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If you’re headed to Oahu, be sure to not overlook the amazing food scene in Waikiki. After my recent week-long trip to the island, I’ve pulled together the best restaurants in Waikiki to add to your list.

Thanks to Hawaii’s landscape and tropical climate, it’s chock full of fresh fruit, vegetables, and seafood. All of this plays a major part in Waikiki’s cuisine—and Hawaii’s overall. A large population of Japanese ex-pats and tourists means there’s also a substantial Japanese influence on the dining scene. There is no shortage of many incredible restaurants to try.

The best part? These restaurants have the iconic Waikiki Beach ocean views as a backdrop. Meaning you’ll have views of white sand, Diamond Head and sunsets over the Pacific Ocean to enjoy while you dine.

Here’s a list of the 21 best restaurants in Waikiki, Oahu, with something for every traveler.

Planning a Trip to Waikiki? Here Are My Top Picks for the Best Hotels in Waikiki:

  1. Waikiki Marriott Beach Resort and Spa, for the best family-friendly hotel
  2. Moana Surfrider Resort and Spa, for the best luxury hotel
  3. The Royal Hawaiian, for the best classic hotel

The 21 Best Restaurants in Waikiki, Oahu


Please Note: I have been to most of these restaurants. I’m including a few extras in case you cannot get a reservation or ones that I couldn’t get either and had on my list.

1. La Mer

Among Waikiki restaurants, La Mer is in a class of its own. The state’s only AAA Five Diamond and Forbes 5 Star restaurant, it’s a fine dining restaurant with an elegant atmosphere. Stunning views of the Pacific Ocean and an award-winning wine list complete a memorable dining experience.

Address: 2199 Kālia Rd, Honolulu, HI 96815

2. Marugame Udon

Best Restaurants in Waikiki, Oahu

This casual Japanese spot specializes in Sanuki-style Udon noodles, which are square in shape and chewy in consistency. Marugame has nine options for trying them. Diners can enjoy them hot or cold and in a range of sauces and broths. Rice bowls, salads, tempura, and more round out the local’s favorite menu.

Address: 2310 Kūhiō Ave., Honolulu, HI 96815

3. Paia Fish Market

First opened in 1989 in its namesake town of Paia on Maui, this fresh seafood restaurant chain expanded to Oahu in 2018. Located within The Laylow Hotel, it’s a perfect place to sample the island’s fresh fish, from mahi mahi to ahi to salmon.

Address: 2299 Kūhiō Ave., Honolulu, HI 96815

4. Musubi Cafe IYASUME

With seven locations in the wider Waikiki area, you won’t have to go far to sample the food at this Japanese rice ball specialist. Everything is handmade with premium rice, and you can try the local specialty—Spam musubi—with topics including plum-cucumber and avocado-bacon-egg.

Address: 227 Lewers St. Honolulu, HI 96815

5. Sushi Sho

Sushi Sho is an omakase restaurant that offers a high-end experience. It combines modern and traditional techniques and uses unique Hawaiian ingredients. Don’t miss out on this amazing culinary experience.

There are only 10 seats at the main dining room’s sushi counter, meaning reservations are tough to snag, opening months in advance.

Address: 383 Kalaimoku St, Honolulu, HI 96815

6. Helena’s Hawaiian Food

This traditional, unpretentious, and family-owned Hawaiian food restaurant has been serving the local community since 1946. Here you’ll find specialties including kalua pig and short ribs, along with sides like macaroni salad and lomi salmon.

Address: 1240 N School St, Honolulu, HI 96817

7. Maguro Brothers Hawaii Waikiki

This counter-service spot has been a go-to for fresh poke and sashimi since it opened in Chinatown in 2014. Its restaurant in Waikiki is only for takeout. However, you can take the food to the open-air shopping center across the street. There you can enjoy your meal without having to pay for seating.

Address: Waikiki Hotel, 415 Nāhua Street Pearl, Honolulu, HI 96815

8. Momosan Waikiki

This ramen and sake bar promises the best ramen in Waikiki, but that’s not all—it also has dumplings, sushi, rice dishes, and garlic shrimp on offer. Momosan also has an outdoor beer garden featuring local and craft brews that you can enjoy at communal tables.

Address: 2490 Kalākaua Ave, Honolulu, HI 96815

9. Duke’s Waikiki

Duke’s is an institution in Hawaii and its Waikiki location. With prime beachfront real estate, a view of Diamond Head and tiki vibes—is no exception.

Named for Olympian Duke Kahanamoku, the father of modern-day surfing, the restaurant puts “Pacific-inspired flavors” on full display with a dash of fun and friendly service.

Address: 2335 Kalākaua Ave #116, Honolulu, HI 96815


10. Moku Kitchen

At Moku, a counter-service restaurant that looks to merge high-quality food and drink with a casual setting. You’ll find a commitment to craft and sustainability in their food.

The restaurant prides itself on its partnerships with farmers, brewers, and other artisans, and that focus shines through on its menu of small plates, salads, and hand-tossed pizzas.

Address: 660 Ala Moana Blvd No. 145, Honolulu, HI 96813

11. The Pig and the Lady

This standout Vietnamese spot serves classics like pho and banh mi with a modern twist. Open for lunch and dinner, its brick-clad dining room provides an industrial-chic ambiance for indulging in menu items like the Viet Cajun Oyster Po’Boy and Vit Kho Gung, a braised duck leg rice plate. While it’s technically in Honolulu, you can’t miss this nearby.

