In our opinion, the windward side’s Kaneohe is one of the most mysterious and magical places on Oahu. It’s also one of the most breathtaking. If you’ve managed to nab a vacation rental or accommodation at Paradise Bay Resort overlooking Koolau Mountains and Kaneohe Bay, then you’re in for a treat. You’ve also made a wise decision to avoid taking a taxi (too pricey), bus (don’t ask), ride share (from the airport??), or rental car (too stressful) and instead opting for a shuttle. But alas, you probably have some questions and concerns about your excursion from HNL to this side of the island. That is why we’re weighing in with information and advice to making those all important first few hours on Oahu worth remembering for all the right reasons.
Everything You Need to Know About Taking a Shuttle from Honolulu International Airport to Kaneohe on Oahu
Direct Private Shuttle vs Shared Shuttle
While there are shared-ride shuttles from HNL to many places on the island, it doesn’t make much sense for trips to the windward side. It’s a long enough ride as it is, so you certainly don’t want to be at the mercy of other traveler schedules and stops. You also have to factor in their ability (or lack thereof) to get their luggage in timely manner from baggage claim. Plus, depending upon the time of day you could be sitting in traffic with complete strangers for much longer than makes you comfortable. This just isn’t a great way to begin your island stay. Instead, take a direct, non-stop, no-share (aside from those in your party) shuttle that will whisk you away from HNL and have you on the way to Kaneohe for a low flat rate that ranges from $50 to $60 (depending upon drop off). That flat rate is inclusive for your entire party (up to four) so it ends up being much cheaper per person than a traditional shared shuttle service, and without the hassle!
What You’ll See Along the Way
Newcomers (malihini) are always curious about what they’ll get to see en route to their island accommodations. As a passenger in our luxury shuttle, your journey (barring construction) from Daniel K. Inouye International Airport will run from I-H-1-E to HI-63N. On the way you’ll pass through iconic Likelike Highway tunnel, Nu’uanu Pali Lookout, and Ho’omaluhia Botanical Gardens which will eventually open up to the wondrous view of Kaneohe Bay. You may want to book your flight so that you arrive during daylight to witness the glory of it all. If staying at the aforementioned Paradise Bay Resort, you’ll also get to pass by the Valley of the Temples as we drive along Kahekili Highway before your arrival at Lihikai Drive.
What to Do if You Arrive in Kaneohe Early
If your flight has you arriving at HNL hours before you can check-in or pick up the keys for your vacation rental, you can either hang out at the airport (here’s what to do there) and schedule your shuttle for a latter pick up OR you can head on over to Kaneohe in the AM and soak up some of the scenery beforehand. If you have a place to store your luggage until you take occupancy, you can spend hours enjoying Kualoa Ranch, where you take a tour of some pretty iconic film settings, Jurassic Park included. You may also head across the Ranch over to Kualoa Regional Park to beach comb and snap numerous photos of one of the most famous natural attractions of the windward side – Mokolii Island (also known as Chinaman’s Hat). Another great place to kill time, is at He’eia Kea Pier where you can kick back at the local cafe for Hawaiian-style comfort food and drinks. The possibilities are truly endless when staying in Kaneohe, with access to each depending upon where you will be staying along (or near) Kamehameha Highway. Simply ask your Honolulu Airport Transport shuttle driver for some advice along the way and he’ll point you in the right direction!
To schedule your shuttle from Honolulu Airport to Kaneohe, call us 24 hours in advance of your arrival at 1.800.929.1219 or complete the reservation form found here.