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For clients who wish to leisurely explore Oahu by bicycle, a Pedego Electric Bike (e-bike) may just be the way to go.
After he got hooked on riding an e-bike a few years ago, avid cycling enthusiast Michael Robles opened e-bike store Pedego Waikiki in 2018. From his centrally located shop, he takes riders on two-wheeled sightseeing adventures across the island on Pedego e-bikes.
Earlier this summer, my husband and I took the company’s most popular offering, the three-hour E-Bike Waikiki and Beyond Tour, which was guided by Robles. Overall, the Pedego e-bikes were user-friendly, and anyone who has ridden a bike can easily operate one after a demonstration and a quick practice ride on the street. In our experience, the bikes had a low learning curve.
As a bonus, high-tech helmets enabled us to hear and communicate with Robles. I found this to be especially helpful when in the back of the group or if I needed to stop along the way.
Pedego bikes featured an optional “pedal assist” operated by a throttle on the handlebars, which transforms an uphill pedal into an effortless glide. When the assist was engaged, I felt the boost immediately. It was almost like someone giving me a swift, smooth push. As a rider, I had all the control regarding how much extra power I required.
“Our assist option allows you go everywhere and see everything farther and faster than on a regular bicycle,” Robles said. “Time and again, my customers say it blows their mind that the ride is so much fun.”
Fun and flexible, the tours are tailored to riders’ abilities. If clients prefer to ride the e-bike like a regular bike, they can bypass the electric option entirely. The bikes are heavier than standard bicycles, however, and at first, I noticed the extra weight.
The Waikiki and Beyond excursion began at the Pedego shop and continued on flat ground past Ala Wai canal, then wound through Ala Moana Beach Park, with some photo ops along the Magic Island lagoon and Kakaako waterfront. We rolled across Waikiki with some sightseeing stops such as the Duke Kahanamoku statue, Waikiki Aquarium and Diamond Head crater. At this point, the road became steeper, and we really experienced the e-bike’s boosting power. Eventually, the tour continued to the upscale Kahala neighborhood, passing stunning viewpoints along the way. Afterward, we returned to the shop in Waikiki.
“This particular route was chosen because of the easy bike access, as well as the overwhelming beauty of each location,” Robles said. “The tour begins on flat terrain and gets progressively steeper. You’ll see beaches, palm trees, gorgeous views and get a taste of the city while pedaling around. Each spot speaks to everyone in its own unique way.”
The tour is especially family-friendly, which means participants of all ages can enjoy riding together, as the e-bike levels the playing field.
“On the Waikiki and Beyond tour, I’ve had a baby less than 1 year old, as well as a grandma who was 83,” Robles said. “One of the things I love about e-bikes is that the generational gap closes instantly, and it allows everyone to ride at the same level. It’s thrilling to see parents, grandparents and kids all enjoy this experience.”
Ideal for visitors who wish to get out of Waikiki for a few hours, the tour offers a great way to sightsee without renting a car. I’ve been fortunate enough to have visited Oahu several times, but before this tour, I had not been to Magic Island or explored the neighborhood of Kakaako, an area with shops, restaurants and colorful murals. It was lovely to admire the ocean views while cycling up the hills — and it was extra fun to see others do double-takes when they realized we were on an e-bike.
Currently, Pedego’s two tours are Waikiki and Beyond (three hours; $160 per person) and Diamond Head Bike Hike and Kahala Excursion (four hours; $190 per person). Both include a lunch at Kahala Hotel & Resort. If visitors prefer to explore a specific neighborhood or different part of the island, Robles can adjust the tour to accommodate.
The DetailsPedego Waikikiwww.pedegoelectricbikes.com