Oahu, Hawaii is one of my favourite travel destinations! I spent a memorable week here in November where I hiked, ate, practiced yoga, surfed, watched the sunset and floated around Waikiki Beach. Here are the five things you must do if you are planning a trip to the main island.
Eat: Marukame Udon
Emerse yourself in Hawaii’s Japanese culture. Japanese ‘order at the counter’ style restaurant often has a line out the door. Don’t let this put you off however- the food is what everyone is looking for- affordable, delicious, and plentiful.
Marukame Udon’s specialty is their noodle soup. Their noodles are made ‘sanuki-style’ which is famous for its time consuming process.
The noodle dough is aged for two hours, the rested overnight to be used the next day.
Cost: Low-middle range
Address: 2310 Kuhio Avenue, Suite 124 Honolulu, HI 96815
Hours: 7am – 10pm, Mon-Sun
Visit: Hanauma Bay
Snorkeling gear and flippers can be hired from the beach. Ensure you arrive at Hanauma Bay early as it gets busy.
Hanauma Bay is a 25 minute drive from Wakiki. You can also catch bus 22 to get there.
Hike: Diamond Head
Diamond Head is one of the most popular hikes in Oahu with good reason. It has spectacular views of Waikiki Beach and is suitable for people of most fitness levels. Diamond Head is an extinct volcano which has been dormant for the past 150,000 years.
Because Diamond Head is such a popular hike, try to arrive first thing in the morning to avoid the crowds.
Summit: 750 feet
Time: 1 hour return (2.5 kilometres)
Cost: $1 USD per hiker, $5 USD per car
Opening hours: 6am – 6pm (last entry is at 4.30pm)
Drive: North Shore
Hiring a car in Hawaii is affordable (from $25USD per day) and a great way to escape touristy Honolulu. Head to Oahu’s North Shore to see the Banzai Pipeline- a spot known for having waves as high as 20 feet!
Check out the sea sunbathing turtles at Laniakea Beach and take photos with the Shaka sign in Laie, a short drive from the North Shore.
The North Shore is a different experience from the hustle and bustle of the city, so take the time to go exploring!
Getting a surfing lesson is super easy in Hawaii. You can book a group or private lessons at Waikiki Beach, starting from $40USD. If you’re brave talk to some of the locals and see if they can give you a lesson. You can hire surfboards, paddleboard and floaties from Waikiki Beach as well. The waves are very mellow at Waikiki Beach so it’s perfect for beginners. There is nothing quite like feeling a wave underneath you and flowing along with it!
Group Lesson: $40 USD
Private Lesson: $70 USD