If you’re a food lover planning a trip to Waikiki, you’re in for a treat. Get ready to embark on a culinary adventure as we unveil the highlights of the best dining spots in this vibrant Hawaiian neighborhood. From seafood shacks serving fresh catch of the day to upscale establishments offering exquisite fine dining experiences, Waikiki has something to satisfy every palate. So pack your bags, bring your appetite, and prepare to indulge in the mouthwatering flavors that await you in Waikiki’s most acclaimed restaurants.
1. Traditional Hawaiian Cuisine
1.1. Roy’s Waikiki
Roy’s Waikiki is a must-visit restaurant for anyone looking to experience traditional Hawaiian cuisine at its finest. Located in the heart of Waikiki, this iconic establishment offers a menu that showcases the unique flavors and ingredients of the Hawaiian Islands. From their famous blackened ahi tuna to their mouthwatering macadamia nut-crusted mahi mahi, every dish at Roy’s Waikiki is a true culinary delight. The restaurant’s elegant and welcoming atmosphere, paired with impeccable service, makes it the perfect spot for a memorable dining experience.
1.2. Helena’s Hawaiian Food
For a taste of authentic home-style Hawaiian cooking, look no further than Helena’s Hawaiian Food. This family-owned and operated restaurant has been serving up delicious traditional dishes since 1946. With recipes passed down through generations, Helena’s captures the true essence of Hawaiian cuisine. From their famous kalua pig to the lomi salmon and poi, every bite at Helena’s is a flavorful journey through the rich culinary history of Hawaii. Don’t miss the chance to indulge in their laulau, a savory bundle of pork or fish wrapped in taro leaves and cooked to perfection.
1.3. Ono Seafood
If you’re craving fresh and flavorful seafood delicacies, Ono Seafood is the place to be. This hidden gem is tucked away in a small strip mall, but its reputation for serving some of the best poke on the island is well-known among locals and travelers alike. Choose from a variety of marinated poke options, made with the freshest fish and locally sourced ingredients. From ahi limu poke to spicy tako poke, Ono Seafood offers a delicious array of flavors that will satisfy any seafood lover’s palate.
1.4. Highway Inn
Highway Inn is a legendary eatery that has been serving up traditional Hawaiian comfort food since 1947. Known for its hearty and satisfying dishes, this family-owned restaurant has become an iconic establishment in Waikiki. From their mouthwatering kalua pig and laulau plate lunches to their famous loco moco, Highway Inn is the place to go if you’re looking for a taste of Hawaii’s culinary heritage. The welcoming atmosphere and friendly staff make dining at Highway Inn a truly memorable experience.
2. Seafood Restaurants
2.1. Duke’s Waikiki
Located right on the beach, Duke’s Waikiki offers a dining experience that perfectly captures the essence of Hawaiian hospitality and cuisine. Named after legendary surfer Duke Kahanamoku, this restaurant pays homage to his legacy through its menu filled with fresh and flavorful seafood options. From the famous Duke’s barefoot barbecued ribs to the mouthwatering miso-glazed salmon, every dish at Duke’s is a celebration of Hawaiian flavors. With live music and stunning views of Waikiki Beach, dining at Duke’s is a truly unforgettable experience.
2.2. Marukame Udon
When it comes to udon noodles, Marukame Udon is a must-visit spot in Waikiki. This casual eatery offers an authentic Japanese dining experience, with a focus on handmade udon noodles prepared right in front of your eyes. Choose from a variety of udon dishes, including kamaage udon served with a hot dipping sauce, or kitsune udon topped with sweet and savory fried tofu. With its fast-paced and lively atmosphere, Marukame Udon is a popular choice among locals and tourists alike.
2.3. Nico’s Pier 38
For a true taste of Hawaii’s seafood scene, head to Nico’s Pier 38. Located near the Honolulu Fish Auction, this seafood market and restaurant combination offers a unique dining experience. Start your meal with a visit to the market to choose from the freshest catch of the day, then have it prepared to perfection at the restaurant. From seared ahi sashimi to fish tacos and shrimp scampi, Nico’s Pier 38 showcases the best of Hawaii’s seafood bounty. Don’t forget to try their famous poke bowls, which come in a variety of flavors and combinations.
