Sunday, September 17, 2023

Is It Better To Stay In Honolulu Or Waikiki

Waikiki Or North Shore

Where to Stay in Waikiki, Hawaii | A Tour of The Royal Hawaiian (our favorite on Oahu)

Hi everyone. My husband and I are coming to Hawaii for our honeymoon from mid-end of October. We have the first 6 days on Kauai and our last 5 days on Oahu. I am struggling with where to stay: Waikiki or the North Shore. Partially between the Hyatt Place in Waikiki or the Turtle Bay Resort which would be our “splurge”. Both offer breakfasts . I’m not worried about the $$ aspect, but more of best place to stay.

We will have a car so we will be driving the whole island anyways sight-seeing. Is the north shore ok for swimming at the end of October?

Do we have to be at pearl harbour for 7am, or would it be ok to drive to one of the days from the north?

Any advice is welcomed!!

North Shore, I would just stay in Kauai.

You need to reserve your PH tickets on in advance and then you will have a specific time you need to be there.


Since the duplicate post, to which I replied in the Hawai`i Forum was closed, I’ll Paste it here on the O`ahu Forum :

We visit O`ahu more than any other Island, and often split our stays between Waikiki and TBR .

We love the golf at TBR, and the quiet solitude, either before, or after a stay in Waikiki. At TBR, we have gotten one of the King Cottages, but not sure if they have refurbished those, as they have the hotel rooms? Lovely, quiet, but with plenty of activities for almost anyone.

For a “counter-point” to Kaua`i, I would be most tempted to explore Waikiki, while on O`ahu, and also the international city of Honolulu.


Best Hostel In Waikiki: The Beach Waikiki Boutique Hostel By Ih

This is our favourite hostel in Honolulu because of its excellent location close to the beach, bars and the best clubs in Honolulu. They provide guests with air-conditioned rooms and comfortable common spaces. Theres also a free continental breakfast, free wifi, and free pizza nights on the rooftop lounge.

Whats The Difference Between Oahu Honolulu And Waikiki

Some may be confused as to the difference between Oahu, Honolulu and Waikiki. This may be especially true for first time visitors to Hawaii. Apparently, there must be something to this. This is because you can see many questions on this subject on travel websites and blogs. Some even confuse Oahu with the Big Island of Hawaii. Were not sure why there is this confusion, but it is there. So, the purpose of this blog is to clear up these areas of confusion.

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Where To Stay In Honolulu: Mid

Hip hotel, The Surfjack Hotel & Swim Club has a 1960s beach-bum vibe with mid-century modern décor and a signature courtyard pool with “Wish You Were Here” written on the bottom. Rooms and suites are done up in surfer style. Mahina & Sun’s restaurant is off the courtyard, and an Olive & Oliver boutique with excellent coffee is right off the lobby. It’s a short walk to the beach.

Also a few blocks from the beach and shopping, Vive Hotel Waikiki is a boutique stay combining excellent value and an island welcome, serving guests chilled pineapple juice on arrival. Complimentary continental breakfast is available in the Living Room, where you can also chill during the day with a book from the Recycled Reads Library. Library and music-themed suites offer a modern-glam option.

Next door to the recently renovated dining and shopping hub, International Market Place, on Kalakaua Avenue, Waikiki Beachcomber by Outrigger is close to the beach and entertainment options, including the Royal Hawaiian Center. The nightly “The Magic of Polynesia” show at the hotel is a perennial hit with guests.

Charming Studio Near Kahala Beach

Best Hotel Pools in Oahu

2 guests · 1 bedroom · 1 bed · 1 bath

This studio apartment near Kahala Beach is a spacious and beautiful accommodation just 10 minute walk to the beach and perfect for couples who want to live like locals during their stay. This clean and well-maintained studio is on the same property as the owners home but its a separate structure giving guests their privacy.

Location: Kahala, 10 minute walk to the beach

Cost: $$$

  • Free parking

Guests Say:

The space was so well appointed, the garden was divine, the hosts were so gracious, and the neighborhood and location were perfect. | The location was so convenient to everywhere I needed to go, plus being in an upscale, safe neighborhood near a peaceful beach. | The owners are very hospitable and helpful. 5 stars all the way!

