The state park is the backbone of the recreational system in the Hawaiian Islands. With over 50 combined park systems on the islands, there is something for everyone, from biking to hiking, including an underwater park at Hanauma Bay in Oahu that will surly thrill all seekers of wildlife.
Oahu is number one in sheer quantity of park areas. Shown in movies around the world, some of these park areas are as familiar to you as if you had lived there. Diamond Head Monument protects and preserves the tuff cone formed by subterranean explosions thousands of years ago. This site has been designated significant by many cultures on the island. The Hawaiians used the summit for human sacrifices. British sailors thought it filled with riches, hence the name. The United States used it as a strategic arms position. Today the site supports facilities for picnicking and hiking.
The Uss Arizona is actually a memorial but it's still a significant place to visit. Any military buffs or descendants of the forces that were stationed on this island are sure to want to visit the USS Arizona Memorial This floating memorial marks the spot where the USS Arizona was sunk in Pearl Harbor December 7, 1941, during the Japanese attack. The USS Arizona Memorial grew out of wartime desire to establish some sort of memorial at Pearl Harbor to honor those who died in the attack. The vessel is the final resting place for many of the ship's 1,177 crewmen who lost their lives on December 7, 1941.
Waimea Canyon in Kauai preserves the Waimea River and the terrain that surrounds it, beginning about six miles north of the town of Waimea. The park is a slender parcel of land that follows the river for approximately five miles. It includes a few canyon overlooks from which views of Ni'ihau Island are possible. Backcountry trails, suitable for backpackers, take adventurous visitors deep within the canyon for a closer look at flora and fauna. A short nature trail provides an opportunity for plant identification.
Wailua River, also in Kaua'i, incorporates the historical and natural sites on and around the Wailua River in eastern Kauai. The boat ramp within the park provides access to the only navigable river on the island. Fishing is available on the shore here. Other highlights within the park include the remains of Malae, Holoholoku and Poliahu Heiaus. Other cultural resources include the royal birthing stones of Kaua'i and a traditional place of refuge. A riverboat cruise on the Wailua is available for an added fee.
Wai'anapanapa lies on the eastern Maui coast, which contains a variety of volcanic formations. Caves, arches, black beaches, sea stacks and blow holes are present within the 122 acres of Wai'anapanapa. An old Hawaiian coastal trail leads along the scenic shoreline approximately two miles and ends at Kainalimu Bay, a mile north of Hana.
The Wailuku River in Hawaii is a fantastic example of nature at it's best. The park encompasses 16 acres along the Wailuku River, and the area preserves two waterfalls and a basalt lava formation known as the boiling pots. Rainbow Falls takes its name from a rainbow formed by the mists and sunlight, the falls are some 80 feet high. The boiling pots lie down river from Peepee Falls. They are a succession of large pools whose water appears to be boiling as it rolls over many rocks en route to the ocean.
Manuka Wayside in Hawaii features an eight-acre arboretum with native and introduced plants. The flora of the park was planted in the mid-nineteenth century. The park is surrounded by the South Kona Forest Reserve and access to the trails of the reserve can be obtained from the wayside. A small lean to is available for camping, with a permit.