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Iolani Palace, Honolulu

4.5
#1 of 100 in Museums in Hawaii
The only royal palace in America, Iolani Palace saw the reign of Queen Lili'uokalani, Hawaii's last monarch, end with her overthrow in 1893. Soak up the building’s Hawaiian renaissance style, which seems fitting given that the site served as the seat of government for the independent Kingdom of Hawaii. Constructed in 1879, the building has a series of rooms restored to their formal royal glory, complete with period-accurate furnishings, fabrics, and decorations. You can explore the grounds on a docent-led tour or a self-guided audio tour, but be sure to book ahead of time to ensure a spot, as tickets can sell out. Our Honolulu trip builder tool makes visiting Iolani Palace and other Honolulu attractions simple, and helps you make a travel plan personal to you.
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Iolani Palace Reviews
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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5
4,432 reviews
Google
4.5
TripAdvisor
  • Magnificent palace in the middle of Honolulu. Already nice tucked between the larger buildings in the city. But definitely a must to visit. I was here around Christmas and so it was nice decorated with Christmas decorations.
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  • This is the only palace on US soil. The audio tour gives you very detailed history in each room. The information is informative to help you see how the queen was treated and locked away inside her own...  more »
  • The building is very nice from the outside. Unfortunately, I had no desire, longer on a leadership, which should take approximately 1 hour to wait. Lt of exhibited photos would be determined gworden very interesting, unfortunately my English isn't perfect is enough to understand it. A lady had entertained out there, I assumed, she makes the guides. Their English was too colloquial. Therefore, I thought it's not worth to make the lead, if only half of one. Cost of entry relate to my knowledge on the leadership.
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Google
  • The audio tour (tours are the only way in the building) was top notch and very informative. The palace itself is beautifully restored and a real example of the depth of Hawaiian history and culture. The price is very reasonable and you could easily spend two hours here if you also visit the optional secondary exhibits in the basement. My minor complaints are with regard to lighting which made some photographs difficult (no flash or video allowed) and the enforced distance from some parts of the rooms, which are laid out like dioramas and you are sometimes only to view from the edge of the room. I would also have liked to see more historical photographs that compare the restored rooms to their original state.
  • The audio tour is very well done--both my husband and I found it engaging and interesting. The history is a sad one, but important. It's well worth taking the time to learn more about Hawaii. I recommend it wholeheartedly.
  • Please visit the palace. There was so much US History that you don't learn in History classes about how Hawaii became a province of our country and then a state. The Queen's being sentence to seclusion to that small portion of the palace was so sad. There was lots to see. I was most impressed by the fact that the Iolani Palace had electricity before the Palace in England and the White House. There are no light switches because the king had the lights to be scheduled to be on in certain places. So much more...check it out.
  • this was a great little stop whether you go inside or not. i feel like this was a great spring board to do so many other things after. there is so much history here you'll definitely want to be here and see everything it has to offer
  • Iolani Palace was pleasant surprise. I was pleased to learn more about the history of Hawaii and its last monarchs. We opted for the audio tour and cruised along just fine. The tour was informative it took us through different rooms inside the castle. Our 4 year old had to be strapped in a stroller and all of us had to wear shoe covers, provided by the palace management. Lots of historical artifacts in the basement. Parking is tough, just like anywhere else on the Island, but we were able to park underneath the state building across the street for a nominal charge. Keep quarters on you for parking.
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