10 Best Restaurants to Experience in the Heart of Waikiki

Waikiki is all about hitting the streets and enjoying the city life, and experiencing the diversity of cuisines in Waikiki is one of the most fun things to do. Restaurants in Waikiki reflect the melting pot that Hawaii is, and you can find just about any type of food you could want, all in the heart of the city. From breakfast to late night dinners and 24-hour cafes, from Japanese food to French food, you can find any type of cuisine you may be craving.

With an elegant, oceanfront setting, Michel's in Waikiki serves top of the line traditional French food, frog legs and all. This upscale eatery has a dress code, and reservations are always a good idea.

Up the street is Irifune, a traditional home style Japanese restaurant serving curries, katsus, and tempura dishes. The casual and friendly atmosphere makes it a great place for family or group dinners, and it's even fun for date night. Irifune is BYOB, so pick up some wine on the way.

Renowned as one of Hawaii's top restaurants, Alan Wong's is one of the most sought after places to eat and reservations are always necessary. A menu that utilizes locally sourced ingredients offers a gourmet take on regional food, using fresh seafood other proteins, along with local produce.

Embark on a culinary adventure with out list of Waikiki's best restaurants, and experience the flavor of the island.


Founded by surfer Joey Cabell in 1969, this restaurant remains the only independently-owned Chart House in the chain. It's also a perennial favorite with islanders, thanks to beautiful harbor views and great steaks and fish. Service is attentive, and prices aren't as steep as at many upscale places. The bar also makes a fun hangout. It offers dinner entrees and appetizers until late, along with well-mixed drinks. You'll even find live music each night just to put you in the appropriate mood for sociability and relaxation. Located at the Ala Wai Harbor, diners can take a stroll along the water before or after dinner.

Recommended for Waikiki's Best Restaurants because: The Chart House serves up delicious locally sourced seafood by the ocean.

Jade's expert tip: The lychee martini is a must try.

Read more about Chart House →

It's dinner and entertainment rolled into one at this Japanese hot spot. Vivacious chefs chop, slice, and saut� steak, chicken, shellfish, and vegetables right before your eyes in an exuberant display of teppanyaki cooking. It's just the place to visit if you're in the mood for an evening of sociability and fun. If you need a sushi fix along the way, don't despair � they'll set you up with an assortment of your favorite rolls. The superb bar begins serving drinks at 5 p.m., including sake and Japanese beer. Great for family and group dinners, this steakhouse is a lot of fun.

Recommended for Waikiki's Best Restaurants because: Mixing fun with food, the steakhouse cooks your entrees at the table and serves perfectly cooked dishes.

Jade's expert tip: Don't forget to make reservations.

Read more about Kobe Japanese Steak House & Sushi Bar →

Spare, contemporary design not only makes an unassuming backdrop for this appealing bistro; it also serves as a thoughtful counterpoint to a menu of simply prepared but complex offerings. Stellar ingredients step in to be given loving attention from the chefs, who turn out dishes like a grilled half-chicken with pancetta, slow-braised pork cheeks, black mussels with fennel-tinged homemade pasta, and crisp, creative salads. Even burgers are sublime. Good wines heighten the flavors, and outdoor dining lets you take in good weather with your great food. You'll need a reservation here any night of the week, so don't forget to call in.

Recommended for Waikiki's Best Restaurants because: Town is Oahu's premier farm to table restaurant, serving everything local.

Jade's expert tip: Reservations are necessary here to ensure a table.

Read more about Town →


Intimate, subtly lit, and genteel, this well-respected steak house is a special-occasion favorite, thanks to its refined ambience and pricey entrees. Waiters in tuxedos add class to an evening out, as do tableside preparations of caesar salad and bananas Foster. Beef, however, is the attraction, whether you select kiawe-broiled NY strip, prime rib, or a T-bone. Rack of lamb, lobster tails, and veal chops also make ideal main courses. Wines, liqueurs, and live music round out the experience. Hy's is a special place, so keep it romantic on date night or bring the family out for some quality family time.

