Oahu's North Shore - a surfer's paradise!

Oahu's North Shore - a surfer's paradise!

Know Before You Go, Shaka Guide's Legendary North Shore Loop

Shaka Guide

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Start Planning!

You’re about to go on an awesome adventure around Oahu that takes you to the famous North Shore, but there are a few things you should know about the tour before you get started!

  • The tour can only be done clockwise.
  • The tour has two starting points: Waikiki or Ko Olina
  • The Dole Plantation closes at 5:30 p.m. There is an entrance fee to do the activities at the plantation, but you can visit the gift shop and cafe for free.
  • Byodo-In costs $5 per adult, $4 per senior and $2 per child and closes at 4:30 p.m.
  • Most of the food trucks in Kahuku are cash only.
  • North Shore Soap Factory has a guided tour that costs $20 per person. Call ahead to schedule.
  • Moanalua Gardens costs $5 for adults, $3 for children 6-12 and is free for children 5 and under. 
  • Waves can get rough in winter (October-April). When in doubt ask a lifeguard.

What to Expect!

To Spend 6-8 Hours Exploring

This tour takes you to Oahu’s legendary North Shore (hence the name). We recommend starting before 9:00 a.m. if you plan on visiting all 20 stops on this tour.

To Try Local Food

This tour is one the best for foodies! You’ll visit some of the most popular local eateries on the island. Grab a malasada from Leanoard’s Bakery, enjoy a hearty plate of garlic shrimp in Kahuku, try a slice of chocolate haupia pie from Ted’s Bakery, and end your day with some delicious shave ice from Matsumoto Shave Ice in Hale'iwa.

To Swim

This tour emphasizes surf history and will take you to all the best beaches to watch surfers strut their stuff. While many of these aren’t safe for swimming (especially during the winter months), you’ll still have ample opportunity to dip your toes in the water! You’ll visit Shark’s Cove where you can snorkel, Kahana Bay which is a great spot to swim all year round, and Waimea Bay where you can go swimming -- and rock jumping -- in the summer. 

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To Learn

On this tour, you’ll learn so much about Oahu’s history -- specifically about surf history. Did you know that long before surfing became an Olympic sport, it was invented in Polynesia? Ever wonder why the surf is so big on the North Shore? You’ll learn all this and more on the tour!


How much you spend truly depends on what you do along the tour route, but here’s a breakdown of some costs:

  • $5.00 per person: Byodo-In Temple (cash only)
  • $5.00/adult and $3.00/child: Moanalua Gardens entry
  • $15.00 - $20.00 per person: Lunch
  • $25.00/adult and $21.00/child per person: Dole Plantation — Train, Maze and Garden pass. 
  • $6.00 per person: Dole Whip at Dole Plantation
  • $4.00 per person: Pie at Ted’s Bakery or shave ice at Matsumoto’s

Start Packing!

Here’s our packing list for this tour. It may seem a little long, but remember, what you bring depends on the activities you choose to do for the day. 

  • Sneakers 
  • Hiking Clothes 
  • Water Bottle 
  • Bug Spray 
  • Towel 
  • Bathing Suit 
  • Sandals 
  • Reef-safe Sunscreen 
  • Sun Glasses and/or Hat 
  • Snacks 
  • Cash 
  • Car Charger *Very Important*
  • Phone Mount 

Malama 'Aina

In Hawaiian, the word malama means “to take care” and the word 'aina means “land.” When you’re in Hawaii, we ask that you practice this and pick up your trash; respect the marine life, plants, and animals; and avoid spots that are unsafe. Hawaii’s natural resources are precious, and it’s up to all of us to help preserve these resources for generations by respecting the aina when you visit. 

We hope that we’ve given you all the information you need to make the most of your day. Your vacation is extremely important to us so if you have any questions feel free to reach out at aloha@shakaguide.com.


Shaka Guide recognizes the use of diacritics in the Hawaiian language including the okina or glottal stop and the kahako or macron. In some instances, these have been omitted on our site to ensure the best online experience for our users since not all online platforms recognize these marks. We understand the importance of these diacritics to preserve the language and culture of Hawaii.

For more help planning your day check out our Legendary North Shore Loop suggested itinerary.

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