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Top Five Coffee Shops to Study at in Honolulu

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Hawaii chapter.

Something that I’ve done differently this semester as compared to any of my previous semesters has been studying and doing online work at coffee shops rather than just the library on campus or at my apartment. I’ve found that while working at a coffee shop, I am much more productive. If I compare the amount of work that I can get done in 2 hours at a coffee shop to the amount of work that I can get done at home in 2 hours, there is a noticeable difference. I’ve compiled a list of my favorite coffee shops that I’ve studied at in Honolulu. I hope that if you’re interested in studying at a coffee shop that you’ll visit one of the ones I recommend! As a disclaimer, this list is not a ranking of the coffee shops, but rather a simple list of places that I’ve visited and liked. 

Talk Kaimuki (Waialae and 12th, Kaimuki)

Talk Kaimuki is a coffee shop and bar. During the daytime hours, they serve up baked goods, sandwiches, and a huge variety of unique coffee drinks. During nighttime hours, they serve up craft cocktails. Talk Kaimuki has lots of great coffee, good food, and great Wi-Fi. I really enjoy the atmosphere that the coffee shop has during the day. It is a bit out of the way of Waikiki and the Mānoa campus, but I find that by going so far out of my way that I can really get a lot of work done. 

Smokey’s Pipe and Coffee (1010 University Ave)

Smokey’s Pipe and Coffee has been a favorite spot of mine since I moved to O’ahu in August of 2020. Smokey’s has a great selection of coffee drinks and really good food as well. They have a great açai bowl and really good avocado toast. They also offer drink options with kava in them. This coffee shop is the smallest on this list, so it is usually not super noisy. It is located a few minutes walk from campus, which makes it a great option if you live on campus and need a change of scenery without going too far. The Wi-Fi is pretty good, and since there’s limited seating, there usually aren’t too many people on the Wi-Fi.

Island Brew Coffeehouse (lvl 3 ewa wing of Ala Moana Mall)

Island Brew Coffeehouse is located on the 3rd Floor of Ala Moana Center. It is located very close to the Bloomingdale’s at Ala Moana. They have a really nice selection of coffee, lots of available seating, and fast Wi-Fi. This coffee shop is open pretty late, so you have plenty of time to be able to sit for a few hours and get lots of work done.

Honolulu Coffee Experience Center (1800 Kalakaua Ave)

The Honolulu Coffee Experience Center is located just outside of Waikiki, right across the street from the Hawaii Convention Center. This coffee shop has great coffee, good pastries, and a sizable café menu, with breakfast and lunch options. You can also order a build-your-own açai bowl here. Honolulu Coffee Experience Center is an experience center, so you can book a private roasting tour and learn about the process of roasting coffee. That said, this coffee shop can get pretty noisy, but I’m able to tune it out pretty successfully.

ARS Café and Gelato (3116 Monsarrat Ave)

ARS Café is located near Diamond Head on the far side of Waikiki. It is a relatively small café, but the coffee is good. I really enjoy their iced matcha latte. They also have lots of art on the walls, which makes for a nice ambiance. Each time I’ve been the café has been really quiet, so I do recommend this coffeeshop for those who need a more quiet space.

Shae Walker

Hawaii '23

Shae currently studies Communications at the University of Hawai'i at Mānoa and is the Campus Correspondent for HCHawai'i. In her spare time, Shae likes to listen to music, hike, and cook.