f/POP Travel Guide: Oahu's North Shore

Sunset surf session at Turtle Bay Resort on Oahu's famous North Shore. 
Photo Insights: Fuji XT2, 18-55mm lens, 8 Stop ND Filter, .5th SS, f/22

We just got back from an epic 2 week photo excursion in Hawaii. We spent the first part of the photo adventure on Oahu's famous North Shore. The North Shore of Oahu is known for it's big surf and laid back vibe. 

When most people think of Oahu, they automatically think of the madness of Honolulu and Waikiki.  The North Shore is the complete opposite.  It's about an hour and half drive from the Honolulu airport.  We cut through the middle of the island on Highway 3. The drive is gorgeous with the highway slicing through the middle of the mountains. We also got stuck in some crazy flash flooding downpours. 

 

Stop # 1: Turtle Bay Resort

 

Turtle Bay is the only resort on Oahu's North Shore. It's jaw dropping. The grounds are beautiful. Every room has a view - pool or ocean. The sunsets alone are worth the money you're paying to stay there.  It's centrally located on the North Shore making it easy access to other beaches, hiking, and lookouts. 


Stop #2: Keiki Pool

 

Keiki means child in Hawaiian. With that said, Hawaii a great place to bring your kids and Turtle Bay is a very kid friendly resort.  You can access Keiki Pool, a little secret beach with a nice pool of water created by coral reefs, from Turtle Bay Resort. In our opinion, the best way to get there is by bike, which you can rent from the resort. Keiki Pool is nice and quiet with calm crystal clear waters. Perfect for a picnic and relaxing with a bottle of suds.   

Keiki Pool outside of Turtle Bay Resort. 
Photo insights: Fuji XT2, 18-55mm lens zoomed out to 18mm. 

Lindsay Stark relaxing in Keiki Pool with our daughter Penelope. 

Lindsay Stark relaxing in Keiki Pool with our daughter Penelope. 


Stop #3: North Shore Banyan Tree

 

Near Kawela Bay on Oahu’s North Shore is a banyan tree that has gained more recent attention as a featured location on the cult-favorite “Lost” television show. It has also been the backdrops to countless other shows and movies.

You'll get killer photos here anytime of day. The trick is to go early in the morning to avoid the crowds. 

Lindsay Stark 7 months pregnant doing tree pose with the Banyan Tree in Kawela Bay, Oahu.

Lindsay Stark 7 months pregnant doing tree pose with the Banyan Tree in Kawela Bay, Oahu.


 

If you keep walking past the Banyan Tree, you'll run right into this secluded, quiet beach. I could spend my whole time on Oahu and be fine by just going to this beach. It's quiet, far less crowded than you'd expect and so serene. The water is perfect for sitting in there for hours. You're surrounded by lush vegetation and palm trees. It feels like you're on an episode of survivor. 

Our good friend Tyler Shortt. He lives on the island photographing everything and producing a popular youtube show: High on Hawaii.

Our good friend Tyler Shortt. He lives on the island photographing everything and producing a popular youtube show: High on Hawaii.


Spot #5: Waimea Valley

 

This place is absolutely incredible.  

The second you walk in to this oasis you're swallowed up by a sea of green. There's vegetation everywhere and a symphony of birds to accompany you. It's pretty magical. 

The best part is when you make it through the reserve and there is a waterfall to greet you. You can swim right up to it.

Now go home and tell all your friends you swam in a waterfall in Hawaii. How awesome is that?  

Shaka under Waimea Falls. Photo by:  Tyler Shortt

Shaka under Waimea Falls. Photo by: Tyler Shortt


Spot #6: Pu'u O Mahuka Heiau State Historic Site

 

Pu'u O Mahuka Heiau State Park is a breathtaking panoramic lookout of North Shore.  It's not a far drive from the base of Waimea Valley.  This place is a historical and sacred site so make sure to just look and not touch anything. 

Our plan was to head up here and launch the GoPro Karma Drone. There were too many obstructions to safely fly it so we just opted to enjoy the view instead. 

 

Tyler Shortt enjoying the views at Pu'u O Mahuka Heiau State Historic Site

Tyler Shortt enjoying the views at Pu'u O Mahuka Heiau State Historic Site


Do you have any must see places in Oahu? Make sure to leave them in the comments! Share your f/POP adventure stories and photos. 

Photography by Stark Photography