Diamond Head Summit Trail
Shoreline view of waikiki

**IMPORTANT PARK NOTICES**

Monitor local surf and weather reports prior to your park visit.

[O’AHU] UPDATED 5/16/24 –  Ka’ena Point State Park, Mokuleʻia Section: Vehicle access road has CLOSED due to saturated roads and inclement weather.

[HAWAI’I] UPDATED 5/13/24 – Akaka Falls State Park to Temporarily CLOSE Weekdays Starting May 15, see Akaka Falls announcement for more information.

[HAWAIʻI] UPDATED 5/13/24 – Wailuku River State Park: Rainbow Falls; tree trimming starts today until 6/7/24, the park will remain OPEN but some areas may be temporarily closed due to safety.

[KAUAʻI] UPDATED 4/30/24 – Kōkeʻe State Park: Kalalau lookout restroom is CLOSED until further notice.

[KAUAʻI] UPDATED 4/26/24 –Kalalau Trail, Nāpali Coast State Wilderness Park: Camping permits held back for local residents during summer, see Kalalau Trail site for more information.

[KAUAʻI] UPDATED 3/18/24 – Kōkeʻe State Park: The gate to Puʻu O Kila Lookout will be closed to vehicular traffic due to road repairs beginning 3/19/24. The lookout will still be accessible by pedestrians, parking is available at Kalalau lookout.

Diamond Head Summit Trail

Trail Length 1.6 miles (round trip)
Time 2 hours
Activity Pedestrian
Difficulty Moderate
Terrain Hot, Dry, Slopes
Elevation Gain 560 ft
Trail Brochure Diamond Head State Monument
Park Name Diamond Head State Monument

Description

The trail to the summit of Leʻahi (Hawaiian name for Diamond Head Crater) was built in 1908 as part of Oʻahu’s coastal defense system. Completed in 1911, the Fire Control Station at the summit directed artillery fire from batteries in Waikiki and Fort Ruger outside Diamond Head crater. The walk is a glimpse into the geological and military history of this volcanic crater. Much of the trail is a natural tuff surface with many switchbacks traversing the steep interior slope of the crater wall. The ascent continues up steep stairs and through a lighted 225-foot tunnel. At the summit, you’ll see bunkers on the crater rim and a navigational lighthouse built in 1917 along the coast outside the crater. The postcard view of the shoreline of southeastern Oʻahu from Koko Head to Wai’anae is stunning, and during winter, may include passing humpback whales.

Route

From the parking lot on the crater floor, the trail to the summit is 0.8 mile (1.3 km) one way and climbs 560 feet (171 m) in elevation. There is a paved concrete walkway for a distance of 0.2 miles at the start of the hike, but the trail becomes uneven and steep, requiring caution and appropriate footwear. Portions of the trail involve steep stairways – take your time. Another portion of the trail goes through a long, narrow tunnel which is lighted.

Directions

The trailhead is adjacent to the parking lot within Diamond Head State Monument. The entrance is off Diamond Head Road between Makapu’u Avenue and 18th Avenue, Honolulu. See park page for fees. (Click Here)

Additional Info

  • Mountain biking is not allowed on this trail.
  • Stay on the trail.
  • NO DOGS ALLOWED IN DIAMOND HEAD STATE MONUMENT.
  • Pack out at least what you pack in.
  • No open fires.
  • Hiking permit not required for groups less than 25.