Best Shave Ice Oahu

best shave ice oahu island snow

Best Shave Ice Oahu is pretty straight forward. While you can find it all over the island, by far the most famous and longest standing shave ice shop is Matsumoto Shave Ice in Haleiwa, on the North Shore.

I’ve compiled this guide to help you get the best shave ice while you’re here, no matter where you are! Its sorted by location… and by one ranking.


DSC 7962 by Alison Bell, Photographer

Hi! I’m Alison, your chaos coordinator, toddler briber, and parent commiserator. Oh! And Oahu family photographer!

As the ringleader of my own 4-boy circus, I know how hard getting family photos can be.

I run my photo session like a party. I give you something TO DO so you don’t feel awkward wondering, “Where do I put my HANDS?!”

Dad is playing with the kids, everyone forgets what’s ACTUALLY happening, and you look amazing bc you’re actually enjoying yourself. #whoknewphotoscouldbefun

Fast. Fun. Done.


Matsumoto Shave Ice North Shore

You can’t talk about shave ice and not mention Matsumomo’s. Matsumoto’s opened in 1951 and has been around ever since. They have a well oiled operation, so don’t let the line stop you – it will move fast.

Any time we’re in the North Shore, my kids ask if we’re going to Matsumoto’s. We said yes first 6 times! Its reasonably priced, quick and not terrible health wise (its water, sugar and dyes). We’ve taken every guest we’ve had to Matsumoto’s!

Matsumoto keeps it simple and straight forward. There are simple topping options that are tried and true.

My personal favorite flavor is the Matsumoto’s trifecta: lemon, blue pineapple, coconut with sweetened condensed milk.

best shave ice oahu matsumoto
ShaveIceMenu matstumoto

Shave Ice Waikiki

Waiola Shave Ice Kapahulu

Waiola Store is a local favorite in the Kapahulu neighborhood of Honolulu. Its about 2 miles from the center of Waikiki.

Waiola takes things up a notch with toppings like azuki mochi, triple scoops of ice cream and custard. They’ve been around since 1979 and are a staple to the Waiola community of Honolulu. They opened a second location in 2009.

Island Vintage Shave Ice

Island Vintage Shave Ice uses fresh, local fruits for its syrups: guava, mango, Liliko’i, and pineapple. Extra options include boba, frozen yogurt, fresh strawberries, and housemade mochi.

Located in the Royal Hawaiian Shopping Center & Marriott Waikiki

Shave Ice Kailua

There are two spots for shave ice in Kailua – Island Snow (better known as a surf shop) located by Kailua Beach and a tiny mom & pop Wilson Store in the center of town near Lex Breezy.

Wilson Store

Wilson Store is my favorite option in Kailua! Its a tiny little shop with shave ice & some candy. I’ll admit its not super convenient to much, but a quick jot across the street and you’re in the middle of local boutiques and great shopping!

Wilson Store has a hand full of flavors – but uncommon ones like Ramune, pepsi and root beer.

best shave ice oahu wilson store
Wilson Store in Kailua Menu
best shave ice oahu wilson store
best shave ice oahu wilson store

Island Snow

Island Snow is different from Wilson Store & Matsumoto in that every shave ice comes with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. They also feature all natural flavors made in Hawaii like lilkoi, lychee, POG, haupia, mago, guava and strawberry.

You can upgrade your ice cream flavor to Dave’s Mac Nut ice cream, and of course add on as many scoops of either flavor you’d like!

Its perfectly located across from Kailua Beach in the same shopping center as Bob’s Pizza and Kailua Beach Adventures. Its not uncommon to see gobs of people sitting around eating shave ice outside their shop after time on the water!

best shave ice oahu island snow
Island Snow Kailua
best shave ice oahu island snow
Island Snow Menu

Most Famous Shave Ice in Oahu

The most famous shave ice in Oahu is undoubtedly Matsumoto’s in Haleiwa on the North Shore. They’ve been around since 1951! I don’t know what makes it so dang good, but it is! Maybe the syrup is more concentrated? I just know my kids are hooked.

Matsumoto Shave Ice

You can’t talk about shave ice and not mention Matsumomo’s. Matsumoto’s opened in 1951 and has been around ever since. They have a well oiled operation, so don’t let the line stop you – it will move fast.

Any time we’re in the North Shore, my kids ask if we’re going to Matsumoto’s. We said yes first 6 times! Its reasonably priced, quick and not terrible health wise (its water, sugar and dyes). We’ve taken every guest we’ve had to Matsumoto’s!

My personal favorite flavor is the Matsumoto’s trifecta: lemon, blue pineapple, coconut with sweetened condensed milk.

Best Shave Ice Oahu North Shore

Matsumoto Shave Ice

You can’t talk about the best shave ice Oahu and not mention Matsumomo’s. Matsumoto’s opened in 1951 and has been around ever since. They have a well oiled operation, so don’t let the line stop you – it will move fast.

Any time we’re in the North Shore, my kids ask if we’re going to Matsumoto’s. We said yes first 6 times! Its reasonably priced, quick and not terrible health wise (its water, sugar and dyes). We’ve taken every guest we’ve had to Matsumoto’s!

My personal favorite flavor is the Matsumoto’s trifecta: lemon, blue pineapple, coconut with sweetened condensed milk.

More Oahu Travel Tips From a Mom!

If this round of the best shave ice Oahu was helpful, check out all of my Oahu travel tips for info you won’t find on Google.

I'm a USMC spouse, South Carolina native, recovering homeschool mama of a 4 boy circus. They've taught me the most important facet of family photography: KEEP IT FUN!

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I find joy in chaos. The louder, the better!

I'm a USMC spouse, South Carolina native, recovering homeschool mama of a 4 boy circus.

They've taught me the most important facet of family photography: KEEP IT FUN!

hey, I'm Alison!

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