Friday, September 29, 2023

Unique Places To Stay In Oahu

Surfjack Hotel & Swim Club Oahu

Oahus Top 16 Unique Things to do in 2022 + Save on your trip

A stay at The Surfjack Hotel & Swim Club will have you feeling the vintage Hawaii vibes. Locally crafted art compliments the retro, mid-century design, and poolside activities, such as the silent disco, showcase the playful, quirky character of this boutique hotel, located just a couple of blocks from the beach. Feast on locally-sourced fare at on-site restaurant Mahina & Suns while enjoying live local music in the evenings.

Sustainability initiatives include: Complimentary reef-safe Raw Elements sunscreen dispenser, no plastic bottled water, no styrofoam or single-use plastic at Mahina & Suns and Chef Ed Kenneys local first, organic whenever possible, with Aloha always ethos.

Tips For Choosing The Best Areas To Stay In Oahu

While youre planning your family vacation to Oahu, I have a few tips for you. Keep these things in mind when looking for the best areas to stay in Oahu.

  • Think about what kind of accommodations youre looking for, and that will give you an idea of the best part of Oahu to stay in. Think about whether you want the amenities of hotels and resorts or the privacy of condos and villas.
  • If you dont want to rent a car, its best to stay in Honolulu or Waikiki. Then, you can rent an airport shuttle to and from, which is cheaper than a taxi or car service will be.
  • To get the most out of your trip, I suggest planning to take 5 to 7 days. You can take a 3-day trip to Oahu, but it may not give you the experience youre looking for. Especially with smaller children, I recommend taking a day to settle in. This time frame will also allow you to plan a variety of experiences, from planned outings and shopping trips to low-key beach days.

Polynesian Residences Waikiki Beach

Polynesian Residences Waikiki Beach : This 4-star property is centrally located on the Waikiki strip with quick access to everything from dining to shopping. A newly-renovated boutique hotel that offers amenities such as cozy rooms, a coffee maker, and lets not forget its 100% smoke-free. It has 65 rooms ranging from deluxe, suites, and studios with kitchenettes, and some rooms have a private lanai with a view of the main shopping street plus strong Wi-Fi.

Compared to Vive Hotel, the rooms here are quite spacious. Theres a yoga class by the pool every day and on top of that, the hotel also offers Lei-making classes every Thursday. Whats more to like? Guests can get exclusive discounts to selected restaurants and shops around the area so it helps to save your pocket money. And if you dont want to be in the crowd of Waikiki beach, Fort DeRussy Beach is just nearby where you can have your morning or evening stroll.

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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

Kahala Upscale Residential Area

9 Unique Places to Stay In Hawaii

Situated within Honolulu, this upscale residential area is known for its beaches and entryway to the Diamond Head Summit Trail, which concludes at the Diamond Head Crater.

Here guests can indulge in elite eats, shopping, local activities, as well as the dreamiest of views and best swimming thanks to the areas calm, clear waters.

Kahala is known for being the departure point for extensive all-day tours of the island, and visitors can experience the full extent of Oahus culture through food, scenery, and local history.

The Shangri La Museum of Islamic Art Culture & Design is not to be missed, with countless visitor reviews citing it the most poignant stop on their tour of Oahu.

The Kahala Mall contains over 50 shops, outlets, and department stores, with plenty of mouthwatering eateries showcasing the best of local and fusion fare.

Lovers of real estate ogling will definitely want to check out the areas sumptuous homes, and maybe even rent one for the duration of their stay.

There are plenty of hotels, resorts, and villa rentals besides, though prices can be extremely steep compared to other areas of the island.

While not the cheapest place to stay in Oahu, nothing compares to the lush splendor of Kahala.

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Best Airbnb In Kapolei: Kapolei Home

Located in one of Oahus best neighborhoods for a peaceful, relaxed stay, this home is ideal for people who really want to explore the island. It offers a kitchen, living room, and backyard with a pool as well as a TV with Amazon Prime, Chromecast, Disney+, Hulu, Netflix etc, parking, and Wi-Fi. Theres also a washer and dryer in the house so you can get your laundry done while youre there!

Waikiki Beach + Ala Moana

The south shore is home to the world-famous Waikiki Beach, and its a prime destination for restaurants, nightlife, and upscale shopping. Here youll find some of the best hotels on the island, including Halekulani, the Modern Honolulu, and The Royal Hawaiian. Enjoy a surf lesson, hike Diamond Head Crater, and book a catamaran cruise to watch the sunset.

