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The Windward Coast is such a beautiful part of Oahu. So much to do, see, and of course, eat! Most of these spots are in Kailua and Kaneohe, but some have other locations in Honolulu and on the North Shore as well! If you’re exploring the Windward Coast here are the best restaurants you won’t want to miss!
Best restaurants in Kaneohe
Hands down the best restaurant experience you will have on Oahu. I mean seriously. The views are breathtaking, the food is immaculate, and the drinks set a gold standard. We went here twice during our trip, and I can’t wait to experience this place again when I go back.
Get there early to ensure you have a chance to try their prime rib. It’s first come, first serve and they almost always run out by the evening. One order can feed 2-3 people— seriously it’s HUGE! The seafood chowder is also a must. And did I mention they give you homemade guava butter with your rolls?! Hawaii is known for its Mai Tais, and Haleiwa Joe’s had some of the best— get the giant one to share!
They are located in the Haiku Gardens in Kaneohe, so you can explore and take pictures there before or after dinner. There is also another location in Haleiwa if you’re staying on the North Shore!
There’s actually another location in Honolulu, but we checked out the one in Kaneohe. Fresh Catch is a counter-service seafood deli that specializes in local Hawaiian dishes like poke, furikake ahi, and salmon. Think of it as your Hawaiian Chipotle. They have a number of variations for poke and plated dishes. If you’re unsure what to get, they have a few dishes marked “local favorite.” That’s how I decided to go with the Ahi Katsu Spicy. It was so good and so different! I have never had breaded Ahi before, and it was very yummy! Just know that their portion sizes are VERY generous, so you may be able to just share a meal!
Best restaurants in Kailua
Chill, tiki atmosphere with delicious surf and turf options. They often have tempting specials as well, which is what we ended up going with. The tuna steak was cooked to perfection, and the dipping sauce brought it all together. If you’re a mushroom person, definitely get their sautéed ones! They also have a number of fun cocktails and locally crafted brews.
In the mood for BBQ? Head to Easy ‘Que. Everything was so packed with flavor, including all of the delicious sides. I think we tried just about every side they offered, because we just could not decide. They also offer fun cocktails and plenty of bourbon, whiskey, and rye options. They even offer bourbon flights and alcoholic slushies! If you need another breakfast spot in the area, they also have a sister location not too far away called Over Easy.
Another great BBQ spot that has a Kailua location is Kono’s Northshore, which I included in the best restaurants on North Shore.
Two words: guava pancakes. They’re pink, fluffy, and delicious. Hawaii made me fall in love with guava— it’s something you don’t come across too often on the mainland. But in Hawaii they are constantly finding unique ways to use it, and they do it so well. Did I mention they’re also topped with whipped cream and some sort of magical guava sauce? The pancakes were definitely the star of the show, but Cinnamon’s also has omelettes, numerous variations of eggs benedict, skillets, and plenty other classics with their own twists. They also have a lunch menu, but if you wake up late and still want your breakfast fix they offer their breakfast all day (open until 2pm)!
BONUS: best dessert spot on the Windward Coast
A must stop guilt-free treat spot in Kailua (with a couple of other locations in Honolulu). Think smoothie bowl meets froyo. The treat is made from local Hawaiian grown bananas and it has no sugar added (you’d never know if I didn’t tell ya). Get it as a float, in a papaya boat, or a pineapple yacht, and add fun toppings like fruit, granola, puffed quinoa, chocolate, and shaved coconut.
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