Waikiki Beach Hawaii

Waikiki Beach Hawaii is one of the most recognizable beaches in the world with the instantly recognizable Diamond Head crater in the background. With world class shopping, beaches and people from every walk of life and culture a visit here is a must.

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Beaches

The water is calm being protected by reefs further out preventing larger waves from crashing onshore. Lots of activities are right there such as surfing lessons and board rentals, outrigger canoes, catamaran boat rides and stand up paddles.

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Beachboys are still a staple showing people how to surf and are reminiscent of the days from World War II when only the uber wealthy and servicemen could visit Hawaii.

 

Street Life

waikiki beach hawaii parrot man

Waikiki beach is filled with all sorts of characters from guys walking around with parrots on their shoulders accepting "donations" for pictures to performance artists painted in gold and silver on the sidewalks.

Busy nights have musicians, break dancers and sketch artists doing their things. You'll notice the crowds cheering people on or just watching with curiosity.

 

waikiki beach hawaii street performer

Along sidewalks crafters will sit on mats with wares that they have made such as jewelry and baskets. Waikiki is a weird dichotomy of the very affluent tourist, the barely homeless guy scrapping to get by and street hustlers. The contrasts are stark yet it all seems to work well somehow.

The people watching is great and people from all walks of life seem to converge here. East meets west with a very heavy emphasis on Japanese tourists.

Mixed in with all of this are locals who have been a staple and part of the fabric for many years. Beachboys still teach surfing lessons to locals (especially pretty girls) and old men play chess nearby.

 


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Shopping

 

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Shopping in Waikiki entails lots of high end designer shops but on side streets little bargain boutiques can be found selling beachwear, tshirts and souvenirs at bargain prices.

Much of the main strip in Waikiki on Kalakaua avenue is occupied by Luxury Row with stores such as Tiffany, Bulgari, Gucci and Coach.

More mid-priced stores do exist but for better bargains head out to the Waikele Outlets. Little nooks and crannies exist for shopping as well such as International Marketplace, the DFS Galleria, Lewers St and the Royal Hawaiian Shopping Center. Read more on shopping in Waikiki page


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Restaurants

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Waikiki has many restaurants to choose from from fine dining options to just grabbing a bite to eat on the go. Many incorporate local flavorings and seasonings and local fish such as Ahi and Mahi Mahi.

If you are in search for a good happy hour or live music there are several choices from hotels to beach front pool bars and eateries. Learn more here on my page about Waikiki restaurants.


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Staying Here

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Many people think that Hawaii has to be a very expensive place to vacation but the good news is that there are choices for every budget. None are too far from the beach either as Waikiki is about 3-4 blocks deep.

Oahu is the cheapest island to vacation on and you don't HAVE to have a car here. Learn more about Hotels in Waikiki and cheap places to stay.

 


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