Beach Playlist – HAWAII

As the weather starts to cool down… for some of us (it’s 90 degrees today in San Diego), we often find ourselves daydreaming about warmer days. I created the perfect playlist to instantly bring you to a beach in your mind.


Ziggy’s song is an obvious one but I still bump it.

“Falling” by Iration instantly brings me back to sophomore year of college when I was spending a lot of time in Waikiki with my group of friends. I can almost taste the Four Lokos. But seriously it’s a great feel good song. I recently saw them in concert at the Del Mar Races and it was just as good live.

“Wade in Your Water” by Common Kings is the perfect song for cruising up to the North Shore. I heard they opened up for Bruno Mars when he was in Hawaii and it was an amazing show. I’ll have to catch them sometime soon.

“Higher Than the Clouds” by Anuhea is MY JAM. This girl is so talented and I remember seeing her play at The Shack (RIP) in Waikiki 10 years ago and thinking this girl is going places. She just released the sweetest version of “True Colors” in Hawaiian for the Lullaby album with a bunch of Hawaiian artists (check it out for your keiki) but I didn’t put it on this list because it’s not very “beach vibey”. “Higher Than the Clouds” is my favorite song of hers.

Last time I was home my mom and I went to the Pure Aloha Fest to see Anuhea perform and then this guy was on after her and we instantly fell in love. Spawnbreezie was so fun live and makes for great beach tunes. My mom’s coworkers are impressed she listens to him too when she puts him on their office radio.

The Green is the best Hawaiian band out there. They have a ton of great songs but “Come In” is one of my faves. Rebelution and SOJA also bring me back to college days. I have some funny stories regarding these bands but I’ll save that for another post. Maybe.

J-Boog, Fiji and Kolohe Kai are also goodies. Check out all their music not just the ones I suggested.

Have fun at the beach! Or at least go there in your mind with these tunes.

A day on Oahu with Paco

A couple weeks ago, I flew out to Oahu to celebrate my Auntie and Uncles 50th wedding anniversary a few days early so I could see my friend before my family arrived. Paco was one of my best friends in college and then he moved to Maui so I spent a lot of time with him whenever I visited my parents.

We had no plans but just a desire to adventure. Here’s what our day entailed:

Leonards – Paco was sleeping in and I was up early on West Coast time so I walked to Leonards to get malasadas. This place has really changed since I lived on Oahu. They have merch, a variety of menu items and they take cards now!

On the road – We stopped at Starbucks in Hawaii Kai and luckily didn’t run into my ex that lives there. I’m always afraid of running into exes when I’m on the island… last time Paco and I saw a different ex at a bar and it was frightening. Well he looked all cracked out and I did a silent hallelujah I dodged that bullet.

My favorite route – The drive from Hawaii Kai to the east side is so beautiful because you’re driving along the cliffs on the ocean and it feels like you’re on the edge of the world.

From here to eternity

First stop – Ho’omaluhia Botanical Gardens. I saw that image that all bloggers post from this place on the road with the mountains in the background but I also did research and saw that getting out of the car is prohibited and the guards yell at those trying to take this photo so I was discouraged from visiting. Paco saw the sign and turned in last minute anyway. We saw the road that everyone takes a photo at and also saw all the little cones along the side of the road keeping anyone from stopping BUT we kept driving and this place is GORGEOUS! It was giving me all the Jurassic Park vibes without paying an arm and a leg at Kualoa Ranch.

you are allowed to get out of the car further into the garden

Beach Break – We kept driving up and stopped at Kualoa Beach to this spot Paco knew about. It was deserted and beautiful and I want to come back and camp here. I also biffed it so hard. Note to self: trees in the ocean are slippery. My gnarly bruise on my arm looked like the island of Maui though so there’s that.

the tree i fell off

Lunch – We wanted to make it to Pupukea Grill for lunch for the BEST POKE but we were so hungry that we just pulled into a 711 and got sushi rolls and canned coffee instead. Typical.

Another Beach – We stopped at Pounders in Laie. We were sitting in the sand and I said, “Ok, I’m ready to see some wildlife… like a shark or a zebra or something” and then a turtle swam by! I totally manifested that! I’m also pretty sure my ʻaumakua is a turtle.

My Favorite Beach – We finally made it to the North Shore and stopped at my favorite beach Ke Iki’s. It was HUGE and empty. Just how I like it.

Long Drive Back – Paco and I drove the long road back to town with the best destination in sight…

Dinner – SUSHIYA!!!!! My favorite restaurant in the world. I crave a spicy ahi donburi all. the. time. (We went back for lunch the next day too).

Sunset – We decided to watch the sunset at Kaimanas with all the keiki lol.

I’d say it was a pretty epic day for just going with the flow. But that always happens when Paco and I cruise.