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Things To See And Do In Ala Moana

  • Head into Waikiki to check out the nightlife, shops, and restaurants.
  • Wander the streets of Ala Moana looking for quirky indie stores.
  • Head over to Ala Moana Beach Park for a picnic or game of volleyball!
  • Check out whats on at the Hawaii Convention Center.
  • Spend some time in the Ala Moana Regional Park if you get tired of the city feel.
  • Head down to the beach at Magic Island for swimming, snorkeling, or surfing.
  • Check out local places to eat and drink like Moku Kitchen or the Honolulu Beerworks.

Hilton Hawaiian Village Beach Resort

10 Best Places to Visit in Hawaii – Travel Video

Hilton Hawaiian Village Beach Resort : In the heart of Waikiki, this high-end resort is right on the beach. It has luxury rooms overlooking the beach, a private lagoon, and free fireworks and dance performance show every Friday. Hilton is easily the most recognizable hotel on the Island and always delivers a great vacation.

Why I recommend this hotel: Kids can kayak, swim and snorkel with no worries in the private lagoon. There are no currents, waves, or sea creatures to worry about. The hotel is right on Waikiki Beach but also central to countless great restaurants and bars. Every Friday night guests of the hotel are treated to a traditional Hawaiian dance performance before the Hilton puts on an epic fireworks show. Its my favorite fireworks show in the world because you are so close to the fireworks you can feel the reverberations on the ground while you are sitting!

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Best Boutique Hotels On Oahu

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Are planning a vacation to Oahu this year and prefer to stay in a smaller, more intimate boutique hotel? You are reading the right article! Most hotels in Waikiki or Honolulu cost a fortune and are pretty impersonal with hundreds of rooms, massive pool areas, and huge buffet bars. Im going to share with you the top 12 boutique hotels on Oahu so you can make the most out of your stay in Honolulu.

Dont Forget Travel Insurance For Oahu

Dont leave yourself out on a whim. Getting good travel insurance really can be a lifesaver.

Its good to get lost sometimes, but its also good not to get too lost. There are people that want you home in one piece.

Theres one travel insurance provider The Broke Backpacker trusts for all his wildest shenanigans World Nomads!

And then let the shenanigans begin.

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Puu O Hoku Ranch Molokai

Gain an appreciation for aloha `aina when you spend time at Puu O Hoku Ranch on the east side of the island of Molokai.

Surrounded by 14,000 acres of protected land, this rustic property set on an organic and biodynamic farm and working ranch make it easy to unplug from the outside world and fully focus on whats in front of you: pristine ocean and forests, star-filled skies, and endemic and culturally significant plants and wildlife.

Spend some time wandering the black sand beach, snorkel at the nearby white sand beach, or take a refreshing dip in a waterfall. No need to leave this idyllic place for meals you can request local produce and fresh beef or venison delivered to your adorable Hawaiian ranch-style cottage.

Sustainability initiatives include: conservation efforts to keep the coastline plastic-free, protect the endangered Nene Goose, and grow native plants around the lodge and in Kanaloas Garden. Try these fun things to do in Molokai when you visit!

Where To Stay In Oahu

97 Free (or under $15) Things to Do on Oahu

Although not the biggest of the Hawaiian Islands, Oahu is the most densely populated and commercialized of them all. Home to the state capital, Honolulu, Oahu is awash with cultural, historical and natural gems to explore.

Oahu acts as the gateway to Hawaii and is a great starting point for travelers wanting to get to grips with this tropical state. Much like any other state capital, Honolulu is a big and bustling business hub. Should you escape the city limits, however, you will find a tropical paradise lying in wait.

Fun fact for you Oahu is just 44-miles long and 30-miles wide. This tiny island can be driven around in the space of one day, so remember that wherever you choose to stay you are never too far from Oahus best attractions and hidden gems.

Pearl Harbor, Hawaiis most iconic historical landmark, can be found on Oahu. This was the site of the surprise Japanese military airstrike in December 1941. No visit to Oahu would be complete without taking the time to learn about this tragedy.

Lets take a look at where to stay in Oahu so you can find a neighborhood to suit your travel style and Hawaiian bucket list itinerary.

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Where On Oahu Should You Stay

On some islands, like Kauai and the Big Island, travelers destination-hop within the island to avoid long drives between their accommodation and places of interest. For example, visitors might stay a few nights in Waimea to see Waimea Canyon before moving to Hanalei to be closer to the N Pali Coast, or Kona before Hilo, respectively.

But thanks to the well-developed system of highways on Oahu, travel times are reasonable, and theres no pressing logistical need to bounce between accommodations . That said, Oahu offers a variety of different hubs, so while there is no logistical reason to move, you may enjoy experiencing different sides of the same island.

Regardless, understanding the different regions is important, and below we break down what each one has to offer, and what kind of visitors they attract.

