Despite Hawaii's prodigious consumption of Spam products, most of the restaurants in Honolulu feature dishes that don't include canned ham. In fact, the city hosts numerous award-winning and celebrated places to eat, so try one of these favorite destinations during your next visit.
12th Ave Grill
Named Restaurant of the Year and Best Gourmet Comfort Food by Honolulu magazine in 2015, the 12th Ave Grill (1120 12th Ave) features a diverse menu that includes pork chops, steaks, seafood, lamb shank, and other delicious delicacies. Don't miss their potato pancakes or their flourless chocolate cake. Entrees range in price from $25-$36, and the restaurant offers an impressive wine list.
Pint + Jigger
If you're in the mood for a juicy burger, a plate of fries, and a game on the television, visit Pint + Jigger (1936 S. King Street) for a relaxing evening in Honolulu. They flavor their stout burger and the cheese that goes on it with beer to create a flavorful combination. Nothing on the menu exceeds $15, so you don't have to worry about breaking the bank. Just remember that minors can only enter the establishment until 8 p.m.
A healthy breakfast puts you in the perfect frame of mind for an enjoyable day in Honolulu. Start your morning right at Bogart's Cafe (3045 Monsarrat Ave., Ste. 3), a hole-in-the-wall establishment that serves fresh produce, amazing coffee, and a few indulgent pastries. Fuel up on fruits and meats, then hit the road for an unforgettable day at the beach.
Lei Lei's Bar and Grill
With a view of the North Shore and a family-friendly environment, Lei Lei's Bar and Grill (57-049 Kuilima Dr.) provides the ideal Hawaiian experience. You might need reservations to enjoy dinner at this establishment, but it's worth the extra planning. Try the Ahi Poke, the restaurant's signature dish, and a fruity cocktail. The open-air venue allows you to enjoy the sweet smell of the nearby ocean as you languish over a delicious meal.
Local favorite Cafe Haleiwa (66-456 Kamehameha Hwy) serves both breakfast and dinner, but the latter meal is your best bet. Good prices combined with a laid back atmosphere make this cafe a solid choice, especially if you're tired after surfing the waves all day. The dinner menu changes from week to week, so it's always a surprise to discover which new dishes have appeared.
Wailana Coffee House
The Wailana Coffee House (1860 Ala Moana Blvd.) is open all night, so if you find yourself hungry after an evening of bar-hopping, you don't have to make do with a drive-thru meal. In addition to the coffee, you'll also appreciate the wide selection of menu items, from bottomless pancakes to salad bar fixings. If you want to beat the crowds, visit on Sunday mornings or late at night. Honolulu cuisine rarely disappoints, so honor your brave side and try as many restaurants and eateries as possible. From Asian fusion to homestyle gourmet, you'll find every genre and origin of food you can think of.
From crystal-clear water to pristine sand, Honolulu, Hawaii, offers more than enough beaches to keep you entertained while on vacation. Curious about what else Honolulu has to offer? During your next trip, don't miss these 10 intriguing activities in Hawaii's capital city.
For $12 per person, browse fresh and saltwater aquariums brimming with fish, coral, turtles, frogs, sharks, and other seafaring creatures at the Waikiki Aquarium. Don't miss the Hawaiian monk seal habitat, where you can watch this marine mammal swim languidly through his manmade lagoon.
Make it an animal-focused day in Honolulu with a trip to the local zoo. Several dozen mammals, reptiles, and birds make this venue their home. Admission costs $14 for adults and $6 for children (military discounts apply).
Hanauma Bay State Park
Just a few minutes east of Honolulu you'll find Hanauma Bay State Park, a tropical paradise known for its sea turtles and clear, blue-green waters. The park closes on Tuesdays, but every other day of the week guests can visit for snorkeling, diving, and swimming. The entry fee costs only $7.50 per person, with extra fees for tours and snorkeling equipment rentals.
USS Arizona Memorial
The USS Arizona Memorial whisks visitors back in time to that fateful day at Pearl Harbor. There is no cost for admission, but you'll need to reserve your free ticket ahead of time. Keep in mind that the venue does not permit purses or bags of any kind.
The crash of water as it cascades down the smooth surface of the rocks and into the pool below calms your thoughts and drowns out the worries of the day. Visit this Honolulu treat to hike through the Manoa wilderness. Parking costs $5.
