You guys, have you ever heard of a tour that you could completely customize to your exact taste? Me either! A family friend recently told me about this tour company on Oahu called Nau Wale No Tours. (Nah Wale No means Just for You in Hawaiian!) I thought it was intriguing, almost overwhelming, to come up with what to do on our private tour myself. Nau Wale No Tours made it so easy and I just love the concept of being customizable. I highly recommend this company and they are offering Sips and Sequins readers an amazing 20% off discount!
Through email, I was able to communicate with the company’s owner, Michelle. She asked me what I was interested in doing. I listed out all the places and things we wanted to do. From there, Michelle kindly organized my thoughts and expressed what she thought would be best for our tour, but furthermore helped organize the rest of the places we wanted to see by grouping them together. How nice is that?
The day before our tour was scheduled, Michelle reached out to me to confirm what we had already experienced to ensure our tour wouldn’t duplicate anything. I felt this tour was a cut above other tours in terms of customer service and I hadn’t even been on it yet! But honestly, I was a bit nervous about it considering I booked an 8 hour tour and it was planned for later in our trip. Was there really 8 more hours of things to see on this small island?
Yes. The answer is yes.
We were picked up around 8:30 am by Ryan, our young, surfer-esque, tour guide. He was super friendly and excited. Ryan gave us a quick tour of the van, showing us all the authentic Hawaiian snacks, waters, towels, beach blankets, sunscreen, bug spray, etc. that was all stocked for us. He then confirmed what we had already seen, asked if there was anything we specifically wanted to see (we were open to anything), and then he derived a plan. Apparently, there was a section of the island that we completely missed! It wasn’t even on our radar at all and had it not been for this tour, hands down – we wouldn’t have explored it.
I’ve compiled a visual diary of what our day consisted of, but keep in mind – this tour can be super customized to whatever you want to see and do!
When giant waves come crashing in, the cave in the rock (just diagonally down from where I’m sitting) spits the water right back out!
This is a great spot for surfers to catch waves!
When the waves come crashing in, the water blows out of this hole! The crowd cheers when a really big one blows out like this!
This little beach is so gorgeous it looks fake! The sand was like sugar.
Koko Volcanic Crater
Oahu turned this volcanic crater into a garden! Ryan walked us around this crater and we really enjoyed all the beautiful Hawaiian flowers.
I mean… is this not a sight for sore eyes?! We could have stared at this view all day.
Ai Love Nalo
Ryan took us to his favorite smoothie place on the island called Ai Love Nalo. This plant based restaurant uses locally grown ingredients and really does have the best smoothies! My sister tried to recreate them at home and they just don’t taste the same…
Pill Box Hike
We told Ryan we wanted to do a little bit of hiking on our tour, so he took us to Pill Box Hike. This hike is pretty cool because there are old World War II bunkers at the top! It is a harder trail though.
We were SO hot and tired after we finished our hike that by the time we got to Lanikai Beach, we went straight into the water. Unfortunately, we don’t have ANY photos of this beach. I pulled this image from Trip Advisor to show you how gorgeous this beach is.
The Habachi Market
After hiking and swimming, I was ready for lunch. I mentioned to Ryan that I was interested in trying a poke bowl. He ended up taking me to his favorite poke bowl place on the island, The Habachi Market. Starvation prevented me from taking any photos of this place, so I’m relying on this shot from @Lizzydutcher (Instagram) to show you what it’s like. It basically looks like a hybrid between a gas station and a liquor store, but the owner is so proud of his fish that he lets you taste everything before deciding what you want. I loved the ginger ahi tuna! It was fantastic. And – I totally agree with Lizzy’s caption. Haha.
Again, I was so focused on my poke bowl that I forgot to take pictures at Island Snow. My mom and sister weren’t interested in poke bowls, so they noshed on shaved ice from Island Snow. Get this – they put ice cream on the bottom and shaved ice on top! YUM.
At this point in our tour, we were fading fast and Ryan could tell. He gave us a few options. He said – we could go do another hike OR we could go check out this Buddhist Temple. All three of us voted for the Temple. Haha. It was so beautiful even though it’s partially under construction.
Our last stop of the day was at Pali Lookout. It was gorgeous and a perfect way to end our day.
I HIGHLY recommend this tour to anyone traveling to Oahu. Not only was Ryan a great tour guide, but he treated us like we were life long friends. At the end of our time together, he even gave us several great restaurant recommendations for dinner that night.
Thank you Nau Wale No Tours for an absolutely wonderful day.
This post was written in collaboration with Nau Wale No Tours.