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Where Do Cruise Ships Dock In Honolulu, HI


Modified: December 28, 2023

by Hatti Almodovar



Honolulu, the capital city of Hawaii, is not only known for its stunning beaches and lush landscapes but also serves as a major hub for cruise ship travel. With its strategic location in the central Pacific Ocean, Honolulu attracts thousands of visitors every year who embark on unforgettable journeys onboard cruise ships.


Cruise ships docking in Honolulu not only bring in tourism revenue but also contribute to the local economy by creating jobs and supporting various industries such as hospitality, transportation, and entertainment. The city has invested in state-of-the-art cruise ship terminals and facilities to accommodate the increasing number of ships and passengers.


In this article, we will explore the different cruise ship docking locations in Honolulu, highlighting the services, amenities, and activities available for passengers during their stay. Whether you’re a seasoned cruiser or planning your first voyage, understanding the layout and offerings of the cruise ship terminals in Honolulu will help you make the most of your time in this tropical paradise.


Let’s dive in and discover where cruise ships dock in Honolulu and what you can expect when you arrive.


Importance of Cruise Ships in Honolulu

Cruise ships play a significant role in the tourism industry of Honolulu, bringing numerous benefits to the city and its local businesses. Here are some key reasons why cruise ships are important to Honolulu:

  1. Economic Impact: The arrival of cruise ships in Honolulu brings in a substantial amount of revenue. Passengers spend money on accommodations, dining, shopping, and various excursions, boosting the local economy and supporting small businesses.
  2. Job Creation: The cruise industry creates job opportunities for local residents. From port workers and tour operators to hospitality staff and transportation providers, cruise ships generate employment in diverse sectors.
  3. Destination Promotion: Honolulu serves as a gateway to the breathtaking beauty and cultural richness of Hawaii. Cruise ship travelers often extend their stay, supporting local hotels and attractions, and promoting the destination to a wider audience.
  4. Tourism Growth: The presence of cruise ships in Honolulu attracts more tourists to the area. Visitors who experience the charm and allure of the city during their cruise may be enticed to return for longer vacations, contributing to sustainable tourism growth.
  5. Infrastructure Development: To accommodate the growing demand for cruise ship travel, Honolulu has made significant investments in its port infrastructure. This includes the development of modern cruise ship terminals and the improvement of transportation networks.

Overall, cruise ships bring immense value to Honolulu, ensuring a thriving tourism industry while preserving the natural beauty and cultural heritage of the region. The city’s commitment to providing world-class services and experiences for cruise ship passengers has established Honolulu as a must-visit destination for cruise enthusiasts from around the world.


Port of Honolulu

The Port of Honolulu serves as the primary cruise ship destination in Hawaii, welcoming numerous ships throughout the year. Situated on the southern coast of Oahu island, the port offers convenient access to the city’s vibrant downtown area and popular tourist attractions.


The Port of Honolulu is operated by the Hawaii Department of Transportation and consists of two main cruise ship terminals: the Aloha Tower Cruise Ship Terminal and the Pier 2 Cruise Ship Terminal.

Aloha Tower Cruise Ship Terminal

The Aloha Tower Cruise Ship Terminal is a historic landmark that has been welcoming cruise ships since the early 1900s. This iconic terminal is located in downtown Honolulu and offers a picturesque setting with panoramic views of the harbor and the city skyline.


This terminal provides a range of facilities and services to enhance the passenger experience. Amenities include baggage handling, customs and immigration services, parking, and transportation options. The terminal is also home to various shops, restaurants, and entertainment venues, allowing passengers to indulge in some last-minute shopping or dine at local eateries.


From the Aloha Tower Cruise Ship Terminal, passengers can easily explore nearby attractions such as the famous Waikiki Beach, the historic Iolani Palace, and the vibrant Chinatown district. The terminal’s central location makes it a convenient starting point for exploring the diverse cultural, culinary, and natural wonders of Honolulu.

