10 Days in Paradise - Our Oahu (Aulani) and Maui Big Summer Blowout


DIS Veteran
Feb 13, 2014
I had Lanikai beach on my list so am excited that you liked it so much and I added the Waiola Shaved ice.
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DIS Veteran
Dec 2, 2007
Absolutely loving your review! Great information! I have been looking at OPT for our stay next summer.
Did it bother you that you spent your time at the beach and then completed your tour? I'm not sure about spending the afternoon with that sticky salt water feel on us.
  • linco711

    DIS Veteran
    Jun 17, 2004
    They have pricing for 1 - 6 guests. Usually, the 1 guest price is the 'start' and it is $25 for each additional person if I recall correctly. It should be on their site (ensure it is the one with oahuprivatetours as the name of the URL - I don't think I am allowed to post a link.) A Google search will show some advertiser sites first if you search 'Oahu private tours' - those are not the correct website.

    I hope that helps.
    Thank you..


    Last chance to lose your keys.
    Feb 11, 2009
    Great report!

    100% agree with you on Kono's and Lanikai Beach - your sentiments match ours! Two of our favorite things from our trip as well.

    I'm disappointed to hear about your poor experience with Matsumoto's though! That was a highlight from our trip. We loved it so much, we even bought t-shirts and other merchandise from the store! We didn't find the ice to be as you described, so I have to wonder if you experienced it on an off day or with new staff or something like that. We had a very minimal wait, so I wonder if they were exceptionally busy and rushing while you were there. They are used to lines there, but I think any place could get flustered or rushed when trying to work through a longer line. Sorry it didn't meet expectations for you!


    Sea days are just so relaxing!
    Sep 8, 2006
    Great start to your trip report! It sounds like you had an amazing day with OPT. I am taking lots of notes for our trip later this year, but think we will do the self drive option of your day.

    If you just link to your pictures (that are hosted somewhere else) instead of uploading them to the DIS, you can post up to 35 in one post.
  • BigTex71

    DIS Dad #536...... Fort Worth, Texas
    Jun 16, 2009
    Absolutely loving your review! Great information! I have been looking at OPT for our stay next summer.
    Did it bother you that you spent your time at the beach and then completed your tour? I'm not sure about spending the afternoon with that sticky salt water feel on us.
    The only thing we did after the beach was the overlooks and the Waiola Shave Ice. It didn't bother us at all. Also, that sand at Lanikai Beach is very powdery, so it doesn't stick to you like some of the bigger grain sand like most of the other beaches (and the lagoon at Aulani.)


    It all starts with a wish!
    Sep 19, 2011
    wowowowowow!!!!!!! following along for sure. starting to plan out our Aulani trip for November and I'm a super planner as well so I'm loving your reports!!!!!!!!!!!!!! THANK YOU for taking the time to share!!
  • BigTex71

    DIS Dad #536...... Fort Worth, Texas
    Jun 16, 2009
    Day 4 - You Down with OPT? (North Shore Tour)

    We woke up around 7:00 am (sleeping in today!) and had plenty of time to get ready - which means wearing our swimsuits and swim shirts/cover-ups and flip flops/swim shoes - before today's tour. I warmed up a few malasadas we had leftover from the previous day in the microwave for breakfast. They were not nearly as good as the fresh ones, but they were still plenty tasty. We applied ample sunblock and went down to the lobby at 8:00 am to meet Kelsey from Oahu Private Tours for our North Shore tour.

    We started at Green World Coffee Farm.
    We had some coffee drinks and browsed the gift shop, then walked through the small coffee tree garden they had in the back. It was neat to see the coffee 'cherries'. Kelsey showed us what they look like when they are picked, how they extract the beans and explained the process for regular and decaffeinated beans and the roasting process.


    Like most places on the island, there were wild chickens roaming around.

    We left the coffee farm and headed to Waimea Bay Beach.



