When it comes to starting your day in Honolulu or the Waikiki area, there’s no shortage of fantastic breakfast spots and coffee shops to choose from. Whether you’re in the mood for a freshly baked pastry or a perfectly brewed cup of coffee, Waikiki has plenty of options to get you going in the morning. Let’s explore some of the top breakfast stops and coffee shops in Waikiki, so that you can start your day right!

Kai Coffee Hawaii

Kai Coffee on Waikiki

Kai Coffee Hawaii is a local favorite with five locations in the Waikiki area. This cafe sources its beans from small-batch Hawaiian coffee farms, ensuring a truly authentic and flavorful cup of coffee. Served in colorful and cozy spaces, their difference locations offer great grab and go options. In addition to their expertly crafted latte drinks with unique flavorings (try the macadamia nut!), they also offer a selection of light breakfast fare. Try their signature acai bowls for a healthy start to your day or grab a sweet slice of banana bread to go. Kai’s motto of “Aloha in Every Cup” shows their passion for coffee and customer service. A must visit!

Kona Coffee Purveyors

Experience the rich history and heritage of Hawaiian coffee at Kona Coffee Purveyors. Located in the International Market Place, this boutique cafe specializes in single-origin beans from the Kona region of the Big Island, with a variety of brewing methods to truly focus on the pure flavors. This is the ideal spot for coffee lovers to savor the local coffee flavor profiles in their purest form. There is also a selection of artisanal pastries with flavors from coconut to pineapple to compliment your brew.

Knot’s Coffee Roasters

Knot's Coffee Roasters in Waikiki

This stylish cafe in the lobby of the Queen Kapiolani hotel offers plenty of indoor and outdoor seating for you to enjoy their unique coffee creations. Coconut macadamia and matcha lattes are a can’t-miss at this hip spot, but if you’re looking for a cold treat, try their Tokyo style espresso soft serve drink. Grab a banana toast or acai bowl to go and enjoy a morning stroll through Kapi’olani Park across the street.

Island Vintage Coffee

Situated in the heart of Waikiki, Island Vintage Coffee is renowned for its farm-to-cup approach and commitment to quality. This spot serves breakfast all day, and it’s great for an afternoon pick-me-up as well. The huge menu offers everything from bagels to breakfast plates, with Hawaiian twists and plenty of vegetarian options. Savor the local flavors with an Island Style Plate or one of their signature Acai bowls, and indulge in a creamy coconut latte made with locally sourced ingredients.

Arvo Cafe 

Arvo Cafe in Honolulu

Arvo Café is a hidden gem known for its vibrant atmosphere and delicious toast pairings. With two airy locations in the Waikiki area, this trendy spot is the perfect place to get your morning caffeine fix and grab a light breakfast. The charcoal latte and strawberry guava mint iced tea are popular beverages and you’ll have your pick of loaded toast – from classic nutella to meatballs, and smoked salmon – there’s no shortage of interesting options at Arvo.

Liliha Bakery

A local favorite since 1950, Liliha Bakery is famous for its iconic coco puffs and freshly baked pastries. Swing by their original location at International Market Place and treat yourself to a taste of Hawaii’s sweetest indulgences. Be sure to try the coco puffs, but don’t miss out on the fluffy malasadas (Hawaiian donuts) or coconut danish. The pastries are the star at this bakery, but they do have a few coffee options as well.

Waffle and Berry

Waffle and Berry in Honolulu

Waffle and Berry is a charming breakfast spot located in the heart of Waikiki, known for its mouthwatering waffle creations with berry infusions. Located on the lower level of Waikiki Shopping Plaza, this unassuming family-owned restaurant serves up towering waffle dishes and refreshing acai bowls, along with coffee and iced tea options. Create your own waffle masterpiece or opt for the Kireina Hana, an overflowing fruity smorgasbord.

Our comfortable and conveniently located Honolulu vacation rentals are only steps away from breakfast in paradise. Book your Waikiki vacation rental with Novation today and start every day off right – your dream vacation awaits!

People hiking on Oahu

Surrounded by lush tropical landscapes and stunning Pacific views, Honolulu is a hiker’s dream with its diverse range of hiking trails. From serene strolls to adrenaline-pumping treks, there’s something for everyone here. Let’s explore the top 10 hiking trails in and around Honolulu.