2.4. Chart House
Perched on the edge of the Ala Wai Yacht Harbor, Chart House is a seafood lover’s paradise. This upscale restaurant offers breathtaking views of the ocean along with a menu filled with delectable seafood options. From their famous macadamia nut-crusted mahi mahi to fresh lobster and crab, every dish at Chart House is prepared with the utmost care and attention to detail. Pair your meal with a selection from their extensive wine list or indulge in one of their signature cocktails, and enjoy a truly memorable dining experience.
3. Asian Cuisine
3.1. Sansei Seafood Restaurant & Sushi Bar
If you’re in the mood for Asian-inspired seafood dishes with a modern twist, look no further than Sansei Seafood Restaurant & Sushi Bar. Known for their innovative sushi creations and mouthwatering seafood entrees, Sansei offers a dining experience that is unmatched. From their famous Panko-crusted ahi sashimi to their flavorful miso seabass, every dish at Sansei is a harmonious blend of traditional Asian flavors and contemporary culinary techniques. With its vibrant atmosphere and talented chefs, Sansei is a true gem in the Waikiki dining scene.
3.2. Gyu-Kaku Japanese BBQ
For a unique dining experience, head to Gyu-Kaku Japanese BBQ and indulge in the art of Japanese barbecue, also known as yakiniku. Gyu-Kaku offers a wide variety of premium meats and seafood that you can grill at your table, allowing you to savor the flavors and textures of each bite. From marinated short ribs to succulent shrimp, Gyu-Kaku’s menu is a carnivore’s dream come true. Pair your meal with some refreshing Japanese beer or sake, and you’re in for an unforgettable culinary adventure.
3.3. Teppanyaki Ginza Onodera
Teppanyaki Ginza Onodera offers a dining experience that combines entertainment, skillful food preparation, and delicious Asian flavors. Sit around the teppanyaki grill and watch as talented chefs showcase their culinary skills right before your eyes. From perfectly seared steak to mouthwatering seafood, every ingredient is cooked to perfection and seasoned with precision. The theatrical element of teppanyaki dining adds an extra layer of enjoyment to your meal, making it a great choice for special occasions or simply a fun night out.
3.4. House Without a Key
For a unique fusion of Asian and Hawaiian flavors, House Without a Key is the place to be. Located within the iconic Halekulani Hotel, this open-air restaurant offers stunning views of Waikiki Beach and Diamond Head while you dine. Enjoy a menu inspired by traditional Asian cuisine, featuring dishes such as miso-glazed salmon, Korean-style short ribs, and lomi lomi salad. Pair your meal with one of their creative cocktails or a glass of wine from their extensive list. With live music and the gentle breeze of the ocean, dining at House Without a Key is a truly magical experience.
4. American Restaurants
4.1. The Cheesecake Factory
If you’re in the mood for classic American fare with a touch of elegance, The Cheesecake Factory is a top choice. This iconic restaurant offers an extensive menu with something for everyone. From their famous avocado egg rolls to their mouthwatering burgers and pastas, every dish at The Cheesecake Factory is made with the highest quality ingredients and bursting with flavor. And, of course, you can’t leave without indulging in one of their signature cheesecakes, available in a variety of decadent flavors.
4.2. Cheeseburger Waikiki
For a taste of the ultimate American comfort food, head to Cheeseburger Waikiki. This lively restaurant is known for serving up some of the best burgers in town, made with high-quality beef, fresh toppings, and toasted buns. From the classic cheeseburger to unique creations like the Hawaiian-style burger with grilled pineapple and teriyaki sauce, you’ll find a burger to satisfy any craving. Pair your meal with a side of crispy fries or onion rings, and you’ve got the perfect meal to fuel your day in Waikiki.
