Waikiki Christmas Events & Dining 2018

This page is fully updated for Christmas 2018. Happy Waikiki Christmas planning!
waikiki christmas

If your idea of a winter wonderland includes sun, sand and gently swaying palm trees, then Waikiki Beach is the place for you!  It’s a wonderful place to experience the Christmas season with Aloha.

To help you make your holiday plans, we’ve compiled our annual Waikiki Christmas list. Here you’ll find great holiday dining and event information in the following main categories:

  • Christmas Eve dining in Waikiki
  • Christmas brunch, lunch and dinner dining in Waikiki
  • Great holiday-related things to do and see during your visit to Oahu
  • Christmas Eve church services

Christmas Eve Dining on Monday, December 24, 2018

Christmas Eve Buffets & Luau

* Lychee at Alohilani Resort presents a Christmas Eve brunch buffet: $68 per adult and $32 per child. See the menu here.

* 100 Sails Restaurant & Bar at the Prince Waikiki offers a Christmas Eve dinner buffet $69 per adult and $34.50 per child. See this link for more information. This restaurant has an ocean/harbor view.

* Waikiki Starlight Luau at the Hilton Hawaiian Village is open for a Christmas Eve luau. Book online or call 808-941-5828 for more information and reservations.

* Diamond Head Beach Luau is open for Christmas Eve.

Christmas Eve Set Dinner Menus

* Chart House offers a three-course holiday dinner for $67 per person. See the menu here. This restaurant has waterfront, harbor views.

* Mahina & Sun’s at the Surfjack Hotel & Swim Club offers a Christmas Feast three-course dinner for $75 per person. See the menu here. (Added 12/10)

Stripsteak at International Marketplace: four-course Thanksgiving dinner for $85 per person. (Regular, a la carte menu also available.) See the special Christmas Eve menu here.

* Hau Tree Lanai at the New Otani Kaimana Hotel, located on the “Diamond Head side” of Waikiki Beach is offering a couple of different Christmas dinner special menus: four course for $79 or five courses for $99. See the menu options here. This restaurant is oceanfront.

Azure at The Royal Hawaiian: Five course dinner for $145 per person. You can review their menu from their webpage. This restaurant has ocean front views.

Christmas Day Brunch/Lunch/Dinner on Tuesday, December 25, 2018

Christmas Brunch/Lunch

* MAC 24/7 at the Hilton Waikiki Beach: Christmas Brunch Buffet: $56 per adult and $28 per child. See the menu here.

* Lychee at Alohilani Resort presents a Christmas brunch buffet: $68 per adult and $32 per child. See the menu here. 

100 Sails Restaurant at Prince Waikiki: Christmas Brunch Buffet: $69 per adult and $34.50 per child. See the menu here. This restaurant has ocean/harbor views.

* Monarch Room Brunch Buffet at the Royal Hawaiian: $98 per adult and $45 for children. View the menu here.

Christmas Dinner Buffets & Luau

* 100 Sails Restaurant & Bar at the Prince Waikiki offers a Christmas dinner buffet $69 per adult and $34 per child. See this link for more information. This restaurant has an ocean/harbor view.

* Waikiki Starlight Luau at the Hilton Hawaiian Village presents a special Christmas luau, which will be held on the Great Lawn instead of their usual rooftop venue. In addition to some of their regular menu items, the special Christmas menu will have some traditional Christmas meal items, such as turkey, ham and pumpkin pie. All guests will receive a lei. Book online or call 808-941-5828 for more information and reservations.

Christmas Set Dinner Menus

* MAC 24/7 at the Hilton Waikiki Beach presents a three-course prix fixe dinner for $45 per person. See the menu here.

* Chart House offers a three-course holiday dinner for $67 per person. See the menu here. This restaurant has waterfront, harbor views.

* Mahina & Sun’s at the Surfjack Hotel & Swim Club offers a Christmas Feast three-course dinner for $75 per person. See the menu here. (Added 12/10)

* BLT at Trump Waikiki a special Christmas menu that can be a la carte or a three-course meal for $95. See the menu here.

* Hau Tree Lanai at the New Otani Kaimana Hotel, located on the “Diamond Head side” of Waikiki Beach is offering a couple of different Christmas dinner special menus: four course for $79 or five courses for $99. See the menu options here. This restaurant is oceanfront.

* Stripsteak at the International Marketplace offers their standard menu as well as a special four-course Christmas dinner for $85 per person. See the menu here.

* Herringbone at the International Marketplace: four-course dinner for $125. See the menu here.

Azure at The Royal Hawaiian: five-course dinner for $145 per person. You can review their menu from their webpage. This restaurant has ocean front views.

