors should be prepared to share the wave. Because Diamondhead surfing can be less accessible to the kinds of tourist services available on Waikiki proper, it is often less crowded.

Oahu Surfing

Oahu Surfing
Oahu Surfing Image: scott mcleod (flickr)

Historically known as the "Sport of Kings," Waikiki Beach surfing was a popular sport even in ancient times. Kings of the past often surfed the waves that break on these beaches and other beaches around the island. The more modern sport was first introduced to the world by Duke Kahanamoku, an Olympic champion swimmer known for his surfing abilities. Relaxed waves have made Waikiki an iconic place for all surfers, whether you are just learning or have been in the game for years. Surf sites are more abundantly available on the southern and northern shores, including Threes, Canoes, Diamond Head, Laniakea, Chuns, and Sunset Beach. However, waves are plentiful all around the island and opportunities abound. One of the best ways to find them is to just get on your board and paddle. Should you venture away from Honlulu, you'll find plenty of other great Oahu surfing beaches.

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