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|Camping - Central Oahu|
Keaiwa Heiau State Recreation Area -- At the southern end of central Oahu, above Halawa Heights, this 385-acre wooded park offers a cool mountain retreat with hiking trails and picnic facilities. This area, in the foothills of the Koolaus, is filled with eucalyptus, ironwood, and Norfolk pines. The remains of the heiau ho'ola (temple of treating the sick) are on the grounds, and specimens of Hawaiian medicinal plants are on display. An excellent 5-mile hiking trail, the Aiea loop, offers magnificent views of Pearl Harbor and the mountains. There's tent camping only; campers have the choice of flat, open grassy areas or slightly sloping areas with shade trees. Facilities include picnic tables, restrooms with cold showers, outdoor grills, a dishwashing area, a covered pavilion, drinking water, and a public phone. Supplies are available in Aiea, 2 miles away.
You'll need a permit at $5 per campsite per night; applications are accepted no earlier than 30 days in advance. Write to the Department of Land and Natural Resources. Permits are limited to a 5-day stay in every 30-day period. Camping is permitted Friday through Tuesday nights. The gates close at 6:45pm in the fall and winter (from the weekend after Labor Day until Mar 31) and 7:45pm in the spring and summer (Apr 1 until the Fri after Labor Day). The gates do not open until 7am the next morning; cars cannot enter or leave during that period.
From Waikiki, take the H-1 Freeway to Highway 78 and exit at Aiea (Exit 13A). Follow Moanalua Road to Aiea Heights Drive and turn right; the park entrance is at the end of the road. There is no bus service to this area.