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Stunning Ocean View Nicely Renovated Clean And Modern

Loved waking up to the ocean view at the Prince! We also got amazing sleep thanks to the comfortable bed and pillows.

Loved that the location was very quiet and only steps away to Ala Moana Mall, Magic Island and theres a great sushi restaurant within the hotel. Yes, you have to take a 8 min Uber into the Waikiki strip area but we didnt mind at all.

The staff was friendly, the rooms were clean and spacious. Would definitely stay at the Prince again as we thought it was amazing value based on water view, location, size of room and the renovation.

Alice R

Cons For Staying On The North Shore

Traffic Jams: The weekend visitors clog the North Shore roads. The main drag is Kamehameha Highway and it can become bumper-to-bumper. You have to drive it to get anywhere so avoid the weekend. Also, the frequent storms cause down trees and other issues that can slow your travel.

Fewer Places to Stay: For resorts, the Turtle Bay Resort is your only option. It is a good option but that is the only resort on the North Shore. You can stay at boutique hotels or vacation rentals.

Its a Long Drive: If you are coming for a day-trip from Waikiki then it is a long drive there and back. That is why staying on the North Shore is your best option. The North Shore is a long way from Honolulu and other parts of the island so you may feel isolated or cut-off from exploring more of Oahu.

Winter White Water: During the winter you get big waves so snorkeling visibility is low and dangerous. You might not have many ocean spots where its safe to get in the water.

Big waves at Oahus Sharks Cove snorkeling spot during a winter swell.

Weather is Dicey: As the North Shore is on the windward side of the island, the weather is less predictable. It may rain all day or just a few showers. The summer is the best time to stay on the North Shore in regard to weather.

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Imperial Hawaii Resort At Waikiki

Only moments away from Waikiki Beach, Imperial Hawaii Resort at Waikiki offers easy access to many top spots. Among them are the Royal Hawaiian Shopping Center and International Marketplace. If you have an active lifestyle, you might want to try windsurfing, canoeing, diving, or snorkeling near the hotel. That said, you can also have a 2-hour semi-private surfing lesson to better your surfing skill. Experience the thrill of catching a wave and discover the Hawaiian surf culture.

This accommodation offers many types of suites to choose from. Each of them comes with a kitchen, a microwave, a toaster, and a coffee machine for the perfect cooking experience. You can save some money by cooking by yourself too. Other amenities you can find are a flat-screen TV, free Wi-Fi, city view, a safety deposit box, and a private bathroom.

Like the best hotels in Honolulu, Hawaii, guests will have access to the 24-hour front desk, on-site ATMs, business center, mini market, fitness center, and wellness area. Meanwhile, private parking and airport transport are available at a surcharge.s

Waikiki Plus Other Resort Areas

Where to Stay in Oahu, Hawaii | Stay in the Best Resort Areas of Ko Olina, Waikiki, & North Shore

Are you thinking about where to stay in Oahu? This article will review the areas to find the best accommodations in Oahu.

Every year, nearly 5 million visitors choose Oahu out of the other Hawaiian islands. Most visitors flock to the world-famous Waikiki area. Their visitors can find most accommodations sprawling in the area. Nearly half of the rooms in Hawaii, including 90% + of all rooms in Oahu, are in Waikiki. Honolulu, the state’s capital, hosts the island’s central tourist hub, Waikiki. Oahu can find it all, from long-term vacation rentals to short-term budget-friendly hotels to the best hostels.

Waikiki is a large city located beachfront of the Pacific Ocean. Go there and discover the area’s lively and accessible social regions that offer the widest variety of lodging choices. Waikiki holds most hotels and resorts in Oahu. Their options vary to fit the desires of backpackers in Oahu, luxury seekers, people on a shoestring budget, and extreme beach lovers like the beach bums of Kailua. Thus, for all those who wonder “where should I stay in Oahu,” consider:

  • Budget-friendly hotels
  • The cheapest hostels in Hawaii
  • Backpackers inns in Oahu

These different accommodations include the world’s premier hotel brands:

  • Hilton
  • Hyatt.