Foster Botanical Garden
Nestled amid the hustle and bustle of downtown Honolulu, Foster Botanical Garden offers 14 acres of flowers, trees, and shrubs, most of which are indigenous to Hawaii. For nonresidents, admission costs $5. The Koko Crater Botanical Garden in Honolulu also deserves a visit.
This volcanic rock formation sprays water upwards of 30 feet when the tide rolls in. Visit this top tourist destination, then cast your gaze farther out into the surf because you might see whales frolicking in the ocean.
Hawaii State Art Museum
View iconic works of art at the Hawaii State Art Museum, which is on the second floor of the Capitol District Building on South Hotel Street. Make sure to visit the sculpture garden during your visit.
Wet 'n' Wild Hawaii
If you're tired of the sand between your toes, take advantage of the watery rides at Wet 'n' Wild Hawaii water park. Float down the lazy river, or enjoy a soft drink under a colorful umbrella. Tickets cost $47.99 per adult and $37.99 for kids under 42 inches.
Travel 20 minutes east of Honolulu to climb the Haiku stairs. The gorgeous mountain views on either side of the walkway make the almost 4,000 stairs worth the inevitable muscle aches.
At least a few of the above attractions belong on the itinerary for your next Honolulu vacation.
Three days might seem to provide insufficient time to explore a city as vibrant and culture-rich as Honolulu, but with preparation and organization, you'll pack plenty of excitement into 72 hours. Divide your time between historical sites, beaches, restaurants, and nightlife venues.
Honolulu in the Morning
Start one of your Honolulu mornings with an invigorating hike up to the tuff cone at Diamond Head. The observation deck atop this iconic volcano provides stunning views of the city and surrounding beaches. Pack a few bottles of water and a couple snacks for the two-hour hike.
Another profound and enlightening morning adventure lies at Pearl Harbor, one of the most-visited historic sites in the United States. If you want to limit your trip to just a few hours, focus on the two-hour guided tour of the USS Missouri, then browse the Pacific Aviation Museum at your leisure. Admission costs $25 for adults and $12 for children.
If you're craving access to nature, spend your third morning at the Lyon Arboretum, which features nearly 200 acres of tropical plants in a rainforest setting. Don't miss the on-site Manoa Falls, either, where visitors can cool off and take photographs.
Honolulu in the Afternoon
The latter part of the day calls for a trip to the beach. Waikiki offers the most scenic (and crowded) beach in Honolulu, but if you'd rather enjoy the waves without the company, check out nearby Kahala Beach. It's not as popular among the tourists, especially during the week, so you'll enjoy more privacy.
Architecture buffs appreciate the abundance of impressive buildings in Honolulu. The Kawaiahaʻo Church, for example, was built in 1842 and features a bell tower that still announces the time at the top of every hour. The Bishop Museum, which is dedicated to Hawaiian artifacts, costs $19.95 per adult for admission, and the royal majesty of the Iolani Palace also beckons visitors and costs $14.95 per adult for self-guided tours.
If you've still got time, consider taking a snorkeling or SCUBA diving class. Explore the ocean's ecosystem below the surface of the water with outfitters like Kaimana Divers, which charges $145 per person for an introduction class.
Honolulu at Night
The city offers numerous bars and clubs for after-hours entertainment. You'll find the greatest concentration of venues at Waikiki, along the southeastern coast of the island, where some of the high-end hotels offer live music and on-site bars. Alternatively, take in a vaudeville production or musical adaptation at the historic Hawaii Theatre Center.
Hawaii at Mealtimes
Enjoy authentic Hawaiian ocean-caught fare at Ono Hawaiian Seafood or take in the eclectic decor at Uncle Bo's Pupu Bar & Grill for seafood, steak, and other familiar delicacies. Duke's Waikiki on Kalakaua Avenue offers a quintessential Hawaiian experience with its beachfront location and indulgent breakfast buffet, and Ray's Cafe on North King Street provides a budget-friendly dining option in a diner-style establishment.
From the crystal-clear waters that lap Waikiki's beaches to the historical downtown district, Honolulu spoils tourists with an abundant choice of attractions and destinations. Plan each day of your trip to wring the most out of every minute you spend on the island.
Ever since Elvis spent a few movies galavanting around this beautiful, mysterious area known as Hawaii - the little islands that could have been thrust into the public consciousness as rarified air. This exotic location, full of rare flora and fauna, has been a staple of American vacation desire for decades.
