By Gaye Sylvester Beamer
My friends are coming to town and I’m excited. I’ve promised a whole day of fun. Now what? Gaye Beamer, an Account Manager with This Week, shares her ideas with us.
My “go-to” when I have one day to entertain guests is the North Shore. The appeal of this iconic coastline and the reason why so many locals have fought to “Keep the Country, Country!” is real.
Our first stop is Dole Plantation to share my delicious DoleWhip habit. It’s a non-dairy soft serve pineapple ice cream and it’s a must. It’s creamy and delicious, and I often get it topped with li hing mui powder, a sweet and salty local flavoring that’s sprinkled on all sorts of yummy things—sliced pineapple, gummy bears, arare (a popular local Japanese cracker), popcorn and, of course, instead of plain old salt, on the rim of a margarita.
Next we head to the quaint town of Hale‘iwa. Eateries, boutiques and specialty shops full of treasures line the two-lane highway. Many of us locals are huge fans of Giovanni’s Shrimp Truck. Their national award-winning scampi marinade and world-famous shrimp is beyond mouthwatering delicious, and when I suggest we stop there for lunch, my friends are all in.
I mention if they want to take home gifts, North Shore Goodies is a great place to start. The made-in-Hawai‘i gourmet peanut butter comes in over 10 flavors like coconut, macadamia nut honey coconut, coffee and banana—all are crazy delicious.
North Shore MarketPlace is full of shops, restaurants and art galleries bursting with great finds, indulging tastes and unique art. We head there and I lead them to SoHa Living, a shop filled with things you didn’t even know you wanted. When I walk in there, I fight the urge to buy one of everything. Banzai Sushi has some of the best sushi found on the North Shore, but it’s their banana tempura prepared in a sweet cinnamon batter served over coconut ice cream that I want my friends to try. It really is that good.
After we get our fill of Hale‘iwa, the beauty of the famed North Shore coastline opens up, continuing on for miles. I take them to Laniakea Beach to watch the sea turtles basking in the sun, then walk along the beach away from the turtles and people to laugh, reminisce and to enjoy the beautiful day.
All the other famous North Shore beaches along the coast are worth the trip, and we stop for just a few minutes to have a look. I have fond memories of going to Waimea Bay Beach Park with family and friends when I was a kid, and I tell them how I still like to sit on the sand and watch the huge waves roll in. Further along is Shark’s Cove, Banzai Pipeline and Sunset Beach where the waves can get so massive we watch in wonder how anyone can get on a surfboard and brave the ride. But they do, and it is an awesome sight.
On our way back to Waikīkī, we drive through Hale‘iwa one last time to end the day the only way us locals know-how—for some refreshingly delicious shave ice. Now that’s how to do it!
[A version of this article appears in print in the pages of This Week O‘ahu]