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The Island of Oahu is a unique place, even among the other islands that make up the Hawaiian Chain. Known as the Gathering Place, and for good reason, Oahu is home to over 65 percent of the state’s population. That doesn’t include the millions of visitors who flock to this diverse island.

Fittingly, Oahu also has the widest range of activities to choose from. Whether your dream is to swim with dolphins at sunrise or to party on the beach til the wee hours of the morning, Oahu is where you can do it all. With so many options, it be can easy to be overwhelmed by the sheer volume. One piece of local advice: don’t miss the North Shore. Whether in summer or winter, the stretch of coastline from Haleiwa to Laie should be on everyone’s can’t-miss list.

Kids at North Shore zipline

Family fun at CLIMB Works Keana Farms

One of the best, and relatively undiscovered, means of surveying this beautiful landscape is from CLIMB Works at Keana Farms. Located on a ridgeline overlooking all of the North Shore is one of the most thrilling and diverse zipline courses in the entire United States. The 3-hour guided tour includes eight ziplines, two rappels and three sky bridges. One of the ziplines is nearly half a mile long! All of this is located in one of the most beautiful parts of Oahu.

The trip would be worth the money even if it were simply to enjoy a hike, but the North Shore offers so much more. Unlike the south side of the island, this is where you can take a trip down memory lane and see how Oahu looked 30 years ago. From the ridgeline at Keana farms you can see Kahuku, a small town unique in character, even in Hawaii. Kahuku today is as local as it gets, home to many Native Hawaiians and other Pacific Islanders, as well as the birthplace of many collegiate and professional football players.

Butter-garlic shrimp, Kahuku

Fruit stands, sweet shrimp trucks, and acres of farmland populate this provincial part of Oahu.The first thing you’ll notice is that Hawaii farmlands don’t much resemble their US Mainland counterparts. Instead of vast plains of potatoes or corn, Hawaiian farms take on the look of the tropics, filled with giant swaths of native trees. If you’re lucky, you may spot some of our colorful native birds watching you zip by. The Pacific Ocean horizon and miles of empty wide sand beaches will leave you breathless  and glad you made the trip.

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