Pier 2 Cruise Ship Terminal

The Pier 2 Cruise Ship Terminal, located adjacent to the Aloha Tower Terminal, is another well-equipped facility for cruise ship arrivals. This terminal offers modern amenities and efficient passenger services to ensure a smooth embarkation and disembarkation process.


With its close proximity to downtown Honolulu, passengers docking at Pier 2 have easy access to a wide range of attractions, including the popular Aloha Stadium Swap Meet, Pearl Harbor, and the Bishop Museum. The terminal is also well-connected to transportation networks, making it convenient for passengers to explore the island’s natural wonders, such as Diamond Head and Hanauma Bay.


Both the Aloha Tower Cruise Ship Terminal and the Pier 2 Cruise Ship Terminal provide exceptional facilities and services, allowing passengers to begin their Hawaiian adventure with ease and convenience. Whether you choose to wander through the vibrant streets of Honolulu or embark on exciting excursions to discover the island’s natural beauty, the Port of Honolulu offers a perfect starting point for your cruise ship journey.


Aloha Tower Cruise Ship Terminal

The Aloha Tower Cruise Ship Terminal is a renowned and picturesque destination for cruise ships visiting Honolulu. Located in the heart of downtown Honolulu, this historic terminal has been welcoming passengers since the early 1900s.


As you approach the Aloha Tower Cruise Ship Terminal, you’ll be greeted by the iconic Aloha Tower, which stands tall as a symbol of Hawaii’s warm hospitality. The terminal offers a range of facilities and services to ensure a seamless and enjoyable experience for passengers.


One of the highlights of the Aloha Tower Cruise Ship Terminal is the breathtaking view it provides. From the observation deck of the tower, you can marvel at panoramic views of the harbor, the sparkling Pacific Ocean, and the impressive skyline of downtown Honolulu. It’s the perfect spot to capture those Instagram-worthy vacation photos.


Inside the terminal, you’ll find various amenities to meet your needs. Baggage handling services are available to assist you with your luggage, allowing you to begin your adventure stress-free. Customs and immigration services are conveniently located within the terminal, ensuring a smooth process for international passengers.


The Aloha Tower Cruise Ship Terminal also offers parking facilities for those who choose to drive to the port. If you prefer not to drive, various transportation options are available including taxis, rideshares, and shuttles to nearby hotels and attractions.


This terminal is not just a gateway to the city; it’s also a destination in itself. Inside the terminal building, you’ll discover a variety of shops selling locally made arts and crafts, traditional Hawaiian souvenirs, and trendy beachwear. Take some time to explore and find the perfect memento to remember your Hawaiian cruise.


When it comes to dining, the Aloha Tower Cruise Ship Terminal has multiple options to satisfy any craving. From casual eateries offering local Hawaiian delicacies to upscale restaurants serving international cuisine, there’s something to please every palate. Indulge in fresh seafood, savor tropical flavors, and enjoy the culinary delights that Honolulu has to offer.


Before or after your cruise, take the opportunity to explore the nearby attractions. From the terminal, you can easily walk to famous landmarks such as the historic Iolani Palace, the vibrant Chinatown district, and the lively waterfront marketplace.


With its convenient location, stunning views, and a wide range of facilities and services, the Aloha Tower Cruise Ship Terminal sets the stage for an unforgettable Hawaiian adventure. Truly embodying the spirit of aloha, this terminal encapsulates the warmth, beauty, and excitement of Honolulu, making it the perfect starting point for your cruise ship journey.


Pier 2 Cruise Ship Terminal

The Pier 2 Cruise Ship Terminal is another popular docking location for cruise ships visiting Honolulu. Situated adjacent to the iconic Aloha Tower Terminal, this modern and well-equipped facility offers a seamless and convenient experience for passengers.


At the Pier 2 Cruise Ship Terminal, passengers can expect a range of amenities and services designed to enhance their journey. The terminal provides efficient and organized embarkation and disembarkation processes, ensuring a smooth transition for passengers both at the beginning and end of their cruise.


