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Duke Kahanamoku Statue

2410 Kalakaua Avenue, Honolulu, HI 96815, United States

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4.0 out of 5
24 member's reviews
178 people visited Duke Kahanamoku Statue
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Who Likes This Place?

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These scores tell you how well-liked a place is in each Tribe. Gogobot Tribes are groups who share a certain travel style, like Family Travelers or History Buffs.

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  • 98%
    History Buffs
  • 78%
    Local Culture
  • 63%
    Outdoor Enthusiasts
  • 63%
    Budget Travelers
  • 63%
    Family Travelers
  • 53%
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  • 51%
    Trendsters
  • 51%
    Art & Design Lovers
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Member Reviews (24)

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  • Duke Kahanamoku Statue
    Emily S
    4 Jan 22, 2014

    Of course I got a picture with the statue of Duke Kahanamoku!

    He was just chilling out in Waikiki Beach. I walked by him many times while I was strolling around. There are always tons of people here taking a picture with him.

    This is a good place to hang out and people watch. And the huge tree nearby is impressive too!

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  • Duke Kahanamoku StatuePro 2014
    Sara Benson
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    4 Oct 20, 2013

    The classic souvenir postcard shot of Waikiki has to be the statue of Olympian swimmer and Waikiki "beachboy" surfer Duke Kahanamoku. Often draped with fresh flower lei, the statue caused some controversy because it shows Duke with his back turned to the sea, something smart surfers don't do.

    Recommended for:Budget TravelersFamily TravelersHistory BuffsOutdoor Enthusiasts
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  • Duke Kahanamoku StatuePro 2014
    Yogic Traveler
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    First to Review
    3 Aug 13, 2013

    Surf legend, The Duke, greets tourists as they arrive at Waikiki beach in Honolulu. The statue is usually covered in flower leis and tourists often stop to take a shot with the famous surfer.

    Recommended for:BackpackersBudget TravelersHistory BuffsLocal Culture
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  • Duke Kahanamoku StatueCommunity ManagerPro 2014
    Keane
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    5 Aug 10, 2013

    The Duke Kahanamoku statue, for me at least, marks the center of Waikiki. He was the one who popularized surfing for the Western world, so it's only appropriate the the Western world surround him as they vacation in Waikiki. Fresh flower leis are placed around his neck every now and again, a tribute to one of Hawaii's favorite icons.

    Recommended for:Local CultureHistory Buffs
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  • Duke Kahanamoku Statue
    Tarina Peterson
    5 Feb 08, 2013

    I enjoy people watching at this statue more than anything else. It makes for great photo ops and some of the poses people think up to interact with this statue we hysterical.

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  • Duke Kahanamoku StatuePro 2014
    Wanugee
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    + 11
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    3 Jul 28, 2012

    This statue honors the legendary father of surfing in Hawaii, Duke Kahanamoku. It is right on the beach in Waikiki, oddly enough, next to places where you can rent long boards and learn how to surf!

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  • Duke Kahanamoku Statue
    Wayde's World Hawaii
    5 Jul 13, 2012

    Who was the Great DUKE KAHANAMOKU? No one really seems to know at least not from the reviews I have seen...So let me tell you who he was and why he’s at the center of all things ALOHA and why he now sits at the center of Waikiki...

    Duke Paoa Kahinu Mokoe Hulikohola Kahanamoku was the Ambassador of Aloha to the Hawaiian island and abroad, but he would also greet many in the old days first hand that came to the Hawaiian islands by plane. He was a five-time Olympic Swimming medalist, he was a Lawman, Professional beach volleyball player, Water Polo Player, Pro Surfer, Businessman and Actor.

    The name “Duke” was a given name…He was named so because of his Father Duke Halapu Kahanamoku who was named “Duke” by Bernice Pauahi Bishop, in honor of the actual Prince Alfred, DUKE of Edinburgh, who visited Hawaii…lol…Long story so I won’t go off subject…

    Duke Kahanamoku originally became a household name NOT because of his surfing, but because of his Swimming abilities, which was some of the best in the world. Duke’s father and mother had been from prominent Hawaiian families, but not royalty as some people think.

    Duke grew up on Oahu and spent most of his time around Waikiki where he developed his swimming and surfing skills. Duke preferred old fashion Koa long boards. He would often be seen on his 16 foot, 114 pound "OLO BOARD" which went back to ancient Hawaiian times. When competing for swimming he would often be seen surfing where ever he was…Before Duke was traveling around the world no one knew of surfing except in Hawaii, but in 1912 everything changed…It was the first time Surfing came to the Mainland of the United States and to California when The Duke did an exhibition. While in Cali he was asked to perform in several Hollywood movies and became an actor for a short period of time. Duke joined the LA Athletic Club acting as a lifeguard and competing on the swimming and water polo team.

    While on duty as a lifeguard in Cali he used his surfboard to make rescues…something no human had ever done before. This skill and knowledge to save people with the board came in handy because in 1925 a fishing vessel had capsized in ruff surf…using his surfboard, Duke was able to rescue 12 of the crew. The Police Chief at the time called Duke’s efforts the most superhuman surfboard rescue the world had ever seen.

    Duke Kahanamoku was the first person to be inducted into the Swimming Hall of Fame and the Surfing Hall of Fame and he is also in the US Olympic Hall of Fame.

    The Duke, once returning to Hawaii in 1932, was the SHERIFF of Honolulu until 1961 something many don’t talk about and during this time some very interesting arrests had been made, but that is another story…Duke ran the show in Honolulu for many years…HE WAS THE MAN…HE WAS THE DUKE!

    Unfortunately in 1968 at the age of 77 Duke passed away…His burial was at sea and his ashes scattered into the Ocean at his favorite beach…Waikiki. What better way…He lives on today with the many surfers that surf his waves there and his statue that welcomes all of you to the place he loved so very much.

    Dukes Famous words live on through all those who spread Aloha…

    “In Hawai’i we greet friends, loved ones and strangers with Aloha, which means with love. Aloha is the key word to the universal spirit of real Hospitality, which makes Hawai’i renowned as the world’s center of understanding and fellowship. Try meeting or leaving people with aloha. You’ll be surprised by their reaction. I believe it and it is my creed.

    Aloha to you. Duke Paoa Kahanamoku”

    Recommended for:History Buffs
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  • Duke Kahanamoku Statue
    Melissa Sutton
    5 Jul 08, 2012

    The statue of The Duke is a great spot to gather near the center of Waikiki Beach. Take a seat on the statue's base and wave at the webcam across the street to get some face time with your ohana back home. You will meet people from all around the world while enjoying this great spot on Waikiki Beach

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  • Duke Kahanamoku StatuePro 2014
    Mel S Wong
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    4 Jul 05, 2012

    The Duke Statue is a fun photo op location AND a fun people watching spot. I enjoy watching people posing with the Duke and seeing what a fun time they are having in Oahu

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  • Duke Kahanamoku Statue
    Wolf Wigo
    5 Jul 05, 2012

    Duke was the man - Olympic Swimmer and Water Polo player and just all around great guy. If visiting the islands you should definitely read up on his life and see what made him so great.

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Description:

Be inspired by the statue of Duke Kahanomoku when you visit Honolulu. This record breaking Olympian, known as the "Father of modern surfing", lived from 1890-1968. Not only did he swim and surf, he also acted in Hollywood movies and worked as Sheriff for many years. He even fought off an eel and saved 12 people from drowning. His statue in Honolulu holds out his arms and well-wishers often bring leis to put around his neck. There is a webcam on the statue, so if you want someone to see you in Hawaii in real-time, visit Duke during daylight hours.
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