Diamond Head (Le'ahi) Summit Trail is a 1.5 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Kaimuki, Hawaii that offers scenic views and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round.

DISTANCE
1.5 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
498 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

kid friendly

hiking

off road driving

trail running

walking

views

no dogs

The Diamond Head Summit trail hike is likely the most popular hike in Oahu, and for good reason. While fairly steep, this easy hike starts from the middle of the Diamond Head volcanic crater and climbs about 500 feet up the side to the top of the rim where panoramic views await. Diamond Head State Monument encompasses over 475 acres, including the interior and outer slopes of the crater. The Diamond Head crater is more than 3,500 feet in diameter and is part of the Hawaiian volcano chain from more than a half million years ago (don't worry, it has been dormant for at least 150,000 years now). The crater is also called "Le'ahi," which means "brow of the tuna" in Hawaiian. It got the name Diamond Head almost 200 years ago when British sailors believed there were diamonds in the side of the crater. Although none were found, the name stuck. The trail was built in 1908 as part of the Oahu coastal defense system. The World War II bunkers on top now support antennas used by the government. The trail starts on a paved path before climbing several steep switchbacks leading to the first set of steep stairs. After the stairs you will climb through a tunnel and then climb up another set of stairs before reaching the bunkers at the top of the rim. Once on top you can climb up to the top of the bunkers for 360-degree views of the island and Pacific Ocean, with Waikiki not too far away. The last entrance to hike the trail is at 4:30 pm. The gates are locked at 6:00 pm daily and all visitors must be out of the park by this time.

hiking
21 hours ago

A fairly easy hike but worth doing! The path is a bit more crowded than other area hikes so have patience and just go with the flow. Beautiful views from the top!

hiking
1 day ago

Easy hike. Would advise going early for sunrise. There are a lot of hikers on this trail. Plus the pineapple smoothies you can purchase at the end of the hike are pretty good too!

hiking
2 days ago

Really enjoyed this hike with the family. Kids loved it! Did this hike about 1.5 months ago.

walking
3 days ago

Was a nice walk not to busy until you got to the top, awesome experience would recommend for 1 dollar

3 days ago

Easy hike cool views

3 days ago

Great view but I agree with the others here; it was quite busy that it’s hard to enjoy the view at the top with the amount of people squeezing in that lookout. I would recommend doing a sunrise hike on Saturday then heading down across the street for the Farmers Market for some great food. I think the market is also open on Fridays but you would have to check on this

hiking
5 days ago

Not a bad hike! Can be crowded at times bur worth the views

trail running
6 days ago

Scenery was spectacular. Lot of foot traffic

hiking
8 days ago

Not bad at all. Great moderate trail. Make sure you finish it. It’s a great area to capture amazing optics.

8 days ago

easy hike, a TON of tourists on this one, decent views, but if you're local you know better than to come here.

hiking
9 days ago

Nice easy hike but very touristy so make sure to go early!!! Some parts of the trail are narrow and can get a little crowded. There are many stops you can make before getting to the top for nice Instagram pics!!! Don’t forget to stop at the pineapple stands after your hike and get a pineapple smoothie. Super refreshing :)

10 days ago

Very busy but great view.

10 days ago

Awesome views, first hike on my first visit to Hawaii! Definitely did not disappoint :) would highly recommend! Lots of traffic and population even super early

10 days ago

Pretty easy hike, but very touristy. Great views!

11 days ago

The most touristy trail I’ve ever done but it’s very unique and worth it.

12 days ago

Beautiful for visitors to Honolulu. Watch out if it’s a rainy day, and try to go earlier to avoid a crowd.

