Learn to Travel Like a Local in Hawaii

As the old saying goes, “do as the locals do”. In Hawaii this only can go so far because many of the locals are charging 20 foot waves at Pipeline… This may not be the right way to follow the old saying. There are many ways to blend in with the locals in Hawaii and have a fun and educational vacation. Here are a few of my favorite and proven tactics to Travel like a Local in Hawaii.

Hawaii Vacation Tips – Blending In

#1 – Eat a musubi. What is a musubi you ask? In the simplest form it is SPAM on top of white rice, wrapped in a thin sheet of sea weed. The musubi has evolved however and now takes on many shapes and sizes. At Diamond Head Market and Grill on the South Shore of Oahu, you can find musubi’s made with teriyaki chicken as well as spins on the traditional musubi that include egg and other seasonings along with the SPAM and rice. This hand held snack is a staple for just about everyone that lives an active lifestyle on Hawaii. It is the perfect snack between long surf sessions and provides quick and lasting energy for the low price of $2.

#2 – Don’t brag about how big of a wave you surfed in Waikiki. The first time you surf the waves will seem 2-4x bigger than they actually are. Be stoked you went out and tried surfing for the first time but skip the part of bragging to your friends that the waves were 10 feet. The lifestyle in Hawaii is so centered on ocean activities that no one cares that much about wave size except when it is over 30 feet. Just being in the ocean and having fun is the biggest accomplishment. Try bragging instead about how much fun you had surfing and how great it was to be out with your pals catching waves in 75 degree water!

#3 – Get a Reyn’s Spooner aloha shirt. Skip the $13.99 aloha shirts from the ABC store that scream tourist and go for something that the locals actually wear day to day. Spend the $60-80 on a Aloha shirt and I guarantee you will be wearing it back home more often than you think! Plus, you are dressing like the locals and living the Hawaiian lifestyle each day you are on vacation. You will be shocked on the difference in feel and comfort. Do as the locals do!

#4 – Get out of Waikiki for dinner. Hawaii and Oahu especially is the epicenter of a foodie revolution and many of the best restaurants are a 10-15 drive outside of Waikiki. Spots like “Town” and “12th Ave Grill” will change your entire perception of Hawaii food culture for the better. They cost about the same as many of the spots in Waikiki but are exponentially better.

#5 – Stay hydrated. The humid and hot weather in Hawaii can take a lot out of you. The ABC stores have large 1.5 liter water bottles for $0.99. Most locals are drinking two of these each day. You will have more energy and your sunburns will heal faster if your body is hydrated. I suggest drinking 2 of these a days along with sips of Gatoraid or similar electrolyte beverage to maintain good hydration. The sun and humidity sucks the water out of you… stay ahead of the curve and have a more pleasant vacation by staying hydrated.

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