Other Waikiki restaurants that will be open for dinner on Christmas

The following notable Waikiki restaurants are open for Christmas, but have not announced special menus at the time of publishing. Standard menus might be offered in addition to a special Christmas menu. These restaurants may eventually publish special menus, so you may way to check their sites, social media and/or contact them directly for more information.

Christmas Dinner Cruises in Honolulu

* Atlantis Cruises offers a Christmas Dinner Cruise. Pricing is $119 for adults and $66 for children. Roundtrip transportation from Waikiki is included. See this link for more information.

Shaka Santa and Mele Tutu by the Christmas tree in front of Honolulu Hale presented as part of Honolulu City Lights

Shaka Santa and Mele Tutu by the Christmas tree in front of Honolulu Hale presented as part of Honolulu City Lights

What to see and do in December for the Christmas holiday in Waikiki, Honolulu & Oahu

* The Royal Hawaiian Center in Waikiki has huge Christmas displays in the Royal Grove. They will host Santa Marty visits and special holiday music on Monday and Wednesday evenings from 6pm – 8pm in December through December 19th. On Christmas Eve, Santa Marty will be on site from 8pm – 9pm only.  See this link for more information.

* At International Market Place meet the Strolling Santa dressed for the beach in aloha attire. Bring your camera to take a selfie with him. Strolling Santa visits the International Market Place on December 21 to 23 from 3pm to 10pm and on December 24 from 3pm to 6pm.

* Enjoy Holiday Mele of live holiday entertainment at the Waikiki Beach Walk plaza from 6pm to 7pm each night from December 19 – 25.

* T Galleria by DFS in Waikiki offers some special holiday events. You can watch “snow” fall and watch the Golden Holiday Wishes live show on December 19 through 23 at 8pm and 9pm. Santa will be visiting on December 22, 23 and 24 from 7pm to 9pm. For more information and verification, call 808-931-2700.

* See the holiday sand sculptures at Sheraton Waikiki.

* Take a stroll through the many Waikiki hotel lobbies to see their Christmas decorations. See examples of Christmas decorations from Waikiki.

* See the Honolulu City Lights and displays in downtown Honolulu in and around the grounds of the Honolulu Hale at 530 S King Street. This annual display is free and open to the public from December 1 through  31. It’s nice to see in the day, but we enjoy seeing the lights at night. Check their site for special events like family movie night, milk and cookie nights. Since downtown Honolulu isn’t walkable from Waikiki, a great way to get to downtown Honolulu is to take the open-air Waikiki Trolley — assuming they’re offering special Honolulu light tours once again this year. Alternatively, you can use public transportation on Oahu’s TheBus or drive your own rental car, if you have one.

* Ala Moana Center (shopping mall) offers free holiday entertainment. See this link for more information.

* Football fans can catch the Hawaii Bowl on December 22nd at 5:30pm HST.

* On the North Shore of Oahu, you can take a ride with Santa’s Hawaiian “reindeer.” The cost is $90 for a 45-minute, seaside ride. This special ride will only be available between December 20 to 27. See this link for more details.

* The Hukilau Marketplace at the  Polynesian Cultural Center in Laie (up near the North Shore) presents Christmas at the Hukilau Marketplace running December 7, 8, 14, 15 early on and then every night from December 17 through 22. Christmas at the Hukilau Marketplace promises ample opportunities for selfies with Santa Claus, brightly lit trees, nightly live Christmas entertainment, train rides for the kids, nightly live nativity performances and – two, much-anticipated Winter Wonderland Snow Days, set for December 15 and 21. On “snow days”, the Hukilau Marketplace will create a tropics-style winter wonderland with real snow. Admission to Christmas at the Hukilau Marketplace and its Winter Wonderland Snow Days is free. The festivities run from 6pm – 8pm, with the snow day activities running from 3pm – 6pm on selected days. For more information, call 808-293-3142.

 

Waikiki Christmas Church Services

* Christmas Eve and Christmas Day Mass services will be held in Waikiki at St. Augustine by-the-sea Catholic church. Their schedule of services is listed on their website.

* Waikiki Baptist Church will hold Christmas Eve candlelight service at 6pm.

* Though not in Waikiki, historic Kawaiaha’o Church in Honolulu is worth noting. The will have two Christmas Eve services — at 6pm and at 11pm. This church is located near the Honolulu City Lights, so it would be a nice Christmas Eve plan to go to the Christmas Eve service and enjoy the Honolulu City Lights.

* For more Christmas Eve services, check with the concierge at your hotel and/or pick up a copy of the Star-Advertiser, which usually has Christmas Eve service information, when you’re on the island.

