In the Hawaiian language Kailua means "two seas," or "two currents," a contraction of the words kai (meaning sea or sea water) and ʻelua (meaning two); it is so named because of the two lagoons in the district or the two currents which run through Kailua Bay.
Kailua is located in Windward Oahu in the judicial district and the ahupua'a named Ko'olaupoko. It is located 12 miles northeast of Honolulu - over Nu'uanu Pali, tallest mountain peak in the Ko'olau mountain range.
The town is a typical suburb spawned by post-war development Kaiwanui Marsh, and Enchanted Lake. The Kailua Chamber of Commerce supports the communities within the triangle from Marine Corp Base Hawaii to the edge of Kaneohe to the outskirts of Waimanalo. Many small businesses and community organizations support this unique town with its beautiful, protected beaches, and improved highways bringing thousands home from their workplaces in Honolulu.
| "I remember one day, I saw Jason Lee, Jamie Lee Curtis, Adam Sandler, Famous Amos, Michelle Pfeifer and some of the cast of Lost all in the same day, just around down doing normal things. No one bothers them, the are treated like normal people. I think that is why they love it here."
Many people come from all over the world to visit Kailua's picturesque beaches, great restaurants and wonderful people. Its tight nit community, laid back vibe and uncrowded beaches is what appeals to people like President Obama, and many other celebrities who make Kailua home. Celebrities enjoy a town you can hang out in, where the residents leave them alone. It isn't uncommon to have celebrity encounters in Kailua.
The "sense of place" shopping and dining experiences you have today are the result of cooperation between the City & County of Honolulu, local businesses and community volunteers in the renovation of our malls, buildings and streets.
There is still more is to come. Stroll around our town and enjoy the ambiance of our revitalized Kailua Town.
Kailua is a place of much natural beauty. The most significant features of Kailua are the bay, the mountains, and the wetlands. Kailua Bay is a magnificent place symbolizing the regional quality of the community. Kailua Beach and nearby Lanikai have been on the "Worlds Best Beach" lists by several publishers for many years.
Wai Nui (the big water) Marsh, a natural wetland, provides habitat for many species of wildlife. The marsh was a center of life for early Kailuans. Here is where they farmed, managed their fishponds and prayed to their gods. A huge saltwater wetland, it's peacefulness can be enjoyed on the hiking/biking pathway that wraps around its edge.
Mount Olomana towers over every neighborhood in Kailua. It's three peaks are it's significant feature and a challenge for the hardiest hikers.