Koko Head Botanical Garden is one of those places that has to be seen to be believed. Nestled in the basin of an ancient volcanic crater, the huge garden is a desert-like oasis that is home to a plethora of plants and over 200 types of trees hailing from Africa, the Americas, Madagascar, and Hawaii. With colorful, fragrant plumeria groves, sprawling cacti beds, and ample collections of rare trees, this botanical garden is a nature lover’s paradise.
Divided into four sections based on the plants’ geography (Africa, the Americas, Madagascar, and Hawaii), the garden features a two mile loop that takes visitors on a journey through a massive collection of dryland plants, cacti, and trees. Gorgeous views of the towering crater walls, dotted with cacti, can be enjoyed along the way. The collection includes aloes, adeniums, baobabs, dry land palms, euphorbias, and just about every possible color of plumeria.
Encompassing 60 acres, this basin (one of two Koko Head basins) is located in the southeast part of Oahu near Hanauma Bay. The crater is hot and dry, and the plants featured in the garden are ones that thrive in a desert-like environment. Plan on spending 1-2 hours exploring the garden, and be sure to bring plenty of water and sunscreen!
Visit the Koko Head Crater Botanical Garden
Informational brochures and maps are located at the entrance to the garden. Special guided tours can be arranged by calling 808-522-7063.
Hours: Open sunrise to sunset year-round, except for Christmas Day and New Years Day.
Tickets: There is no fee to enter the garden
Address: Kokonani St, Honolulu, HI 96825
Phone: (808) 522-7063
Directions: From Honolulu, take the H1-E. It will become Kalanianaole Hwy/HI-72. Turn left onto Keahole St (just past Hawaii Kai Dr). Keahole St will become Hawaii Kai Dr. Turn right onto Wailua St, and then left onto Lunalilo Home Road. Turn righto onto Hawaii Kai Dr; follow it for a mile. Turn right onto Kealahou St, and then take the first right onto Kokonani St. The garden is located at the end of Kokonani St.