Notes

  • We recommend you make reservations as soon as possible to secure the place and time you like.
  • Should you have further questions, contact the venues directly. From each link that we’ve provided in this article, you should be able to navigate to the venue’s telephone number.
  • Unless otherwise stated, you can assume that taxes and gratuities are not included in the listed prices. When you make your reservations, please confirm these details.
  • As we’ve created the dining lists, we’ve aimed to find restaurants with great views, special holiday menus or a unique setting. Bear in mind that Christmas is a very busy time in Waikiki. Though a restaurant may have ocean views, not every table will have a direct ocean view. For the best possible view, try to make your reservation for as close to the time that the restaurant opens. Waikiki sunset around the week of Christmas is between 5:55pm and 6:00pm.
  • As much as possible, we’ve tried to list the dining options by pricing/value.
  • Most Waikiki Beach hotel-based restaurants will be open on Christmas. Check directly with the concierge of your accommodations for their special Christmas meals and events.
  • For last minute dinner reservations, check availability with OpenTable. It’s not a comprehensive list of Oahu restaurants, but it can help if you’re trying to find reservations at the last minute.
  • Once you arrive on Oahu, pick up a copy of the Star Advertiser, the local newspaper, which may provide additional dining options and events.
  • All times, pricing and information are accurately reported at the time of publishing and are subject to change.
  • We anticipate that we’ll be adding more events and dining options, so do check back. Additions will be indicated by the date they were added.
  • If you’ll be on Oahu through New Year’s Eve, check out our Waikiki, Honolulu, Oahu New Year’s Eve Guide.
  • Learn how to say Mele Kalikimaka, Hawaii’s way to say Merry Christmas.

25 comments

  1. Will you be updating the Xmas information for 2016

  2. Will there be Christmas decorations still from December 28 to New Year’s Eve?

  3. Ala Moana food court open on Christmas day?

  4. We have reservations at Orchids on Xmas Eve for the Dinner Buffet….same price and menu as Xmas day dinner buffet . I noticed you did not include so I thought I would share.

    • I’m glad to hear they’ll be open for Christmas this year as Orchids is one of our favorite places to dine in Waikiki. Mahalo.

      At the moment, the list is a mix of 2015 and 2016 event/dinners. We normally receive the press releases from the Halekulani about what their restaurants are offering for Christmas. If I remember correctly, Orchids was either closed last year for Christmas Eve or was fully booked, so that’s why Orchids is currently not showing on the list. The list won’t be complete until December.

  5. Are shops in Waikiki open on Christmas Day?

  6. Hi Sheila

    Can you recommend the most atmospheric restaurant with Hawaiian dancers for Christmas Eve please? And can you please keep me posted on all events leading up to Christmas day please?

    Regards.

    Lela

    • We don’t keep track of who would have dancers at dinner. I’m guessing House Without A Key at the Halekulani will have live Hawaiian music and a hula dancer as they do other days throughout the year. Their oceanfront setting is wonderful, too.

      We can’t send out individual updates, however, you can easily keep track of them by bookmarking this page and checking back.

      Enjoy your Waikiki Christmas!

  7. Hi Sheila,

    Thanks for your information.

    Do you know of any reputable Catering companies that can deliver Christmas lunch/dinner [Turkey/Ham/Salads etc.] for a family dining event?

    • No, we don’t know of any for Christmas. You might call some of the restaurants we’ve listed that have those items on their menu or check with local grocery stores like Foodland or Safeway. I doubt they’d deliver, though.

      • Not catering, but Zippy’s on Oahu is offering traditional Christmas plates that you could pick up and bring to your family.

  8. Where is the best place for my kids to see a Hawaiian Santa?

  9. Do you know of locations other than the malls that offer photo opportunities with Santa?

    • I don’t tend to think of the Royal Hawaiian Center as a mall per se. It’s more of an outdoor shopping center with a beautiful courtyard.

      Also look at the Santa meeting/greeting/photo opportunities at the Honolulu City Lights and the Battleship Missouri Memorial which are both listed in the article.

  10. I read on TripAdvisor that SAnta arrives in an outrigger canoe somewhere in Waikiki.
    Do you know anything about that?

    • Santa visited by canoe last weekend and was hosted by the Outrigger.

      We understand that Santa is going to visit Waikiki Beach again. He’s due to arrive at the Halekulani by canoe at 4:30pm on Christmas Eve.

      • Awesome! Thanks so much for the info. If you find out he’s arriving by canoe anywhere else, please let us know. What fun!

  11. Mahalo for the great guide! The Royal Hawaiian and all the lights along Waikiki are just so amazing!

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