House Without A key is one of the best restaurants in Waikiki!

The 8 Absolute Best Restaurants in Waikiki, Oahu (2024 Guide!)

One of the best things to do in Waikiki is…EAT!

The best restaurants in Waikiki range from fine dining places to casual cafes and hole-in-the-wall eateries. You’ll find a variety of cuisines to sample, from local favorites to international dishes.

This much-visited Honolulu neighborhood offers so many must-visit restaurants that you’ll run out of time much sooner than you’ll run out of choices for where to eat in Waikiki.

Whether you are looking for world-class fusion tasting menus, loco moco and kalua pig, the freshest seafood, acai bowls, or salads showcasing local veggies and fruit, you’ll find Waikiki restaurants that fit the bill.

Dessert course, tasting menu at Azure at the Royal Hawaiian in Waikiki, Oahu
Beautifully-plated dessert course, part of the tasting menu at Azure at The Royal Hawaiian in Waikiki

In this article, we’ve rounded up some of our favorite restaurants in Waikiki. We eat at some of these restaurants on EVERY trip to Oahu: they are that good!

Looking for fun excursions for your Oahu itinerary? Consider a snorkeling tour at Turtle Canyon, where Hawaiian green sea turtle sightings are very commonplace!

And now, let’s get started discovering the best places to eat in Waikiki!

Roy's Waikiki is one of the best places to eat in Waikiki, Honolulu, Oahu!
Roy’s Waikiki by Chef Roy Yamaguchi is one of the best restaurants in Waikiki!

Some links on this page may be affiliate links. If you click an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a small commission, at no extra cost to you. For more details, refer to our disclosure.

Best Restaurants in Waikiki Honolulu

1. House Without A Key: Ambience to Die For + Great Food!

One of our absolute favorite Waikiki restaurants, House Without A Key is located inside the 5-star Halekulani Hotel. (If you are looking to splurge, Halekulani makes for a delightful stay in Waikiki, but that’s a subject for another article!)

By day, you can opt to sit under large umbrellas on the outside patio, which overlooks the pool and has a great view of Diamond Head and the Pacific Ocean. Or you can dine inside if it is very hot.

A view of Diamond Head from patio of House Without A Key at the Halekulani Resort in Waikiki, Oahu
The fabulous view of Diamond Head from the patio at House Without A Key

But in the evening is when House Without A Key really comes into its own. Additional seating is opened on a lawn area that faces a stage, where you can enjoy nightly entertainment along with drinks (and dinner).

The stage is located at the foot of the 100-year-old kiawe tree that is Halekulani’s logo. This lawn also offers a front-seat view of the spectacular Oahu sunsets!

House Without a Key offers a daily breakfast buffet, plus lunch and dinner, pool bites, and a bar menu.

We’ve had lunch at House Without A Key several times. We love the edamame hummus dip to start. The poke bowl is delicious as well.

Their vegetarian pizza is topped with tons of veggies and is a no-brainer if you are looking for comfort food with a healthy twist. The burger and the crab sandwich are also well prepared.

Beet Salad at House Without A Key, one of the best restaurants in Waikiki in Oahu, Hawaii
Colorful roasted beet salad at House Without A Key
Vegetarian Pizza at House Without A Key, one of the top Honolulu restaurants.
Lots of flavorful locally-sourced veggies on House Without A Key’s vegetarian pizza!

House Without a Key’s signature mai tai is a great way to start your evening. If you are a Hemingway fan, ask for Table 97: it’s the table the famous author would typically choose when he dined here in the 1940s!

Entertainment is music, and hula dancing by usually a single dancer. It starts at 5 p.m. and goes until 10 p.m., with the dancer making periodic appearances between 6 p.m. and 8 p.m.

Evening entertainment at House Without A Key at the Halekulani in Waikiki, Oahu.
The evening entertainment at House Without a Key is delightful!

Attire at House Without a Key is resort casual. In the evenings, we saw men mostly wearing Aloha shirts and shorts, and women mostly in light flowing dresses.

Reserve way ahead of your Oahu trip for dinner: they get fully booked well in advance.

Pssst…if you dine here in the evening, do not forget bug spray or bug wipes if you want to enjoy your evening without worrying about bug bites!

2. Orchids Restaurant: Must-Do Sparkling Sunday Brunch!

Also in the Halekulani resort, you’ll find Orchids Restaurant. An oceanfront restaurant with casual elegance vibes, Orchids is open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

But what we typically visit Orchids for is the decadent Sunday brunch.

The Orchids brunch is widely regarded as the BEST brunch in Oahu, and we think that reputation is very well deserved! In fact, we’ve been known to structure our Oahu visits to include at least one Sunday, just so we can enjoy brunch at Orchids.

A selection of desserts at the Orchids brunch at the Halekulani in Waikiki, Oahu
The selection of desserts at the Orchids brunch is astounding, and each one is delicious!

It’s pricey, but for foodies visiting Honolulu, your tastebuds will thank you with every delectable bite. And there are a LOT of bites to savor on this spread.

The Orchids brunch menu includes a salad bar with several prepared salads, plus ingredients to build your own. Be sure to enjoy the sliced papaya: it’s usually sugar sweet, with concentrated flavor we’ve only found in Hawaii.

Then it’s on to the many stations, where chefs serve you with what you desire.

Seafood selections include sushi, sashimi, nigiri, shrimp cocktail, clams and mussels, and several kinds of poke. Meat stations include ham, prime rib, and kalua pig, with roasted vegetables on the side.

Poke Station at the Orchids Sunday Brunch in Waikiki, Oahu
The poke station at the Orchids brunch
Sushi station at the Orchids brunch in the Halekulani in Waikiki, Honolulu
More seafood at the Orchids brunch!

There’s an omelette station, and different kinds of soup.

And, since it’s a sparkling brunch, you can enjoy a glass or two of complimentary prosecco or sparkling cider with your meal.

Be sure to leave PLENTY of room for dessert: the pastries here are some of the best we’ve had in Hawaii.

Some of the more unique dessert choices include the signature Halekulani Coconut Cake, which melts in your mouth, mochi, and matcha rolls. There’s also an ice cream station.

Halekulani Coconut Cake at the Orchids brunch in Waikiki, Oahu
Do not leave without sampling the melt-in-your-mouth Halekulani Coconut Cake!

A piano player provided live entertainment at brunch on our last visit.

Be sure to reserve well in advance, because the Orchids brunch is one of the super popular Waikiki experiences.

Looking for the best Waikiki tours to book for your Oahu trip?

Consider the very popular snorkeling excursion to Turtle Canyon (fun for adults and kids and turtle sightings are virtually guaranteed) or a romantic sunset cocktail sail along the Waikiki coast!

3. La Vie: A Choice of 3 Must-Try Tasting Menu Options

Located on the 8th floor of the Ritz-Carlton Residences, La Vie is one of the top restaurants in Waikiki. La Vie’s dinner with an ocean view is a must-have experience on your Oahu trip!

La Vie offers a five-course French-inspired degustation menu at dinner, with pescetarian and vegetarian options if you do not wish to eat meat.

We tried the pescetarian menu and the vegetarian menu on a recent visit to Waikiki, and you can’t go wrong with either option!

Scallop second course at La Vie in Waikiki, Oahu
The scallop second course on the pescetarian menu was excellent!
Beet salad second course on vegetarian menu at La Vie in Waikiki, Honolulu
The salad second course on the vegetarian menu featured local Hirabara beets

The house menu features Hawaii veal for the main course, or Wagyu beef for an upcharge.

The pescetarian menu has hot smoked Kona kanpachi (a Hawaii yellowtail that’s currently the rage in culinary circles) for the main course, and the vegetarian menu showcases ali’i mushrooms.

Hot smoked Kona kanpachi fish main course at La Vie, Waikiki
Smoked kanpachi, main course on the pescetarian tasting menu at La Vie

We also really liked the complimentary bread that was served at the start of the meal.

We were hoping to try the lychee rose cake for dessert, but sadly, they didn’t have it the day we visited. The salted caramel pot de creme we were served was yum, but not the unique dessert we were looking forward as an ending to a great meal.

A piano artist provided live entertainment as we dined. It was raining the evening we dined at La Vie, so we missed out on the view and a colorful sunset. Hopefully next time!

La Vie is open for dinner Monday through Saturday. Advance reservations are recommended. E-mail them to receive the pescetarian or vegetarian menu.

4. Azure: Tasting Menu with a View of Diamond Head

A beachfront fine dining restaurant located inside the pretty pink Royal Hawaiian Resort, Azure is a delightful place for a night out in Waikiki.

Azure Restaurant is one of the top restaurants in Waikiki, Oahu
A view of the patio at Azure from the inside dining room

For a romantic experience, opt to sit in one of the covered booths on the patio with dramatic views of Diamond Head and the ocean. The booths are furnished with drawn-back drapes for a cozy setting.

Fair warning, though: the beach just outside does tend to be crowded most evenings and that does take away a little bit from the ambience.

With the amazing views and on-point food offerings, we think Azure definitely deserves its spot as one of the best restaurants in Waikiki.

Their dinner tasting menu is currently offered Wednesday through Sunday, and includes four courses, with vegetarian options for each course.

When we dined at Azure on our most recent visit to Oahu, we started with an excellent beet salad for the first course.

Beet salad at Azure Restaurant in Waikiki, Oahu
The starter course at Azure, a colorful beet salad

The options we chose on the second course were outstanding: poached hearts of palm for vegetarians and ahi crudo.

Main dishes included tofu and roasted cauliflower, striploin and short rib, or pan-seared kanpachi. Dessert options were the honu tart with dark chocolate pictured at the top of the article, and a delicious citrus olive cake.

Tofu main course at Azure Restaurant in Waikiki, Oahu
The tofu main course at Azure Restaurant in Waikiki
Striploin main course at Azure Restaurant in Honolulu, Oahu
The striploin main course at Azure

Wine pairings are offered of course, and while we are not big wine drinkers, we saw most other guests opting for the addition.

Advance reservations are recommended for dinner.

Planning your Honolulu trip and wondering where to stay?

The Royal Hawaiian is located right in the heart of the action in Waikiki and is a gorgeous and romantic pink hotel with great gardens and architecture.

Prefer a more modern ambience? Try Halepuna, an extremely well-located and upscale boutique Waikiki resort — and pick an ocean-view room!

5. Roy’s Waikiki: Delicious Hawaiian Fusion Cuisine

Located along the Waikiki Beach Walk (an excellent stroll in its own right), Roy’s Waikiki is one of several restaurants in Hawaii owned by acclaimed chef Roy Yamaguchi.

We never visit Hawaii without eating at least once at a Roy Yamaguchi restaurant. The food, and the service, have never failed us so far.

Opt for an outside table if the weather allows. The ambience on the street outside is lively without being intrusive, and in the evening, lights adorn the trunks of the palm trees for a festive touch.

Roy's is one of the top restaurants in Waikiki, Oahu.
Looking up at some outside tables at Roy’s from the street below

Roy’s Waikiki is open daily for dinner. If you plan to visit mainly for drinks, the outside bar is a busy but fun place to relax.

The dinner menu at Roy’s features both a prix fixe four-course option and à la carte with sushi and sashimi along with appetizers and main dishes.

If you go the à la carte route and like fish, we highly recommend the misoyaki butterfish, it is rich but so delicious! We’ve also enjoyed the classic trio, with three varieties of fish prepared individually, and the beef short rib.

Classic Trio main course at Roy's Waikiki
The Classic Trio main dish at Roy’s Waikiki

Although not on the menu, vegetarians can ask for a tofu main course (it is accompanied by a variety of vegetables and a wonderful soy-based sauce) or opt for the lighter tofu-yaki, served on a hot iron plate.

The hot desserts at Roy’s are to-die-for good, so be sure to leave room! Our favorite is the chocolate soufflé with a raspberry sauce, but the pineapple upside down cake is a great choice if you are not a chocolate fan.

The chocolate souffle at Roy's Waikiki in Honolulu, Oahu
Plunge your spoon in for decadent molten chocolate!
The pineapple upside down cake is very sweet but very yum!

Reservations are highly recommended. We’ve arrived a couple of times at opening time without a reservation and been seated right away, but if you prefer to dine later, it’s best to reserve.

Planning your Oahu trip? Be sure to bookmark our ultimate Hawaii packing list for help as you pack for your tropical vacation!

6. Duke’s: One of the Most Iconic Restaurants in Waikiki!

Named for the iconic Hawaiian surfer Duke Kahanamoku (you’ll see his statue along Waikiki Beach!), Duke’s is one of the most popular beachfront restaurants in Waikiki.

With a casual, lively ambience and a large patio that looks out onto the Pacific Ocean, Duke’s Waikiki is located inside the Outrigger Waikiki Beach Resort.

View of the Pacific Ocean from Duke's Waikiki
Looking out at the ocean from our table on the patio at Duke’s Waikiki

Duke’s is open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and you can access the restaurant, and its famous Barefoot Bar, right from the beach in Waikiki!

We’ve visited Duke’s around sunset for drinks several times, and it’s our favorite way to experience this popular Waikiki eatery.

Drinks on the patio at Duke's Waikiki in Honolulu, Oahu
Enjoy drinks on the patio at Duke’s Waikiki!

But we’ve also had lunch here a couple of times. They offer a buffet both at breakfast and at lunch.

While we found plenty to eat at the lunch buffet, I think we prefer ordering off the menu, although there aren’t too many choices if you are vegetarian or vegan.

There’s live music in the evening, and a self-serve salad bar you can add to your meal.

Falafel Naan Sandwich at Duke's Waikiki in Honolulu, Hawaii
The falafel naan sandwich is a good lunch option for vegetarians!
Choices at the lunch buffet at Duke's Waikiki in Honolulu, Oahu
A part of the lunch buffet at Duke’s Waikiki

We have not tried the hula pie at Duke’s yet, but if you are looking to indulge your sweet tooth while at Duke’s Waikiki, it’s their signature dessert.

You should reserve your table at Duke’s ahead of time, especially if you plan to visit in the evening. We reserve for lunch as well.

7. 100 Sails Restaurant: Harbor Views for Sunset Dining

You’ll see why this restaurant at the Prince Waikiki Resort is named 100 Sails when you visit: the view of the Ala Wai harbor from the dining room is phenomenal, especially at sunset.

Be sure to opt for a table by the large windows!

Sunset View, 100 Sails Restaurant in Waikiki, Oahu
Sunset view from our table at 100 Sails in Waikiki

100 Sails Restaurant is open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and offers a brunch buffet on Sunday and a dinner buffet Thursday through Sunday.

Featuring island cuisine with fresh locally-sourced ingredients, the menus at 100 Sails include such dishes as poke bowls, duck confit ramen, and pork belly.

We usually visit for the dinner buffet, which has lots of seafood options, meats, side dishes, and prepared salads. Vegetarian options are not plentiful.

You’ll find a variety of desserts, including well made bread pudding, chocolate cake, and crème brûlée.

Salads at the dinner buffet at 100 Sails in Waikiki, Oahu
Prepared salads at the dinner buffet at 100 Sails Restaurant in Waikiki
Desserts at the dinner buffet at 100 Sails in Waikiki, Honolulu, Oahu
A selection of desserts at the 100 Sails dinner buffet

Reserve your table for the evening and for the Sunday brunch buffet.

8. Nalu Health Bar & Cafe: Fresh + Flavorful Lunch Go-To!

Looking for a quick but delicious lunch option in Waikiki? Head to Nalu Health Bar & Cafe at the Waikiki Beach Walk!

We’ve eaten numerous times at Nalu, and not just at the Waikiki location but also their locations in Haleiwa on Oahu’s north shore and in Kailua on Oahu’s east side.

Every meal, without exception, has been on the button, and the staff is friendly and efficient: what more could you ask of a lunch place?

Nalu’s menu features locally sourced ingredients, organic where possible. They offer a variety of smoothies and fresh juices, acai bowls, salads, wraps, and sandwiches. Wraps and sandwiches come up with a side salad.

Vegetable sandwich at Nalu Health Bar & Cafe in Waikiki, Oahu
Vegetable sandwich made with tasty ciabatta bread

The greens are crisp, the carrots crunchy, and the salad dressings very flavorful. We always get a serving of the nalu sauce on the side to pour over our salad.

The acai bowl at Nalu is one of our top sweet treats in Oahu. We get ours without banana at times to reduce the sugar content, but it tastes excellent with or without the banana.

Acai bowl at Nalu Health Bar in Waikiki, Oahu
Nalu’s delicious acai bowl sans banana

Nalu has a dine-in option with both indoor and outdoor tables, or you can get your food to go.

Map of the Best Places to Eat in Waikiki, Honolulu, Oahu

The Best Oahu Tours

Have you booked these popular Oahu tours and excursions yet?

Love snorkeling? This Turtle Canyon snorkeling excursion from Waikiki lets you frolic with colorful fish and Hawaiian green sea turtles. Hands down the MOST BOOKED Oahu snorkeling tour: turtle sightings are guaranteed!

The most popular luau in Oahu, Paradise Cove Luau has a 4.5 rating on Viator with over 3.5K reviews. The tour includes pick-up from your Waikiki hotel, pre-dinner games, arts, and crafts, a delicious meal, and an award-winning show.

Based in Waikiki but want to see more of the island? This full-day Oahu Circle Island Tour includes Diamond Head, Hanauma Bay, Haleiwa, the Dole Plantation, and more!

Pay your respects at the USS Arizona Memorial at Pearl Harbor! This popular Pearl Harbor tour includes boat tickets and round-trip transport from Waikiki.

A super popular Oahu North Shore excursion, this Oahu shark cage dive allows you to observe wild sharks in the open ocean from the safety of a cage! It’s a THRILLING Oahu adventure for your bucket list.

We have a detailed guide to the top Oahu tours and excursions if you are in the midst of planning your itinerary for the island.

Renting a Car in Oahu

If you want to explore more of the island of Oahu on your vacation, you should get a rental car.

Oahu’s popular attractions are spread over the island: the windward coast, the North Shore, and Ko Olina are great places to explore beyond Waikiki (or the greater Honolulu area).

While Oahu does have public transport options that are better than the other islands, a car offers a lot more flexibility and time savings.

We always use Discover Cars to book Oahu car rentals. They search across a variety of rental car companies, both budget and brand, to offer you the best deals, AND they offer free cancellations. Plus, there are no hidden fees.

>> Check availability and prices on Oahu car rentals now!

Where to Stay in Oahu

Honolulu (Waikiki in particular) offers a large number of hotels and resorts, along with shopping and dining options. Most visitors to Oahu choose to base in Honolulu at least for a part of their stay.

While many of the large chains have a presence if you are looking to use your memberships, Honolulu also has several unique boutiques to consider.

Our faves include Halekulani for a splurge stay, the Lotus Honolulu for views of Diamond Head, and The Laylow for its awesome location.

Want more room to spread out or looking to stay elsewhere on Oahu? You will find VRBO listings all over the island!

On previous trips to Oahu, we have stayed in VRBO rentals in Waikiki as well as on the North Shore and the east coast and we’ve found the choice and quality great.

>> Look for an Oahu vacation rental on VRBO now!

Eggs Benedict at the Orchids brunch in Waikiki, Oahu
Trying the Eggs Benedict at the Orchids brunch in Waikiki!

More Oahu Travel Inspiration!

Planning a trip to Oahu? Check out our other in-depth Oahu travel guides for help finalizing your Oahu itinerary!

Start by discovering the best things to do in Oahu. We also have a detailed guide to Oahu’s North Shore, a round-up of things to do on the east side of Oahu, and the best things to do in Ko Olina, on the west coast of the island.

If you ar planning a short first visit to the island, we have the perfect day-by-day 3 days in Oahu itinerary for you!

Of course you’ll want to learn about all the exciting things to do in Honolulu, Hawaii’s capital, and Waikiki, the touristic core of Oahu. We also have an article on the best places to eat in Waikiki!

Check out our guide to the best beaches in Oahu, and a round-up of the best beaches on the north shore of Oahu. Also read about must-visit Oahu waterfalls and botanical gardens in Oahu you have to visit.

Oahu is home to so many must-visit landmarks! Check out our in-depth article on how to visit Pearl Harbor, and our guides on the beautiful Waimea Valley in Oahu and the spectacular Byodo-In Temple.

Want to enjoy the thrill of observing sharks in the wild? Check out our article on shark cage diving on Oahu’s North Shore!

Discover the top places to go snorkeling in west Oahu, where you will find a long coastline with lovely beaches, and tips for snorkeling Kaneohe Sandbar on the island’s east coast as well as the super popular Hanauma Bay.

And if you love marine life, also check out our complete guide to (respectfully!) see and swim with dolphins in Oahu, and the best spots to snorkel with turtles in Oahu.

For hikers and outdoor enthusiasts, we have a round-up of the best Oahu hikes, and if you are looking to exclude the harder Oahu trails, a guide to the best easy Oahu hikes.

Find out how to do the iconic (and VERY popular) Diamond Head Hike near Waikiki for exceptional views. We also have a guide to the very popular Manoa Falls Trail in Honolulu.

More advanced hikers will want to read up on the Koko Head Hike, a long set of stairs leading to expansive views.

Learn where to go for the best sunsets in Oahu, whether you want to hike or enjoy watching a colorful Hawaiian sunset without working up a sweat.

We also have a guide to the best sunrise hikes in Oahu, one of which is the spectacular Makapu’u Point Lighthouse Trail in the southeastern part of the island. The Lanikai Pillbox Hike is another wonderful sunrise hike on Oahu!

If you are a garden enthusiast, check out our detailed guide to the Ho’omaluhia Botanical Garden, our article on the unique Koko Crater Botanical Garden, and our guide to Foster Botanical Garden!

Did you find this article informative? Pin it on Pinterest for later!

Discover the very best restaurants in Waikiki in Oahu, from fine dining places to casual cafes. Many of these places to eat in Waikiki feature ocean views! #waikikirestaurants #wheretoeatwaikiki

Disclaimer

All information provided on this blog is for informational purposes only and is subject to our terms and conditions of use. It is not a substitute for information or advice from official agencies or qualified professionals.

SV Travel Media LLC makes no representations or warranties regarding the accuracy or completeness of the information provided here, and readers should use their own discretion and judgement, and seek advice from professionals where needed.

Your use of the information described in, and your participation in activities presented on our website may carry the risk of illness, bodily injury, disability, death, or property damage. You freely assume all risks and dangers that may occur as a result of your access, use, purchase, or participation in any information, activity, product, or service listed on our website.

Like this article? Share it with your friends!

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *