Back in the 1950s, the classic film From Here To Eternity was filmed in Hawaii. It included a passionate love scene between Burt Lancaster and Deborah Kerr, right on the beach with water washing over them. The scene was not in the original script the director was inspired when he first saw the beautiful cove.
The same spot was used as the location for a dream sequence in the film 50 First Dates starring Adam Sandler and Drew Barrymore.
Other scenes in that film were shot at Sea Life Park, half an hour from Honolulu. There you can swim with a dolphin, learn about their magical world and thrill to in-depth interaction from a waist-deep platform. Dolphins play, kiss and 'dance' with participants and for those who feel comfortable, there is the chance to move from the platform into slightly deeper water.
The 730-hectare Waimea Falls Park on the North Shore of Oahu is home to Waimea Falls, the island's most beautiful waterfall. Hawaiians believed the reddish waters, coloured by iron oxide, had healing powers and took wounded soldiers there. These days professional cliff-divers put on a show by climbing the rock wall and diving up to 20 metres into the deep, cold pool.
It's the perfect location for filming. Fantasy Island, George of the Jungle and Beverly Hills 90210 set up their cameras there. It has also been on the television series Lost many times.
Oahu's North Shore is also famous for huge waves. Massive barrels roll in and it has one of the toughest, most powerful breaks in the world the Pipeline. The surfing movie Blue Crush was filmed here and captured the surf culture of the area, as well as showing off its beauty. Most of the difficult surfing scenes were done by stunt people, including Australia's champion surfer Layne Beachley.
Ex-pro surfer Hans Hedemann provided assistance and now runs a surf school there for seasoned surfers looking for local knowledge about the Hawaii breaks or brand new surfers ready to catch their first wave.
Kualoa Ranch covers 650 hectares of Oahu's east coast. The family-owned, working cattle ranch is spectacular and offers tours. It was used in Jurassic Park, Mighty Joe Young, Pearl Harbor, Windtalkers and many other feature films and television shows. Kale Cabrinha is the resident film buff and loves to tell people about who was there and how it can be changed into Africa, Saipan and Tahiti.
Godzilla was filmed here in 1988 for that they built a Tahitian village and dug footprints two and a half metres deep.
Most people remember Jack Lord as Steve McGarrett saying "Book him Dano" in television's longest-running police drama, Hawaii-5O. It pretty much put Hawaii on the map for television viewers and with the opening scenes shot from the roof of the Ilikai Hotel, put it on the map as well some 40 years ago.
The hotel has a superb location halfway between the Ala Moana Center, a shopping haven, and the Hilton Hawaiian Village. It overlooks the Ala Wai boat harbour the Minnow left from there for its appearance in Gilligan's Island and the warm Pacific water is right on the doorstep.
The Ilikai has almost 800 rooms some are privately owned apartments and 250 have full kitchens, particularly useful for family stays. They offer mountain or ocean views and every night you can join in hula lessons.
Oahu in the Hawaiian Islands.
Renaissance Ilikai Waikiki Hotel rooms start at around $218 a night.
Sea Life Park entry is $32 for adults and $17 for children. It is open every day between 9:30am-5pm. A portion of the admission price goes towards marine animal rehabilitation programs.
Talpacific Holidays half-day Ranch & Movie Set location tours start at around $169 per person. Buffet lunch and transfers from Waikiki hotels are included.
Please note that the prices listed are valid at the time of filming.
Ph: 1300 137 727; (07) 3218 9900
Fax: (07) 3229 7072
Level 6, 117 York Street
Sydney NSW 2000
Sea Life Park
41-202 Kalanianaole Highway
Waimanalo HI 96795
Ph: 0011 1 808 259 7933
Fax: 0011 1 808 259 7373
Waimea Valley Park
59-864 Kamehameha Highway,
Haleiwa HI 96712
Hans Hedemann Surf School
Ph: 0011 1 808 924 7778
49-450 Kamahaema Highway
Kaaawa HI 96730
Ph: 0011 1 808 237 8515
Fax: 0011 1 808 237 8925
Renaissance Ilikai Waikiki Hotel
1777 Ala Moana Boulevard
Honolulu HI 96815
Ph: 0011 1 808 949 3811
Fax: 0011 1 808 947 4523