Top 10 Awesome Things About Kailua
Once abundant with swampy marshlands, Kailua has become one of Oahu’s gems. With beautiful white sandy beaches, modern shops and restaurants, and a lively feel, locals and tourists alike flock to Kailua town. Here are some of the things that make Kailua a favorite place to live on Oahu.
1. The “Mokes”
The Mokulua islands, or the “Mokes” are two small islands a short distance from Lanikai Beach. The islands are bird sanctuaries and access is permitted on the beach of the larger, northern island. Once there, a panoramic view of the windward side of the island awaits and often the journey out is as rewarding as the island escape whether you canoe, kayak or take a boat out – these islands are a “must see” when travelling to the island of Oahu.
2. The Beach ~ Lanikai & Kailua ~
Consistently rated on lists featuring the best beaches in the world, these two are nothing short of amazing. Though located adjacent to one another, these beaches are distinctly different.
The more serene location, Lanikai Beach, is a relatively short span of soft, white shoreline and calm water. With most of the current protected by an outer reef as well as the Mokulua islands, the water often mimics that of a clear-blue lagoon. This beach can become crowded throughout the day – best times to get there are mornings and weekdays.
Kailua Beach is a much larger span of shoreline. At one end is the Kaneohe Marine Corps Base and nearby vacation rental of President Obama, and at the other end is a large recreational park, a boat ramp and canoe “halau” where watercraft is stored. This beach does tend to get a bit more wind funneling through than the more protected Lanikai Beach as well as choppier waters, however, this is a windsurfer’s/kite-boarder’s paradise. The long, white beaches are great for going on a brisk oceanside walk or jog and the surroundings are less crowded. Surfers and body-boarders alike enjoy the fun waves this beach has to offer.
Kailua is a great place to rent a kayak (or just a snorkel). With local shops just steps away from the beach, such as Kailua Sailboards & Kayaks www.kailuasailboards.com one can easily rent all the gear necessary to head into the water and paddle out. One of my favorite spots is a little island, Popoia, commonly known as “flat island” where I often encounter green sea turtles swimming nearby. This island is a State Seabird Sanctuary as well - housing the wedge-tailed shearwater seabirds.
4. Kite Boarding/Windsurfing
Original home of notorious windsurfing legends like Robby Naish, this beach is an excellent launching pad for wind-related water sports. Hop on a windsurfboard, kiteboard, or hobie cat and quickly escape the bustling beaches.
5. Buzz’s Original Steakhouse
A quaint steakhouse located at the entrance to Lanikai, Buzz’s is the go-to place for steak and seafood lovers. A perfect evening spot to enjoy a cocktail and dinner on the lanai. Famous for their potent Mai Tais – grab any of their tropical drinks and relax at this heavenly beachside restaurant.
6. Island Snow
After a long, fun-filled day at the beach, there are few things greater than a refreshing, tasty snow cone, or “shave ice” to cool you down. Known for a variety of tropical flavors – this spot is a winner. Experiment with some of their more adventurous flavors such as li hing mui with azuki beans. As the locals say “So ono”!
7. Brazilian Showroom
Don’t have a suit to wear? Head over to 629 Kailua Road (near Whole Foods) and check out their stylish suits, clothing and hats – perfect combination for hitting the beach in fashion.
8. Morning Brew
One of my favorite spots in the heart of Kailua for a great cup of coffee and a delicious meal. This spot will have something for everyone – Keiki Pancakes for the kids, to more unique dishes like Prosciutto, Eggs & Cheese, to healthier choices like Vegan Waffles.
Kailua has several golf courses with various levels of difficulty. Pali Golf Course, at the base of the Pali is lush and green. This course is fun, gorgeous, not too difficult and relatively inexpensive – yet can be quite rainy. Olomana Golf Links features a course of above-average difficulty and offers a full range of services with comparatively low fees. Mid-Pac Country Club is a private course tucked on the mountainside of Lanikai. This is an absolutely gorgeous course with a clubhouse overlooking amazing views from the ocean to the majestic Pali mountain range. If you are able to accompany a club member at this course you will love it!
This town has everything from lush, mountainous waterfalls to dry, mountain peaks. Climbing up to the
Lanikai Pillboxes offers amazing, panoramic 360 degree views of the windward coast and a short trail to the top bunkers.
Kailua town has a genuine community and outdoorsy feel where people often spend their days outside, strolling the beach, riding their bikes and dining out.
You can search properties in this area at www.ZaneProperties.com and consult with a Kailua expert to set up appointments to view.