For the life of me, I was absolutely sure the travel page of this blog included an overview of the Hawaiian Island. I mean, how could it not when we’ve been there over ten times? Alas … I just checked this morning and no. So here I am to rectify that.
(Note: In 2012 I wrote a comprehensive post titled Some Thoughts on Hawaii that might be an interesting read, albeit a pretty outdated one at this point.)
I feel like putting together a page that goes over each of our trips wouldn’t be very useful to people who are looking for information or help in planning their own getaways. Given the overwhelming amount of information I’ve posted over the years highlighting our trips to Oahu, Kauai, the Big Island, and Maui, I think I’ll break it down by island. And of course, if any of you are reading this and you don’t see the information you’re looking for, by all means drop me a line.
So without further ado, here are my (updated) thoughts on Oahu.
We’ve been to Oahu twice. Once for my 30th birthday and another time with my sister and her husband when she was pregnant with her oldest daughter. So yeah, like ten years ago. Over the years we’ve thought about quick getaways to Oahu where we just planted ourselves at a hotel on Waikiki and stayed there, but I can’t seem to convince myself that’s the best use of our vacation time. Although Alan has a former co-worker who spent four days doing just that at The Royal Hawaiian and I admit to having been very tempted since it was only a five-hour flight from Oakland.
Because those trips were so long ago I feel like most of the insights I’d share wouldn’t be particularly noteworthy or relevant, but some of this stuff is still worth calling out. Just be sure to take it with a boulder of salt and do your own research before committing to anything I recommend here.
- Rent an umbrella and spend the day on Waikiki Beach
- Do an ATV tour at Kualoa Ranch
- In summer, go swimming at Waimea Bay Beach
- In winter, watch the giant surf on the north shore (including Waimea Bay)
- Visit the Waimea Valley Auduban Center and go swimming in Waimea Falls (where Kate & Sawyer found the briefcase in LOST)
- Pay your respects to our fallen soldiers at Pearl Harbor and the USS Arizona Memorial (Alan and my brother-in-law Sean did this while my sister and I relaxed on Waikiki with a book)
- Go snorkeling at Hanauma Bay
- Drive Mt. Tantalus for amazing views of Honolulu
- Ditch the crowds at Ala Moana Beach Park
- Catch a catamaran cruise from Waikiki
- Spend the afternoon on Lanikai, one of Hawaii’s most beautiful beaches
- Visit Oahu’s famous shrimp trucks (Giovanni’s is our favorite)
- Eat the best shave ice on Oahu at Matsumoto Shave Ice in Haleiwa
Other items of note we’ve not done: