Honolulu Nightlife

Nowadays it’s difficult to choose between the plethora of various nightclubs, DJ bars, live music haunts, and other exciting events on offer in Honolulu.

With a raft of great bars, cafés, and clubs, Chinatown is packed with lively nightspots, especially on weekends. Then there’s the famed Kalakaua Avenue, aswarm each evening with street performers, venders and musicians.

There are also plenty of cultural events, including world class theatre, film festivals and music concerts. The Hawaii Visitors & Convention Bureau (www.gohawaii.com) and Honolulu Pulse (www.honolulustreetpulse.com) provide nightlife listings.

Bars in Honolulu

Mai Tai Bar

The best rendezvous for a bucketload of heady Hawaiian ambiance is found near Kahanamoku Lagoon. This award winning, open air bar plays live music and have a great variety of tropical cocktails for you to enjoy. The Mai Tai Bar offers a late night happy hour everyday so be sure to stick around for the entire night.

1450 Ala Moana Boulevard Suite 3247, Honolulu, 96814, United States
Telephone: +1 808 947 2900
Nocturna Lounge

This stylish, low-lit lounge bar inside the Waterfront Plaza may look like a chintzy drinking hole, but it’s actually one of Honolulu’s hippest nighttime venues. Stuffed with next generation karaoke machines and dozens of games consoles for the latest video games, this bar is frequented by gamers and singers of all ages. While they may come for the machinery, they stick around until 2am for the excellent handmade cocktails. Over 21s only.

500 Ala Moana Boulevard, Honolulu, 96813, United States
Telephone: +1 808 521 1555
Scarlet Honolulu

Found along a row of Waikiki’s most popular bars, this hip gay club keeps it popping every weekend. While the cover fee is a little steep, the pumping music, excellent sound system, and cool laser lighting keep the dance floor packed. Keep an eye on the club’s scheduled events: its known for its risqué and wildly entertaining drag shows.


80 South Pauahi Street, Honolulu, 96813, United States
Telephone: +1 808 200 0910
Tiki's Grill & Bar

One of Waikiki beaches most popular grills, Tiki's Grill & Bar is as much loved for its retro island décor—fishing nets, lava rock walls, carved wooden tikis (human faces) and a 'volcano' that erupts when light shines through it at night—as it is for its tasty American and Pacific Rim fare. This chilled out bar has an extensive drinks list, including loads of cocktails. Try the Ocean Potion, drunk straight out of a coconut!

2570 Kalakaua Avenue, Honolulu, 96815, United States
Telephone: +1 808 923 8454.
Wang Chung’s Karaoke Bar

The popularity of karaoke bars in Honolulu can’t be understated, and Wang Chung’s is one of the best. Dark, cosy, and populated with locals and travelers alike, this gay friendly bar offers delicious Chinese food, funky Asian décor, and—what you never knew you needed—misfortune cookies. Find it all on the lobby level of the Stay Hotel.


2424 Koa Avenue, Honolulu, 96815, United States
Telephone: +1 808 201 6369

Clubs in Honolulu


From jazz to electronic dance music, hip hop to heavy metal, this club in the heart of Chinatown pulls in large dance crowds. Its celendar is packed with visiting bands and DJs.

43 N Hotel St, Honolulu, Hawaii, 96817, United States
Telephone: +1 808 200 4470

Live Music in Honolulu

Jazz Minds Art & Cafe

A popular venue for jazz music, at Jazz Minds Art & Café prominent local artists come and jam six nights a week. There’s plenty of room for R & B, surf rock, and funk too. While the décor is questionable (exposed brickwork and a rug-covered, Cuban heel of a stage doesn’t get any interior designers taking notes), the friendly atmosphere, swinging musicians, and cool range of cocktails certainly keep the venue packed.

1661 Kapiolani Boulevard, Honolulu, 96814, United States
Telephone: +1 808 945 0800.
The Dragon Upstairs

At the heart of hip and happening Chinatown, this erstwhile tattoo parlour is now a chilled venue for live jazz and blues. You’ll find this cosy, slightly grungy venue with its cramped dance floor hidden on the second floor above Hank’s Café Honolulu. While you'll need to pay a cover charge to enter, it's always worth the small fee to hear the Dragon's excellent selection of live acts. Seating is limited, so arrive early unless you want to stand all night.

1038 Nu'uanu Avenue, Honolulu, 96817, United States
Telephone: +1 808 526 1411.

Culture in Honolulu

Hawaii Theatre Center

Known as ‘The Pride of the Pacific,’ when the Hawaii Theatre opened its doors in 1922 it was the most elegant theatre and cinema in Honolulu, staging spectacular plays, variety shows, musicals, and silent films. Over the years, it fell into disrepair, but a spirited community effort saved it from the wrecking ball in 1986. Listed on both State and National Registers of Historic Places, the theatre today is a state-of-the-art, multi-purpose performance centre.

1130 Bethel Street, Honolulu, 96813, United States
Telephone: +1 808 528 0506.
Neal S Blaisdell Center

This is Honolulu's primary special-event venue, within which can be found a multi-purpose arena, exhibition hall, galleria, and concert hall that accommodates a stunning range of events. The venue’s most notable construction is the Waikiki Shell, a beautiful outdoor amphitheatre that hosts shows and dance presentations. Go in the evening, when the moon and stars shining overhead add an incomparable and dramatic mood to the scene. The Shell seats 2,400 people, with room for an additional 6,000 on the lawn.

777 Ward Avenue, Honolulu, 96814, United States
Telephone: +1 808 768 5400.
Visa and passport information is updated regularly and is correct at the time of publishing. You should verify critical travel information independently with the relevant embassy before you travel.