Hawai‘i is a natural playground - a place to wander, explore, climb and maybe even get a little dirty. And as any school-aged child knows, playgrounds are best with a buddy.
So we grabbed some of our local "celebrity" friends who know the islands, maybe even better than we do!
(Think: The best place to grab a poke bowl, how to find parking anywhere, and where the best beaches are)
Here are their guided tours - exclusively for O‘ahu Finds -- of favorite places to go when they have a free day (or a few hours) to splash out on the island.
When she's not making a living as a 21st century Marco Polo, Chelsea Yamase (also known as @ChelseaKauai online) is a graphic designer and model, serves as private tour guide for friends and family, and has reached new heights with social media fame. She lives to pursue the extraordinary and believes in building stronger communities based on a deep-seeded appreciation for the outdoors. When she isn't doing this, you can find her tending to her garden.
Here are just a few of Chelsea's favorite spots around town, whether its dashing from a morning dripping with adventure to a peaceful afternoon stretching out with a cold brew. For Chelsea, finding your way around paradise is simple - just kick off your slippers and slip off your worries.
When she's not splashing out, Chelsea loves to stretch out, and one of her favorite places to do it is at (1) Power Yoga Hawai‘i. A donation-based yoga studio in Honolulu, Power Yoga Hawai‘i is home to some of her favorite teachers - including Naomi and Emily. She credits them for her flexibility and lithe frame. It also explains how she's able to make it to the tops of mountains, swim with sharks, paddleboard down a river, and everything in between.
When the surfs up, Chelsea is out making waves and new friends surfing Queens or Canoes in Waikiki. While some hate the crowds, Chelsea relishes the mix of kooks (surfing newbies) and crystal clear waters. She recommends renting a soft-top surfboard and heading out with a school of friends. Her tip - don't be afraid to fall off. Here, anything goes.
If you're like us you measure a good day by a good meal. And while you may not be able to whip something up in the kitchen, you can still visit (2) Your Kitchen for contemporary plate lunch favorites so good, you wish you could cook them at home. Though the menu may be small, so are the prices (everything is under $10). Chelsea's favorite way to beat the heat is to order Your Kitchen's homemade shave ice and haupia ice cream - just two of her #faves.
In Hawai‘i you can never truly leaf nature behind. Whenever she's looking for some serious inspo for her home garden Chelsea ducks in to (3) Paiko Hawaii. The boutique flower shop in the heart of Kaka‘ako blossoms with unique gifts, some of the best coffee in town, and feeds her love for succulents and all things nature-inspired. The bonus: If you're looking to branch out for even more ideas they offer regular classes with everything from how to make haku lei (flower head wreaths) to constructing your own succulent arrangement.
After lunch Chelsea likes too cool off with a quick kayak around (4) Lanikai Beach. The postcard-perfect views truly live up to its name (in Hawaiian, Lanikai translates as "heavenly sea"). If you're looking to get that extra special shot, she recommends putting the paddle to the metal and head out to the Mokes. Just make sure to check conditions and take all the necessary precautions before you head out.
When the lights come on in the city it's time to hit up (5) Honolulu Night Market, one of Chelsea's favorite nighttime activities. #HNLNightMarket pops up every third Saturday of the month featuring a revolving lineup of hot, up-and-coming artists, designers, food and music. Be sure to check their new location in Kaka‘ako on Cooke Street.
More on some of Chelsea's favorite #OahuFinds here.