The Manoa real estate area is a beautifully lush green suburban city in the heart of Honolulu. To some, it's the best option in or near town, with lots of character and plenty of rain. The video above is a short driving tour around some of the major streets in Manoa. I took the video with my phone while driving around on a Sunday afternoon.
Houses in Manoa are typically older homes with a lot of charm, set along streets lined with huge trees, grand views of the mountains, and again, a ton of rain. There's also a quaint little shopping center and great coffee shops.
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Manoa gets over 200 inches of rain a year, which is what makes it so incredibly beautiful. When you think of Hawaii, maybe you think of a tropical rain forest with giant trees and lots of green everywhere. You're thinking of a place like Manoa. Unfortunately, most of Hawaii is not that way. In fact, on the Ewa or Kapolei side, you might be surprised at how brown and dead everything is. It looks a lot like California in the summer. Sometimes on the Ewa side of the island, you would think there was no rain all year.
The rain is what makes Manoa so great, yet the rain is also what some people hate about this town. It rains almost every day and every night, especially in the winter. As you drive around Manoa though, you'll understand why people love it so much. When people first move to Hawaii, it's the ocean that attracts them, but after you have lived here for a while, the tropical valleys and mountains will start to appeal to you more and more.
The old houses in Manoa are often nicely renovated, and can be some of the most appealing properties on the island. If you renovate a home yourself, you stand a better chance of making a profit. There are plenty of Manoa homes that need someone to modernize them, as many of Oahu's older homes weren't built to today's standards. However, these properties more than make up for it with their charming architecture.
The Manoa property to the right was recently sold by RE/MAX Honolulu for just over $2 million. While that may seem like a high price, Manoa is only a short drive from downtown, so many of the island's executives and professionals choose Manoa as their home.
For those who have to commute into town everyday, Manoa is the perfect blend of town and country feel. As soon as you enter Manoa Valley, you can feel the difference in humidity and temperature. It's a tropical rainforest filled with modern houses. It's paradise.
Manoa boasts one of the island's best public elementary schools, which consistently scores high in national testing. So even though the housing prices may be out of range for many families, those who can afford it enjoy access to an excellent school.
Driving through Manoa feels like you're in an old New England town, except that it's 85 degrees with 70% humidity. The beautiful tree-lined streets and New England-style architecture make you feel like you're in a different place, until you look behind you and see the ocean. There are plenty of mature trees in this area and nearby the homes have lush green grass everywhere. The area also has beautiful mountains and valleys.
The University of Hawaii is located in Manoa, so there is a high student population here. Because of this, you'll see plenty of people cruising around on bicycles and mopeds. Mopeds are considered bicycles here by the law, so riders are uninsured and carry no license. Beware!
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