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Aloha from the Hawaiian Islands

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Finding beauty beyond my job and relocation to Hawaii.
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Waimea Bay, Hawaii 96712, USA
Families gather at this North Shore cove—all golden sand and peacock-colored swells—in summertime. Adventurous types swarm the rocky headland—a riotous scene that resembles Where's Waldo? or Richard Scarry's...
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57-091 Kamehameha Hwy, Kahuku, HI 96731, USA
We only have one resort on the North Shore: Turtle Bay. It’s set right on the beach and has a 36-hole golf course. Every Tuesday the resort’s bar hosts open mic night. —Hoku Haiku 57-091 Kamehameha Hwy., Kahuku, (808) 293-6000. This appeared in...
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2005 Kalia Rd, Honolulu, HI 96815, USA
Have you been here? Tell us about it below!
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78-6740 Alii Dr, Kailua-Kona, HI 96740, USA
One of the more relaxing evenings away from home was spent at the Outrigger Hotel in Kailua-Kona on the Big Island of Hawaii. I checked in with no problems and was even upgraded to a partial ocean view room! I had enough time to mosey on through...
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2330 Kalakaua Ave, Honolulu, HI 96815, USA
This elegant mall bridges glitzy Kalakaua Avenue and up-and-coming Kuhio Avenue. Its heart: a treehouse in an enormous Indian banyan tree. The tree was planted around 1850 and briefly owned by Queen Emma; at one point, one of its tree houses...
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59-024 Kamehameha Hwy, Haleiwa, HI 96712, USA
Everyone is crazy for the chocolate haupia pie here, but the shrimp plate is also so good you’ll want to lick your fingers. —Hoku Haiku 59-024 Kamehameha Hwy., Sunset Beach, (808) 638-8207. This appeared in the June/July 2013 issue. Read more...
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53 - 360 Kamehameha Hwy, Hauula, HI 96717, USA
A trip to the North Shore is a must for any visitor on Oahu. It is an easy day trip from Honolulu or Waikiki to swing around Hawaii Kai up the windward (east) side of the island and make several stops along the way. The best shrimp in Hawaii is up...
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Kapiolani Park Beach, Diamond Head - Kapahulu - St. Louis, HI 96815, USA
The Hawaiian Islands are made up of many more cultural groups than Hawaiian Islanders and white settlers. Located between Asia and North America, the blend of cultures is much different than the other 49 States. Every time I host guests in ...
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Haleiwa, HI 96712, USA
Shave Ice is a great way to cool off on a hot Hawaiian day and enjoy a Hawaii flavored favorite treat. There is no better place than Haleiwa to find shave ice stands on as many corners as Starbucks frequents in Seattle! Flavors come in all sorts...
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2233 Kalakaua Ave #304, Honolulu, HI 96815, USA
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Satisfy your sushi cravings at Doraku Sushi. This reasonably-priced Japanese restaurant's owner is the son of Benihana's founder and located on busy Kalakaua Avenue—right in the middle of the action. Feast your eyes on this ahi poke: local tuna,...
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66-111 Kamehameha Hwy #101, Haleiwa, HI 96712, USA
This spacious North Shore eatery and watering hole riffs on the beloved Honolulu original. It makes a strong showing in the "pupu" (appetizer) department with nibbles like poke, pot stickers, kālua-pig fried rice, Korean-style chicken wings, and...
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Magic Island, Honolulu, HI 96814, USA
Even before I moved to Hawaii, I knew I wanted to be a part of the Lantern Floating Festival. It takes place on Memorial Day weekend in May at Ala Moana Park in Honolulu. An estimated 40,000 people turned out for the 2012 celebration where...
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Kīlauea Crater, Hawaii 96778, USA
The highlight of Volcanoes National Park is the Kilauea Crater. Nothing beats seeing the glow from the active crater at night—well, maybe the prospect of seeing a new explosive eruption. There are a couple of other lava flow viewing areas in the...
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Hilo, HI, HI, USA
Living in Honolulu, nothing feels better than to leave the City for a few days; even if it means heading to the North Shore of Oahu or another island for a short reprieve. On this particular occasion, I booked a ticket to the Big Island of Hawaii;...