However, consider going beyond Waikiki& Honolulu for a set of other, beautiful accommodations. These areas include:

  • South Oahu
  • Leeward Waianae
  • North Shore

Windward East

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Things To See And Do In Waikiki

Dine on delicious barbecue at Me B-B-Q.

Excite your senses with fresh, spicy and flavourful food at Oahu Mexican Grill .

Get up close and personal with your favourite sea creatures at the Waikiki Aquarium.

Hike up the Diamond Head Crater and enjoy the view.

Hit up all of Waikikis most famous spots by walking the Waikiki Historic Trail.

Indulge at Marukame Udon Waikiki.

Learn to play the ukulele at the Royal Hawaiian Center.

Satisfy your sweet tooth at Volcano Shakes & Sandwiches.

See your favourite animals, birds and reptiles at the Honolulu Zoo.

Take a stroll through lush Kapiolani Park.

Staying On The North Shore

Including Haleiwa to Turtle Bay

You’ll eventually come to Oahu’s famous north shore when you drive north out of Honolulu. From Haleiwa to Turtle Bay and onward to Laie, Oahu locals refer to this area as “the country.”

No big box stores or fancy restaurants exist here. Instead, you will find plenty of beautiful beaches and a variety of quaint surfing towns. Accommodations in North Shore span from vacation rentals to North Shore camping, North Shore hostels, or B& B’s.

Why Should You Stay in the North Shore, Including Haleiwa and Turtle Bay?

The North Shore is a mecca for beachgoers and others who enjoy aquatic activities. It’s known for its genuine Hawaiian culture and an easygoing, laid-back attitude. With world-class surfing, an endless number of beaches to explore, and fantastic dining, this is the perfect spot for anyone looking for fun in the sun. Staying in Turtle Bay provides a taste of the North Shore’s tropical nature with its beautiful beaches and sprawling mountains.

Our Recommended Lodgings to Stay in the North Shore, Including Haleiwa and Turtle Bay

The Drawbacks of Staying in North Shore Including Haleiwa and Turtle Bay

There’s no public transportation in Haleiwa, so you’ll have to rely on rentals or taxis. The problem is that traffic can get congested around the North Shore. This area, especially Turtle Bay, is pretty quiet and low-key.

The Pros and Cons of Staying in the North Shore Including Haleiwa and Turtle Bay

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Best For Romance: The New Otani Kaimana Beach Hotel

Courtesy of The New Otani Kaimana Beach Hotel

Technically a half-mile off Waikiki Beach, on the other side of the Waikiki Aquarium and Kapiolani Park, the intimate New Otani Kaimana Beach Hotel sits on its own quiet stretch of sand. It feels worlds away from the chaos of Waikiki Beach proper, which makes for a great romantic retreat. The hotels 118 rooms range from ocean- or Diamond Headview standard rooms to airy suites, all with beautifully updated decor that reflects the colors of the sea and lush Hawaiian landscape. There are three dining options here: the Hau Tree Lanai, an outdoor steak and seafood restaurant the Miyako Japanese Restaurant and the Sunset Lanai Lounge, a cocktail bar that serves light fare and has live entertainment in the evenings from Thursday to Sunday. Since it is more removed from Waikiki Beach, youll have to take a car into town, but if its a romantic getaway youre looking for, the distance might suit you just fine.

Who Would Like The North Shore

Hilton Hawaiian Village Waikiki Beach Resort, Oahu, Hawaii ...

North Shore is where you go to get your hands dirty on a Hawaii vacation. Folks who like to hike, surf, snorkel, eat at food trucks, stop at fresh-fruit stands, and explore small towns will enjoy the North Shore.

Families will be able to keep their children entertained with shave ice, beaches, bodyboarding, cliff jumping, horseback riding, sea turtles on beaches, and waterfall hikes. Older children will enjoy the activities more.