    Then we went over to Sunset Beach. This is the beach with the 100-year-old palm tree that hangs out over the beach. Very famous location. It was the same tree Elvis sits on in the movie Blue Hawaii.
    The waves were a little rough for us, so we didn't get in the water - we just enjoyed the sights and sounds from the beach.

    We then went to the Banzai Pipeline.
    The waves were picking up and it became overcast. I didn't get too many pics. We also stopped by Turtle Beach, but there were no turtles and it was raining - so no camera for me. I didn't want to risk having something happen to my rental camera since I can't afford to buy it outright. LOL.

    Continued in Day 4 - Part 2.


    DIS Dad #536...... Fort Worth, Texas
    Jun 16, 2009
    Day 4 - You Down with OPT? (North Shore Tour) - Part 2

    After exploring the beaches, went over to Haleiwa Town and picked up some shirts and looked for some of that Coconut Bread I had mentioned from the other days' post. No luck - they were out of it. We then went to get some lunch. I wanted to try one of the shrimp trucks up here in Haleiwa and asked Kelsey about them. She suggested Big Wave Shrimp Truck. It is the one Guy Fieri visits and was recently voted one of the top 25 food trucks in the U.S.! Giovanni's Shrimp Truck had a huge line waiting and we went the few blocks down the road to Big Wave - it had just one person ordering at the window. This made me nervous - hardly any line here - how good could it be?


    Well, I had no need to worry. I had the Garlic Shrimp and it was superb! It ranked a very close second to the Garlic Shrimp I had at Ono Steaks and Shrimp Shack the day before. The cool thing about Big Wave - you can pay $1 extra to have the shrimp pre-peeled, so less work to eat it. This was an advantage over Ono (and Giovanni's.) DS had the Coconut Shrimp. I tried it and it was very fresh and full of flavor.

    The shrimp was not as large as the shrimp from Ono, but there were more than enough to make up for that. If you are looking for shrimp in North Shore, I highly recommend Big Wave. (There is that 'highly recommended' thing again.) I had heard Jenny's is good also, and it is across the street from Big Wave - but I didn't try it, so I can't help you with a comparison.

    We skipped Matsumoto's since we already had tried it and weren't impressed. We headed back to Aulani, as it was nearing 2:00 pm. We hung out for a while at the resort, then DS, DD, and I went to have pizza from The Pizza Corner in the shopping center across the street from Aulani. DW was feeling some of the effects of her sunburn, so she decided to chill at the villa. I was skeptical about getting pizza, but I did hear some good things about Pizza Corner. The downside to this place - they only have one size pizza - large. So we decided to get one pizza and split it amongst ourselves. We ordered a half Meatzilla/half cheese. They gave us some complimentary Garlic Knots while we waited for our pizza. Wow, those Garlic Knots were so good! I think it has more to do with that sweet, local garlic they use. The pizza was surprisingly good. They claim it to be New York style. It was crispy on the bottom with a light crunch but was still slightly chewy - well done. We had a slice of Meatzilla and a slice of cheese left over to take back to DW at the villa. She liked it also.

    By this time we were worn out from the sun and the beaches today, so we hit the hay. We were heading to Pearl Harbor and Waikiki the next day, so we needed our rest.

    Overall, another great day. Again, not having to worry about driving or finding parking at different beaches was nice. The information, stories, and recommendations Kelsey provided added yet another layer of value. She was an awesome tour guide and we felt we had made a new friend. The food was great and the beaches were really nice up on North Shore. I wish the weather was better in the afternoon so we might have seen some turtles, but we still had several days left in Oahu and Maui to try to see the sea turtles.

    Did we end up seeing sea turtles? You will have to wait and find out.

    Up Next: Day 5 - Waikiki would you want to visit Pearl Harbor?


    Earning My Ears
    Aug 23, 2017
    Sounds like two great days with OPT was had by you all, makes me very excited for my trip come December. Looking forward to reading the next installment.


    Oct 19, 2012
    Great report, thank you so much. I have never seen the cute coffee farm! I am going to have to try the Big Wave Shrimp truck--I like that they peel them for you :)


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