Address: 83 N King St, Honolulu, HI 96817

12. Hula Grill

Serving breakfast, brunch, lunch, dinner and everything in between, Hula Grill is an all-day destination for locally produced Hawaiian food. The menu is packed with all-natural meats, line-caught fish, and Oahu-grown fruits and vegetables.

Don’t sleep on the dessert menu, which includes classics like hula pie and pineapple upside-down cake.

Address: 2335 Kalākaua Ave, Honolulu, HI 96815

13. ARS Café

In the shadow of Diamond Head sits ARS, whose mission is to provide top-notch coffee and gelato and help visitors feel inspired through art.

Its hand-crafted wooden interior is meant to evoke an early-century English bar, and its hand-painted signage was done by an artist from Japan, sparking a global feel.

Address: 3116 Monsarrat Ave, Honolulu, HI 96815

14. House Without a Key

For dinner with a side of entertainment, head to House Without a Key. The restaurant, which specializes in mai tais, starts both its dinner menu and its performances at 5:00 p.m. The combination of Hawaiian music and cocktails under the stars is hard to beat.

Address: 2199 Kālia Rd, Honolulu, HI 96815

15. TsuroTonTan

Another udon specialist, this restaurant’s name refers to the sounds of slurping, kneading, and cutting its signature noodle. Udon is made fresh in-house each day using high-quality flour from Japan. Top-notch dashi and craft soy sauces round out the dining experience.

Address: 2233 Kalākaua Ave B310, Honolulu, HI 96815

16. Restaurant Suntory

No matter what kind of Japanese food you’re seeking, you’ll find it at Restaurant Suntory, which has been serving Honolulu for more than 40 years.

From sushi to hot pot to omakase, there’s something here for everyone. The restaurant also prides itself on outstanding hospitality.

Address: Third Level, Bldg B, Royal Hawaiian Shopping Center, 2233 Kalākaua Ave B307, Honolulu, HI 96815

17. Ginza Bairin Tonkatsu and Yoshoku Bistro

Established in 1927 and billing itself as Honolulu’s premier destination for Japanese food, Ginza Bairin offers the Tonkatsu Room and the Yoshoku Bistro Room as two different dining experiences. The menus are largely distinct at each, with 10 signature dishes available on both.

Address: 255 Beach Walk, Honolulu, HI 96815

18. Poké Bar

Build your own poke bowl at Poké Bar, which champions eating healthy and fresh. Bowls start with a base of rice, noodles are greens and are finished with fish, mix-ins, sauces, sides, and toppings.

Address: 226 Lewers St # L106, Honolulu, HI 96815

19. ALOHA TABLE Waikiki

This Hawaiian joint boasts an award-winning “Loco Moco,” a dish made with premium Kobe-style beef and a special mushroom-onion sauce. Dinner here is served until midnight, so this is your spot if you need late-night eats.

Address: 2238 Lauula St #2F, Honolulu, HI 96815

20. Tim Ho Wan

Tim Ho Wan is a chain restaurant with locations in 12 countries. However, don’t let that prevent you from visiting its outpost in Waikiki.

The dim sum spot originated in Hong Kong. It has a Michelin star and is renowned for its dishes. These include dumplings, barbecue pork buns, and sticky rice.

Address: 2233 Kalākaua Ave suite b-303, Honolulu, HI 96815

21. Cream Pot

High-quality ingredients sourced from around the world are staples at Cream Pot, a breakfast and brunch destination serving dishes including Soufflé Pancakes to our Maguro Eggs Benedict.

Cream Pot offers plenty of charm in its décor and interior design. The style features black bistro chairs and antiques for a cozy atmosphere.

Address: 444 Niu St, Honolulu, HI 96815


Helpful Waikiki Guides to Plan Your Trip


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The 21 Best Restaurants in Waikiki, Oahu

PS — Are You Booking a Trip Soon? Use My Booking Checklist!

These are the sites I use most to book my own trips. Using the links below is a great way to support Bon Traveler’s travel journalism at no extra cost to you. If you need help organizing your itinerary, get my free travel itinerary template here.

1. Book Your Flights

Use Skyscanner to find the best flights. It searches 100s of airlines and websites across the globe to ensure you’re not missing out on any route options or deals.

2. Book Your Accommodations

Use Booking.com for hotels and guest houses. They have the biggest inventory and consistently offer the best rates.

3. Book Your Tours & Experiences

Use Viator or Get Your Guide to find the best tours and experiences. They are my favorite tour search engines. I always check both as their inventory varies depending on the destination.

4. Book Your Car

Use Discover Cars or Rentalcars.com to find the best car rental deals. I recommend comparing rental agency reviews on Google to ensure you are booking with the best company in that destination, as the reviews are often more accurate than the car rental search engines.

5. Don’t Forget Airport Lounge Access

Get a Priority Pass membership to gain access to 1,400+ VIP lounges and airport experiences worldwide. The Priority Pass app is the first thing I check when I have a layover. I’ve been a member for over a decade, and having a comfortable place to relax before and between flights makes air travel so much more enjoyable.

6. Don’t Forget Travel Insurance

I never leave the country without travel insurance. It provides comprehensive protection in case anything goes wrong (ie. illness, injury, theft, and cancelations, etc.). I use it frequently for my travels to stay protected.

My favorite companies that offer the best coverage and rates are:


Xx,
Jessica

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