Waikiki Best Area To Stay In Oahu For Nightlife

Of course, youve heard of Waikiki. Its the most popular area for tourists and is filled with everything you could want on a beach holiday. Its a great choice when youre deciding where to stay for nightlife and for easy access to local beaches and great shopping. The whole area is based around the famous beach, with lots of shops, restaurants, and cafes packed close by.

If youre in Oahu for a short holiday, then this is probably where youll stay. The water is warm, the people friendly, the cocktail ubiquitous, and the neighborhood safe. Youll find a huge range of accommodation in Waikiki, from top quality luxury hotels to cheaper hostels and apartments. So, no matter your budget, you can spend some time in this area without breaking the bank.

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West Oahu And Ko Olina Great For Luxury Resorts

If you want a more chilled vibe, nice beaches, and a luxurious hotel, the West Side of the island is a nice choice for you. West Oahu is about 30 minutes drive from Honolulu and the airport, and there will find many beaches to be discovered on the West Coast.

Although there are accommodation options scattered the whole way along the coast, the main town where you will find luxurious hotels on the West Side is Ko Olina. Here you will see famous chain resorts such as Aulani Disney Resort, Four Seasons Resort, and . These resorts will keep you busy all day with their facilities like golfing, fitness centers, waterslide pools, and sunset cruises making them the perfect place to stay for couples.

What Makes Ko Olina special is four man-made magical lagoons with pristine white sand beaches. Even if you dont stay in the beachfront resorts here, you can still access the public areas to enjoy the amazing white sand beaches, or if you want some more activities, you can go snorkeling or join a boat tour. Make sure to book now if you want to stay here as these resorts and hotels certainly book fast

  • Go hiking at Kaena Point
  • Do water sports like SUP, canoeing, or snorkeling in the Ko Olina Lagoon
  • Go horseback riding

Best Vacation Rentals In Hawaii Kai Neighborhood

Where to Stay in Oahu: Waikiki vs Ko Olina vs The North Shore

Hawaii Kai is on the southeastern corner of Oahu, near Koko Head and Hanauma Bay. Still considered part of Honolulu, its far from city high rises and has its own commercial area that includes Costco, supermarkets, and many restaurants. The residential neighborhood is built around a man-made lagoon that gives it a unique feel.

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Kailua The Coolest Place To Stay In Oahu

Kailua is one of the coolest places to stay simply because its so beautiful. The name means two seas and describes the two lagoons that makeup Kailua Bay. The water in this bay is incredibly blue and beautiful, far outstripping some of the more popular beaches on the island. If you want to get away from the tourist traps and stay somewhere stunning, this is where you should be looking.

But that doesnt mean that Kailua is boring or not set up for tourists. In fact, this sleepy town does attract some tourists and the locals are always welcoming and accommodating.

Its the most adventurous travellers who end up in Kailua as its one of the best areas to stay in Oahu if you want to explore hidden areas on your own. And the food is amazing too. Kailua has become Oahus health and wellness hub and boasts restaurants and cafes that offer delicious fare that nourishes the body.

Best Hotel In Diamond Head: Diamond Head Beach Hotel

This hotel is in the best neighborhood in Oahu to stay in if you want to be close to the beach but away from the crowds. It offers laundry facilities, billiards equipment and all the essential amenities for a comfortable stay. The rooms are suitable for families or solo travelers. Its much cheaper than a beach house in Oahu, but doesnt skimp out on the luxuries, either.

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Ala Moana Staying Near Pearl Harbor Memorial

We now move west along the south shore from Waikiki to the neighboring district of Ala Moana. The area originally came to prominence as it was bought by the company responsible for building many of the harbors on the island, including the famous Pearl Harbor.

Pearl Harbor is even located just a short distance away, making this a great place to stay for anyone planning to visit the Pearl Harbor National Memorial during their trip. However, despite its fame, it is far from the main reason people choose to stay in Ala Moana.

For starters, you have Ala Moana Beach, the most popular beach in all of Hawaii. Protected by coral reefs just offshore, it provides calm waters perfect for weaker swimmers, as well as plenty of places to explore for snorkellers and scuba divers.

Its beautiful golden sands are the ideal choice for those looking for a relaxing day in the sun, while the quieter west of the beach lets you pop into the ocean to cool off without worrying about mobs of tourists.

The beach is surrounded by beautiful grassy areas, filled with palm and banyan trees, making it ideal for a picnic, BBQ, or some outdoor fun away from the sand.

Then, you also have the Ala Moana Center, a beautiful shopping destination with distinctly Hawaiian architecture. The Ala Moana Center is the largest outdoor shopping mall in not just the Hawaiian islands but the entire world, as well as the most valuable in the entire United States.

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