jillian travel and wellness influencer and blogger at Sandy Beach, Hawaii near Waikiki Beach


Sharing is caring!

Waikiki Beach is the party place of Hawaii.

Because I am from Vegas, Honolulu feels like home to me with a touch more humidity and the ocean backdrop. There are crowds, lots of drinks, and beautiful beaches. It’s a mix of upscale 5-star hotels, surfers who walk around the town pushing through tourists with their surfboards high above their heads, and locals cruising on island time. There is no shortage of good food from iron chef restaurants to the best snacks at the ABC Store. Honolulu also has great shopping, from upscale designers so that you feel like you’re on Rodeo Drive, to tons of outdoor malls much like mainland malls. 

Over the summer we took a trip to Waikiki beach in Honolulu for a good friend’s wedding.

Nothing is more fun than meeting up with a group of friends you have known for years and relaxing and catching up. It was long weekend full of pool time, tropical drinks, and lots of laughs.

jillian travel and wellness influencer and blogger at Sandy Beach, Hawaii near Waikiki Beach

I balanced my mai tais out with wellness. One morning while I was doing yoga on the beach there was a group of local surfers hard at work in the sand with their shovels. It wasn’t until a few hours later after brunch that we walked by to see what they had accomplished. They had made a slip-and-slide from the grass hill where I had been practicing yoga, right into the ocean. Everyone on the beach was in awe, and people of all ages were lined up with their rafts to go belly-first into the water.

The highlight of the trip was the reason for our vacation, an intimate wedding on Sandy Beach 40 minutes from Waikiki on the south shore of O’ahu.

It was nothing short of breathtaking. The groom’s whole family was there for the occasion from Australia. I have known this family as long as I have known the groom. The groom’ss parents go out with their sons and they are simply a fun family. It was a delight to spend time with them again, celebrating their son and the love of his life.

Of course we were escorted to the ceremony by a private party bus stocked full of prosecco.

Even though my girlfriend Bonnie, who is the queen of champagne, happened to be pregnant at the time, she made sure that everyone else made up for her lack of champagne! Anytime a glass was less than half full she asked her husband to top it off. The drive to Sandy Beach from Honolulu was picturesque. My dear friend Ray, a music lover, was blasting rock ‘n roll. The music was playing, prosecco was flowing, and we enjoyed our drive with the view of ocean views the entire time. When we arrived at Sandy Beach, we all jumped out and started snapping photos. The beach looked like a postcard.

Soon, it was time for the ceremony. We sat on blankets provided by the bride and groom with the date and their names embroidered as our souvenir (how cute is that). They vowed to cherish one another forever as the waves crashed in the ocean providing the most scenic backdrop. There were fishermen off on the rocks in tiki shirts adding to the atmosphere of a perfect Hawaiian beachside wedding.

Wedding at Sandy Beach in Hawaii

After the wedding we headed to Duke’s–it’s the classic Waikiki beach spot for drinks, food, and a great sunset.

jillian spritz sunday travel and wellness influencer and blogger with her friends at Duke's Waikiki Beach

Drinks, food, a gorgeous sunset, we had all of these things but what made them even more magical was the ukulele player serenading us as the bride and groom danced, mingled, and enjoyed the best day of their lives. I snuck out when the party got wild as the hardcore party goers bar-hopped throughout the night. 

Duke’s is a classic beach bar, but Heyday is the best bar on the island.

The next day we hit up a bar called Heyday. It has fun, relaxed pool vibes and a bamboo bar with swings–which provide the most fun instagram photo. Heyday exudes vintage vibes of a remodeled hotel with a tucked away restaurant that makes you feel like you found something special. Heyday serves hand crafted island cocktails, something I couldn’t find anywhere else in town. Think tropical flavors without a ton of added sugar and not blended with ice or cream. 

We finished our vacation with a boat cruise out on the ocean of Waikiki Beach.

There really is nothing like an ocean breeze with a mai tai in hand. The cruise ended at sunset as new and old friends chatted over fond memories made, the perfect end to our Hawaiian vacation. And like any good party with tons of people, it ended with covid.

After my few weeks of coming home, getting sick, and being stuck in quarantine I can properly reflect and say Waikiki Beach is a must see for anyone who loves a beach nightlife. Hawaii is truly paradise. Waikiki Beach is full of great memories for me. But also, after years of living in Vegas it’s safe to say I prefer the quieter and calmer island pace of Maui than Honolulu.

Maui remains my favorite island for a lot of reasons.

My memories of Maui include invaluable life experiences, like getting my first yoga teacher training certification and father-daughter vacations. Whatever island you choose, Hawaii is the perfect destination for a tropical getaway.

jillian spritz sunday travel and wellness influencer and blogger in Honolulu, Hawaii near Waikiki Beach

Want to read more about vacation spots on the water? Monopoli is my favorite seaside town! Spoiler, it’s in Italy on the Adriatic Sea. Read about it here.

Similar Posts