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Chain of Craters Rd, Pāhoa, HI 96778, USA
There are several hidden treasures among the volcanoes on the Big Island of Hawaii. The one that I found most fascinating was a short (0.7 mile) hike from the Chain of Craters road to the Pu'u Loa Petroglyphs. I was most fascinated that this land...
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Round Top Dr, Honolulu, HI 96822, USA
My favorite part about living in Hawaii is the view from where I live. I am tremendously blessed to have the spectacular 'perch' that I do looking over Diamondhead, Waikiki, Honolulu, and past the airport to Ko'olina. If you are looking to see...
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2365 Kalakaua Ave, Honolulu, HI 96815, USA
Smack in the middle of Waikiki’s perennial party, the Moana Surfrider has elegant old bones and the bustle of a big-city hotel. On any given day, the Victorian-era lobby is full of young Japanese brides and grooms, trailed by their...
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Kalapana - Kapoho Rd, Pāhoa, HI 96778, USA
Pele is the Hawaiian goddess of fire, lightning, wind, and volcanoes. Her power still holds the imagination of people in Hawaii today as legends suggest that taking rocks from her home on the island of Hawaii will lead to bad luck. She is said to...
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Maui County, HI, USA
The best snorkeling in Hawaii may be found in the Molokini Crater. Snorkelers and divers find pristine water and great visibility in this small crater off the coast of Maui. Not only is the water amazingly clear, the number and variety of fish in...
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45-550 Kionaole Rd, Kaneohe, HI 96744, USA
It’s not your hometown suburban country club. Golfers at any of Oahu’s dozens of open courses may be distracted by all the surrounding beauty—or the setting might inspire their game. Either way, there’s a course for all levels, from the nine-hole...
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Maui, Hawaii, USA
There's plenty of interesting wildlife on and around Hawaii, but you have to seek it out. Hike Oahu’s Makapu’u Point Lighthouse Trail for a chance to see humpbacks breaching offshore, then head to the North Shore to observe sea turtles basking on...
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2760 Round Top Dr, Honolulu, HI 96822, USA
You are lucky the sun only rises and sets once a day on Hawaii—otherwise, you’d spend all of your time transfixed by the horizon. Hike to the leeward (eastern) side of any island on a clear evening and train your eye over the ocean in search of...
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Waikīkī Beach, Honolulu, HI 96815, USA
Despite the crowds of tourists upon Waikiki Beach trying to get an enviable tan their co-workers will resent, there is some great snorkelling opportunities that you don't necessarily have to pay for. When the ocean is devoid of any waves I urge...
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1185 Kaluanui Rd, Honolulu, HI 96825, USA
Escape the hubbub of Honolulu and stretch your legs on this 4.4-mile, moderate, out-and-back path. Somewhat steep, this serious glute workout attracts a lot of trail runners, especially on the weekends. The hike begins among rocks and small...
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Kamehameha Hwy, Haleiwa, HI 96712, USA
Sunbathing—throwing down a towel, propping up a beach umbrella, and idly sifting sand through your toes—remains one of the greatest pleasures of visiting Hawaii. Lanikai beach on Oahu ranks as one of the world’s best, inspiring devotion with its...
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Makapuu Lighthouse Rd, Hawaii Kai, HI, USA
For some reason (beyond jetlag), I wake up very early in Hawaii. Perhaps it's the promise of early morning view like this one, after a pretty simple hike.
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HI-560, Kapaa, HI 96746, USA
With sand between your toes and frothy waves running over your tired feet, enjoying a long walk on the beach with your beau is about as romantic as life can get. Many hotels make it easy on couples, thanks to their convenient waterfront location,...
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Waikīkī, HI 96815, USA
Where there are beaches, there are beach bars, allowing travelers to soothe their souls by indulging in liquid refreshment. To the wafting sounds of slack-key guitar and hula celebration, order a Coco Freeze beneath the enormous banyan tree at the...
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Waimea Canyon Dr, Waimea, HI 96796, USA
Often described as the Grand Canyon of the Pacific, this 10-mile-long Kauai valley is a kaleidoscopic array of scarlet earth, verdant valleys, and raw volcanic crags. Bands of color streak the corrugated landscape, each representing a different...
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2201 Kalakaua Ave, Honolulu, HI 96815, USA
A stroll down Kalakaua Avenue is always great for people watching, shopping, and dining. In September 2013, the Royal Hawaiian Center reopened the Helumoa Hale and Royal Grover on Kalakaua. This beautiful grove provides authentic Hawaiian hula,...
