I was recently asked why I love the Windward side of O’ahu so much.  There are many other fantastic areas, towns and neighborhoods that is for certain. However, I love the Windward side for the beauty, people and food…to name just a few.

Views from the Mountains to the Beach – Take It All In

The Windward side is a magical place, and one of the highlights is the fact there are amazing views from the mountain to the ocean, from mauka to makai. You can stand on the beach and watch the lapping waves, breathe the ocean air and then turn around to see the majestic Ko’olaus.  If you love the ocean, you can park your towel or chair on the beach and take in the sights and sounds.  Or, kick off your slippahs and take a walk down the beach.  Grab your dog if you have one to go with you!  Conversely, if you love the mountains, put on your hiking shoes and find a trail like Olomana or Kawai Nui. Regardless of where you go, there is beauty in every direction.

People Who Exude Aloha – A Smile Everywhere You Turn

One of the reasons I love the Windward side is because Aloha exists here.  The people exude it. I love walking down the street, not knowing the person, but we say “good morning” or “hello.” I have a friend who does not leave her house without a flower in her ear. Just seeing it brightens up my day. I feel the Windward side is still a place of manners: there is still a please and thank you and a smile.  And, eh, there is also the wave from a car window when you let someone merge or pass.  Yes, aloha means hello or goodbye, but it truly means so much more.  “Spread a little aloha around the world…”

Delicious Food – Good for the Stomach and the Soul

Now, the topic of food is personal and subjective.  We all have our favorites.  But, what I love about the Windward side is the diversity in both the type of cuisine as well as budgets. 

On a special occasion, I love to go to Haleiwa Joe’s.  The lanai seating and view of the sunset cannot be replicated anywhere else.  The mai tai’s are always cold and tasty and the fish dishes satisfy every time.  (They also serve large portions of prime rib, if that’s your jam.)

Kailua:  For breakfast, great stops include Moke’s, Over Easy, Boots & Kimo’s, and Cinnamon’s.  I often pop by Kalapawai, Uahi, Aloha Salads, Hibachi, Kono’s or Paniolo’s for lunch.  And, I already mentioned dinner, but there is also Champa Thai, Buzz’s, Tokoname and Assagio’s.  Finally, there are the nights when I can’t even think about cooking or cleaning, so I always appreciate Big City Diner, California Pizza Kitchen, Zippy’s, Yamas and Grylt.  There are so many other wonderful restaurants to choose from. 

Kaneohe:  It’s a great start to the day if you stop by Kaneohe Pancake House, Times Coffee Shop (Kailua, too) or Kaneohe Bakerty for your favorite pastries.  My go-to for lunch is Dean’s Drive-Inn, Fresh Catch, or if I am that way, Kualoa’s restaurant.  I already mentioned dinner at Haleiwa Joe’s.  A few other go-tos are Chao Pytha, Ichiriki and Zia’s.

I know I have not covered everything here!  What are some of your favorites?  Please feel free to hop on my Facebook page and share your favorites on this post:

All in all, the Windward side is one of the most wonderful places to call home. We have beauty, wonderful people and ono food!  Lucky we live Hawai’i!