Pali Lookout is located on the Windward side of Oahu and is one of the more popular scenic points on Oahu, if not the most popular scenic point on Oahu. One thing to note… the Pali Lookout is very windy, so make sure you are dressed appropriately and make sure you hang on tight to your belongings or they will be gone in a second. Most Oahu’s first time visitors and island tour companies have it in their checklist. On a clear day, the windy perch offers stunning views of the blue Pacific Ocean lying beyond the green Ko‘olau Mountains. It also overlooks Kaneohe, Kaneohe Bay, Kailua, and the island of Mokoli‘i.
What to Expect
You can expect amazing views of the entire Windward side of Oahu, which includes Kailua, Kaneohe, Waimanalo and Kahaluu. You can also expect some very strong winds, as the area gives off the strongest winds on Oahu and can sometimes be tough, yet very fun, to navigate. You will also be able to access the “old Pali Road,” which was a very small two lane road years ago before the Pali Highway was rebuilt. This leads you down to several great hikes, all of which are pretty family friendly. Pali Notches Hike is a bit tough, so maybe stay away from that one if you have the entire family.
Nu’uanu Pali Lookout offers ideal photo opportunities and an easy way to get to know Oahu upon your arrival.
Parking fee for individuals is $3.00 per car and there is no fee for Hawaii residents.
The fee for commercial PUC vehicles is as follows:
- 1-7 passenger vehicles: $6.00
- 8-25 passenger vehicles: $12.00
- 26 + passenger vehicles: $24.00
There are strong trade winds and we recommend you to bring a light jacket. You also have to short walk to the viewpoint from the parking lot, so you can bring shoes as well. The lookout is accessible to wheelchairs and strollers.
Parking is tight, with space for about 15 cars at a time and we advise you not to leave valuables in your car.
How do you get to Nuuanu Pali Lookout?
To get to Nuuanu Pali Lookout from Waikiki, head northeast on Kalaimoku St toward Kūhiō Ave, then turn right onto HI-61/Pali Highway. The road to the Lookout through the Nuuanu Pali State Park is well marked.
Hawaiian Culture, Legend and History
Legend says that the Pali Lookout was the point of a great war in the history to unite all of the Hawaiian Islands. King Kamehameha was in battle with others trying to unite the islands when he was thrown from the Pali cliff. Legend says that the powerful winds tossed him back up to the high ground and prevented him from falling to his death. As soon as this happened the battle stopped and everyone recognized King Kamehameha as the rightful king of Hawaii and the one to unite all of the Hawaii Islands.