The Hawaiian islands, due to their unconvential attributes, inspire art & culture. Many bloggers have set up shop somewhere on the islands, or visit frequently, and document their efforts. There were many talented writers to choose from, but here we've presented our list of the top Hawaii-based bloggers to follow:
A Maui Blog: Liza knows Maui like the back of her hand and luckily she's made a place to share her stories of the island with all of us! Get the scoop on this island from a local perspective.
A Splash of Aloha: Traveling to Hawaii every year since 2009, Su-Lynn is definitely an expert on getting to and getting around the islands. Check out her blog if you're looking for trip planning tips and logistical information before your Hawaiian vacation.
Damon Tucker: Hawaii News & Information: For breaking news and information about Hawaii, follow Damon Tucker's blog. Get the scoop on what's happening from a local perspective before you travel!
Exploration Hawaii: What started as a site centered around the best hiking and adventuring in the great state of Hawaii has now grown into a full on blog about all things island life! Events, photography, food - this site has a little bit of everything for travelers looking to discover what's hot right now on all of Hawaii's islands.
Frolic Hawaii: Food, events, style -- this blog has it all! Frolic Hawaii is a one-stop-shop for island information.
Go Visit Hawaii: This blog is as close as you can get to having a personal Hawaii tour guide. It even has categories for each separate island as well as featured deals to share!
Hawaii Blog: Ryan, a "self-professed life-long geek", has created a space on Hawaii Blog where information about science, technology, media, and Hawaii all converge. If you're looking to keep up on the latest tech innovations as it relates to the islands, Ryan's blog is for you.
Hawaii Mom Blog: If you're trying to plan a trip to Hawaii without leaving the kids behind, have a look at Hawaii Mom Blog for tips on where to go and what to do.
Hawaii Nightlife Diaries: Honolulu's nightlife has a steady beat and Christa, author of Honolulu's Nightlife Diaries, is here to prove it. Follow her blog for updates on music and party events in Hawaii's capital city.
Sarahonthe808: Looking for some visuals to get you excited about traveling to the islands? Hawaii native Sarah has all of the beautiful inspiration you need here on her photo blog featuring galleries of her home state and beyond.
Taste of Hawaii: Taste of Hawaii features one family's food and travel experiences in Hawaii and beyond. Lots of photos accompany the reviews so that you can better experience the scene!
The Tasty Island: Foodies rejoice: Hawaii is a great destination for eating as well as tanning! The Tasty Island author Pomai takes readers through great dishes and eating destinations throughout the state.
Trailblazer Hawaii: If there's one thing that Hawaii is known for, it's beautiful landscapes to explore. Trailblazer Hawaii gives you everything you need to know about the island's best spots for outdoor adventure.
Planning a big trip with your sweetie for Valentine's Day? Consider visiting gorgeous Honolulu, Hawaii to connect and pamper yourselves. With temperatures at a balmy 80 degrees on average in February, escape to Honolulu for sun, sand, and love. With world class spas and beaches in the area, you'll have plenty of time to relax together, as well as dining at some of Hawaii's premiere restaurants.
For the sporty couple, there are endless water activities like surfing, scuba diving, and para sailing. Also there is ample hiking and biking opportunities. Foodies will love to spoon feed their spouse the native fare while sipping cocktails from a coconut with a large umbrella! Dance the night away together at one of Honolulu's hot spots and a couples massage will bring you closer than ever.
Hawaii - the westernmost U.S. state comprised of eight islands in the heart of the Pacific Ocean. Technically, Hawaii is also the tallest mountain in the world as it has been formed by a geothermal “hotspot” that has been drifting over hundreds of millions of years which has created each of these islands. When you factor in the history of the islands and unique culture that they offer, this isn’t something you will find anywhere else in the U.S. or the world. Located on the island of Oahu, Honolulu is Hawaii’s capital and serves as the gateway to this exotic area, so let’s take a look at why it is named as FlipKey’s best U.S. Vacation destination.
For starters, there is never a bad time to visit Honolulu, as the weather always hovers between 75 and 85 degrees and there are authentic Hawaiian Festivals that take place year-round. Historic landmarks can be found throughout the city with many tributes to the WWII era and Pearl Harbor. These famous landmarks include the U.S.S. Arizona, U.S.S. Missouri, Pacific Aviation Museum, and National Cemetery of the Pacific.
Travelers who are looking for a more active array of shopping and nightlife will be delighted to check out dozens of shops, including the Ala Moana Center, the DFS Galleria, and the Royal Hawaiian Center. These locations blend large corporate stores with smaller outlets that offer unique gifts which you can only find in Hawaii. In particular, the Ala Moana Center is one of the country’s largest outdoor shopping malls and includes an amphitheater where festivals are held year-round.