One of the advantages of docking at the Pier 2 Terminal is its close proximity to downtown Honolulu. From the terminal, you’ll have easy access to a wide range of attractions, restaurants, and shops. Take a stroll through the bustling streets of Chinatown, immerse yourself in the local culture, and sample delicious Hawaiian cuisine.


For shopping enthusiasts, the Pier 2 Terminal is conveniently located near the Aloha Tower Marketplace, where you can find an array of stores offering everything from clothing and accessories to unique souvenirs and locally made products. Don’t miss the chance to pick up a piece of Hawaiian jewelry or a beautiful piece of art to commemorate your cruise.


Transportation options from the Pier 2 Terminal are plentiful, allowing you to explore the island and its stunning natural beauty. Whether you choose to rent a car, take a taxi, or use rideshare services, you’ll be able to easily reach popular attractions such as Pearl Harbor, the Diamond Head State Monument, and the famous Waikiki Beach.


If you prefer to stay close to the terminal, you’ll still find plenty of entertainment and activities to enjoy. The nearby Aloha Stadium Swap Meet offers a unique shopping experience with vendors selling local crafts, clothing, and fresh produce. It’s a perfect place to find one-of-a-kind treasures and immerse yourself in the vibrant atmosphere of a local market.


As you explore the Pier 2 Terminal, you’ll also discover a variety of dining options to satisfy your culinary cravings. From casual eateries serving Hawaiian plate lunches to seafood restaurants offering freshly caught fish, there’s something for every palate. Don’t forget to indulge in a refreshing tropical cocktail or a refreshing shave ice treat.


The Pier 2 Cruise Ship Terminal provides a convenient and welcoming experience for cruise ship passengers, with its modern facilities, central location, and easy access to attractions and amenities. Whether you’re embarking on a new adventure or bidding farewell to the beautiful islands of Hawaii, the Pier 2 Terminal ensures a memorable and enjoyable start or end to your cruising experience in Honolulu.


Cruise Ship Services and Facilities

When it comes to cruise ship travel, the comfort and convenience of passengers are of utmost importance. The cruise ship terminals in Honolulu are equipped with a wide range of services and facilities to ensure a pleasant and enjoyable experience for all passengers. Here are some key services and facilities you can expect:

  1. Baggage Handling: Upon arrival at the terminals, dedicated staff will assist you with your luggage, ensuring a smooth transition from the ship to the terminal and vice versa. This service eliminates the hassle of carrying heavy bags and allows you to focus on enjoying your cruise.
  2. Immigration and Customs: International passengers can easily clear immigration and customs within the terminals, streamlining the process and saving valuable time. The terminals are equipped with immigration and customs facilities to ensure a quick and efficient clearance for passengers.
  3. Parking and Transportation: If you choose to drive to the cruise terminal, parking facilities are available for both short-term and long-term stays. Additionally, the terminals are well-connected to transportation networks, making it easy to access taxis, rideshare services, shuttles, and public transportation to explore the city and its surrounding areas.
  4. Shops and Restaurants: The cruise ship terminals feature a variety of shops and restaurants, allowing you to indulge in some retail therapy or savor delicious cuisine. From souvenir shops and duty-free boutiques to cafes and fine dining establishments, you’ll find plenty of options to enhance your cruise experience.
  5. Wi-Fi and Communication: Staying connected is important, even when you’re on a cruise. Most cruise ship terminals in Honolulu offer Wi-Fi access, allowing you to stay connected with your loved ones or share your memorable moments on social media.
  6. Tourist Information: Friendly and knowledgeable staff members are available at the cruise ship terminals to provide tourists with information about local attractions, activities, and transportation options. They can assist you in planning your excursions and making the most of your time in Honolulu.

These services and facilities ensure that your experience at the cruise ship terminals in Honolulu is convenient, comfortable, and stress-free. Whether you’re embarking on your cruise or returning from a memorable journey, you can expect a high level of customer service and attention to detail, allowing you to fully enjoy your time in this tropical paradise.


