Where to Eat on the Big Island, Hawaii
Collected by Andrea Rip , AFAR Local Expert
HI-11, Naalehu, HI 96772, USA
For travelers who find themselves driving on the southern end of the Big Island, a stop at the Punaluu Bake Shop should be required. The shop is clean, has an outdoor picnic area, and has a case full of tremendously delicious bakery items....
332 Keawe St, Hilo, HI 96720, USA
This open-air, family-run gem has an old-school Hawaiiana feel, but takes a fresh, sustainable approach to sourcing its ingredients. Expect classics here with a local twist, like island-style onion soup topped with provolone and beer-battered...
1 N Kaniku Dr, Waimea, HI 96743, USA
Is it is possible to be romanced by a property or courted by a restaurant? My luxurious and beautiful dining experience at the Fairmont Orchid Resort's Brown's Beach House Restaurant had me hooked as soon as I arrived on the resort property just...
78-128 Ehukai St, Kailua-Kona, HI 96740, USA
Reserve a table for a unique and memorable dining experience at the Sheraton Kona Keauhou Bay Resort. While waiting for the magical mantas to appear, order a cocktail and something delicious from the affordable menu. When 8 o'clock comes around,...
72-100 Kaupulehu Dr, Kailua-Kona, HI 96740, USA
A beautiful example of locally sourced food on the Big Island, Ulu Ocean Grill at the Four Seasons Hualalai works with more than 160 farmers and fisherman to put together a menu full of culinary masterpieces. Every guest will find pleasure in...
45-690 Pakalana St, Honokaa, HI 96727, USA
On the Northshore of the Big Island is a local little drive-in that serves hot malasadas and loads of breakfast, lunch, and dinner options including burgers, pancakes, miso soup, and other sorts of local and American food. The prices are good (a...
75-5663 Palani Rd, Kailua-Kona, HI 96740, USA
A little peckish for lunch, I dropped in at Splashers on a recommendation from a street artist on Alii Drive. Though I was on my own, I quickly felt embraced by the local aloha and friendly atmosphere of the restaurant. I people watched - a group...
969 Kilauea Ave, Hilo, HI 96720, USA
Invented in Hilo, the Loco Moco is a very local breakfast item with its own following. Most restaurants put their own little twist on the meal. Cafe 100 in Hilo serves theirs in more than 30 varieties, though the basic loco moco is simply rice, a...
1 N Kaniku Dr, Waimea, HI 96743, USA
Prepared on Norio's signature cedar plank, Norio's Crispy Salmon, Kulana Farms 31 Day Dry Rib Eye, or sustainably caught Hawaiian Ahi will tantalize your tastebuds and leave you craving more. You can eat at a sushi bar or at tables in the...
274 Kilauea Ave, Hilo, HI 96720, USA
If you are a fan of mochi, this is a MUST stop on your visit in the Hilo area. The place is tiny, there is usually a long line, takes cash only, and parking is a bear, but once you take one bite into their massive (and most famous) strawberry...
27-999 Mamalahoa Hwy, Pepeekeo, HI 96783, USA
What's Shakin' is a fantastic local food spot located outside of Hilo, on the Big Island, along what is labeled the 'Pepe'ekeo Scenic Drive.' They are known for their fresher-than-fresh smoothies, but also boast a menu that'll appease even the...
75-6129 Alii Dr, Kailua-Kona, HI 96740, USA
Since 2013, patrons from around the world have found this little place in Kailua-Kona and raved about the fall-from-the-bone ribs marinated in homemade Kona Coffee Steak Rub and the pineapple slaw. Like home cooking at a backyard BBQ, you’ll be...
Open for dinner under the stars from Thursday through Sunday nights, flavors, live music, and dance harmoniously come together for an incredible evening out at Blue Dragon Restaurant and Musiquarium. The menu focuses on the freshness factor and...
15-2969 Pahoa Village Rd, Pāhoa, HI 96778, USA
In the tiny, quirky town of Hilo, a perfect date night starts with a stroll on the elevated sidewalks along the Victorian-style storefronts to check out the local creative scene. It ends at Kaleo’s Restaurant, where flip-flops are welcome and...
681 Manono St #101, Hilo, HI 96720, USA
Local-style comfort food gets the portions it deserves here, filling the soul and the stomach. Massive pancakes, kalua pork hash, and an all-day Big Island Breakfast Menu are the main draws. Seafood eaters shouldn't miss the poke bowl (pronounced...
65-1227 Opelo Road Kamuela B, Waimea, HI 96743, USA
Chef Peter Merriman’s flagship restaurant in Waimea is known for some of Hawaii’s best farm-to-table foods. At the forefront of the local menu movement, his award-winning dishes include Bulogogi Spiced Kauai Prawns, Hirabara Farm Earth Grown...
68-1330 Mauna Lani Dr #116, Waimea, HI 96743, USA
Feeding a healthy body and soul, Under the Bodhi Tree is commited to serving local, organic, and gourmet vegetarian and vegan foods from their Kamuela cafe. Beyond the menu, the restaurant supports the community with a fitness program and local...
51 Kalakaua St, Hilo, HI 96720, USA
Charming, with plenty of aloha, Moon and Turtle’s easy-breezy atmosphere is great for sipping a mint julep and enjoying wild boar fried rice. The interesting menu and fresh flavors welcome everyone to visit—in fact, it’s so popular that...
374 Kinoole St, Hilo, HI 96720, USA
Perfect for a breakfast or lunch, drop by Short n Sweet Bakery Market Cafe in Hilo for a refreshing bite to eat that will kick start your day and send you off on an afternoon of volcanic adventures or gallery gawking on the Hilo side of the Big...
75-5699 Alii Dr, Kailua-Kona, HI 96740, USA
Scandinavian Shave Ice is Hawaii Island's most iconic purveyor of the frozen treat—though it's not quite so big a deal on this island as some of the others. That said, Scandi's is everything you want your shave ice shop to be. Dozens of flavors to...
79-7251 Hawaii Belt Rd, Kealakekua, HI 96750, USA
Teshima's Restaurant is a historic Japanese diner on the west coast of Hawaii Island in Kealakekua. Welcoming and reasonably priced, the diner serves Hawaiian Japanese comfort food. The set meals are the best value, a sampling of small dishes that...
79-7399 Hawaii Belt Rd, Kealakekua, HI 96750, USA
Rebel Kitchen is a welcoming food joint in Kainaliu, just up from the Donkey Balls Factory. Choose from a selection of reasonably priced sandwiches and burgers made from local ingredients (there are a few mains, too, like jambalaya and coconut...
Church Rd, Waimea, HI 96743, USA
This unassuming trailer in a parking lot opposite a port in Kawaihae serves what may be the best shave ice on Hawaii Island, and possibly in the whole state. Why? First up, the syrups (divided into artificial, creamy, and fruit) really taste of...
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