Oahu Travel Tips

We stayed at the Ala Moana Hotel as we’ve done many times. It’s five minutes from the hectic Waikiki strip but close enough to walk to beaches, historic downtown and open-air restaurants.  Owned by the Outrigger hotel operators its nice with mountain or ocean views. When other hotel rooms are at $350-400 a night the Ala Moana is around $130. Good value. However don’t request a top floor the air conditioners rattle  and you’ll hear a constant hum. Instead of a room on the 34th floor settle for a room on the 12th floor.

For some local inexpensive eating go to Nicos at Pier 38. A few tourists have discovered this locals’ fresh fish place, thanks to Food Network’s Guy Fieri’s “Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives” episode highlighting Nicos’ famous pan-seared Ahi. It’s the best Ahi Tuna on the island. Heads up – don’t order  the mussels or crab cake.

While hanging out at Haleiwa after the Shark Dive or photographing surfers at the Pipeline we have two recommendations – The Grass Skirt or Macky’s Shrimp Truck.

There are 2 shark dive operators on the North Shore. We’ve only been on Hawaii Shark Encounters and not North Shore Shark Adventures. The last time we went with Shark Encounters the guides were awful. They acted like they hated their jobs and had a distaste for their customers as well as the sharks. Next time we’ll use North Shore Shark Adventures and report back.

Kailua Beach Adventures in Kailua have kayaks and stand up paddle boards. There are 3 islands to paddle to for ocean adventures and photography. www.kailuasailboards.com  We like very much!

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