1. Diamond Head

Steep stairs on Diamon Head hike in honolulu

Situated just east of Waikiki, Diamond Head, known for its stunning coastal views, is one of Oahu’s most iconic landmarks. The hiking trail winds its way to the summit, offering panoramic views of the coastline and the Honolulu skyline. The hike is considered moderately challenging, with some steep sections and a series of stairs, but it’s manageable for most fitness levels. 

This is one of Honolulu’s most popular trails and can be crowded any time of day, so pack your patience – but the views are worth it! Due to the popularity, reservations are required and desirable timeslots can sell out quickly. You can expect to spend 1-2 hours to reach the summit and back, and remember to bring water and sunscreen, as there’s minimal shade along the trail.

Koko Crate Trail in Honolulu

2. Koko Crater Railway Trail

Do you enjoy stairs? Then Koko Crater Railway Trail is for you! Also known as the “Stairway to Heaven”, the hike involves climbing over1,000 steps made of railroad ties, originally used by the military during World War II. Once at the summit, you’ll be rewarded with panoramic views of the island’s southeastern coastline. 

Be sure to bring sturdy shoes and plenty of water, since the Koko Head area is known to be very humid. This trail typically takes 1-2 hours to complete and is not recommended for young children or those with mobility issues. For an interesting stop after your hike, check out the nearby Koko Crater Botanical Gardens.

3. Aiea Loop Trail

Located in the lush Aiea Heights neighborhood, the Aiea Loop Trail offers a scenic escape from the urban jungle of Honolulu. The well-maintained path winds through a forested ridge, providing glimpses of native plants and animals along the way. The remnants of a WWII plane crash can also be spotted alongside the trail.

This trail loop typically takes 2-3 hours to complete and is suitable for all levels. It can get muddy in spots during the winter and spring, and you shouldn’t forget bug spray. Watch for native birds such as the Hawaiian honeycreeper and the ‘apapane.

4. Makiki Valley Trail

Makiki Valley Trail in Honolulu

Conveniently located near downtown Honolulu, the Makiki Valley Loop Trail offers a tranquil retreat from the hustle and bustle of the city. The well-marked trail winds through a lush forest, providing opportunities to spot native wildlife and listen to the soothing sounds of tropical birds. Along the way, you’ll encounter bamboo groves, tranquil streams, and picturesque viewpoints overlooking the valley below. 

This 3.4-mile loop typically takes 2 hours to complete, and can be muddy in spots. To fully enjoy this trek into the forest canopy, be sure to bring shoes with good traction, as well as bug spray.

5. Manoa Falls Trail

Just a short drive from Honolulu, this family-friendly trail leads to the picturesque Manoa Falls. The 1.7-mile path meanders through a lush rainforest, passing by bamboo groves and exotic tropical plants. The highlight of the hike is the 150-foot waterfall at the end, creating a picturesque rainforest oasis.

The trail can become very muddy, so be sure to wear shoes with good traction. This popular trail will usually take an hour to complete, and it can become crowded at times. Swimming in the falls is not recommended due to slippery rocks, strong currents and falling debris.

6. Waimano Falls TrailWaimano Falls near Honolulu

If you’re looking for a challenging jungle hike, the Waimano Falls Trail offers a refreshing escape into nature. Beginning in a residential neighborhood on the outskirts of Honolulu, this moderate hike leads hikers along a scenic path through the forest canopy, alongside tranquil streams. As you make your way deeper into Waimano Valley, you’ll encounter picturesque waterfalls and natural swimming holes, perfect for cooling off on a hot day. 

The trail is relatively well-maintained, but due to some rocky and muddy sections to navigate, it is not recommended for small children or those with mobility restrictions. Reserve a few hours to enjoy this trail and be sure to wear sturdy hiking shoes and bring plenty of water.

7. Lanikai Pillbox Hike

Offering postcard-perfect views of Lanikai Beach and the Mokulua Islands, the Lanikai Pillbox Hike is a favorite among locals and tourists alike. Located 40 minutes from Honolulu in Kailua, the trail leads to historic World War II pillboxes, which served as lookout points for the military. 

