Soak Up East Side Oahu
The Menehune loves the east side of the island. Here are some suggestions for an excellent half day adventure featuring ono grinds, a hike and some beautiful ocean views that can’t be beat!
12:00 pm: Head over to Hawaii Kai on Kalanianaole Highway. Before the hike, fuel up at Kona Brewing Company. They have delicious pupus and entrees and craft beer with local favorites you can only get on tap. Plus they are located on the marina so you can enjoy the breeze with a view of the ocean while you relax.
1:30 pm Next make your way to the Makapu’u Lighthouse hike. This is a pretty steep yet short hike on a paved path overlooking the Ka Iwi Coastline (Bring plenty of water and sunscreen since there is no shade). If you happen to be visiting during the winter months, keep an eye out for whales spouting and jumping. The hike takes about one hour (plus or minus 30 minutes based on your skill level) round-trip. Once you get to the top you can see the epic view of Rabbit Island, Waimanalo, and the whole coastline of the windward side. If you’re looking for more of a challenge from this hike, try running up it!
Bonus hike: Makapu’u Tide Pools is an extension of the Makapu’u Lighthouse Trail that will add about 45 minutes to an hour to your hike. Once you’re about halfway up the lighthouse trail, you will see a sign on your right telling you about Humpback Whales. If you look down from there you will see the tide pools below you and possibly see people climbing their way up or down to get to them. This is a moderate hike as there are some uneven parts to the path, and it requires some climbing and getting a little dirty. Just go slowly to keep your footing. The way down is pretty intuitive; you just weave down on the path that is mostly carved out. Take a dip in the pools and enjoy the view of the crashing waves. On the way up if you are feeling lost, just look for the arrows that have been conveniently painted on the rocks for you to help you find the way back.
2:30/3:30 pm Now it’s time to cool off with a dip in the ocean! Head over to Waimanalo Beach Park, a short drive from the lighthouse hike, where you’ll find a nice, long beach with plenty of room to spread out. The white sand and gentle waves make it a great location to hang out or go for a swim. The views of the Koolau Mountains just complete the picture.
5:30/6:00 pm When you’ve had your fill of sun and sea salt, head back to town and get ready for an epic meal at Side Street Inn on Kapahulu. A favorite of many of Hawaii’s top chefs, they serve family-style, gourmet Hawaiian dishes in a relaxed setting. You really can’t go wrong with anything on the menu, but you do have to try the Kim Chee Fried Rice because it just can’t be beat. Portions are huge, so the more friends and family you can bring the better!
The Menehune hopes you enjoy this adventure as much as he does. If you don’t have the statue, don’t forget to download a free “Flat ‘Hune” to bring with you!