For fans of sports and the outdoors, be sure to check out Waikiki. Renowned for its famous beaches, this is the perfect Honolulu neighborhood to visit to take a surfing lesson, walk along the Waikiki Historical Trail or check out the volcanic landscapes of Diamond Head. Waikiki is also perfect for families to spend a day visiting the Waikiki Zoo and Waikiki Aquarium.
This article only touches on the variety of fun events that Honolulu has to offer. Whether you are traveling on business by yourself, are with a group of friends, or are on a family vacation, this city will have something amazing to offer you the next time you visit!
The University of Hawaii - Manoa was recently named to FlipKey's 2014 list of Top Campuses Worth Traveling For in all 50 states.
The beautiful University of Hawaii - Manoa has a total undergraduate enrollment of 14,499 and the campus size is 320 acres. The university is located outside downtown Honolulu on the island of Oahu. The school's academic departments include the School of Hawaiian Knowledge, the School of Ocean and Earth Science and Technology, and the School of Pacific and Asian Studies. There are more than 200 student organizations for students to to participate in. UH Manoa's recreation center coordinates kayaking trips, sailing and surfing classes, snorkeling and hiking excursions and more.
The universities finest feature is the Lyon Arboretum. From their website: "The University of Hawai‘i Lyon Arboretum and Botanical Garden is the only university botanical garden located in a tropical rainforest in the United States as well as the only easily accessible tropical rainforest on the island of O‘ahu. The arboretum consists of almost 200 acres at the top of the Manoa watershed with a set of small cottages and greenhouses used for research and community education about plants and the natural environments of Hawai‘i."
The ARTS at Mark's Garage was recently named to FlipKey's 2014 list of Top Museums Worth Traveling For in all 50 States. This award-winning, thirteen-year-old community arts center welcomes over 45,000 visitors per year and is unlike anything you’ve ever seen in Hawaii. They hold 12 annual exhibitions and 150 performances, lectures, screenings, and workshops. They host creative classes for the area youth and also serve as an incubator for visual arts groups.
Their mission is: to transform our community with the power of the arts, and establish Chinatown, Honolulu as the creative capital of the pacific. Marks emerged as an anchor of downtown-Chinatown and its existence helped spearhead the revitalization of the neighborhood. Marks has been funded by major grants from National Endowment for the Arts, Andy Warhol Foundation, and Ford Foundation.
Here’s the full list of our top museums by state:
Alabama (Mobile): History Museum of Mobile
Alaska (Anchorage): Anchorage Museum at Rasmuson Center
Arizona (Phoenix): Children's Museum of Phoenix
Arkansas (Little Rock): Historic Arkansas Museum
California (San Jose): The Tech Museum of Innovation
Colorado (Denver): Clyfford Still Museum
Connecticut (Greenwich): Bruce Museum
Delaware (Dover): Biggs Museum of American Art
Florida (Miami): Pérez Art Museum Miami
Georgia (Macon): Museum of Arts & Science
Hawaii (Honolulu): The ARTS at Marks Garage
Idaho (Blackfoot): Idaho Potato Museum
Illinois (Chicago): National Museum of Mexican Art
Indiana (Indianapolis): Children’s Museum of Indianapolis
Iowa (Cedar Rapids): Cedar Rapids Museum of Art
Kansas (Hutchinson): Strataca Kansas Underground Salt Museum
Kentucky (Petersburg): Creation Museum
Louisiana (New Orleans): Degas House
Maine (Waterville): Colby Museum of Art
Maryland (Baltimore): Geppi's Entertainment Museum
Massachusetts (Boston): Institute of Contemporary Art
Michigan (East Lansing): Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum
Minnesota (Minneapolis): The Museum of Russian Art
Mississippi (Meridian): Jimmie Rodgers Museum
Missouri (Kansas City): American Jazz Museum
Montana (Helena): Holter Museum of Art
Nebraska (Hastings): Hastings Museum
Nevada (Las Vegas): The Neon Museum
New Hampshire (Dover): The Children’s Museum of New Hampshire
New Jersey (Asbury Park): Silver Ball Museum
New Mexico (Santa Fe): Georgia O'Keeffe Museum
New York (New York): National Museum of Mathematics
North Carolina (Raleigh): North Carolina Museum of Art
North Dakota (Fargo): Plains Art Museum
Ohio (Cincinnati): American Sign Museum
Oklahoma (Oklahoma City): American Banjo Museum
Oregon (Eugene): University of Oregon Museum of Natural and Cultural History
Pennsylvania (Philadelphia): Woodmere Art Museum
Rhode Island (Pawtucket): Rhode Island Music Hall of Fame
South Carolina (Myrtle Beach): Encounters: U.F.O. Experience
South Dakota (Rapid City): Museum of Geology
Tennessee (Memphis): Metal Museum
Texas (Dallas): Frontiers of Flight Museum
Utah (Salt Lake City): The Leonardo
Vermont (Brattleboro): Brattleboro Museum & Art Center
Virginia (Norfolk): Chrysler Museum of Art
Washington (Seattle): Frye Museum
West Virginia (Charleston): Clay Center for the Arts & Sciences
Wisconsin (Middleton): National Mustard Museum
Wyoming (Jackson): National Museum of Wildlife Art
Alan Wong's Honolulu was recently named to FlipKey's 2014 list of Top Restaurants Worth Traveling For in all 50 states.