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Kaneohe Bay, Hawaii, USA
Before I moved to Hawaii, I was able to take a short "scouting" trip to sort out where I wanted to live and learn about the island of Oahu. I stayed with some generous friends on Kaneohe Bay on the windward side of the island who had a lovely view...
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Ka‘Iwa Ridge, Kailua, HI 96734, USA
Starting a day with a hike on the Lanikai Pillbox Trail is a popular way to get out of Honolulu for a magnificent morning sight. Although the view is beautiful any time of day, most people prefer to visit the pillboxes (bunkers constructed during...
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2335 Kalakaua Ave #116, Honolulu, HI 96815, USA
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Surfing legend Duke Kahanamoku grew up here, and you can dine amid his memorabilia at this kitschy Waikiki classic. Pair one of the restaurant’s signature mai tais with a pupu (appetizer) like ahi poke or panko-fried...
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Kalakaua Ave, Honolulu, HI, USA
In Honolulu it seems like any reason is a fantastic reason to have a parade on Oahu. Traffic is held up and diverted all over Waikiki's slim peninsula, and the streets are flooded with brilliant colors and the sounds of marching bands. The...
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Pearl Harbor, HI 96701, USA
Every December 7 at Pearl Harbor, there is a memorial to those who died in the awful attacks that day in 1941. Survivors gather here, though fewer every year remain alive. Oil still rises from where the USS Arizona lies in the harbor. The horrific...
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Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, HI 96718, USA
The ire of Mount Kilauea reforges the world before visitors' eyes. Nicknamed "the World's Only Drive-In Volcano," it’s produced serious lava every day since 1983 with no signs of stopping. Pele—the fire goddess who lives here,...
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Honolulu, HI 96815, USA
If there is one geological formation that represents the island of Oahu, and perhaps the entire state of Hawaii, it is Diamond Head. This crater, formed about 300,000 years ago, prominently sits right next to Waikiki and makes its way into many...
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423 Kaumakani St, Honolulu, HI 96825, USA
Unlikely as it may be, if you climb the steps to 1208ft (or 368m) at Kokohead, there is quite a bit of street art...er, trail art. Usually spotting the tagging at the conclusion of an intense and beautiful hike is a disappointment, but the...
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1 Arizona Memorial Pl, Honolulu, HI 96818, USA
Every year on December 7, survivors from the attacks on Pearl Harbor gather as the faces of remembrance. A ship's whistle is blown, flowers are thrown to the sea, the missing man formation flies overhead, the President makes a statement of...
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Round Top Dr, Honolulu, HI 96822, USA
Hawaii’s flora is immediately captivating. From the sweet-smelling plumeria tucked behind the ears of women in the airport, to the wild orchids that grow in Volcanoes National Park and the resplendent ipu kula (cup of gold) flower found along...
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2169 Kalia Rd, Honolulu, HI 96815, USA
In Honolulu, just a couple blocks off Kalakaua Avenue sits the Outrigger Reef on the Beach hotel. The open-air lobby with several shops on the ground floor and a tropical garden near the entry make this hotel a quieter and beautiful place to stay...
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2169 Kalia Rd, Honolulu, HI 96815, USA
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Everything about the Blue Hawaii cocktail at the Shore Bird Restaurant says "tropical island paradise." The icy blue color of the blue curaçao is enough to cool any sunburnt skin down and providing for a relaxed mood to enjoy the sun's decent into...
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2005 Kalia Rd, Honolulu, HI 96815, USA
The Hilton Hawaiian Village has built a little kingdom associated with the resort property on the beach in Waikiki. Pools, restaurants, shops, a beautiful beach, and well maintained landscapes allow guests to meander seamlessly from one activity...
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8483 Highway 72, Honolulu, HI 96825, USA
Before landing in Honolulu and visiting Oahu for the first time, it is important to note that the island is 44 miles long and 30 miles wide. To reach the North Shore, visitors will either want to arrange a tour, rent a car, or be prepared for a...
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3435 Waialae Ave #104, Honolulu, HI 96816, USA
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For folks who want to leave Waikiki for exotic drinks, Town is a classy favorite of the locals. Located on Waialae Avenue, the warm and intimate atmosphere will have patrons ordering several cocktails, like this grape caipirinha to cool off after...
