After several days on the island of Kauai, we made our way via a Hawaiian Airlines flight, to Oahu for part 2 of our Honeymoon adventure. Immediately upon landing you can tell that this island is very different than the first. Its much more built up and city-like than Kauai. Overall it doesn’t carry that “relaxed tropical feel” that Kauai had, but we did find a few spots we enjoyed which are noted below.
Oahu Revealed – Once again we need to thank Andrew Doughty for this perfect guidebook to see the island. We followed along with the detailed maps and each categorized section to discover all parts of this island. I highly recommended buying this before making your way here!
Where we stayed:
Marriot Waikiki – As the book describes, most of the hotel and resorts of the island are all housed along this one beach stretch of the island, known as Waikiki. Think Las Vegas with a beach on one side of the street and no gambling. It was more city like than we realized but was super convenient when you were hungry and wanted a snack! They say most people who stay on this island don’t rent a car but we knew we would want to explore, so we snagged a good hotel/car deal through Marriot Vacations. The only downer side is the $32 per day parking fee at the hotel but it was worth it to us. Above you can see the view from our room (which included 2 balconies so I could get this shot!)
Where We Ate:
BREAKFAST AND DINNER: Il Lupino (Waikiki) – On 2 different days we enjoyed a delicious French toast breakfast and relaxing dinner at this Italian restaurant. At dinner, I had the chicken piccata while Derek had a ceaser salad and margarita pizza. Highly recommended for either meal, both for the atmosphere and the delicious food!
SNACK: Aioki’s Shave Ice (Hale’iwa, North Shore) – We had read in the guidebook to get vanilla ice cream with our shave ice so we chose this second tasting as an opportunity to do so. Again, we shared one cup, opting this time for watermelon, cherry and mango flavored syrups with vanilla ice cream (and no protective cup that they offer at the counter). This is one of 3 or 4 Shave Ice stores right in a row in Hale’iwa so I can’t really compare it to others, but we enjoyed our syrup flavors and would recommend the ice cream on the bottom!
LUNCH: Breakers (Haleiwa) – While on our way to the pipeline, we stopped at this shopping center where I had the best grilled chicken sandwich I had the whole trip. D had fish and chips with a Castaway IPA which he’s also recommend to readers. Stop here for some AC and a fulfilling lunch!
LUNCH: Romy’s Shrimp and Prawns (Kahuku) – This area of the north shore is well known for their farm raised shrimp and prawns. As per the recommendation of our guidebook, we ventured to Romy’s to taste the local delights. After waiting in line about 15 minutes, I ordered the #4, a ½ of steamed shrimp while D got a #3, fried shrimp. Tip: It’s a cash only establishment, but don’t worry, you can always hit up their ATM in back
It was announced that orders from here on our would take 45 minutes to 1 hour after ordering, but ours came quickly within 30 mins.
Yep. The heads were still attached to mine. After getting over that fact and learning how to manually remove that, the legs and the shell, I enjoyed a yummy meal at Romy’s shrimp shack. D’s was even more delicious with the friend shell around the shrimp being more like a wonton than the type you’re used to in the mainland states. It included a tasty sweet and sour type sauce that tasted great with both the shrimp and the white rice side. Get either plate and you’ll have a satisfying meal!
DINNER: Cholo’s Mexican (Haleiwa) – I will have to grant Cholo’s the best in two categories for Oahu: best logo and best margaritas! D had 2 a la carte shredded beef tacos while I had shredded chicken quesadillas and a special mango margarita. “shred the waves then eat shredded meat!” It was the perfect amount of food to be satisfied but not too full, all for an affordable price with a delicious margarita to boot!
Entertainment / Adventures:
Pearl Harbor (Honolulu) – We flew into Oahu on a Wednesday and decided to make the required trek to Pearl Harbor Thursday morning before the weekend crowd. GO EARLY and you’ll comfortably get your free tickets to the Arizona Memorial without a problem. After walking around the museum, and a short 20 minute video explaining the events that led up to the attack, you boarded the ferry boat that lead you over to the sunken ship memorial. There wasn’t much to see visually but of course it was more about respecting the memorial that represented the WWII soldiers that were lost. Tip: as read in our guidebook, don’t bring a purse or backpack with you as you’re required to lock them up in the rented lockers before boarding the ferry.
Body Boarding on the Banzai Pipline (North Shore) – D felt he would always regret not trying to conquer the waters of the famous banzai pipeline to one afternoon he rented a body board at Sea Maids surf shop ($20 for 24 hours, even though he only used it for one) and made his way to the waters. Sure, the surf didn’t include the 20 foot waves you can see in the middle of winter, but he still had fun! Go here to try to ride the waves or watch the other surfers do their thing.
Turtle Bay Resort (Kahuku) – If you’re looking for a relaxing place to sit on the beach with a protected swimming area, then head to this north shore resort’s public beach access. We came here twice to enjoy some hot sun, small waves, and a safer feeling place you could relax.