We just got back from an amazing trip to the North Shore of Oahu (sand is still in my purse!), and I’ll have a full trip report soon, I promise. But today I wanted to share with you a simplified itinerary if you had just one day on the North Shore of Oahu and wanted to pack in a few of the major highlights. Here’s how I’d spend it…
This post is sponsored by Uber, which makes getting to and from your favorite spots on vacation with your family even easier.
First off, I wanted to mention that I know Uber has been in the news a lot lately. I had mixed feelings about partnering with them, but I do use them all the time (to/from dinner with Jared, to/from the airport) and with the CEO recently stepping down I hope this signifies some positive changes for the company moving forward.
I was excited to find out Uber had drivers and even uberXL drivers on the North Shore which makes it really easy to not rent a car or deal with parking, but still see all your favorite spots quickly and easily. So many areas in Oahu are packed with tourists in the summer and very little parking. Getting dropped off and picked up with an Uber makes so much more sense. Also, we always take an Uber to/from the airport. It’s become a given now, especially with the uber XL which can fit our family of five, car seats, and all our luggage. Way more cost effective than two cars and much easier to manage.
8am: Grab an Uber to Ted’s Bakery, just a block north of Sunset Beach. Famous for their pastries and chocolate haupia pies (grab a slice for dessert tonight!), they also have yummy breakfast sandwiches. But our favorite treats were the donuts and huge cinnamon rolls. Delicious way to start the day!
9am: Jump back in your Uber and head to Sunset Elementary school for the Ehukai Pillbox hike just a mile or so away. The hike starts in the parking lot of the school (which, if it’s on a Saturday hosts a little farmer’s market). It’s a beautiful hike that’s well travelled with amazingly rewarding views of the beaches from the top!
10:30am: When you’re sweaty and hot from the hike, head directly across the street to the Bonzai Pipeline beach. It’s the most famous surf break on the island, and probably in the world. If you’re there in the summer it’ll be calm and a nice place to jump in to cool off. If you’re there in the winter, be prepared to see some famous surfers riding the gigantic waves.
12 noon: Grab an Uber and head to Haleiwa for lunch. It’s a really cute little beach town with some shops and restaurants just 15 minutes or so south of the Pipeline beach. Opal Thai is a great place to eat, but there a lot of options. Just be sure you stop at Matsumoto Shave Ice for dessert. Arguably, the best shave ice in Oahu! We may or may not have stopped there every day on our trip.
Just down the street along the Halewai beach is a great place to rent a kayak or paddle board for a little dip after lunch in Haleiwa.
3pm: Take an Uber back north to Shark’s Cove for some snorkeling. Parking can be a hassle here in the afternoon, but it’s the best time to go! That’s where Uber comes in super handy, no need to drive around looking for a spot or park too far way for the kids to walk! You can rent the snorkel gear across the street where all the food trucks are, and be sure to ask their advice on the best spots to go or a tropical plant that cleans your googles!
5pm: Across the street from Shark’s Cove are a bunch of food trucks and really nice place to hang out for dinner (including fun little things for the kids, like this surf photo opt above!). We were there several nights in a row, it was such a cool vibe. There’s a shrimp truck, taco truck, thai truck, poke truck, burgers, shave ice, etc. Something for everyone!
6pm: After dinner, head to another famous surf break, Waimea Bay for cliff jump (first image of the post!) and the watching the sunset. Again, can be a pain for parking (people will just line up waiting for a spot in their cars), so taking an Uber is super helpful here!
7:30pm: Thursdays during the summer they play family outdoor movies across the street at Waimea Park. Great place to end the day with the family after the sun goes down!
Thanks to Uber for sponsoring this post.