Nourishing Cities: Oahu Edition

Hello! It’s Grace again, one of the Summer 2021 interns at Moonlit Skincare. After finishing up my sophomore year at the University of Washington (and hopefully my very last virtual college quarter), I took a trip to Oahu, Hawai’i.

Oahu, Hawaii Sunset Picture with two people in the water

I used to live on Oahu so this trip was a combination of seeing my friends, relaxing after finals, and also showing my boyfriend around the island. I want to note that I am fully vaccinated and complied with all of the safety precautions put in place by the state of Hawai’i. Also, I want to acknowledge the importance of the culture, land, and the locals that live there as well. In this blog post I will be sharing some of my favorite food spots  and my favorite spots to relax around the island. 

 1. Heavenly Island Lifestyle Instagram @heavenly.hi - I would have to say Heavenly is my favorite breakfast spot in Waikiki. It is connected to the Shoreline Hotel Waikiki, which was the hotel that I stayed at for the majority of my trip. It is a great affordable option if you are looking for hotels in Waikiki. Heavenly specializes in brunch foods and has a wide variety of Hawaiian fusion food to energizing smoothies. 

*Moonlit Tip: Heavenly opens at 7AM and I recommend getting there as early as possible because the line gets long. There was already a long line forming by 7:30 am! I would recommend anything on the menu because everything I’ve had there so far blows my mind every time, but if you’re looking for something to start off with I would suggest getting the Kalua Pork Eggs Benedict or the Loco Moco.

Eggs Benedict from Heavenly Hawaii

2. Manoa Falls Hike - This beginner friendly hike is straight out of a Jurassic Park movie. The vines traveling up trees and wild monstera plants growing right off the road transports you to a different world. Located in the Manoa Valley, the 1.7 mile hike is a 20 minute car ride from Waikiki. Admission to see the beautiful greenery and waterfall  is $5 per vehicle.


*Moonlit Tip: There is ample parking here unlike Diamond Head, so you don’t have to wake up at the crack of dawn if you want to do this hike. I went around 8-9 am after failing to get parking at Diamond Head. I would say that you can skip on the bug spray at Diamond Head or Koko Head, but bug spray here is a must  because the moisture and plants make it a perfect breeding ground for mosquitoes. Also, going on a rainy day will make the trail super muddy, but you’ll get a beautiful waterfall at the end of the hike so it’s up to you and the weather.
Manoa Falls Hike greenery, jurassic like trees and plants
3. Sunrise Shack - The Sunrise Shack is literally a yellow shack on the side of the road in North Shore, but they also have other locations with one being in Waikiki. This instagrammable yellow shack has a variety of smoothie bowls and other healthy and delicious items that are a perfect pick me up after a day at the beach. 

*Moonlit Tip: My favorite thing to get at the Sunrise Shack is the blue dream bowl which is kind of like an acai bowl but with blue majik spirulina powder. If you have never tried an acai bowl I would definitely recommend trying an acai bowl because they taste 100 percent better in Hawai’i. There are two locations on the north shore and one location in Waikiki. I went to the north shore location around 4 pm on a weekday because I was already at the beach and I got my smoothie bowl fairly fast.
Blue dream bowl from sunrise shack on the North Shore of Oahu. Includes berries, granola, and blue spirulina powder
4. Matsumoto Shave Ice - Shave Ice is another snack that is perfect for after the beach. In its most simple form this treat is just ice and flavoring with the occasional topping, but don’t underestimate how tasty it is. Matsumoto is a family owned shop that has been open since 1951! While it’s a popular tourist spot, locals still frequent the spot to get a cold treat. Another plus about Matsumoto is that it is affordable. A small shave ice is only $3!

*Moonlit Tip: My friends recommend getting ice cream, snow cap (condensed milk), and mochi balls with either the original rainbow combination or any of the fruit flavors. You can find lots of parking behind the shopping center Matsumoto is located in and there is a bathroom as well.
Matsumoto Rainbow Shaved Ice
5. Sunset Beach - Waikiki is where everyone stays, but visiting Sunset Beach on the north shore is a must. The beach has real sand and the water is crystal clear. True to its name, sunset beach has some of the best sunsets. I feel most relaxed on the beach tanning and I love using the Midnight Shift facial oil on my sunburns at night. 
*Moonlit Tip: Parking can be hard to find but there is a parking lot across the street from sunset if there isn’t any street parking available. Don’t forget to reapply sunscreen to help protect yourself from the sun.
Hawaii sunset
6. Sheraton Hotel Waikiki - I would have to say that the Sheraton is the nicest hotel resort located in Waikiki. While it is pretty expensive, I like staying there at least one night to enjoy the infinity pool, walk around the shops located in the hotel, and to enjoy the best oceanfront views. 

 *Moonlit Tip: One of the best features of the Sheraton is the 18+ infinity pool. It showcases amazing views of Diamond Head and is one of the best places to relax while watching the waves (without sand getting everywhere). If you stay at the Sheraton they also have a free GoPro rental available for guests. 

Diamond Head with Palm trees in the background in Hawaii