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Honolulu! What a great place for a business trip, lucky you! You are absolutely spoiled for choice of things to do and places to go when your work day ends. Your biggest problem will be finding enough time to do it all.
You can’t say you’ve been to Honolulu without taking an early evening stroll along Waikiki Beach, finding a beachfront bar, ordering a Mai Tai cocktail or two and watch the sunset!
How to Get to Honolulu, HI
Most business people traveling to Hawaii will fly into Daniel K. Inouye International Airport. also known as Honolulu International Airport. The quickest way to get to Honolulu from the airport is by taxi ($40-$50) or Uber or Lyft ($30-$40) and should take 25 to 50 minutes depending on the time of day.
There are several shuttle services. Roberts Hawaii Express Shuttle is one of the most well known. Cost is $17 and time taken will depend on the time of day and the number of hotel drop-offs it does, but allow 45 to 75 minutes.
If you only have hand luggage, you can jump on the number 20 bus for $2.75 but you will need the correct change as no change is given and definitely no big luggage. Allow an hour to one and a half hours for the trip.
The major car rental companies also have offices at the airport.
For getting around Honolulu, walking is probably your best, most interesting, and quickest option. The traffic is dense and the traffic lights are many! However, there are plenty of taxis, Uber and Lyft. There are always plenty of touristy trolleybuses running frequently around the most popular places in Waikiki and the public buses called ‘TheBus’ will take you to those places outside Waikiki you may need to visit. However, download a timetable as some routes do not run very frequently.
Where to Eat in Honolulu, HI
Quick, Cheap & Cheerful! // If you’ve had a hard day at the office and been in meetings all day, you might just want a quick meal and not want to have to talk to anyone! Ala Moana Mall and the Royal Hawaiian Centre have excellent food courts where you are bound to find something to suit your needs. And there are plenty of interesting hole in the wall food places and food trucks scattered about.
Kuhio Beach Grill at Marriott’s Resort & Spa // Another good option after a busy day when you are hungry and want a good meal, but don’t want to sit around for ages waiting for it to be cooked, is the buffet at the Kuhio Beach Grill in the Marriott Resort. The surroundings are pleasant and relaxing and the food options are good. The prime rib is superb and the crab legs delicious! As a bonus, if you happen to be there on Monday to Thursday nights between 5 and 6 pm or 8 to 10 pm the buffet is half price.
Marukame Udon Waikiki // We would frequently drive by this place on Kuhio Avenue with queues of people lined up outside any time of the day and night and we wondered what the attraction was. Our curiosity got the better of us and we went and checked it out for ourselves. It was a self serve Japanese noodle and tempura bar cafe. The queue moves reasonably fast and the Udon is made in front of you. Load up your tray with the noodles and tempura and other delicious food, pay the cashier, and go in search of a table. The food was so tasty. We understood why people would queue.
And we also saw big queues at 933 Kapahula Avenue, which is the famous Leonards Bakery. Since 1952 they have been making fresh and hot malasadas and other delicious doughnuts to appreciative queues of tourists and locals.
Ruth’s Chris Steak House // Maybe you have a hankering for a really juicy steak or maybe you need to take some guests for dinner. We recommend the elegant and professional service at Ruth’s Chris Steak House. It has an outdoor seating area, if that’s your preference, and our meal of rib-eye steak with salad and a delicious blue cheese dressing was perfect.
Duke’s Barefoot Bar and Restaurant // If you’re coming to Honolulu you should pay homage to the Duke! Duke Paoa Kahanamoku introduced surfing to the USA, Australia and New Zealand in the early 1900s. He was an Olympic Gold Medal swimmer and one of the last full-blooded Hawaiians. This famous restaurant and bar is right on the beachfront at Waikiki. Check your sandals in at the door, order a tropical cocktail and swish your feet about in the sand. You’re at the beach. Who needs shoes?
Things to See in Honolulu, HI
Murals and Microbreweries // Take a taxi to the newly hip area of Kakaako. Wander around and be stunned by the huge wall murals which are painted in February each year as part of the Pow Wow Festival. When you get hungry or thirsty pop into one of the many microbreweries and sample their unique beers and food.
Luau // It’s Hawaii. You’ve got to go to a luau, enjoy the Hawaiian feast, music, and culture. There are plenty of venues in Waikiki but one of the most authentic and popular is at the Polynesian Cultural Center on the North Shore.
Segway twilight trip to Diamond Head // Feel like some fresh air? Avoid the crowds and the heat of the day and take an early evening Segway of Hawaii tour to Diamond Head. You’ll get instruction on how to ride a segway, a headset and mic so you can hear the tour guide. The views are spectacular and you won’t get all hot and sweaty! Honolulu Sunset Cruise What a way to end the day. There is plenty of choice of types of boats -luxury launches, catamarans and even glass-bottom boats for your sunset cruise with drinks, dinner and often entertainment. It’s also a great way to watch the traditional Friday night fireworks from The Hilton.
Moon Walks at Waimea Valley // Here’s something different! Moon Walks up to the waterfall at the beautiful Waimea Valley. “Our annual moonwalks are a popular activity at the Valley,” says Richard Pezzulo, executive director. “Not only are the walks a unique way to experience the Valley, but it is an opportunity for us to share how significant the Hawaiian lunar phases are and what they meant to the lives of Native Hawaiians.”
Blue Note Hawaii // Feel like listening to some excellent live music? Blue Note Hawaii is located at the Outrigger Waikiki Beach Resort and renowned as the premier live music venue in Hawaii and features two shows per night of top local and international acts. You can get a meal here too.
Also check out:
- Sacramento, CA After 5:00 pm
- San Diego After 5:00 pm
- Bernal Heights, San Francisco After 5:00 pm
- San Diego After Five: Enjoying Warm Nights
- San Jose After Five
- San Francisco Chinatown After Five