9 Things to Do on North Shore

by Mariam Beard • Last Updated: October 2022

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On a recent day off, I decided to explore the North Shore of Oahu with a good friend. We had a full day of activities, places to eat, and scenic points to explore. In this article, I’ll share with you the nine things we did on our day trip to the North Shore.

#1: Shark Cage Tour

We left Waikiki early for a 7:30am shark cage tour. It’s a bit of a drive, so we had a light breakfast since we knew we’d be swimming with sharks later. It was an incredible experience to see such majestic creatures.

#2 Breakfast at Farm to Barn Cafe

After the shark cage dive, we headed to Farm to Barn Cafe for breakfast. I was so hungry that I ordered a Loco Moco, which is a beef patty on top of rice with an egg on top and drizzled in gravy. It was a perfect comfort food after the dive.

#3 Stop at Sunset Beach

We had a couple of hours to kill before our next activity, so we headed to Sunset Beach. It’s super gorgeous and a lot of it is seasonal. During the winter time (December, January, and February) the waves are huge, but when we went it was a lot calmer. We hung out on the beach and relaxed for a bit.

#4 Grab a snack at Sunrise Shack

After we finished at Sunset Beach, I got hungry again so we headed to Sunrise Shack. It’s a bright yellow spot with delicious acai bowls and bullet coffee. If you’re not heading up to the North Shore, you can also check out their other location in Waikiki within the Outrigger Waikiki Beach Resort.

#5 Go on a Scenic Drive to Kahuku

We were heading to a zip line place in the northernmost part of the island, so we took a scenic drive up to Kahuku. We passed by the world famous Waimea Bay and Waimea Valley, a really cool botanical garden with a waterfall you can swim in. Admission to Waimea Valley is $25 and you purchase those tickets at the ticket booth when you arrive.

#6 Have a Mocktail at Turtle Bay Resort

We stopped at Turtle Bay Resort to have a mocktail at their poolside bar and restaurant called Sunset. They have mocktails, cocktails, and light bites. We were exhausted from getting up early for the shark cage dive, so we stopped in for a mocktail and lounged for a bit.

#7 Go Zip Lining

It was around 12:30pm when we checked in at Climb Works for the zip line. It was three hours with about eight zip lines, suspension bridges, and repelling. All the zip lines are dual lines, so two people can zip side by side. Wear sunscreen, as you’re outdoors the entire time and there isn’t really any shade.

Our Experience

#8 Have Dinner at Giovanni’s (shrimp truck)

After the zip line tour, we headed to Giovanni’s, a famous shrimp truck on the North Shore. They are known for their garlic shrimp, which is 10 out of 10. A plate runs about $16 and they are cash only.

#9 Go on East Coast Drive Back to Waikiki

Rather than going back to Haleiwa and then going through the center of the island, we went around the east coast of the island via the H3 and headed back into Waikiki. The east coast drive is really pretty, with the ocean on your left the entire time.

Overall, it was an incredible day trip to the North Shore of Oahu.

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Aloha! I'm Mariam.

I'm an Oahu resident sharing my adventures here in Hawaii to help take the guesswork out of planning your trip to Hawaii.

I've worked full-time as a concierge for a decade and have planned thousands of itineraries for travelers like you!


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