"My friends thought I was nuts opening a restaurant in Hawaii on the 3rd floor of an office building with no parking and no ocean view.” - Alan Wong
Maybe he was nuts, but this Honolulu location was where this chain started and first succeeded. An incubator for the newest dishes and flavors from the Alan Wong family of restaurants, Alan Wong’s Honolulu has been the gold standard, and flagship spot, since 1995. This eatery offers the quintessential Hawaiian regional cuisine, and does not disappoint. It is a menu inspired by the diverse ethnic cultures found in Hawaii and the freshly farmed ingredients from the islands.
The outside of the space is unassuming, but once you’re inside the restaurant you see tasteful island decorations and you can smell the incredible fish dishes awaiting you. The service is impeccable, and the reviews on TripAdvisor reflect that. Check out Alan Wong’s if you ever visit Hawaii for an award-winning dining experience.
Here’s the full list of our top restaurants by state:
Alabama (Birmingham): Highlands Bar and Grill
Alaska (Anchorage): Orso
Arizona (Phoenix): Cibo
Arkansas (Little Rock): South on Main
California (San Francisco): Flour and Water
Colorado (Denver): D Bar Restaurant
Connecticut (Stamford): Olio
Delaware (Rehoboth Beach): Go Fish
Florida (Miami): The District Miami
Georgia (Decatur): The Iberian Pig
Hawaii (Honolulu): Alan Wong's
Idaho (Moscow): Sangria Grille
Illinois (Chicago): Acadia
Indiana (Indianapolis): St. Elmo Steak House
Iowa (Des Moines): Proof
Kansas (Leawood): Rye KC
Kentucky (Louisville): Proof on Main
Louisiana (New Orleans): Sylvain
Maine (Kittery): Robert's Maine Grill
Maryland (Clarksville): Great Sage
Massachusetts (Boston): Mei Mei
Michigan (Detroit): Vellum
Minnesota (Minneapolis): Sea Change
Mississippi (Jackson): Parlor Market
Missouri (St. Louis): The Block Restaurant
Montana (Bozeman): The Nova Cafe
Nebraska (Omaha): The Grey Plume
Nevada (Reno): 4th St Bistro
New Hampshire (Manchester): Firefly
New Jersey (Cape May): The Mad Batter Restaurant
New Mexico (Santa Fe): Sweetwater Harvest Kitchen
New York (New York): The John Dory Oyster Bar
North Carolina (Cary & Greensboro): Lucky 32 Southern Kitchen
North Dakota (Mandan): Harvest Brazilian Grill
Ohio (Columbus): Basi Italia
Oklahoma (Oklahoma City): Mickey Mantle's Steakhouse
Oregon (Newberg): The Painted Lady
Pennsylvania (Philadelphia): Nectar
Rhode Island (Providence): Farmstead
South Carolina (Charleston): Husk
South Dakota (Brookings): Pheasant Restaurant & Lounge
Tennessee (Nashville): Puckett's
Texas (Austin): Franklin Barbecue
Utah (Ogden): Hearth on 25th
Vermont (Waterbury): Prohibition Pig
Virginia (Alexandria): Hank's Oyster Bar
Washington (Seattle): Joule
West Virginia (Charleston): Pies & Pints
Wisconsin (Madison): Banzo
Wyoming (Jackson Hole): Local Resturant & Bar
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