It's a big deal to bring your dog to Hawaii. First, there's the small problem of just getting there, whether by air or by sea. Secondly, there's the fact that Hawaii is quite strict about allowing animals into the state due to very stringent vaccination requests. If you wish to bring your pup to paradise, you will have to begin preparing at least four months in advance, and sometimes, you will need to start earlier in order to avoid a mandatory 120-day quarantine period. And even if everything goes perfectly according to plan, your dog may still face a five-day quarantine.
Okay, so maybe Hawaii isn't the best place to take your dog on vacation. But if you live there, or if you just like seeing local dogs at play, one of the best places in the islands is the Hawaii Kai Dog park in Honolulu. The park was created by dog lovers who were frustrated by the lack of off-leash spaces for their dogs. They organized around their shared interest, and named their group Hui 'Ilio Hawai'i, which means "The Hawaii dog people." They organized to create a space for their dogs to run off-leash. They developed the park in cooperation with the city of Honolulu. The city department of parks and recreation has since taken over the park, freeing Hui 'Ilio Hawaii to develop other dog parks.
The Hawaii Kai Dog Park is very large. The park has a total space of two grassy, open acres. The land is flat, which is a little unusual for Hawaii. There is an enclosure for dogs under twenty pounds, and both sides of the park have plenty of poop bags. The park is nicely shaded and there are a couple of human fountains that also have dog access. There are picnic tables and benches in the main enclosure.
The Hawaii Kai Dog Park may not be the fanciest dog park in America, but it is very well kept. The park is closed on Tuesday mornings until noon for cleaning and maintenance. In addition, the members of Hui 'Ilio Hawai'i still frequent the park and perform basic upkeep as needed, such as weeding and cleaning up any missed "landmines." They also provide tennis balls. The city of Honolulu may have taken responsibility for the park, but it is still a labor of love for the dog people of Hawaii.