Honolulu, on the island of Oahu, is the capital and largest city of the state of Hawaii. It is the government, transportation, and commercial center for the state, and home to its best known tourist destination, Waikiki Beach.
Waikiki Beach is definitely not the place to go for a "get-away-from-it-all" Hawaiian vacation. It is as fast-paced and dynamic, and also a good place to learn to surf. But Honolulu has not entirely lost its laid-back atmosphere and culture. Looking for something closer to nature? Hanauma Bay Nature Preserve, a bay formed in the crater of an extinct volcano and filled with a wonderful coral reef and many fish, is a great place for snorkeling and scuba diving. Or check out the Pali Lookout for a panoramic view of Windward Oahu.
If you’re looking to stay indoors, the Bishop Museum has an excellent collection of Hawaiian artifacts, as well as a number of science-based exhibits. The new Science Adventure Center is centered around vulcanology, with a large simulated volcano in the center that "erupts" regularly. The museum also features a planetarium.