Alohaaaa – This trip to Hawaii was unreal! Though this trip was a gift for Ben, I had the best time of my life and learned so many new things about myself. I think what defines an amazing trip is if you had delicious food, met new friends and learned something new either a skill or about yourself.
If you’ve read my travel blogs before then you should be familiar with my style of travelling. I don’t like touristy shit… aka I didn’t go to Hanauma Bay lol. I’ll hit up the ‘MUST EATS’ but I love discovering a new hole in the wall! During this trip, I didn’t have enough time to hit up the North Shore and try any shrimp trucks and go to the Dole Plantation… etc etc, so if that’s what you’re expecting in this blog then you can leave now.
Let’s get this started!
Hawaii – Honolulu
What started as a mere thought turned into a huge surprise birthday present for my boyfriend. If you want to see how this whole surprise went down then click here.
This was both Ben and I’s first time visiting Hawaii and now we know why people love it there so much. No matter if you’re going on a family vacation, wedding, or just a short getaway it really hits the spot for all.
Our Airbnb was so cute (like I can’t even… it was adorable). It was SUPER clean and only a 5-10 min walk to Rainbow’s Drive-in, Ono Seafood, and Leonards (all the must eats). Click here to see the Airbnb I stayed in.
Flights: Flight Centre – $1300 for 2 RT
Cost: $1500 CAD Spending Money | $1000 USD Airbnb (split between 3)
Uber: $275 CAD the entire trip for the 3 of us
Duration of stay: 5 Days 4 Nights
Tipping: Anywhere from 18-20% – Keep in mind this is just me. I received great service at all the establishments.
Things you must eat while you’re in Hawaii: Poke, Loco Moco, Spam Musubi, and O-Nigiri’s. Hands down the best thing I had was the Half #1 and Half #7 from Ono Seafood. I even went to one of Michael Mina’s restaurants and had a $600 USD bill and I still choose Ono.
Ono Seafood (my favourite resto hands down the entire trip!) – Half #1/Half#7
Musubi Cafe Iyasume – Daikon + Spam or Avocado + Spam
Island Vintage Coffee – Acai Bowl
Waikiki Yokocho – Mentaiko O-Nigiri (LIFE CHANGING) – it’s on the first floor across Ross outside.
K&K BBQ – Loco Moco and Chicken Katsu
Yoshi– Yakiniku – After 9pm it’s Happy Hour so it’s half price on food I think. You also need a reso.
Strip Steak – Table side pineapple dessert + Seafood Tower
Yakitori Ando – You can get beef intestine here! Yakitori Omakase only $30 USD per person and BYOB. When you get here you might think you’re at the wrong spot because it’s in a sketchy ally, but you’re in the right place haha.
Restaurants I thought were meh.
Marukame Udon – Too many people and the quality was not there. I mean if you’re looking for cheap eats then it’s definitely a place you should hit. $3.50 USD for a bowl of plain udon … can’t complain.
Rainbow Drive-in – I know it’s a must eat, and the loco moco was good but K&K BBQ is better. I tried the Shoyu Chicken and it was good too, but the Pork Chop and Chicken Katsu were horrible at Rainbow.
The Pig & The Lady – I was super hyped to go here and it was only meh. so sad.
Waiola Shaved Ice – Good, but it’s just syrup on ice… meh.
Ahi Assasins – It was featured on Buzzfeed worth it and was not worth it. Their Lunatic flavour was great but overall the entire poke bowl was a salt bomb in my mouth.
You MUST go surfing! I am horrible at snowboarding and was definitely hesitant at first and I ended up catching 6 waves and not falling once. I’ve heard that Hawaii is one of the best places to learn to surf since the water is warm and clear.
Surfing – Aloha Beach Services
Their stand is right next to Duke’s on the beach and they take cash only but they are cheaper than the other ones on the beach. It cost $100 USD for a 1-hour surf lesson and $20 to rent a board. I would highly suggest taking a lesson. My instructor was Tommy.
Kayaking – Kailua Beach Adventures
Kailua beach was SO beautiful and also not crowded at all. I booked my kayaking excursion through Trip Advisor ($197 CAD). Our tour was so fun and the best thing is that you get a ride to and from Kailua Beach (30 mins from Waikiki). You also get lunch included (choose K&K BBQ and get the loco moco or chicken katsu) and after you’re done your tour and lunch you will still have about 2 hours to kill and they let you borrow most of their equipment free of charge! The entire excursion went from 7:30am – 3pm. The beach is only a 5 min walk from their store. Our guide was Tommy and he was awesome.
Overall I had an amazing time in Oahu and will definitely be back. We overall spent a lot of money but perhaps because it was our first time in Hawaii and we wanted to hit up as many spots as possible. We ate a few higher end meals but also had amazing low brow food, but at the end of the day, we loved the $10 Ono Seafood Poke bowl the most.
Let me know in the comments below about your experience in Hawaii and if I missed any MUST SEE/MUST EATS!