Hawaii Polo Oceanfront Trail Rides, about 45 minutes from Ko Olina Beach Villas, offers horseback riding adventures unlike your typical ranch trail rides. Experience unforgettable horseback rides along the spectacular coast of Oahu’s North Shore with expert guides.
Group and private trail rides are available during the day and at sunset, as well as polo lessons. For more information about pricing and packages, visit https://oahuhorsebackrides.com/.
The Red Barn Farmstand, about 40 minutes from Ko Olina Beach Villas, opened in October 2016 on the North Shore in Haleiwa. It is a vibrant spot that sells locally-grown produce and food products. They work with local farmers and artisans to offer the best and freshest fruits, vegetables, and other items. They also prepare and serve breakfast, brunch, lunch, and to-go items. The ingredients they use are from their fields or the fields of their Oahu partner farms.
In April, the Red Barn Farmstand started hosting a Friday event called Farmers & Friends, with a special lunch menu featuring a select farmer or artisan. Visitors can speak with the farmers or food producers and learn how they farm or craft their products and the best ways to use them.
The next Farmers & Friends lunch is on June 16, from 11 AM to 1 PM, and will feature Mānoa Chocolate from Kailua. The entire lunch menu will be designed around its artisan chocolates. The cost is $25 and includes a starter, main dish, drink, and dessert.
For more information, visit http://www.redbarnfarmstand.com/events/farmers-friends-fridays/.
Lantern Floating Hawaii is a Memorial Day ceremony at Ala Moana Beach (about 35 minutes from Ko Olina Beach Villas) where everyone gathers for a personal and collective moment of remembrance, reflection, and offering of gratitude to those who have gone before us.
Individual lanterns are available from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m., or until they run out. There will be a pre-ceremony taiko (Japanese drums) performance at 6:10 PM and the ceremony will start at 6:30 PM.
For more information, visit http://lanternfloatinghawaii.com.
Eating House 1849, a plantation-inspired concept by James Beard Award-winning chef Roy Yamaguchi, opens at the Kapolei Commons (about 10 minutes from the Ko Olina Beach Villas).
The restaurant pays homage to Hawaii’s vibrant culinary heritage with a nod to restaurateurs like Peter Fernandez who opened one of the first restaurants in Hawaii back in the mid-1800s. Peter called his restaurant the Eating House and used what was available from local farmers, ranchers, foragers, and fishermen.
Chef Roy Yamaguchi blends the easy feeling and simple flavors of a plantation town with the innovative modernity of stylish cuisine. The kitchen will be headed by executive chef Randy Bangloy, who was most recently the sous chef at Roy’s Ko Olina. The Waipahu High alum is a graduate of Leeward Community College’s culinary program.
For more information, visit http://www.eatinghouse1849.com/.
Take a 2-hour walking tour to explore the history, culture, and food traditions of Honolulu’s Chinatown (about 30 minutes from the Ko Olina Beach Villas). The tour is on April 23, 2017, from 9:30 AM to 1:00 PM. Shop the markets and learn about seafood, fresh produce, and traditional foods. Visit bakeries, noodle factories, specialty shops, temples, and historic sites. Sample local foods such as poke, roast pork, look funn noodles, and tropical fruits. Bring your shopping bags with you so you can buy fresh produce, noodles, and specialty products.
After the walking tour, you will enjoy a 5-course family-style lunch at one of Chinatown’s finest restaurants. Meal cost is included in the tour price and can accommodate any food restrictions.
For more information, visit https://www.eventbrite.com/e/slow-food-oahu-chinatown-food-tour-and-lunch-tickets-32809042730?aff=es2.
Are you a morning person? Up before the dawn? Then you may want to roll out of bed, jump in your car, and head down to Sandy Beach Park (about an hour from the Ko Olina Beach Villas).
Due to the massive shore breaks, this southern beach is popular with experienced bodysurfers. President Obama has been known to frequent this special locale. You can watch the sun rise from the beach or head down to the tide pools as the waves come rolling in.
The beach is located between Hanauma Bay Nature Preserve Park to the west and Makapu’u Point to the east along Kalanianaole Highway.
Looking to add more outdoor adventure to your Ko Olina Beach Villas dream vacation? Perhaps a relaxing bike ride taking in the tropical views sounds good to you? Or you may prefer to practice your balance atop a paddle board while watching the fish swim beneath you in the cove? Or sitting down and paddling in a kayak as you soak in the waves, sun, and fun is more your speed? Any or all of those options are available to you.
You can contact a gear rental company who will deliver to and pick up from the resort. Hawaii Gear Rental will deliver bikes, kayaks, paddle boards, and more. For more information, visit http://www.hawaiigearrental.com/.
If you are specifically looking for bikes, you may find better prices and a wider selection from Hawaii Bikes. They also deliver to and pick up from the resort. For more information, visit http://www.hawaiibikes.com/islandwide-delivery.
You can also go to the Disney Aulani and rent a paddleboard by the hour. For more information, visit https://resorts.disney.go.com/aulani-hawaii-resort/activities/aulani-beach/makiki-joes/.
The famous Hula Pie at Duke’s Waikiki, about 45 minutes from the Ko Olina Beach Villas, has become a social media superstar. According to Instagram’s rankings, Duke’s Waikiki is the most geo-tagged restaurant in Hawaii.
The legendary Hula Pie is a colossal wave-resembling slab of macadamia nut ice cream pie over a chocolate cookie crust, topped with whipped cream, drizzled with fudge, and topped with even more macadamia nuts. It’s the perfect dessert to share with one or more people. Just don’t forget to share a picture of it on social media before it disappears.
For more information about the menu, hours, and location, visit http://www.dukeswaikiki.com/.
The Ukulele Picnic, about 35 minutes from the Ko Olina Beach Villas, will offer two stages of live entertainment featuring well-known Hawaiian and Japanese ukulele performers. On February 12, 2017, entertainers will share their talent and aloha from 9 AM until sunset.
Admission to the picnic is free. Along with the all-day entertainment, exhibitors will show ukulele-related displays and guests can explore booths featuring Hawaiian crafts, food, activities for kids, and a luxury ukulele raffle.
Parking is available and free shuttle service will be provided from Waikiki. There will be inflatables for the kids and all are encouraged to bring mats for lawn seating.
For more information, visit http://www.ukulelepicnicinhawaii.org/en/index.html.
Each year, about 30 minutes from the Ko Olina Beach Villas, Chinatown opens its doors and streets to host a Chinese New Year spectacular. Enjoy a parade featuring the traditional lion and dragon dance, Kung Fu exhibitions, music performances, and countless ethnic dishes made especially for the occasion.
The Chinese Chamber of Commerce of Hawaii hosts the event at Chinatown Cultural Plaza (100 N. Beretania Street) on Friday, January 20 from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. and Saturday, January 21 from 9 a.m. to 10 p.m.
This year, Chinese New Year is on Jan. 28, and 2017 is the year of the Rooster.
For more information about the celebration, visit https://www.hawaii.com/event/chinese-new-year-celebration/.