Snapshots of Kailua

I knew Hong Kong and Macau were going to be tiring, and would include a lot of city walking, so I wanted to end our holiday on the beach, on a relaxed note. And so, Hawaii it was.

I allotted four days at the end of our trip, and decided on Oahu. I would have loved to return to Kauai — my happy place — but it didn’t make sense given the time we had. I didn’t want to stay in Waikiki, as I have numerous times, so I looked into Kailua. I found an adorable micro-house on Airbnb: the Kailua Coconut, about a ten-minute walk from the town center and twenty-five minute walk from the beach. It’s an 8’x10′ house with a full-size bed and (private and enclosed) toilet.

The front entrance of the Kailua Coconut.
The front entrance of the Kailua Coconut.

Our Airbnb hosts, Denise and Henrik, built the Coconut in their backyard. The space is pretty small — tinier than the house we’re building — but it’s custom-designed, with many beautiful details. To make the most of the interior space, there’s no formal kitchen — just a sink, small fridge, and counter — while the shower is outside, next to the house.

We’ve stayed in a number of small spaces over the past year, paying more attention to the design of structures like these, as well as tiny hotel rooms, to figure out what we want and need in our own house, and what actually works for a couple. I’d recommend the Coconut if you’re interested in simple, no-fuss, and inexpensive lodging in Kailua: it’s a cute and convenient base to explore Oahu’s Windward Coast.

We took the bus one day to the North Shore to wander in Haleiwa and watch spectacular surfers at the Pipeline, but other than that, we stayed put in Kailua all week. We spent our time getting our shave ice fix, eating a lot, and going to the beach. We tried stand-up paddleboarding for the first time, practicing briefly in the canal, then exploring off of Kailua Beach and to Flat Island.

The view of the Mokulua Islands, about a mile off shore, from Lanikai Beach.
The view of the Mokulua Islands, about a mile from shore, from Lanikai Beach.
A stand-up paddleboarder just off Flat Island in Kailua.
A stand-up paddleboarder just off of Flat Island, 1/3-mile from Kailua Beach.
A pool on Flat Island, with a view of the Oahu coastline in the background.
A pool on Flat Island, with a view of the Oahu coastline in the background.
Our pair of paddleboards, on the shore of Flat Island. Lanikai Beach in the distance.
Our pair of paddleboards, on the shore of Flat Island. That’s Lanikai Beach in the distance.

* * *

* * *

A view of Flat Island, as Mokulua Drive slopes up into Lanikai. (It really is flat, as you can see.)
A view of Flat Island, from Mokulua Drive as it slopes up into Lanikai. (It really is flat, as you can see.)
A view of Kailua Beach from above, as the road slopes up into Lanikai.
A view of Kailua Beach from the east.
A cluster of signs, taken along Kailua Road.
A cluster of signs on Kailua Road.
Shave ice flavors at Island Snow, near Kailua Beach.
Shave ice flavors at Island Snow, steps from Kailua Beach.
Breakfast at Cinnamon's Restaurant in Kailua. On the right: guava chiffon pancakes.
Breakfast at Cinnamon’s Restaurant, a five-minute walk from the Coconut. On the right: guava chiffon pancakes.
Palm tree silhouettes at dusk on Lanikai Beach.
Palm tree silhouettes at dusk on Lanikai Beach.

Photographs taken with a Canon G11 or iPhone 5s (a few with Instagram filters).

18 Comments

  1. [1st pic-wise] It’s good there are restrooms around the lounge 🙂

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  2. God I wish I was in Hawaii right now. I’m enjoying reading your writing and looking at your pictures though.

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  3. The water looked calmer at that beach.

    We’ve been to Hawai’i twice –I particularily enjoyed Big Hawai’i Island and Kauai. 2nd trip was Maui which it coincided with the annual breaching of the whales on southern end of island. An unplanned surprise.

    I love Hawai’i …because it’s culturally unlike so much of mainland US.

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  4. Nothing quite like finding that relaxing spot ~ great series of photos, especially the shot from Lanikai Beach… Wish I was somewhere warm right now ~ Cheers!

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  5. simplelivinggal

    Very cool!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I went to Oahu last month and we went to some of the same places! Lanikai was my favorite beach, so gorgeous and peaceful! Great pics and post!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Anonymous

    Hey, what apps do you use to edit your iPhone pictures, apart from Instagram?

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    1. I just use Instagram when editing my iPhone photos.

      For photos from my camera (Canon G11), I use Photoshop for general edits (cropping, straightening, setting white balance) and PicMonkey for additional edits when desired.

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  8. Beautifully captured. I hope it did the trick and you’re back home feeling well rested.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. You bring back memories…a beautiful beach!

    Liked by 2 people

  10. Beautiful, these look like those travel brochure pictures – gosh, I’m longing for a holiday now! 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  11. Gorgeous pictures, looks idyllic.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. I got a contact high.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. No Boots and Kimos or did you eat before you could photograph?

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    1. Oh, crap. I just looked up this place and have no idea how we missed it — we were on this street so many times. Now salivating over those banana pancakes with macadamia nut sauce. NEXT TIME.

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  14. this post calls for a “Love” button

    Liked by 3 people

  15. Nice pics Cheri. Looks like you had a great time!

    Liked by 1 person

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