Want to jump into Aulani’s pools, but don’t want to pay the price of staying at the resort? You’re probably wondering if there is an Aulani day pass available for purchase to just use their pools. The short answer: No, Aulani does not provide day passes to access their pools and most other amenities.
Why not? The pools are an amenity for guests staying at the resort. It’s not a “water park”. If you plan to visit Oahu, but not staying at Aulani, there is a Wet ‘n’ Wild Hawaii water park about a 12 minute drive from the resort.
Even though you can’t access the pools, you can still visit the resort as a day guest and look around, here’s how.
Spend the Day at the Lagoon
You won’t be able to explore any amenities of course, but this is one way you can get a feel of the resort if you’ve never been there before. This is the free/cheapest way to visit. Spend the day at the beach. You can bring your own food or splurge a little on shave ice and Mickey ice cream sandwiches from one the quick-serve food outlets at Aulani. You won’t need a room key or wristband to make any purchases.
Parking availability at the lagoons are very limited, and when I say limited, only a dozen or so per lagoon parking lot. It’s on a first-come first-serve basis, so you’d have to get there REALLY early. Parking at the lagoons on holidays is especially crazy. Once the parking lots reach max capacity, it gets closed off and there’s cars lined up waiting for someone to leave.
Aulani sits on the edge of Kohola Lagoon (also known as Lagoon 1). If you park at the other lagoons, you’ll be further away, but you can just take a leisurely stroll to the resort using the sidewalk alongside the beach.
If anything, you can pay for parking at Aulani or the other resorts nearby.
Book a Dining Reservation
Dining at one of Aulani’s restaurants is another way of visiting without actually staying there. If you drive to the resort for your reservation, you can use the self-serve parking or valet service which is $37 and can be validated if you spend $35 or more at ‘AMA’AMA or Makahiki.
Now, I don’t know if my eyes are deceiving me, but Aulani’s website says parking will be validated for up to 2 1/2 hours versus the 4 hours I thought it originally was and many people know of it to be, so I’m a little confused. I don’t know that is old info or If they changed the validation hours.
There is also the Disney Character Dining which is great for kids wanting to meet a few Disney characters such as Mickey and Minnie.
- Aunty’s Breakfast Celebration: Enjoy breakfast at the Makahiki with live entertainment in which kids can participate in with Aunty.
- “Menehune Mischief” Character Dinner: Similar to the character breakfast with Aunty, except this one is with Uncle.
You’ll also have the opportunity to take photos with the characters.
Cocktails and Pupus (No Reservation Needed)
If you just want to sit and have some drinks and something lighter to eat, you can do so at Off The Hook or at The Olelo Room and listen to some live music (if entertainment is scheduled). These places will also validate your parking if you spend $35 or more, but only after 5 PM at Off The Hook and between 5 to 11 PM at The Olelo Room.
If you spend $50 or more at Kalepa’s Store or Hale Manu you can validate your parking with some time to explore the resort. Unless you spend the whole 2 1/2 hours shopping for cute Disney merchandise.
Get pampered and purchase a spa treatment! Your purchase also includes access to the Mikimiki Fitness Center. And you guessed, you’re parking will be validated if your purchase is $35 or more.
The Laniwai Spa alone is amazing to explore even if you don’t get to explore the resort. I have yet to experience it, but it’s on my list to try out. The Hydrotherapy Garden sounds interesting!
Ka Wa’a Luau
This is also on my list to try out. I imagine Aulani’s luau has a Disney spin on it so I’m not sure how it compares to other luaus I’ve been to. The food offerings on their menu seems like “Disneyfied” Hawaiian food.
As for parking, yes, they’ll validate! Just take note, the luau experience takes about 3 hours.
Now you know of 6 ways to visit Aulani as a day guest!
Have you visited Aulani as a day guest? If so, how did you explore the resort? Let me know in the comments!