Surfer, bodysurfer and entrepreneur Daniel Strudwick perfectly embodies the spirit of Huntington Beach. His love of the water sees him at the pier almost daily, and it's the inspiration behind his handmade handplanes company, Scoots Handplanes. Crafted in his own front yard, his handsome wooden handplanes are sold in our Made In HB Marketplace and elevate the sport to a whole new radical level.
Always supporting local businesses, Strudwick finds himself on Main Street and beyond practically every day of the week and knows where to go and who to see. Here are his top five favorite local spots, in no particular order.
ROCKIN' FIG SURF HEADQUARTERS
This small shop caught my attention one Tuesday night during Surf City Nights, an event that I frequent weekly now. I was drawn to one of the surfboards displayed outside. One of the employees, Greg, started up a conversation immediately, figured out what I was looking for, and before I knew it, I was walking away with a new board. It turned out to be exactly what I was looking for. This guy knows what he's talking about! On Tuesday nights they have a booth set up outside with Bolsa Clothing flannels, tees, shirts and jackets, along with a huge selection of surfboards. It's hard to walk into this shop and not find something that I like. The inside of the shop is filled with photos, trophies and vintage boards hanging from the ceiling. You'll see something new each time. I love stopping by to catch up with Fig and Greg, scope out the new boards and find out how the surf was if I couldn't make it out.
Rockin' Fig Surf Headquarters // 316 Main Street, Huntington Beach, CA 92648
NO KA OI
This place really is the best! The breakfast here is amazing, with plates like macadamia nut pancakes and Hawaiian French toast made with Kings Hawaiian sweet bread. The service is always great, and the food never disappoints. Be sure to stop by later in the day for a Mai Tai, Volcano or a Primo and enjoy this Hawaiian oasis hidden on Huntington Beach's own Main Street.
No Ka Oi // 215 Main Street, Huntington Beach, CA 92648
HULA GIRLS HAWAIIAN SHAVE ICE
If you want real Hawaiian shave ice, you're going to need a plane ticket to the North Shore of Oahu and to pay a visit to Matsumoto Shave Ice. That's what I thought until I found Hula Girls Hawaiian Shave Ice. This Huntington Beach gem is just what the doctor ordered when you get that itch for real shave ice. A fluffy, never crunchy Hawaiian Sunset (#3) with a snow cap is my shave ice of choice. If you haven't tried their homemade ice cream, you are doing yourself a disservice. Be sure to try the macadamia nut coconut. They also have Dole Whip like you can get at Disneyland! While you're there, grab some hot malasadas from Dough Dough's Hawaiian Malasadas, an authentic Hawaiian mixed plate restaurant. I love how inviting this place is. The owners are awesome, the décor is spot on and there is always new art on the walls to check out.
Hula Girls Hawaiian Shave Ice // 16556 Bolsa Chica Street, Huntington Beach, CA 92649
DUKE'S HUNTINGTON BEACH
Duke's has quickly become one of my favorite dinner restaurants and is home to one of the best fish tacos I've had. Catch the Aloha Hour in the Barefoot Bar with nightly specials on amazing food and drinks like the Kalua Pork Mac & Cheese and the Hawaiian Ice Tea. The view from the main restaurant is perfect for watching the sunset slip behind the pier and enjoying a slice of Kimo's Original Hula Pie. With their traditional Hawaiian atmosphere and décor, Duke's has become a go-to for relaxed dining and great food.
Duke's Huntington Beach // 317 Pacific Coast Highway, Huntington Beach, CA 92648
Huntington Beach's nickname of Surf City says it all. The beach is the main reason the city is what it is today: the surfing capital of California. Northside, southside, 17th Street, Goldenwest and State Beach—there's always a spot in HB where you’ll be able to find waves. HB is home to the Surfers' Hall of Fame, Surfing Walk of Fame and the International Surfing Museum, which commemorates the history of surfing in HB and Duke Kahanamoku. All three local highlights are found within just blocks of the beach. The beach is what has drawn me to this city for years, from watching the waves crashing on the pier during the storms in 1988, learning to surf and having bonfires during my high school years to more recently living here and enjoying everything the city has to offer.