Oahu, Hawaii

Hi everyone! Thanks for tuning in to my wedding series! For my topic this week, I’d love to share with you some awesome places I’ve traveled to! I will be sharing some of my friend’s trips as well in hopes that my travelers out there have the best tips and advice!

Wanderlust is a strong desire to wander or travel and explore the world. I had the honor of being able to visit this beautiful island of Oahu, Hawaii. We had an itinerary but we also had places we came across the way that we couldn’t resist! Here are some of our favorite spots that we think everyone should check out when they travel to this island!

Skip the city of Waikiki, there’s too many tourists and I think there’s so much more to the island that you can do that’s fun and more private. The only two places I could recommend in the actual city of Waikiki for food would be Musubi Cafe if you are a huge fan of Spam and Me’s Bar-B-Que for delicious Hawaiian/Korean style breakfast. We went to these places more than once because we could not get enough of their food!If you are there to shop luxury, there is a marketplace near there but I just don’t think it’s worth it if you’re trying to see the beautiful nature of Hawaii.

For places to go, I recommend you visit these; Diamond Head, North Shore, Kualoa Ranch, Hanauma Bay, Pearl Harbor and Chinaman’s Hat. Diamond Head is closest to Waikiki and it’s the one place that many locals recommend tourists if you enjoy hiking. For Hanauma Bay, it is the most recommended spot for snorkeling that way you can see all the fishies. Pearl Harbor is a great place to discover the history that happened on the island and it recently opened up after being closed for a couple years. Chinaman’s hat is near Kualoa Ranch so you can rent a kayak and row out there to check out the small island.

If you are a big fan of the Jurassic Park franchise, Kualoa Ranch is a must!! My husband love the tour and it was so worth it to see so much of the island. The people that love and cherish the ranch are so dedicated to educating tourists and also focused on a lot of the movie making aspect of the tour. It was fun and we learned so much! It was our most favorite place we went to out of all the places we’ve seen in Oahu. Another important place to check out is North Shore, this is where you can see surfing competitions during the right season and also swim with the sharks! We booked a tour and they allowed us to swim with sharks that were cage-less while educating us about the shark species. It sounds really scary but they always made sure we were safe at all times and were always paying attention if a more dangerous/aggressive species approached us close. It was breathtaking and very thrill-seeking.

Some places I like to recommend when it comes to food are Ono’s Seafood for Poke (you can also stop by Foodland, a convenient store if you want cheap but delicious poke), Leonard’s Bakery, Rainbow Drive Inn and Side Street Inn, Romy’s Shrimp, Aoki’s Shave Ice and Uncle Bo’s Haleiwa. I found many of these places to be the common recommendation from many of our local uber drivers and there wasn’t a single place we went to that we didn’t love. Some of these places I’ve recommended have competitors that are more popular than they are, but I wanted to mention some of these to help those smaller businesses! Go and try a loco moco from Rainbow Drive Inn, try a malasada from Leonard’s, wake up early to get in line at Ono’s to try that fresh Poke, and stop by this cute little family business at Aoki’s for shave ice. If you go to Side Street Inn order one dish for two people, their portions are huge!! We ordered 3 dishes not knowing this and we ended up having to go most of the food.

Lastly, for places to stay, I highly recommend Alohilani Resort, not only is it beautiful, but it has amazing service from all departments. We were very fortunate enough to know an amazing local that recommended this spot and was able to give an experience that was incredibly special. We also recommend airbnbs if the resorts are too expensive, they are just as great. We do have an honorable mention, which is Turtle Bay Resort, it is so beautiful and we probably would’ve chose to stay there if we didn’t pick Alohilani. Plus, the public is allowed to access their personal beach which is super fun and you could really get a good suntan while snorkeling.

Hope these recommendations help you on your trip to Oahu! We would love to go back one more time and highly recommend it’s beauty to anyone who has been dreaming of coming to Oahu.

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