Excursions and Activities in Honolulu

When you dock in Honolulu, you’ll find yourself in a paradise filled with endless opportunities for exploration and adventure. From pristine beaches and lush hiking trails to vibrant cultural sites and historical landmarks, there is something for everyone in this Hawaiian gem. Here are some exciting excursions and activities you can partake in during your visit to Honolulu:

  1. Pearl Harbor: A visit to Pearl Harbor is a must for history enthusiasts. Explore the USS Arizona Memorial, Battleship Missouri, and USS Bowfin Submarine Museum for a glimpse into the events of World War II and pay tribute to the fallen sailors.
  2. Waikiki Beach: Spend a day lounging on the dazzling shores of Waikiki Beach. Whether you prefer sunbathing, swimming, or trying your hand at surfing, this renowned beach offers plenty of opportunities for relaxation and water sports.
  3. Diamond Head State Monument: Embark on a scenic hike to the top of Diamond Head crater for breathtaking panoramic views of the city and the Pacific Ocean. The moderate hike is rewarded with stunning vistas that make for fantastic photo opportunities.
  4. Hanauma Bay: Dive into the crystal-clear waters of Hanauma Bay for an unforgettable snorkeling experience. Discover vibrant coral reefs and a myriad of tropical fish in this marine nature reserve known for its biodiversity.
  5. Polynesian Cultural Center: Immerse yourself in the rich and diverse cultural heritage of Hawaii and the Polynesian islands at the Polynesian Cultural Center. Enjoy traditional music, dance performances, and interactive exhibits that showcase the unique traditions of the Polynesian cultures.
  6. Hiking in Manoa Falls: Embark on a scenic hike through the lush rainforest of Manoa Valley to reach the breathtaking Manoa Falls. This tropical paradise offers an enchanting experience surrounded by native plants, songbirds, and the stunning waterfall at the end of the trail.
  7. Iolani Palace: Step back in time with a visit to Iolani Palace, the only royal palace in the United States. Explore the opulent rooms and learn about Hawaii’s monarchy and the history of the Hawaiian Kingdom.

These are just a few of the many excursions and activities available in Honolulu. Whether you’re interested in history, outdoor adventures, cultural experiences, or simply soaking up the sun on pristine beaches, Honolulu offers a wide range of options to cater to every interest and preference. Embrace the spirit of aloha and create unforgettable memories during your time in this tropical paradise.



Honolulu, with its beautiful coastline, rich cultural heritage, and vibrant city life, has become a sought-after destination for cruise ship travelers. The two main cruise ship terminals in Honolulu, the Aloha Tower Cruise Ship Terminal and the Pier 2 Cruise Ship Terminal, provide a gateway to a world of adventure and discovery.


As cruise ships dock in Honolulu, visitors are greeted with a warm aloha and a host of services and facilities to ensure a seamless and enjoyable experience. The terminals offer convenient baggage handling, customs and immigration services, parking, and transportation options. Passengers can explore an array of shops, dine in local eateries, and take in the breathtaking views of the harbor and downtown skyline.


Along with the convenient facilities at the terminals, Honolulu boasts a wide range of excursions and activities to suit every interest. From exploring the historic Pearl Harbor and hiking to the top of Diamond Head, to discovering the marine wonders of Hanauma Bay and engaging with the rich Polynesian culture, there is no shortage of experiences to create lasting memories.


The importance of cruise ships to Honolulu cannot be overstated. They bring economic benefits, create job opportunities, and contribute to the growth of the local tourism industry. The city has made substantial investments in port infrastructure to ensure a world-class experience for cruise ship passengers.


Whether you are a seasoned cruiser or embarking on your first voyage, Honolulu offers a captivating blend of natural beauty, cultural richness, and modern amenities. As you dock in this tropical paradise, you’ll be immersed in the spirit of aloha, greeted by warm smiles and embraced by the allure of Hawaii’s breathtaking landscapes and vibrant city life.


So, pack your bags, set sail for Honolulu, and get ready for an unforgettable adventure that will leave you with cherished memories and a longing to return to the enchanting shores of this Pacific paradise.