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Waikiki Where To Stay In Honolulu On A Budget

Waikiki is one of the most famous places to stay in Hawaii. It is the touristic centre of the state and attracts surfers and sunbathers thanks to its white-sand beaches and shimmering turquoise waters. Youll also find a great selection of restaurants, shops and bars, as well as plenty of things to see and do.

Located near the centre of the city, Waikiki is our top recommendation for where to stay in Honolulu for one night, or if youre on a budget because it boasts the highest concentration of hostels on the island. From lively and social to laid-back and relaxed, no matter what your style, theres a perfect hostel for you in Waikiki.

Best Airbnb In Honolulu: Incredible But Cheap Condo

Take your shoes off! Apart from this typical Hawaiian tradition, there is nothing else that could go wrong if you book this Airbnb. Perfect for first-time travellers, youll have everything you need or want to see just moments away. As in most condos, youll have access to all onsite-amenities. Your apartment is exceptionally clean, with an amazing view of the city no doubt that youll enjoy it.

If this apartment is booked, no worries! There are plenty more Airbnbs in Honolulu to check out.

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Where To Stay In Oahu For Your Perfect Hawaiian Getaway

Fancy a tropical getaway to Hawaii and need to know where to stay in Oahu?

Great, because Im here to answer just that!

But first, lets talk a bit about Oahu.

Oahu is Hawaiis most visited island. Oahu is where Honolulu, the capital of Hawaii, is located. Waikiki, a beach suburb of Honolulu, is the most popular tourist spot in all of Hawaii!

Waikiki is undoubtedly where most tourists to Oahu end up staying. In fact, my husband, Harrison, and I stayed in Waikiki on our honeymoon!

But there are definitely some other places worth checking out too! Though we loved our honeymoon, we decided to try a new area on our most recent Oahu trip and were pleasantly surprised. Ill get more into that later.

Also, you can check out my video of our trip to Oahu below!

Oahu is divided into five main areas:

  • the North Shore
  • the Windward Coast on the east
  • the Leeward Coast on the west
  • the South
  • and the Central area.

In this guide, well look at the best places to stay in Oahu and some of the best hotels in Oahu!

Best For Nightlife: The Modern Honolulu

Waikiki Hotels: 7 Things to Know Before Booking a Hotel in Waikiki, Hawaii

Courtesy of The Modern Honolulu

Waikiki Beach might not be Miami Beach when it comes to nightlife, but it still has a number of clubs catering to the out-all-night crowd, most notably Addiction at The Modern Honolulu. Set on the far western end of the beach it actually sits on a marina rather than sand the 353-room independent hotel is surprisingly zen-like in terms of its bar. Most spaces, including the rooms, are decorated in an all-white minimalist style with warm wood details spread throughout. There are some cheeky accents, though, like the broken surfboard sculpture behind the front desk.

Other than Addiction, guests can mingle at the Grove Restaurant and Bar, the Study Lounge a speakeasy sneakily tucked away behind a bookshelf, and the Modern Players Club a poolside bar that shows live sports on TV and has a daily happy hour. When guests have had enough of the partying, they can relax at the Lather Spa or retreat to their serene rooms.

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Getting From Honolulu Airport To Waikiki By Shuttle

If youre looking to take advantage of a shuttle from HNL to Waikiki, there are several options.

Fly Shuttle offers a shuttle from Honolulu airport to Waikiki and back. They are a top-rated airport transportation service and their rides start at $17.80 for one-way.

Go Waikiki Shuttle offers round-trip rides and can be upgraded to include a traditional airport greeting with a Hawaiian flower lei. These rides begin at $18 per person.

SpeediShuttle offers one-way rides from the airport for $16 per person if traveling with two people. If you book a round trip ride, SheediShuttle offers a discount for your return shuttle ride.

If youre traveling with a larger group, consider Jet-A Limo. These private shuttles vary in price from $50 to $150 per group.

The company will track your flight and make changes to your pick-up time accordingly which alleviates the worry if you miss a connection or a flight is delayed.

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