The capital of Hawaii and its primary point of entry, Honolulu is by far the state's largest city, with 980,000 people in the metro area (2018) — two-thirds of the state's population—residing within the metro area. Situated on the southern shore of the island of Oahu, Honolulu serves as the center of government and commerce for the state, the home of the largest airport in the Hawaiian Islands, and the site of state's best known tourist destination: Waikiki Beach.
Given the city's size and its prominence as a traveler destination, this is definitely not the place to go for a "get-away-from-it-all" Hawaiian vacation. Honolulu is as fast-paced and dynamic as any large city, with all the associated problems such as heavy traffic, crime, and homelessness. But Honolulu still has the charm of the islands' laid-back atmosphere and culture, with some of Hawaii's best museums, the historic sites of Pearl Harbor and former palaces of Hawaiian royalty, splendid beaches, and striking natural scenery, all set amidst a dynamic mix of cultures which hail from all corners of the Pacific Ocean.
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