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2815 Kalakaua Ave, Honolulu, HI 96815, USA
The War Memorial Natatorium was originally built in 1927 to remember those who fought and served in World War I. It is a (now closed) saltwater swimming pool built right off the beach and into the Pacific Ocean. The Duke Kahanamoku, renowned...
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2201, 1130 Bethel St, Honolulu, HI 96813, USA
In case of inclement weather, Honolulu has a beautiful indoor entertainment option at the Hawaii Theatre. Shows include opera, concerts, plays, ballets, and nearly anything that can be performed on a stage! The historic vaudeville theater was...
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11 Arizona Memorial Dr, Honolulu, HI 96818, USA
The USS Bowfin earned the nickname "The Pearl Harbor Avenger" when it started service one year after the attack on Pearl Harbor. Now docked in the harbor as a museum, visitors can walk through the attack submarine and imagine what events...
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5000 Kahala Ave, Honolulu, HI 96816, USA
Long considered one of the top hotels on Oahu, the Kahala has always been a particular favorite among the type of guests who travel with their own security detail. A number of past U.S. presidents, plus kings, queens, princesses Grace and Di,...
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Waikīkī, HI 96815, USA
Sailors can find their place at sea in Hawaii by renting their own sail boat for a day or allowing someone else to do the work and joining one of the many charters that explore the sea each day. During whale season (January to March and October to...
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417 S King St, Honolulu, HI 96813, USA
Known today as the Hawaii Five-O headquarters façade, Aliiolani Hale means "house of the heavenly king" in the Hawaiian language. The building was designed under King Kamehameha V and served as a palace with government offices for the Kingdom of...
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45-550 Kionaole Rd, Kaneohe, HI 96744, USA
Camille's on Wheels is a roving food truck. Undoubtably, the blue and green truck will be on Oahu, but finding Camille's location can be like a game of hide-n-seek. Camille cooks for film crews and caters events. Her food is prepared from scratch...
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940 Auahi St # 140, Honolulu, HI 96814, USA
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I first visited Wahoo's Fish Taco in Denver and have been going back ever since. It seems much more appropriate that Wahoo's, with its surfboarding theme, has a location in Hawaii. The location I frequented is in Ala Moana. Time permitting, I...
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Pali Hwy, Honolulu, HI 96817, USA
The Pali Puka trail is a short distance, but the trail was much more exposed and challenging to negotiate than the length of path suggests. The trail is hidden beyond the parking lot at the Nuuanu Pali Lookout and follows along the ridge line of...
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Magic Island, Honolulu, HI 96815, USA
Ala Moana Beach Park is a long skinny thread of land on the beachfront between Waikiki and downtown Honolulu. The atmosphere is much calmer than Waikiki, though large events are often held at the Park—like the Floating Lantern Memorial and the...
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Laniakea Beach, North Shore, HI 96712, USA
More commonly known as Turtle Beach, this Oahu North Shore cove often attracts honu, aka Chelonia mydas, the largest of the hard-shelled sea turtles. These big, friendly giants can reach 400 pounds as adults and are herbivorous, feeding primarily...
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Ala Moana, Honolulu, HI, USA
The Mai Tai is the state of Hawaii's signature drink. Some airlines (Alaska Airlines) even provide complimentary mai tai beverages just prior to landing for passengers who are flying to the Islands. Mai Tais are a mix of tropical fruit juices...
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Getting around Oahu was a breeze on my Vespa scooter. My 250cc engine was enough to easily get me over the Koolau Mountain passes and zip to the grocery store. For experienced drivers, a big scooter or motorcycle ride around Oahu feels like an...
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Maunalaha Rd, Honolulu, HI 96822, USA
In the land where the sun shines and the temperatures rarely require a sweater, decorating for the holidays in Hawaii takes on a different look and feel than it does throughout the rest of North America. I drove by this little arrangement every...
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31 N Pauahi St, Honolulu, HI 96817, USA
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Of all the little cafes and restaurants in Honolulu, we picked HASR Bistro to celebrate a friend's birthday over lunch. The chef has started several Honolulu restaurants and teamed up with HASR Wine owner for this little treat. We all loved our...
