We arrived at Honolulu Airport mid afternoon and headed to Wakiki, which was our base for the first part of our trip.
Hotels pretty much span the coastline at Wakiki starting right by the Marina and the Hawaiian Conference Centre, to the landscape dominating Diamond Head.
We had a lot of success with our villa booking in Florida last year, so this time we decided to use Airbnb. The condo was as described in the ad, and Jenny (our host) sent me an extensive list of tips on places to eat and visit.
The main beach at Wakiki is bustling with brightly coloured Hawaiian shirts, tourists laden with designer bags from a hard day shopping and surfers with boards in tow.
All the hotels by the beach are within a block of each other, that coupled with the ABC stores on every corner meant it was a bit hard to get our bearings! I don’t think the jet lag and Mai Tais helped either.
We went to the Hula Grill for dinner (On Jenny’s recommendation) due primarily to the view of the beach. When we were seated, I could see Diamond Head whilst the Other Half had a view of the powder pink Royal Hawaiian Hotel, one of the first established hotels in Wakiki.
Dinner started with warm bread, olive oil and Chilli water. The water is made with a mix of chillies, onion, garlic, vinegar and a bit of sugar (I think) this was delicious and a great alternative to balsamic vinegar and bread we usually have.
For starters, Scallop and lobster popstickers, the plum sauce was a bit too sweet and sickly for me but the popstickers themselves were spot on.
The Other half loved his Ahi sashimi, you can’t go wrong with fresh fish being so close to the ocean. We both had the Surf and turf special as our main course.
As it was a Friday night, we could see the fireworks from the Hilton Hawaiian Village, which is further down the coast.
The shuttle we used charges $30 for a round trip, a taxi would set you back around $40-50. The number 19 goes to Wakiki and costs $2.50 from the airport (if you get on the 19 to Hickem you’re going in the wrong direction). The bus will take you around an hour in moderate traffic, you can’t travel with large bags, just what you can stow under the seat.