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Must-See Museums in Oahu

Must-See Museums in Oahu

From historic World War II memorials to world-class art and royal heirlooms, Oahu has museums to keep visitors occupied for days. Here’s a list of the top museums on the island.

Pearl Harbor Historic Sites

In addition to the Pearl Harbor Visitor Center, Pearl Harbor Historic Sites comprises the USS Arizona Memorial, built over the remains of a sunken battleship; the Battleship Missouri Memorial, the last American battleship ever built; the USS Bowfin Submarine Museum & Park, one of 15 surviving US combat submarines from World War II; and the Pearl Harbor Aviation Museum, home to more than 20 aircrafts and a combat flight simulator.

How to Visit: To gain access to each site, you’ll need a separate admission ticket. Numerous tour options are available, from ticket packages and transfers to half- and full-day tours by land and sea. Opt for a skip-the-line-pass to save time. Day tours are also available from other islands, including the Big Island and Maui.

Bishop Museum

Founded in 1889 to house Princess Bishop’s extensive collection of artefacts and heirlooms, the museum—which covers topics from art and culture to archaeology and natural history—contains millions of artefacts and photos, and documents about Hawaii and other Polynesian cultures. Exhibits and interactive presentations are spread across five buildings.

How to Visit: Admission tickets can be booked in advance. Planetarium shows and some programs require a separate fee. Admission is also included as part of the multi-attraction Go Oahu Card.

Honolulu Museum of Art

One of the best fine art museums in Hawaii, the Honolulu Museum of Art has a permanent collection of more than 38,000 works of art from around the world. Find paintings, sculptures, and textiles across more than 30 galleries, including Spalding House, the Robert Allerton Art Library, the Art School, and the Shangri La Doris Duke Foundation for Islamic Art.

How to Visit: Separate tickets are required for the main museum, Spalding House, and Shangri La. Docent-led tours are available and admission ticket are also included as part of the multi-attraction Go Oahu Card.

Iolani Palace

The meticulously restored Iolani Palace was home to the last two monarchs of the Hawaiian Kingdom, who lived there in the late 19th century. See all the main rooms and halls, which feature recovered original artefacts and furniture and then explore the grounds and ornate royal tomb.

How to Visit: Both guided and self-guided tours are available. A guided tour covers just the basement exhibits, which includes the crown jewels. Many historical and cultural tours include a stop here. Admission is also included as part of the multi-attraction Go Oahu Card.

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4 Tours and Activities

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Oahu Day Trip to Pearl Harbor from Maui
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Oahu Day Trip to Pearl Harbor from Maui

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On this unforgettable Pearl Harbor day trip from Maui, journey back to December 7, 1941, when the United States was tragically thrust into fighting in World War II. Stroll the decks of the USS Missouri where the surrender agreement was signed. Coupled with a tour of downtown Honolulu, this day trip from Maui to Pearl Harbor is great for visitors of all ages with an interest in America’s history.
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  • 14 hours
From
$576.96
From
$576.96

Pearl Harbor Arizona, Punchbowl and City Tour

Pearl Harbor Arizona, Punchbowl and City Tour

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1095
See Honolulu’s top attractions on this tour which includes a drive through downtown Honolulu, Puchbowl Cemetry and a visit to Pearl Harbor. Board the Navy launch boats to view the USS Arizona Memorial and explore the harbor side displays and historic exhibits at the Pearl Harbor Visitor Center. The downtown Honolulu tour, include a drive past Kawaiahao Church, King Kamehameha statue and Mission Houses Museum.
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  • 6 to 8 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$61.78
From
$61.78

Go City: Oahu All-Inclusive Pass with 40+ Attractions and Tours

Go City: Oahu All-Inclusive Pass with 40+ Attractions and Tours

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122
Make the most out of your trip to paradise with Go City's Oahu All-Inclusive Pass, available for 1- to 7-days. This Oahu all-Inclusive Pass pass offers you admission to over 45 attractions, beach activities, and tours- from exploring Polynesian culture, to snorkeling in crystal clear waters - there is something for everyone. No redemption is required, just save your pass (ticket) on your mobile device and explore Oahu at your leisure. Please note: Enjoy the extra flexibility in case your travel plans need to change: All passes are valid for two year from purchase date and only become activated with your first attraction visit. After activation your pass will be valid for the number of days purchased, which can be used any time during a 2-week period.
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  • 1 to 7 days
From
$82.00
From
$82.00

Bishop Museum General Admission Ticket

Bishop Museum General Admission Ticket

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Visit the Bishop Museum, one of the most popular attractions in Oahu, with this prepaid admission ticket. Rated the number one museum attraction in Hawaii by TripAdvisor and founded in 1889, this venue contains informative exhibits on Hawaiian culture and traditions. Witness a fascinating live lava demonstration and recline in a comfortable seat to enjoy a celestial planetarium show. Learn about Hawaii's history and its relationship to the Pacific islands and the rest of the world.
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  • 1 to 8 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$24.95
From
$24.95