15 days ago

a easier hike but tons of fun

15 days ago

Would describe this as more of a nature walk, very touristy, but still a must do while you’re on the island—it’s iconic with the standard Waikiki views. Definitely recommend the pineapple and coconut drinks at the end. Parking is $5

17 days ago

awesome view

19 days ago

Loved. We went in the afternoon and it was quite busy. Lots of stairs. Beautiful at the top!

hiking
21 days ago

Easy with a super nice view. Lot's of people hiking. May need to wait for parking spots.

hiking
21 days ago

Lots of people on the weekends! Even in off season. Great little workout with uphill ascent and a ton of stairs. Saw all ages and shapes doing it. Great view of Waikiki up top. $1 to walk in, $5 to park your car but if you don’t go early you won’t find parking.

22 days ago

Go early. It gets hot and the lot fills up. We parked prior to the tunnel and saved a few dollars in parking.

hiking
23 days ago

Nice easy morning hike. Tons of people on the trail, the more the merrier!

hiking
24 days ago

We did a Wednesday 5:30 AM sunrise hike on our anniversary in Hawaii.

Pros:
Beautiful scenery
Well maintained paths
A variety of terrains: pathed, rocky, multiple stairs
Challenging

Cons:
Cost $1 per person or $5 per car
A huge number of tourist, try to beat the buses ( like we did by arriving a few minutes before they opened and walked up after being dropped off by our Lyft)

25 days ago

easy hike, great view!

26 days ago

super touristy and you have to pay to get in. but beautiful views

26 days ago

It's funny to see some of the reviews on here that undoubtedly have to be tourists from acting like this has to be the best hike on the island because it's so amazing. I realize this sounds condescending, but I humble myself by saying I've only lived in Hawaii for about 6 weeks now and before I experienced some of the most breathtaking trails here, I probably would have said Diamond Head was the best hike I've ever done.

Don't get me wrong, this is a great hike and a great one to start with if you're going to do more intense (and dangerous) trails later. But in my opinion it is FAR FROM the best hike. I'm going to list some pros and cons of this hike. Now remember, it's all about preference and perspective, so my pros might be cons for you and visa versa. I'm more of a hiking enthusiast. So I'd guess that my review would resemble another hiking enthusiast's preferences. Not a family's with children with them.

Pros:
-Great views at the top. One of the few places you can see the Honolulu skyline from such an extraordinary angle.
-There's a parking lot right by where the trail starts for convenience
-Cool rock formations along the walking trail and views almost all the way up
-You get to walk through a cave like structure through the mountain at one point
-Bathrooms and water at trailhead

Cons:
-Extremely crowded. Everyone comes here. I went on a Thursday mid morning and parking lot was full and trail full of people. Would hate to see it on the weekends.
-You have to pay 5 dollars to park or 1 dollar if you walk in(like I did).
-Hardly a hiking trail. It is very well maintained/established and feels like you're walking through a line to get on a Jurrastic Park ride at Universal Studios.
-Way to easy. Dont get me wrong, still a climb, and it's a workout, but other than an increased heart rate and a bit of sweating, it's a little challenge. (560 foot climb)
-Views are great but not very high up(760 feet above sea level). Many other trails have a better altitude.

In summary, I think it's a good hike to do and check out because it's still a great hike and very iconic. It's just very different than every other Hawaii hike I've done. If you want want something more rugged and more challenging with more nature and less crowds, check out kaau crater hike. Or 3 peaks olomana trail! Along with tons more.

28 days ago

Easy to walk to the top within 30 minutes. Do not bring a stroller as the trail turns from a flat sidewalk, to bumpy rocks, to stairs and a narrow tunnel. There are a few lookouts as you go up to rest/hang out. This isn't a challenging hike, and it's not much of an adventure if you are a hiker. It's worth it to check out for the views to kill 1 hour of the day and to get a little workout in. You can park at the lookout for free before entering diamond head tunnel, or you can park in their provided parking lot for $5. If you walk in and park outside, you do have to pay $1.

3/5 because it's not an adventure, you have to pay, but it's good to do for the views.

28 days ago

Well, not really a trail, more of an ascent on some pavement that isn’t flat. It’s short which is nice cause it’s all up hill without rest stops. Great views from the top.

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