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2055 Kalia Rd, Honolulu, HI 96815, USA
When my friends came through Honolulu and said they had a room at the Hale Koa, I had an opportunity to see what the resort is all about. The Hale Koa is dedicated to providing service men and women of all ranks with a place for rest and...
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2424 Kalakaua Ave, Honolulu, HI 96815, USA
Every afternoon about 5:30 PM, islanders and connoisseurs of sunsets arrange themselves at their favorite beach side vantage point on the west and south shores of Oahu for a chance to see the legendary “green flash”. In all of my years of living...
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Honolulu, HI, USA
Most little critters do not bother me too much, but there are several that can give me a fright - mostly due to their size. This centipede was nearly dead, but at five inches long, surprised me quite a bit! On land, several spiders will bite, but...
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49-227 Kamehameha Hwy # A, Kaneohe, HI 96744, USA
For one of the best tours in Hawaii, I send my friends and family to Tropical Farms. The talented, laid back, and comical tour guides provide an entertaining history of the Hawaiian Islands through the fruits that grow on the Islands - including...
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310 Kamakee St, Honolulu, HI 96814, USA
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Local Hawaiian Barbecue is easy to come by in the Islands. And, no fast food or plated lunch chain makes it easier to taste a bit of Island food than L&L Barbecue. Menu favorites include Kailua Pork and Hawaiian Barbecue Chicken. To try something...
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1050 Ala Moana Blvd, Honolulu, HI 96814, USA
It might be the middle of the City, and it might be at the major concert hall in Honolulu, but Wednesday evenings are typically reserved for the Ward (aka Honolulu) Farmers Market. Tents go up, and local food vendors and farmers display their...
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601 Kapahulu Ave, Honolulu, HI 96815, USA
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It's late and you're out with friends or bringing the family back to the hotel after a long day at the North Shore. Everyone's hungry for a filling snack—or a late dinner. Back on the U.S. mainland, you might consider dropping by a Denny's, but in...
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Honolulu, HI, USA
The night blooming cereus flower bloom on the hillsides in Honolulu once a year. And, when one pops out, the entire hillside will fill with their white blossoms. The flower develops overnight and is wilting already in the morning making them quite...
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925 Maunakea St # C2, Honolulu, HI 96817, USA
Once a week I allocate $3.65 for my favorite lychee bubble tea. The frozen beverage with black tapioca pearls tastes so delicious on a hot day. And, I also found that it provides a great deal of headache relief. The mom and pops store is run by a...
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41-037 Wailea St, Waimanalo, HI 96795, USA
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A trip on Oahu's windward side to the North Shore is not complete without a stop at the yellow Shrimp Shack. Two wonderful women operate this truck and serve up locally sourced fresh shrimp and other delicious food. As a warning, the meals are...
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Honolulu, HI, USA
Papaya is all over the Hawaiian Islands. Unfortunately, finding some that is ripe and not on private property can be a bit difficult. Priced under $1 per pound at most fruit markets, it's probably easier to purchase the golden fruit when it's firm...
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Honolulu, HI, USA
One fruit that you will undoubtably come across in Hawaii is lilikoi, a yellow Hawaiian passion fruit. The fruit grows in abundance, and is pretty easy to find in parks and forests all over the Islands. Low hanging lilikoi will be picked quickly,...
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50 N Hotel St, Honolulu, HI 96817, USA
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Craft cocktails and modern Asian cuisine reign at this hip noodle bar in Honolulu's Chinatown. Dig into a bowl of ramen, garnished with sesame seeds, green onion, ginger, a soft egg, and wakame (dried seaweed). From there, things get lively with...
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3454 Waialae Ave #6, Honolulu, HI 96861, USA
Down Waialae Avenue, an unsuspecting building on the corner of 9th Avenue is home to Acupoint Wellness Clinic where Patrick Piotrowski, MS, LAc uses Chinese medicine, acupuncture, and massage to relax and energize anyone who comes in for an...
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62-100 Mauna Kea Beach Dr, Waimea, HI 96743, USA
The sweet smell of plumeria floats on gentle trade winds into each guest room at the Mauna Kea Beach Hotel. When entering the room, you may be surprised that floor-to-ceiling picture windows and a beautiful private lanai (patio) beckon you to step...