4.3. Wolfgang’s Steakhouse
When it comes to high-quality steaks, Wolfgang’s Steakhouse is a true standout. This world-class steakhouse offers a dining experience that is second to none. Choose from a selection of prime USDA Black Angus steaks, perfectly aged and cooked to your desired doneness. Pair your steak with classic steakhouse sides like creamed spinach or truffle fries, and you’re in for a meal that will satisfy even the most discerning steak lover. With its elegant ambiance and attentive service, dining at Wolfgang’s Steakhouse is a truly luxurious experience.
4.4. Hula Grill Waikiki
Hula Grill Waikiki offers a unique blend of American cuisine with a Hawaiian twist. Located right on Waikiki Beach, this open-air restaurant provides stunning views of the ocean while you dine. Indulge in dishes like Kalua pork tacos, grilled fish sandwiches, and the famous Hula Pie, a delicious ice cream dessert topped with hot fudge and macadamia nuts. With its laid-back atmosphere and friendly staff, Hula Grill Waikiki is the perfect spot for a casual yet memorable dining experience.
5. Italian Restaurants
5.1. Arancino Di Mare
For an authentic taste of Italy in the heart of Waikiki, Arancino Di Mare is a hidden gem. This charming restaurant specializes in Italian coastal cuisine, with a particular focus on seafood dishes. From their signature arancini stuffed with creamy risotto and seafood to their homemade pasta dishes, Arancino Di Mare blends traditional Italian techniques with the freshest local ingredients. With its cozy and romantic atmosphere, this restaurant is perfect for a special night out or a leisurely lunch by the sea.
5.2. Taormina Sicilian Cuisine
Taormina Sicilian Cuisine is a true culinary gem that transports you straight to the beautiful island of Sicily. Led by a Sicilian-born chef, this restaurant offers an authentic taste of traditional Sicilian flavors. From their homemade pastas to their flavorful meat and seafood dishes, every bite at Taormina is a celebration of Sicilian culinary heritage. The restaurant also boasts an extensive wine list featuring wines from Sicily and beyond, ensuring the perfect pairing for your meal. With its warm and inviting ambiance, Taormina Sicilian Cuisine is a must-visit for Italian food enthusiasts.
5.3. Il Lupino Trattoria & Wine Bar
Il Lupino Trattoria & Wine Bar is a stylish Italian restaurant that prides itself on serving authentic Italian dishes made from scratch using the freshest ingredients. From their wood-fired pizzas to their homemade pastas, every dish at Il Lupino is a true culinary delight. Pair your meal with a glass of wine from their impressive wine list, featuring both Italian and international selections. Whether you’re looking for a romantic dinner with your loved one or a lively evening with friends, Il Lupino offers an elegant setting to enjoy the flavors of Italy in the heart of Waikiki.
5.4. Tiki’s Grill & Bar
Tiki’s Grill & Bar offers a unique fusion of Pacific Rim cuisine with a touch of Hawaiian flair. This lively restaurant captures the spirit of the Hawaiian Islands with its tropical decor and ocean views. From their mouthwatering teriyaki steak to their fresh fish dishes, Tiki’s Grill & Bar showcases the diverse flavors of the Pacific. Be sure to try their signature cocktails, such as the famous Tiki’s Mai Tai, while enjoying live music and hula dancing. With its vibrant atmosphere and delicious food, Tiki’s Grill & Bar is the perfect spot to relax and unwind in the heart of Waikiki.
6. Vegan & Vegetarian Options
6.1. Down to Earth Organic & Natural Market
If you’re looking for a one-stop-shop for all your vegan and vegetarian needs, Down to Earth Organic & Natural Market is the place to go. This health food store and deli offers a wide range of plant-based options, from fresh produce to vegan snacks and pantry staples. Grab a delicious vegan wrap or salad from their deli counter, or indulge in one of their freshly squeezed juices. With a commitment to sustainability and a focus on organic and locally sourced ingredients, Down to Earth is a go-to destination for those seeking vegan and vegetarian options in Waikiki.
