Two Months of Surf and The Good Life in North Shore Oahu

    North Shore Oahu sunset pillbox hike

    We weren’t planning on it, but we ended up spending two months in North Shore Oahu. How did we spend two months in one place on a round-the-world surf trip? Well, it’s Hawaii, there are lots of waves, and we had a free place to stay. So it really was quite easy to settle into Hawaiian living for a while.

    But I’ll back up really quick. My dad currently lives on the North Shore, but he’s been back and forth for years, so if I ever had a home away from home, the North Shore is it. My dad has been surfing his whole life, and first ventured to the North Shore when he was 18-ish, so if I’m doing my math right, that’s around 1966.

    He told me there was one tiny store to get food and everything was about ten times the normal price because it was the only store. He lived in a tiny shack at the entrance to Waimea Valley and was a surf bum for quite some time. The 60s must have been an amazing time to be on the North Shore.

    North Shore Oahu beach

    I give my dad a hard time for not teaching me to surf when I was two and raising me on the beach. I could have been a really, really good surfer! Alas, I mostly grew up in the mountains, poor me, I know. But I digress.

    Eric and I planned to spend one month in Hawaii, but between a couple health issues, Christmas coming up and a comfortable free place to stay, we kept extending our trip. So yeah, we basically left our lives as we know them to move in with my dad haha!

    We’ve always thought about moving to Hawaii in the future, so staying in Oahu for an extended trip was a nice little trial period. And we can say that after two months, while we were definitely ready to take off to the rest of the world, we really enjoyed our stay on the North Shore.

    North Shore, Oahu

    So what did we do for two months? We surfed as often as there was swell… which was a lot. We watched the pros battle it out at multiple surf competitions for the Vans Triple Crown. We swam with dolphins, took a freediving course, hiked, cooked, worked, explored Honolulu a bit, and ate a whole lot of Thai food. Eric’s parents and sister came out to visit which was really fun, and it was just a really awesome two months in paradise.

    North Shore Oahu

    van life surfmobile

    Palm Trees
    North Shore Oahu surfing

    Surf n sea

    Surfrider Beach Clean Up
    We volunteered in a Surfrider Beach Clean Up in Haleiwa and while it was awesome that we helped clear around 800 pounds of trash, it’s terrible that there’s so much to be cleaned. We can do better!
    Surfrider beach clean up Haleiwa Hawaii
    Surfrider beach clean up
    Surfrider beach clean up Haleiwa Hawaii
    Apparently, people burn pallets on the beach for bonfires, so consequently, there are rusted nails all over the beach. Volunteers sifted through fire remains to find and get rid of the nails.

    surf north shore oahu

    North Shore Oahu surf
    We caught some incredible days at Off-The-Wall

    Off-the-wall, North Shore Oahu

    north shore oahu
    watching north shore surf
    North Shore, Oahu
    This day at Off-The-Wall was HUGE. For scale, check out the photographer’s fins duck diving this wave. Yikes.
    John John Florence Off-The-Wall / North Shore, Oahu
    John John doing his thing…
    John John Florence Off-The-Wall / North Shore, Oahu
    John John Florence Off-The-Wall / North Shore, Oahu
    Pipeline crowds
    John John had just returned after being crowned the WSL champ and there were signs all over the North Shore with congrats and support for the hometown champ.

    Off-The-Wall North Shore Oahu surf

    North Shore surf
    North Shore Oahu surf
    Elephant Thai Truck / North Shore, Oahu
    The delish Elephant Thai Truck

    Wailua Bakery / North Shore Oahu
    VW camper bus
    surfer girl / North Shore Oahu
    For our trip, I got a custom Fried Egg from Vega Surfboards and really got to know it in Hawaii. Love that thing!
    Pipeline, North Shore Oahu
    Pipeline on Christmas was insane.

    Pipeline, North Shore Oahu

    Pipeline, North Shore Oahu

    Pipeline, North Shore Oahu

    Pipeline, North Shore Oahu

    Pipeline, North Shore Oahu

    Pipeline, North Shore Oahu

    Pipeline, North Shore Oahu

    North Shore Oahu

    North Shore Oahu surf

    North Shore Oahu sunset

    For our top recommendations on the North Shore, check out >>

    Guide to North Shore Oahu

     

    For more info on traveling in Oahu, check out >>

    Oahu Hawaii / Everything You Need To Know to Plan a Trip

     

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