If you’re visiting Hawaii, you’ve got to spend time in Haleiwa Town. This coastal area has the ultimate North Shore, small-town vibes. So step into a slower way of life and come with us to Haleiwa, home to big-wave surfing, famous shrimp trucks, and a laid-back lifestyle.
Where is Haleiwa
Haleiwa town is on Oahu’s north shore. It’s about an hour away from Waikiki, and it’s where you’ll likely begin any North Shore road trip.
What to Do In & Around Haleiwa Town
Haleiwa is most famous for its surfing. After all, it’s part of the “Seven Mile Miracle” – a stretch of world-famous surf breaks. In winter months, waves can reach 30 feet, and you can likely see some kind of brave soul riding them.
In summer months, Haleiwa Town is a great place for a family beach day, as the waters are typically calm this time of year.
In addition to water activities, you can shop and eat your way through Haleiwa town. It’s home to surfer boutiques, food trucks, and Matsumoto Shave Ice.
The Famous Welcome Sign
This is a ‘must see’ attraction that welcomes people on their drive into Haleiwa town. A road sign doesn’t seem like much, but this particular one is meant to capture the town’s essence — with none other than a surfer.
The stylish little dude’s getting tubed by the ‘HALEIWA’ place name. He’s wearing bright red shorts and riding the slick yellow board like a pro.
There are actually two signs — one at each entrance to the town. The wave that the surfer’s riding could be at any break, really, since the North Shore’s known for its massive winter surf. Haleiwa, however, has its own famous big-wave break called Alii Beach. During advisory-level swells, surfers will likely tow in with jet skis.
Food Gas Shops Beaches
Everything about Haleiwa Town is so simple. That’s why there’s an arrow on the sign with the words ‘FOOD GAS SHOPS BEACHES’ written on it. These are the bare essentials for the laid-back ways of the North Shore; leave your worries behind and hit the beach! It’s definitely the kind of attitude to have on a Hawaiian vacation.
The signs have been there for decades, too, with as much history as the town itself. They attract tourists to their roadside locations, while some drive past for a swift snap-n-go pic. Either way, be sure to be super cautious when getting your own picture to post.
Haleiwa Town: A Hawaii Treasure
The signs (and the town) are a symbol of Hawaii. When visitors go home after a trip to the islands, they’ll remember the sign and then the refreshing strawberry shave ice they had at Matsumoto’s, how the sun felt on their shoulder, or how they watched a surfer catch that perfect wave.