Kualoa Ranch is a one-stop adventure playground and a highlight for many travelers to Oahu. Stretching from the verdant folds of the Koolau Mountains to the tropical sea, the 4,000-acre (1,619-hectare) working cattle ranch is one of the largest tracts of accessible nature on Oahu and offers visitors a huge variety of ways to interact with Hawaii’s stunning landscapes, from ATV rides and zipline adventures to film site tours. The property is divided into two areas: the northerly Kaaawa Valley with its many movie locations, and Hakipuu Valley, fronted by an 800-year-old Hawaiian fishpond and the site’s Secret Island Beach.
Guided Kualoa Ranch activities include bouncing along on an ATV tour, exploring the trails on a horseback ride, soaring through the jungle canopy on a zipline tour, cruising by catamaran around Kaneohe Bay, discovering Oahu’s famous film sites on a movie tour, and sunbathing on a white-sand beach. The ranch can be visited for a single activity, on a full-day adventure tour, or on a circle island tour that also visits other top Oahu sites such as Diamond Head, Makapuu Beach, and Kaneohe Bay. Choose from nearly a dozen themed activities, including unique options such as a farm-to-table look at the property’s ranching and a tour of Kualoa’s modern fruit orchards.
Things to Know Before You Go
- All onsite experiences are part of fully guided tours, and reservations should be made at least 24 hours in advance.
- Kualoa Ranch offers lockers, a gift shop, a visitor center, and a restaurant, Aunty Pat’s Cafe, which serves dishes featuring Kualoa-grown meats and vegetables.
- Insect repellant and rain jackets may be helpful on jungle tours.
- Horseback riding tours are limited to visitors ages 10 and up; ATV tours are limited to those 16 and over.
- Some tours include round-trip transport from Waikiki hotels.
How to Get There
The property is set 25 miles (40 kilometers) north of Waikiki Beach and about 11 miles (18 kilometers) north of Kaneohe on Oahu’s windward side. It’s possible to take public transit via The Bus from Waikiki (Bus 55 runs past the property), but most visitors drive themselves along the scenic coastal roads or choose a tour that includes hotel pickup and roundtrip transportation.
When to Get There
The ranch is open daily from 8:30am to 6pm. While each tour departs several times per day, active tours—like ATV riding and ziplining—are best done in early morning or late afternoon to avoid midday heat. Year-round temperatures on Oahu are almost always between 70°F (21°C) and 80°F (27°C), so there is no bad time of year to visit, though rain showers are most common between November and February.
Movie Magic at Kualoa Ranch
Kualoa Ranch’s natural beauty is so scenic that its backdrop has been featured in numerous Hollywood films and TV shows. Choose a movie site tour and hop aboard a green bus for an off-road ride into cinematic history. Take photos in one of the Lost bunkers, hide behind the log that shielded Jurassic Park visitors from stampeding dinosaurs, and check out the Hukilau Cafe, where Adam Sandler’s Henry first met Drew Barrymore’s Lucy in 50 First Dates. The ranch offers a 90-minute standard movie tour, a 2.5-hour premier movie site tour, and a special 90-minute Jurassic Park Jungle Expedition, all with multiple daily departures.