Waikiki showed me a side of Hawaii that I’d never seen before. It has the charm and beauty of the island state, but also the bustle of a major city. I spent several days in the Honolulu neighborhood for a family wedding and had such a great time.
High-end hotels line the Waikiki beach and department stores and restaurants fill the inland area. We ended up staying at the budget-friendly Stay Hotel for a few days and then moved to the historic Moana Surfrider hotel for the last few. We did this to save money but still get the luxurious Waikiki experience.
The beaches in Waikiki are soft and sandy and the waves attract tons of surfers. The beaches can be pretty crowded at times but still are lovely. We spent several days just relaxing on the beach and swimming in the water – which was the perfect temperature, even though our trip was in October! We did a catamaran ride which was a fun and surprisingly affordable way to spend an afternoon.
The shopping is walking distance from the resorts and includes many of the major department stores. There are also lots of restaurants around. Some of our favorite places that we ate at are Duke’s, Roy’s, and Maui Brewing Co.
Another highlight of our trip was our hike to Manoa Falls. The trail was not too challenging and took you through a beautiful rainforest. The waterfall at the top is gorgeous and makes for a great photo opt. We took an Uber there, and it only took about 20 minutes.
Watch my YouTube vlog of my trip here!