We took an amazing day trip away from Waikiki to the Valley of the Temples on Oahu, a multifaith place of serenity with a large cemetery and multiple places of worship.
I was there primarily to see the Byodo-in Temple which is a replica of a Buddhist temple in Uji Japan. Set amidst the foggy rainforest mountains of Oahu this is a place of beauty and tranquility worth hiring a car to visit.
After a morning visit to the temple we were fired up for a big lunch, some searches on Yelp and we found ourselves directed to Haleiwa Joe's a popular brunch eatery with locals.
The gorgeous views continued at the restaurant showing off the postcard worthy forests and mountains of Oahu. The rainforest nature makes this part of the island foggy and prone to showers so be mindful when wandering their gardens.
Despite coming at the end of the brunch shift the restaurant was still packed and the food regularly being replaced. The crowd is all locals and townies mostly celebrating birthdays and wedding anniversaries.
Haleiwa Joe's brunch is a buffet offering multiple hot and cold dishes, a carvery, an egg station and a salad bar. At $26USD a head this is a total steal. At night the restaurant turns to a la carte seafood but with a deal this good and a view that beautiful, it's worth heading out for lunch.
Grilled breakfast favourites abound like sausage, chorizo, eggs, bacon, eggs Benedict and more.
Lunch food like this beef roast with horseradish cream and hand tossed salad with passionfruit (lilikoi) dressing were also available if eggs and bacon don't satisfy your midday meals.
A huge range of breakfast pastries and desserts was on offer including mini muffins, danishes, tarts, scones, waffles and puddings. Cream, ice cream and some sauces was also available.
For the coeliacs and non wheat eaters there were options as well like this delicious coconut jelly with cream and blueberry compote.
The view alone is well worth a visit to Haleiwa Joe's as was the huge range of grilled meats and breakfast staples. For us this was a wonderful chance to get away from the other tourists and have a meal that felt a little more "normal".
As well as the delicious food it looked like champagne toasts and tiki classic cocktails were in strong demand and bigger groups were getting very rambunctious... probably not the place if you like a quiet meal.
Kaneohe, HI 96744
All you can eat brunch, family friendly with gorgeous views