Kuhio Avenue is Honolulu’s second-biggest hotel zone and an affordable alternate for vacationers happy to forgo the ocean views. While Kalakaua Avenue hotels straddle Waikiki Beach for breathtaking vistas, up-and-coming Kuhio is easier on the billfold. You probably won’t get to enjoy Pacific Ocean sunsets from your balcony here, but you’ll save much-needed cash to spend elsewhere during your Hawaiian getaway.

Kuhio Avenue has an eclectic collection of ritzy lodgings, plus tempting retail outlets and a handful of tourist sites. A wide array of eateries caters to every budget and taste, and there’s plenty of public transportation to whisk you around town.

If you do feel the need to hit the beach, the sugary white sands of Waikiki are an easy stroll away. In this guide, we’ll cover the top highlights and hotels in Kuhio Avenue, and then provide some need-to-know info to help you plan your trip. 

Kuhio Avenue in Honolulu - one of the highlights of 10 Most Popular Streets in Honolulu (Read all about Honolulu here)

photo by Tony Webster (CC BY 2.0) modified

What are the highlights and features of Kuhio Avenue?

Kuhio Avenue is, above all else, a hotel zone, with scores of high-rise lodgings lining the busy thoroughfare. But aside from being a budget-friendly place to stay, there are several exciting attractions to visit on the avenue.

On the north-western end, where Kuhio merges into Kalakaua, lies the statue of King David Kalākaua, Hawaii’s penultimate monarch. In 1985, the local Japanese-American community gifted the brilliant bronze effigy to the city to commemorate 100 years of Japanese migration. One block south, you’ll find King Kalakaua Plaza, which houses a small selection of stores.

The best shopping mall on the strip, however, is International Market Place. The massive retail mecca stretches from Kalakaua to Kuhio Avenue, a three-floor mega-plex housing over 90 stores. It’s been trading since 1956.

On the southern end, you’ll find Honolulu Zoo (enter via Kapahulu Avenue), a lush 42-acre expanse with 900 animals and a petting zoo.

photo by Prayitno (CC BY 2.0) modified

Good to know about Kuhio Avenue

Although Kuhio Avenue isn’t as busy as its big brother Kalakaua, the strip still sees ample action. Flocks of pedestrians trample down its wide shady sidewalks, traversing between restaurants, hotels, retailers, and the ubiquitous ABC stores.

If you fancy checking out the scene on Waikiki Beach, the world-famous stretch is never more than a 3-minute walk away. 

Kuhio Avenue is a common stop for TheBus, Honolulu’s superb public transportation system. These clean, air-conditioned buses run every 10-30 minutes and will whisk you off to attractions like Pearl Harbor, Ala Moana Mall, and Chinatown. The Pink Line of the Waikiki Trolley also runs down Kuhio (other lines pass Kalakaua and Ala Wai, both a few minutes away on foot).

photo by Tony Webster (CC BY 2.0) modified

Kuhio Avenue in Honolulu

Location: Kūhiō Ave, Honolulu, HI 96815, USA

Harry Stewart | Contributing Writer