Recommended for Waikiki's Best Restaurants because: Locally renowned as one of the best steak houses on the island, Hy's is known for delicious steaks and elegant atmosphere.

Jade's expert tip: Great place for an intimate dinner or celebration. And don't miss out on a unique dessert!

Read more about Hy's Steak House →

Photo courtesy of www.halekulani

Boasting lovely views of Diamond Head and an abundance of signature flowers, this celebrated restaurant does everything right. With an expansive opening to the ocean and a white sand beach, Orchids offers an exquisite outdoor dining experience in Honolulu. Breakfast each day is an event, whether you opt for a Continental, American, or Japanese morning meal. Sunday brunch, however, is an absolute extravaganza known the island over. Its legion of stations features breakfast favorites and adds in pastries, fruit, hot entrees, soups, salads, fresh fish, and desserts aplenty. Live music adds another layer of sensation, and the entire affair is not-to-be-missed.

Recommended for Waikiki's Best Restaurants because: Orchids is known for local seafood along with an array of other cuisines, in an elegant beach side setting.

Jade's expert tip: Come hungry for brunch, they have everything!

Read more about Orchids →


Fabulous French cuisine tempts diners at this elegant ocean side restaurant, making for potent sensory stimulation. While you revel in beautiful views and romantic sunsets, feast from a menu of mouthwatering dishes, such as lobster bisque, tender salmon filet, or satisfying beef tenderloin. Salads make the most of Oahu's fresh produce – all things, in short, are good. Service is excellent as well, adding to the appeal of a delightful meal at the base of Diamond Head. This is the most traditional French food to be found in Honolulu. Dinner reservations are a must, and the dress code requires resort wear.

Recommended for Waikiki's Best Restaurants because: Miche's is one of Honolulu's rare traditional French restaurants, and is located on the ocean.

Jade's expert tip: Live on the edge, try the frog legs.

Read more about Michel's →

One of the top places to eat in Honolulu and all of Hawaii, Roy's has risen to the top under the masterful tutelage of chef Roy Yamaguchi, who skillfully fuses European and Asian cuisines, this establishment has earned a reputation for lively ambience, attentive service, and incredible food. A devotion to impeccably fresh ingredients and a penchant for artistic presentation characterizes the menu, whose temptations include steamed Hawaiian onaga, tri-peppercorn-crusted ahi, and ginger-steamed Chinese chicken. There's also steak, lamb, pasta, pork, and duck. Nightly specials make an appearance too, and the signature chocolate souffl-- is absolutely sinful. This is one of the places where you can go in pretty casual, or have fun dressing up for a night out on the town.

Recommended for Waikiki's Best Restaurants because: Famous for being one of Hawaii's best regional restaurants, Roy's serves amazing Hawaiian and Asian fusion.

Jade's expert tip: Make reservations.

Read more about Roy's →

A beautiful, pale room, accented with gleaming wood and sprinkled with flowers and artwork, welcomes guests to this exceptional place. Using a wide array of locally grown ingredients, the Pineapple Rooms combines gourmet cooking with the locovore movement. The exhibition kitchen makes the most of fresh, regional ingredients, crafting such delicacies as kiawe wood-grilled mahimahi, ginger-crusted onaga, and roast duck prepared three ways. You'll also find grilled beef and lamb chops, along with "da bag," a foil packet of seafood, kalua pork, and vegetables that's dramatically deflated tableside. If you make it to dessert, don't miss the sorbets or cr�me br�l�es, infused with tropical fruits.

Recommended for Waikiki's Best Restaurants because: Alan Wong blends gourmet cooking with fresh and healthy locally grown ingredients.

Jade's expert tip: Just make sure you don't miss this place!

Read more about Alan Wong's →


Meet Jade Eckardt

Raised on the Big Island of Hawaii, Jade has traveled the world and doesn't intend to stop, yet the Hawaiian Islands are still her favorite place. She spent seven years living on Oahu and...  More About Jade