While the hike is relatively short, the uneven terrain and steep sections require sturdy footwear, and hikers should exercise caution. Visitors are encouraged to park in the Kailua Beach boat ramp parking lot and walk to the trailhead to avoid parking tickets.

8. Makapu’u Lighthouse Trail

Offering breathtaking views of Oahu’s southeastern coastline, the Makapu’u Lighthouse Trail is a must-do for visitors to Honolulu. On clear days, panoramic vistas of the ocean and neighboring islands of Molokai and Lanai can be seen from the summit. Visitors can also get up close to the lighthouse via a side path.

The trail is considered easy to moderate, with gradual climbs on a relatively flat paved path, making it a popular choice for casual hikers and families. You can expect to spend around 2 hours on the trail, and should bring water and sun protection since there is little shade. Keep an eye out for humpback whales during the winter months, as the trail provides excellent vantage points to view migrating whales.

9. Kuliʻouʻou Ridge Trail

kuliouou trail in Honolulu

On the southeastern side of Oahu, the Kuliʻouʻou Ridge Trail offers an invigorating adventure through breathtaking landscapes. Starting from a residential neighborhood, this trail offers convenient access to the lush beauty of Oahu’s interior. Norfolk pine trees and fragrant eucalyptus line the 4.4-mile trail, providing a peaceful backdrop as you make your way upward to stunning views of Oahu’s coastline.

The trail is challenging, with steep inclines and muddy terrain, and hikers should come prepared with plenty of water and sturdy hiking shoes. Plan to arrive early to secure a parking spot and expect to spend 2-3 hours completing this trail.

10. Ka’ena Point Trail

For a taste of Hawaii’s rugged coastline, head to Ka’ena Point State Park on Oahu’s western tip. The coastal trail offers stunning views of the Pacific Ocean and the opportunity to spot Hawaiian monk seals and whales. The coastal dune habitat is home to a variety of seabirds and native plants as well.

This hike typically takes 2 hours and is considered moderately challenging due to rocky terrain. Sturdy shoes and sun protection are recommended. Visitors are encouraged to stay on the designated path to protect fragile coastal ecosystems and respect the area’s cultural significance.

Whether you’re a seasoned hiker seeking a challenge or a family looking for a leisurely adventure, Honolulu has it all when it comes to fun hiking trails. So book your Waikiki vacation rental, lace up your books, and explore some of Oahu’s trails!

Beautiful plate of food at Paia Fish Market

While Honolulu is known for being a tropical paradise for beach bums and sun seekers, it’s also a destination for foodies! The culinary scene in Honolulu, particularly in the Waikiki area, is a rich tapestry of flavors, blending traditional Hawaiian fare with influences from Asia, the Pacific, and beyond. In this guide, we will take you on a journey through some of the best restaurants in the Honolulu and Waikiki areas, each offering a unique and unforgettable dining experience.

1938 Indochine

Noodle dish at 1938 Indochine

Step into 1938 Indochine and be transported to a bygone era of French Colonial vibes and exotic flavors. The sophisticated decor welcomes you into a replica of a Vietnamese street scene, perfectly blended with vintage French flair. This elegant restaurant pays homage to the street food traditions of Southeast Asia, offering a fusion of Vietnamese, Thai, and Cambodian cuisines. Signature dishes like colonial crab cake, green papaya mango salad, and aromatic lemongrass fries are expertly crafted with fresh ingredients, while specialty cocktails and whiskey and cigar pairings create a dining experience that is both indulgent and unforgettable.


A culinary adventure awaits at Obake, where traditional Japanese izakaya fare meets Hawaiian hospitality. This cozy eatery specializes in small plates meant for sharing, with an emphasis on fresh seafood, savory snacks and specialty hand rolls. Sip on sake cocktails while nibbling on succulent yakiniku, and immerse yourself in the lively atmosphere of this beloved neighborhood izakaya.

Paia Fish Market Waikiki

For seafood lovers craving the freshest local catch of the day, Paia Fish Market is the place to be. With its laid-back atmosphere and commitment to sustainability, this beloved eatery serves up a delectable array of fish tacos, grilled mahi-mahi burgers, and seafood platters bursting with flavor. Be sure to try one of their fresh catch plates, made with your choice of fish and preparation. Conveniently located on Kuhio Avenue, this spot is the ideal place to stop for a delicious meal after a day at the beach.

Hau Tree

Oceanfront Dining at Hau Tree

Nestled at the foot of Diamond Head in Waikiki, Hau Tree is a hidden gem that offers an enchanting oceanfront dining experience on Kaimana Beach. The restaurant’s historic hau tree provides a stunning backdrop for guests to enjoy an array of Pacific Rim-inspired dishes. Indulge in creative specialties like harissa shrimp, grilled wagyu steak and seared local fish or stop by for a renowned brunch menu. The elevated fare is influenced by local flavors and ingredients are sourced from local island partners. This beachfront restaurant is full of breezy charm and elegance, with a shaded patio where you can enjoy the unique cocktail menu and soak in the panoramic views of the Pacific Ocean and Diamond Head.

Monkeypod Kitchen Waikiki

Monkeypod Kitchen Waikiki

With a lively atmosphere and innovative cuisine, Monkeypod Kitchen Waikiki is a must-visit destination for foodies seeking a taste of Hawaii’s farm-to-table delights. Led by renowned chef Peter Merriman, this bustling eatery offers an eclectic menu inspired by the island’s rich agricultural bounty. From inspired appetizers like lobster deviled eggs and taro ravioli to wood-fired pizzas topped with locally sourced ingredients, every dish at Monkeypod Kitchen is a celebration of Hawaii’s vibrant culinary heritage. This restaurant is located within the Outrigger Reef Waikiki Beach Resort and offers stunning views of the sunset over the Pacific Ocean. Live music is performed daily, providing the perfect backdrop to enjoy their famous Mai Tai topped with honey-lilikoi foam.


Located in Honolulu’s vibrant Kaimuki neighborhood, Rigo is a cozy Italian eatery that has garnered a loyal following for its warm hospitality and creative cuisine. The restaurant’s menu features classic Italian and Spanish dishes with a modern twist and a hint of Japanese influence. House-made pastas, wood-fired pizzas, and flavorful antipasti dominate the menu with interesting flavor combinations and expert preparation. The inviting atmosphere and attentive service make Rigo an ideal spot for a romantic dinner or a gathering with friends. Don’t miss the opportunity to savor their signature paella and finish your meal with a decadent tiramisu that will transport you to the streets of Rome.

Mud Hen Water

Drawing inspiration from Hawaii’s multicultural heritage, Mud Hen Water offers a contemporary take on island cuisine that is as bold and flavorful as it is innovative. Led by acclaimed chef Ed Kenney, this hip eatery showcases the best of Hawaii’s local ingredients, with dishes like beet poke, mapo rice cakes and octopus he’e rolls pushing the boundaries of traditional Hawaiian fare. This cozy spot boasts laid-back vibes and a colorful patio where you can enjoy the elevated local fusion fare either homestyle or a la carte. Mud Hen Water is a must-visit destination for foodies looking to experience the cutting edge of Hawaiian cuisine.


With its chic brasserie style ambiance and creative cuisine, Fete is a taste of modern Hawaiian cuisine with a hint of Brooklyn sensibilities. James Beard award-winning chef Robynne Maii’s inventive dishes are a celebration of Hawaii’s farm-to-table movement, creating a contemporary take on traditional flavors with a focus on local meat and produce. From local mushroom risotto to Korean fried chicken, every dish at Fete is a curated work of art that will leave diners craving more.


A culinary adventure awaits at Obake, where traditional Japanese izakaya fare meets Hawaiian hospitality. This cozy eatery specializes in small plates meant for sharing, with an emphasis on fresh seafood, savory snacks and specialty hand rolls. Sip on sake cocktails while nibbling on succulent yakiniku, and immerse yourself in the lively atmosphere of this beloved neighborhood izakaya.

The Pig and The Lady

Drawing inspiration from the vibrant flavors of Southeast Asia, The Pig and The Lady reimagines traditional Vietnamese dishes with a modern twist. This popular restaurant offers an eclectic menu with dishes like pho french dip banh mi, black truffle tofu gnocchi, and green papaya salad pushing the boundaries of traditional Vietnamese cuisine. With its lively atmosphere and bold flavors, this spot is a must-visit for foodies looking for innovative and exciting flavors.

Guava Smoked

This casual eatery on Kapahulu Avenue is a must-visit for barbecue lovers. It’s known for mouthwatering smoked meats, including tender brisket, succulent ribs, and flavorful pulled pork. The menu also features creative twists on barbecue dishes featuring local flavors, such as guava smoked kalbi short ribs and butterfish collars. With its laid-back atmosphere and delicious take on Hawaiian barbecue, Guava Smoked is the perfect spot to indulge in hearty, satisfying meals. Head to the Waikiki location outside of Kapiolani Park to enjoy well made local food and sample their beer menu featuring local brews.

From traditional Hawaiian fare to innovative fusion cuisine, the restaurants in the Honolulu and Waikiki area offer a diverse array of flavors and experiences that are sure to delight even the most discerning palates. Whether you’re craving barbecue, fresh seafood, or inventive cocktails, there is something here to satisfy every craving. So book your vacation rental, bring an appetite and embark on a culinary adventure through the heart of Honolulu. Aloha and bon appétit!

Prince Lot Hula Festival
Palm trees decorated for Christmas in Waikiki

Christmas in Waikiki is a truly magical experience with festive decorations all around, joyful holiday music on the streets, and plenty of fun things to do for people of all ages. There are a variety of experiences on Oahu that make for a memorable holiday season on the island!

Since Oahu is so popular with tourists, many places will remain open on Christmas Day. However, because this is the peak holiday season on the island, be prepared for crowds at some attractions. If you are planning a vacation to Waikiki over the Christmas holiday, here are activities and suggestions for enjoying this festive time of year!

Attend a Holiday Parade

Festive holiday lights in WaikikiKick off your holiday season with the Waikiki Holiday Parade, which takes place each year on the Friday after Thanksgiving. The parade commemorates Pearl Harbor, and includes marching bands, colorful floats, and holiday characters. Later in December, the Electric Light Parade offers a festive atmosphere to light up the night with holiday cheer.

Add Hawaiian Flavor to Your Christmas

For those looking for a unique experience this Christmas season, Waikiki offers a variety of cultural activities that celebrate the season and Hawaii’s heritage. Spend an evening at one of the local luaus to participate in a Polynesian show and try traditional Hawaiian food. 

Take a trip to the Polynesian Cultural Center in Laie for Christmas in Polynesia events throughout the month of December. There are activities for the kids, train rides, a Christmas scavenger hunt and a visit with Santa. The Polynesian Cultural Center will also be open for regular cultural activities during this time, including the Island Villages experience and evening shows.

Make your Holiday Bright and Merry

Waikiki and Honolulu are lit up with light displays throughout the holiday season. The best way to see Christmas lights in Holiday Lights bus tour on Waikiki Honolulu is to hop on the Holiday Lights Tour, which runs for most of December. An open-air double decker bus will take you around downtown Honolulu, with holiday music and stories along the way. The whole experience is approximately 2 hours, which includes a 30 minute joyful ride to the Honolulu Hale, roughly 1 hour of fun exploring the Hale, and a festive 25 minute ride returning to the Kewalo Basin.

Or visit Aloha Land to experience a winter wonderland in the tropics! Aloha Stadium is decked out with light displays, inflatable playgrounds, fresh snow to play in, Santa’s Workshop, and a full food court. The whole family will have a great time at this winter carnival.

Stroll down Waikiki Beach to find all sorts of vendors, performers and festive decorations. Stop by the Sheraton Waikiki hotel lobby to check out their famous Christmas sand sculptures. Keep an eye out for Santa walking around in his Hawaiian shirt and sandals, or even surfing the waves!

Go Christmas shopping

Waikiki area shopping centers offer a variety of stores to find that perfect holiday gift. The Royal Hawaiian Center fully decks the halls in December, with a 34 foot Christmas tree, holiday lights and Santa’s Workshop. Bring the whole family to meet Santa, with free photo prints, cookies and a shopping discount pass provided. 

The Ala Moana Shopping Center is another great option in the area. Located just a ten minute drive from Waikiki, this four level shopping center offers a variety of chain and local stores. The Ala Moana center is decorated for the holiday season, with Santa visits available, as well as special holiday shopping offers.

Enjoy the Outdoor Activities

Whether on land or sea, there’s plenty to do outside during the holiday season on Oahu. Put on your swimsuit and head to Waikiki Beach for a beach day with spectacular scenery. The waves on Waikiki are known to be calmer, perfect for playing in the water or learning how to surf. The water is still warm in December, making it the perfect time of year for kayaking, stand-up paddleboarding, and snorkeling. Or lace up your hiking boots for stunning views on Diamond Head or one of the other many hiking trails of Oahu.

If you are looking for a change of scenery from Waikiki, head to the north end of Oahu for some of the best surfing beaches in the world. Check out world-class surfing at Haleiwa Beach for the Vans Pipe Masters competition in December.

Sports fans can also enjoy some college football at the Hawaii Bowl, which is typically held on Christmas Eve at the University of Hawaii stadium. 

What to Expect in Waikiki in December

December marks the beginning of the winter season in Hawaii, but “winter” here is a relative term. While the rest of the Northern Hemisphere is experiencing colder temperatures, Waikiki remains pleasantly warm, with daytime temperatures ranging from the mid-70s to low 80s Fahrenheit (24-28°C), making it an ideal destination for those seeking a respite from the winter chill.

December is considered the off-peak season for tourism in Waikiki, which means fewer crowds and a more laid-back ambiance. You can enjoy the beaches, restaurants, and attractions with a bit less hustle and bustle compared to the busier summer months. While this time year is relatively dry in Waikiki, it’s also part of the rainy season in Hawaii. Be prepared for occasional rain showers, but they’re usually brief and followed by sunshine.

Novation Realty offers a variety of affordable downtown Waikiki condo rentals, perfect for your December vacation. Our Waikiki condos are ideally located close to Waikiki Beach and within walking distance to area restaurants, shops, nightlife, and more. Our guests enjoy smooth & easy check-in with virtual instructions, a 24/7 guest line, welcome coffee and tea set, and AC, WiFi and cable in every single property. We would love to host you on your Waikiki holiday vacation!

No matter what type of activities you and your family choose to enjoy during the holiday season, Christmas in Waikiki will be an unforgettable experience. Don’t miss out on the magic and start planning your holiday getaway today!

Waikiki offers a unique blend of natural beauty, culture, and a lively atmosphere. In this enchanting place, you’ll find surfers riding the waves, the sounds of local music, and the scent of delicious food wafting through the air. If you’re thinking of planning your first trip to Waikiki, we hope this guide will help. Let’s dive into the can’t-miss food and essential places to visit on your first trip to Waikiki, put together by the Waikiki locals that own and operate Novation Realty. 

Grab a Bite to Eat

Dining in Waikiki is a culinary adventure that combines diverse flavors with breathtaking views. Whether you’re craving fresh seafood, traditional HawaiianTables outside the Barefoot Beach Cafe in Waikiki dishes, or international cuisine, Waikiki offers a ton of different options. Here are a few of our recommendations for where to eat Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, and more in Waikiki!

Breakfast. Try Cinnamon’s at the Ilikai for their famous tropical pancakes and syrups. The Liliha Bakery at Macy’s Ala Moana Center offers hearty local fare and an incredible bakery. For a mid-morning boost, stop by Honolulu Coffee Company or Kai Coffee for excellent local coffee.

Lunch. Take a walk to Kuhio Ave., where you can find beloved local burrito spot Kono’s or savor delicious tempura and ramen at great prices at Marugame Udon (it’s worth the wait!). 

Snacks. Check out the unique frozen desserts at Banan, a farm-to-table banana ice cream shop right on the water by Beachwalk and Fort DeRussy. Island Vintage Shave Ice in Royal Hawaiian Center is also highly recommended for a classic local treat.

Pau Hana (Happy Hour). For casual beachfront drinks with a tiki flair, head over to Duke’s Waikiki. Hit up Doraku Sushi in Royal Hawaiian Center for great food and craft cocktails. 

Dinner. The laid-back Barefoot Beach Café features delicious local food, from pineapple smoothies to fresh fish to veggie burgers and vegan options. This waterfront restaurant is easily accessible from the beach path, with live music most nights and great views of Diamond Head. Another great option is Lulu’s Waikiki, with mouthwatering local fare and relaxing ocean views. 

