Can I just say I was VERY pleasantly surprised with Oahu. I had this expectation of Hawaiian dad shirts and swarms of tourists. I’m sure you can find this on the island, but where we ventured to felt authentic. Streets lined with an array of food trucks, surf shops, and shave ice stands. The beaches made you want to lay out all day while the vibrant blue ocean lapped at the sea shore and your feet. The hikes made you feel as though you were infused in Jurasic park.
As beautiful as Oahu is, we only experienced it for two days! I cannot wait to venture back to this beautifully created place.
We spent most of our time in Haleiwa, otherwise known as the North Shore. I think this is why we didn’t get the touristy feel. It’s a local hot spot and sooooo cute.
Here’s a few tips and things to do on your trip to Oahu.
Banzai Bowls. We literally went here once a day the whole time we were there. The acai bowls really let your stomach know that you are on a tropical island. Located off the beach, attached to a gas station. But the line is always out the door with surfers fresh out of the salty water, hungry for brekky.
Elephant Shack Thai. Woah. all I can say. The vibe of this place is also so hawaii. candle lit, and picked up quick as togo food would be. You can sit under the stars or inside to enjoy your plate of authentic thai food. I am a huge lover of thai food, and this stuff, this stuff is worth going to try. The serving sizes are going to stretch your stomach, and you will be able to eat leftovers for brekky.
The Sunrise Shack. Sandwhiched between at the bottom of some rolling hills and the ocean. This place is just so freaking cute you can’t pass it up. Even if it is just for the pic. The papaya bowl is a go to, also, even if it’s just for the pic. They have some delicious fresh brewed coffee to enjoy the view. Don’t pass this lover up.
V Land Taco Truck. We stumbled upon this place and I am so glad we did. Holy crap. These taco bowls were so unique and fresh. They add a Thai zing to their meat and it is mind blowing. Or shall I say, stomach blowing? *lol Dad joke*
Things To Do:
Ho’omaluhia Botanical Gardens. A bit of a drive, but you end up staring straight up at some unbelievable mountains.
Hike, Hike, Hike.
Crouching Lion Hike. Since we were there for such a short period of time this is the one we chose to do, but I will recommend others that are on our list for next time. This hike is difficult only if you don’t have the right shoes. And by right I mean, NOT Michael Kors tennies or Converse. The whole hike is a mix of extremely slippery mud and tree roots. Did I mention theres a steep incline. Be ready to get dirty. Unless you have spike things that you can cover your shoes in. The people passing us, clean, had these. I recommend getting a pair. The summit of this hike is worth it. overlooking a beautiful blue bay, and rolling tree covered mountains. It’s breathtaking. This hike is only about 20-30 mins each way so grab your HIKING shoes, and get out there.
Waimea Bay. Cute local small beach, where there’s a rock out in the water you can jump off! wooooo
For the girls, if you want something insanely authentic to Hawaii, and just make you feel a little bit extra, get yourself a flower crown. You might feel silly at first, but these things are beautiful, and really make you feel like a Hawaiian goddess. PoeHaku makes some brilliant flower crowns, really known as a Haku.
Obviously be sure to pack multiple cute bathing suits. Hiking shoes, not just cute tennies. SUNSCREEN. Cute tanks/ tees and shorts. The fashion here is laid back and undone. Keep it simple.
If you are looking to rent a car, which I reccomend so you can see a good chunk of the island, I will reccomend Turo. It’s like airbnb for cars and its amazing.
Enjoy, and Aloha.