Stylish Travel Guide: Oahu, Hawaii

Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Growing up, my family and I traveled to Hawaii pretty frequently (so thankful for my hardworking parents) and even as an adult, its probably one of my favorite places to travel too. I think a lot of that has to do with the fact that it's a super easy flight from SoCal, under 5 hours usually! This year we stayed on the island of Oahu, specifically in Waikiki. You might remember last summer I was lucky enough to go to the same place with my two girlfriends and this year it was with my mom and dad!  This was my 4th time to this island but these past two trips were definitely my most memorable. My family has a timeshare investment with Hilton and so we got to stay (again) at Hilton Hawaiian Village
Now I will be frank, if you are going with your significant other or girlfriends, this is probably not the most ideal place to stay mainly because it's obviously kid and family friendly. If this doesn't bother you, then definitely stay here. You basically never have to leave the property because they have everything! This resort is set on 22 acres with direct beach access, 2 oceanfront towers, 2 other towers, 5 pools, 20 restaurants and bars, a spa and literally so much more. As I said before, you truly never have to leave the property. We were lucky enough to stay in the newest tower, the Grand Islander which was only opened in late 2017. Last year we stayed in another tower which I felt was far from everything, it was the end most tower, and this year we were right in the middle of everything. 

Last year we definitely did more activities and spent more time away from the hotel, but this year we stayed mostly on the property except for a few dinners we ventured off the property and into the main part of Waikiki. There is so much to do in Hawaii, it can sometimes be a bit overwhelming but I've broken down a few things that I have done in the past and some restaurants I really loved. I don't want to write a novel, so I will keep it short and sweet, well at least the rest of this post. 
I know these photos aren't from our hotel, but this is one of the oldest hotels in Waikiki and its pink, so its a photo must! It's also a frequent wedding venue as well :)
Restaurants:

Hula Grill - This is a pretty famous spot as they have locations all over Hawaii, but its probably one of the best meals we had the entire trip. Their fish is fresh and they have a killer Happy Hour menu. It's also ocean front so you get a gorgeous view as you dine!

Duke's - If you live in SoCal, this is not new to you, but in Hawaii its a whole different scene. I personally hate Dukes here in California but for some reason the Hawaii location is amazing. They almost always have a live band and the menu is super diverse with options for everyone. In Oahu, its downstairs from Hula Grill and both are located inside the Outrigger Hotel. 

Hideout at the Laylow Hotel- This place I ventured too last year and it was a hidden gem. It has a rooftop deck but sadly no ocean view and its two blocks in from the ocean. The drinks and apps reminded me of home but with a Hawaiian touch. Happy Hour is a must here! 
Activities: 

The most obvious things to do here are Pearl Harbor, the North Shore, hike Diamond Head, surfing etc. Instead of sharing those, which I have done, I wanted to share a few things we did last year that were different, in my opinion.

Hanauma Bay: I'll start with if you are not a snorkeler, this may not be for you. The girls and I took a city bus here as its about 25 minutes from Waikiki for some of Hawaii's best snorkeling (I've snorkeled a bunch of places in Hawaii, and this was by far one of my favorites. A little background: this state park was formed within a volcanic cone and in simpler terms is it is a marine ecosystem. It was previously neglected and in 1990, the city took over it and preserved it and now it's a state park.  You hike up this hill where you find this curved bay with some of the bluest water ever and amazing fish. I'll admit as you snorkel, its super shallow so it's easy to brush the reef with your stomach and they warn you not to step on it which freaked me out a bit, but once you get over that it's amazing! 

Dole Plantation: I didn't do this the past two times I went but I did do this when I was younger and I remember loving it. This is basically the ultimate pineapple experience and I will leave it at that! 

Another great activity, which I did frequently, is a buy a $5 raft at the ABC Store and get it inflated and float the day away in the ocean. This was what I did for most of my most recent trip :) When I wasn't in the water, I was relaxing with a pina colada in hand, which for me is the most relaxing! Sadly we forgot to snap a photo of me on my raft, but you get the idea! 
As you can see, Hawaii is a great option for a quick beach vacay' and if you can find the right deal, it can be a pretty budget friendly trip. Things are obviously a bit more expensive Hawaii but it's worth it! Hope this helps y'all with ideas for future trips. Hope everyone is having a great week!

So until next time... Live Stylishly



2 comments

  1. Wow! Your trip to Hawaii really looks amazing and relaxing! I have been wanting to go all Summer but it didn't work out! Glad you had a great time there!

    xo, Chloe // https://funinthecloset.com/nordgreen-minimalist-watch/

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  2. How fun! I've been to Oahu once before and currently planning a trip for February! I can't wait to go back to Hula Grill and check out The Laylow. Do you have more Oahu travel guides? I'd love to read more about where to stay, cheap activites, etc :)

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