HONOLULU | Hawaii’s capital is a great place to discover street art. Venture beyond the tourist hotspots, and you’ll find a city with a thriving street art scene. Talented local artists tell stories about themselves, and the islands that they call home, as well as painting things that they simply like.
It’s not just local artists either. Around February each year, artists from across the USA and the world descend on Honolulu to participate in POW! WOW! Hawaii. It’s a gathering that celebrates culture, music and art, and results in several impressive murals being created across Honolulu’s trendy Kaka’ako neighbourhood. Visit, and you can see many of these murals from years’ past, and more.
In this Honolulu street art guide, I’ll tell you about some of my favourite spots in which you can find Honolulu’s best street art. Most of it is centred on the aforementioned Kaka’ako and Kaimuki, and each of those neighbourhoods have their own, more detailed guides, that I’ve linked in this article.
I’ve listed the main areas to find street art in Honolulu alphabetically. From the popular and well known spots, to the more obscure. Use it as a starting point, and happy exploring!
Walking from Waikiki to the trendy, street art-filled neighbourhood that is Kaka’ako, you’ll pass through Ala Moana. Most visitors come to the neighbourhood for the sprawling mall, Ala Moana Centre. Venture beyond the mall, however, and you’ll find several murals, small and large, touching on a variety of themes.
Chinatown has long been home to some of Honolulu’s most well preserved historic architecture, markets, and great Asian restaurants. In recent years, the area has seen several trendy restaurants and bars pop up. As part of the area’s transformation, several murals have popped up across the neighbourhood.
Of particular note are the painted electrical boxes. They follow a theme of Kipuka, which symbolizes hope and regrowth. Through the murals, the story of Chinatown’s resiliency, its history, and its people, is told.
Kaimuki is a residential neighbourhood in Honolulu with a retail and dining strip that’s home to plenty of street art. Far away from the tourist spots, it has a real local’s, community vibe.
You can check out my dedicated Kaimiku street art guide here. It covers the best spots to find street art in the area, along with the neighbouring neighbourhood of Kapahulu.
Located between Waikiki and Downtown Honolulu, Kaka’ako was primarily an industrial neighbourhood of warehouses and workshop. Today, it’s one of the trendiest parts of Honolulu, with a vibrant food, drink, and arts scene.
I’ve created a detailed Kaka’ako street art guide, which you can find here. It gives you more details on the neighbourhood and areas in which to find street art, and features a whole lot more pictures.
Kapahulu Avenue starts at the tip of Waikiki and is filled with fantastic places to eat and drink. Most visitors to the area come for this reason, but what’s less known is that the area is also home to a whole lot of street art.
For a more detailed guide on the neighbourhood’s street art, check out my Kaimiku street art guide here. It deals with Kapahulu and Kaimuki, which I advise you do together in one street art walk.
Chances are you’ll be staying in Waikiki during your visit to Honolulu. The tourist heart of Honolulu doesn’t have a lot of street art, but there is some. Of particular note is the 16 story high “Whaling Wall” by artist Wyland. Originally painted in 1995 as part of the 25th anniversary of Earth Day, Wyland restored the mural in 2018.
Identified artists featured in the image gallery include:
- Andrea James (Drea)
- Audrey Kawasaki
- Dropdead Grace
- Kamea Hadar
- Kim Sielbeck
- Lauren Hana Chai
- Sergio Garzon
Happy discoveries on your walk through Honolulu using my Honolulu street art guide. What are your favourites places for street art in Honolulu? Have you found any other pieces outside of these street art hotspots that you love?