6.2. Maharaja Vegetarian Cuisine
Step into the flavorful world of Indian vegetarian cuisine at Maharaja Vegetarian Cuisine. This charming restaurant offers a wide selection of vegetarian and vegan dishes inspired by the diverse flavors of India. From savory curries to aromatic biryanis and flavorful dosas, every dish at Maharaja is a celebration of the vibrant spices and herbs used in Indian cooking. Don’t miss the chance to try their famous masala chai, a perfectly spiced and comforting tea that pairs perfectly with your meal. With its warm and inviting atmosphere, Maharaja guarantees a memorable dining experience for veggie lovers.
6.3. Peace Cafe
Peace Cafe is a delightful vegan and vegetarian restaurant that promotes nourishing and sustainable eating. Their menu features a variety of plant-based dishes made with organic and locally sourced ingredients. From their nourishing grain bowls to their vibrant salads and flavorful sandwiches, every dish at Peace Cafe is packed with nutrients and bursting with flavor. Don’t forget to try their delicious smoothies and desserts, made with wholesome ingredients and creative flavor combinations. With its peaceful ambiance and commitment to mindful eating, Peace Cafe is a haven for those seeking vegan and vegetarian options in Waikiki.
6.4. Greens & Vines
Nestled in the heart of Waikiki, Greens & Vines is a raw vegan restaurant that showcases the incredible flavors and health benefits of plant-based cuisine. From their colorful and nutrient-packed salads to their flavorful raw pizzas and sushi rolls, every dish at Greens & Vines is a culinary masterpiece. The restaurant sources the freshest organic ingredients and utilizes innovative techniques to create dishes that are both visually stunning and incredibly delicious. Don’t miss the chance to taste their famous raw desserts, made with wholesome ingredients and free from refined sugars. With its commitment to health and sustainability, Greens & Vines is a must-visit for those looking for vegan and vegetarian options in Waikiki.
7. International Cuisine
7.1. Ruffage Natural Foods
Ruffage Natural Foods is a hidden gem that offers a wide range of organic and nutrient-dense dishes from around the world. This health-conscious cafe is known for its creative and flavorful menu options that cater to various dietary preferences. From their hearty salads to their flavorful wraps and sandwiches, Ruffage Natural Foods ensures that every bite is packed with wholesome goodness. Whether you’re in the mood for Mediterranean-inspired flavors or Asian-infused dishes, Ruffage Natural Foods has something to satisfy every palate. With its commitment to using locally sourced and organic ingredients, this cafe is a go-to spot for international cuisine in Waikiki.
7.2. Himalayan Kitchen
For a taste of the vibrant flavors of Nepal and India, look no further than Himalayan Kitchen. This family-owned and operated restaurant offers a menu filled with authentic Himalayan and Indian dishes that are sure to transport you to the foothills of the Himalayas. From their flavorful curries to their aromatic biryanis and tandoori specialties, every dish at Himalayan Kitchen is a true culinary adventure. Don’t miss the chance to taste their famous momos, traditional Nepali dumplings filled with a variety of savory ingredients. With its warm and welcoming atmosphere, dining at Himalayan Kitchen is like taking a trip to the heart of the Himalayas.
7.3. May’s Hawaii Kal Bi
Experience the bold and savory flavors of Korean cuisine at May’s Hawaii Kal Bi. This casual eatery offers a menu filled with traditional Korean dishes made with the freshest ingredients and authentic flavors. From their mouthwatering kalbi short ribs to their flavorful bulgogi and banchan sides, every bite at May’s is a celebration of Korean culinary heritage. Pair your meal with a refreshing glass of Korean barley tea or traditional soju, and you’ll have a dining experience that is both satisfying and enjoyable. With its friendly staff and welcoming atmosphere, May’s Hawaii Kal Bi is a top choice for those craving authentic Korean cuisine in Waikiki.
7.4. Scratch Kitchen & Meatery
If you’re in the mood for globally inspired dishes made with the freshest local ingredients, Scratch Kitchen & Meatery is the place to go. This eclectic eatery offers a menu that combines flavors and techniques from around the world, resulting in a truly unique dining experience. From their flavorful Moroccan-inspired lamb stew to their savory Peruvian chicken and mouthwatering Thai curries, every dish at Scratch Kitchen is a delightful fusion of international cuisines. Don’t miss the chance to try their house-made sausages and charcuterie, which highlight the skill and craftsmanship of their talented chefs. With its lively atmosphere and creative food offerings, Scratch Kitchen & Meatery is a surefire hit for those seeking international cuisine in Waikiki.