Take in the Views

Views from the Diamond Head hike on Oahu

The natural environment and spectacular scenery is one of the most enticing parts of visiting Waikiki. Walking on Kalakaua Ave along the water is a simple pleasure that allows visitors to soak up the lively atmosphere and stunning views. Head towards Diamond Head to reach the secluded part of Waikiki Beach, which is never crowded and great for swimming and snorkeling.

For amazing views of the ocean and coastline, head to nearby Diamond Head for an energizing hike that takes 1-2 hours. It is recommended to wear sturdy hiking shoes, and go early or late to avoid crowds and heat. There are many hikes near Waikiki that will leave you in awe.

For visitors with a car, taking a drive along the east side of Oahu can be a special experience. The sea cliffs create a dramatic backdrop, with lots of lookouts and beaches to stop at along the way.

Go Shopping

All first-time visitors should take a stroll through the newly rebuilt International Marketplace. This open-air shopping center has incredible shops, food and drinks in a beautiful outdoor setting, with walkways wrapping around historic banyan trees, framed by koi ponds and lush greenery. The Royal Hawaiian Center is a three-story outdoor mall in the heart of Waikiki, with shops, restaurants, and plenty of spots to relax in the shade. There are also cultural events and live entertainment throughout the week, with a focus on Hawaiian culture and music. 

Book Your StayWaikiki vacation rentals

Staying in a vacation rental in the heart of vibrant Waikiki offers a convenient home base for first time visitors to experience everything the area has to offer. Novation Realty offers a variety of studio and 1 bedroom Waikiki vacation rentals and monthly rentals for extended stays. Step out of your front door and immerse yourself in the aloha spirit in this tropical paradise!

Food trucks at the Ohana Hale marketplace

The local favorite Ohana Hale Marketplace recently opened in a new location in the heart of Waikiki on Kalakaua Avenue, after having to vacate their previous location due to a new condo building project. This popular marketplace is a unique combination of a food truck park and a two-story indoor mini-mall made up of local businesses. The laid-back vibe of Ohana Hale is great for visitors who want to take a break from the hustle and bustle of Waikiki Beach and perfect for groups who want lots of different dining options at any time of the day. 

Woman holding a drink from the Ohana Hale food trucks Outside, there’s a food truck park that include more than 10 food trucks and pop-up restaurants which rotate every week. Customers can find a range of dining options, including Hawaiian delicacies, fried chicken, burgers, shawarma, tacos and more. Sweet cravings can be satisfied with treats like shave ice and fruit drinks. It’s a festive tropical feel outside, with picnic tables under fringed umbrellas and large palm trees that provide plenty of shade. Head inside to find sushi, pizza and the well-known breakfast spot Waffle and Berry, as well as local vendors selling jewelry and other merchandise. Right now there are about 15 vendors, and the location can hold up to 30 vendors.

The Food Truck Lot hours are 12pm – 9pm every day, and the Marketplace inside is open from 8am – 8pm every day.  

We’re particularly excited about the location of the new Ohana Hale Marketplace, because it’s right across the street from the Hawaiian Monarch building, where we have several Waikiki vacation rentals! All of our Hawaiian Monarch vacation rentals have access to the building amenities which include a large pool, sundeck, hot tub, fitness center and laundry. This secure building also has a coffee shop, restaurant and convenience store on-site, as well as parking for an extra daily fee. Enjoy views of the city and Diamond Head from this bright studio with a full kitchen, or check out this cozy corner studio with wraparound skyline views. For a truly elevated experience, the two-bedroom Ocean View Penthouse delivers panoramic views of the ocean and mountains, with plenty of space for a larger group to enjoy. 

The Hawaiian Monarch is in a quieter neighborhood removed from the main tourist areas, but still close enough to walk to Royal Pool area at the Hawaii Monarch Building Hawaiian Center, Fort DeRussy Beach Park and the restaurants and nightlife of Waikiki. This location offers the best of both worlds – a more authentic local experience and just steps away from the excitement of Waikiki.

Explore these vacation rentals in the vibrant heart of Waikiki, and check out the Ohana Hale Marketplace for a variety of delicious food and treats!