8. Fusion & Contemporary Dining
8.1. Morimoto Asia
For a fusion of Asian flavors with a contemporary twist, look no further than Morimoto Asia. This upscale restaurant, led by Iron Chef Masaharu Morimoto, offers a dining experience that is as visually stunning as it is delicious. From their beautifully presented sushi rolls to their flavorful Asian-inspired dishes, every bite at Morimoto Asia is a harmonious blend of flavors and textures. The restaurant’s elegant interior and attentive service add to the overall experience, making it the perfect spot for a special occasion or a memorable night out.
8.2. Nobu Honolulu
Nobu Honolulu is a world-renowned restaurant that needs no introduction. Led by celebrity chef Nobu Matsuhisa, this upscale establishment offers a truly unforgettable dining experience. The menu features a unique fusion of traditional Japanese dishes with Peruvian flavors, resulting in an innovative and tantalizing culinary journey. From their signature black cod miso to their melt-in-your-mouth sushi rolls, every dish at Nobu Honolulu is expertly crafted and artfully presented. With its sleek and sophisticated ambiance, dining at Nobu is a remarkable experience that is sure to leave a lasting impression.
8.3. Azure Restaurant
Azure Restaurant, located within the Royal Hawaiian Hotel, is a contemporary oceanfront dining destination that offers a fusion of flavors from around the world. The menu features a wide variety of dishes crafted with the finest locally sourced ingredients, including fresh seafood and prime meats. From their succulent lobster bisque to their flavorful steamed opakapaka, every dish at Azure is a work of culinary art. Pair your meal with a selection from their extensive wine list or indulge in one of their handcrafted cocktails, and savor the breathtaking views of Waikiki Beach and Diamond Head. With its elegant setting and refined cuisine, Azure Restaurant promises a dining experience that is both sophisticated and memorable.
8.4. Herringbone Waikiki
Herringbone Waikiki combines a farm-to-table concept with a coastal ambiance to create a unique and inviting dining experience. This contemporary restaurant celebrates the flavors of Hawaii through a variety of seafood and vegetable-forward dishes. From their fresh ceviche to their wood-grilled fish and seasonal salads, every bite at Herringbone is a flavorful celebration of the island’s bountiful ingredients. The open-air design and ocean-inspired decor create a relaxed and inviting atmosphere, making it the perfect place to enjoy a leisurely meal with friends or loved ones.
9. Brunch Spots
9.1. Goofy Cafe & Dine
Start your day off right with a visit to Goofy Cafe & Dine, a charming brunch spot in Waikiki. This cozy cafe offers a menu filled with mouthwatering breakfast and brunch options, made with fresh and locally sourced ingredients. From their fluffy pancakes and savory omelettes to their delicious acai bowls and avocado toasts, every dish at Goofy Cafe & Dine is a delightful culinary experience. Pair your meal with a cup of their specialty coffee or a freshly squeezed juice, and you’ll be ready to take on the day in Waikiki.
9.2. Heavenly Island Lifestyle
For a taste of the island’s tropical flavors and a relaxed brunch atmosphere, Heavenly Island Lifestyle is a top choice. Located right on Kalakaua Avenue, this cozy cafe offers a menu that focuses on fresh and local ingredients. Indulge in dishes like their famous macadamia nut pancakes, loco moco, or the Hawaiian-style eggs Benedict. Pair your meal with a refreshing tropical smoothie or a freshly brewed Hawaiian coffee, and enjoy the laid-back vibe of Waikiki. With its friendly staff and delicious food, Heavenly Island Lifestyle is an excellent spot to start your day.
YogurStory is a trendy brunch destination that combines the love for breakfast and dessert in one delicious menu. This unique establishment offers a fusion of Korean and American flavors, resulting in creative and mouthwatering dishes. From their decadent red velvet pancakes to their savory Korean fried chicken and waffles, every dish at YogurStory is a creative masterpiece. Don’t miss the chance to try their famous acai bowls or their indulgent Matcha Dreams French toast. With its trendy decor and lively atmosphere, YogurStory is a brunch spot that’s worth the wait.
9.4. Bills Hawaii
Originating from Australia, Bills Hawaii has made a name for itself as a go-to brunch spot in Waikiki. This light-filled cafe offers a menu that emphasizes fresh, seasonal ingredients and simple yet flavorful dishes. From their famous ricotta hotcakes topped with honeycomb butter to their flavorful corn fritters and salmon poke bowls, every bite at Bills is a burst of deliciousness. Pair your meal with a cup of their specialty coffee or a refreshing juice, and enjoy the relaxed and welcoming ambiance of this renowned brunch destination.
10. Fine Dining Experiences
10.1. La Mer
For an unparalleled fine dining experience in Waikiki, La Mer is the epitome of elegance. Located within the iconic Halekulani Hotel, this award-winning restaurant offers a culinary journey that showcases the finest French cuisine with a touch of island influence. From their exquisite lobster bisque to their mouthwatering seared foie gras and perfectly cooked seafood, every dish at La Mer is a work of art. The restaurant’s elegant decor, impeccable service, and breathtaking ocean views create a truly memorable dining experience that is perfect for special occasions or a romantic night out.
10.2. Alan Wong’s Honolulu
Alan Wong’s Honolulu is a renowned fine dining establishment that has been serving up innovative and flavorsome Hawaiian cuisine for over 25 years. Chef Alan Wong is widely recognized as one of the pioneers of Hawaii Regional Cuisine, and his restaurant showcases the best of the island’s ingredients and flavors. From their delicate sashimi to their rich and flavorful braised short ribs, every dish at Alan Wong’s is a tribute to Hawaii’s local farmers and fishermen. With its refined ambiance and attentive service, dining at Alan Wong’s is a true culinary journey that shouldn’t be missed.
Located within The Halekulani Hotel, Orchids offers a fine dining experience that showcases the flavors of the Hawaiian Islands in an elegant and sophisticated setting. With its stunning views of Waikiki Beach and Diamond Head, this AAA Five Diamond Award-winning restaurant provides the perfect backdrop for an unforgettable meal. The menu features a combination of classic dishes and innovative creations, all made with the finest and freshest ingredients. From their succulent seafood platters to their indulgent desserts, every dish at Orchids is a testament to the culinary skills of the talented chefs. With its luxurious ambiance and world-class service, Orchids is the ideal choice for those seeking a refined dining experience in Waikiki.
10.4. Chef Mavro
Chef Mavro is a renowned chef-owned restaurant that offers a true feast for the senses. Led by James Beard Award-winning chef George Mavrothalassitis, this fine dining establishment showcases the flavors of Hawaii through a French-inspired menu that changes with the seasons. With an emphasis on locally sourced and organic ingredients, Chef Mavro offers a culinary experience like no other. From their delicate seafood preparations to their succulent meat dishes, every bite at Chef Mavro is a celebration of flavor and craftsmanship. The restaurant’s elegant decor and impeccable service add to the overall experience, making it a top choice for a memorable fine dining experience in Waikiki.
In conclusion, Waikiki is a culinary haven for food enthusiasts of all kinds, offering a diverse range of restaurants that span traditional Hawaiian cuisine to international flavors. Whether you’re craving fresh seafood, Asian delicacies, hearty American fare, Italian classics, vegan and vegetarian options, international cuisine, fusion creations, delicious brunch, or an unforgettable fine dining experience, Waikiki has something to fulfill every culinary desire. With its stunning views, friendly atmosphere, and talented chefs, Waikiki’s best restaurants are prepared to deliver a dining experience that will leave you wanting for more. So, dive into the flavors and embark on a culinary journey in Waikiki, where every meal is a celebration of the island’s vibrant culinary scene.