Beyond its golden sandy beaches and captivating, jewel-toned waves, Hawaii’s unpopular local tours and activities complete the days spent in paradise. Here are our top suggestions for embracing Hawaii’s concept of aloha, from chilling out at a rum tasting that honors the state’s history as a sugar producer to riding across the green countryside. So start booking a trip, search for accommodation in Hilo vacation rentals, and see what Hawaii Island has to offer.
- Visit Chinatown in Honolulu. Honolulu’s old business district, previously known for its casinos, is now home to some excellent restaurants and a vibrant artistic community. Catch a live musical, comedy, or theater production at Hawaii Theatre after a meal of vegan or oxtail pho from The Pig and The Lady. Take a cuisine, history, and historical walking tour with the Hawai’i Heritage Center media posts to be brought back in time.
- Visit Kauai’s traditional taro fields. When you register for a farmer-led Ho’opulapula Haraguchi tour on Kauai, you’ll make stops at the lo’i or taro fields and Haraguchi Rice Mill, the last Hawaiian rice mill. The root vegetable taro, also known as Kalo in Hawaiian, is a staple of Hawaiian cuisine and is even mentioned in the folk tale.
Fresh, seasonal foods cooked with taro, like kalua pork and kuolo, are served by an on-site food truck. It is a sticky pudding-like dessert made with taro and coconut. Drive across a one-lane bridge on Kauai’s Northside to reach eblogz the sixth-generation operating taro farm in Hanalei.
- Hike on Maui with local guides. Your experience of the island is guided by a small-group hike with local and veteran resident guides from Hike Maui. Journeys include stops at waterfalls, bamboo woods, and tropical jungles in Haleakala National Park. Transportation from central Maui to the trail along the Road to Hana is offered, as well as lunch and snacks.
The guides on the Hike Maui staff have all completed a course on Hawaiian culture, history, geology, and botany. They also had to spend at least a year living in Maui. Many tour guides also have personal interests, such as marine biology and Hawaiian herbal medicine.
- Take a horseback ride to the Hawaiian coast or The Big Island. Though it is fading, remnants of Hawaii’s lesser-known paniolo, or cowboy, culture can still be seen at Kahua Ranch’s Na’alapa Stables in the island’s northern regions. One of Hawaii’s longest active operating cow and sheep ranches is the focus of its two-hour Kahua Ranch on Horseback trip, which is led by a paniolo. From mauka to makai, as the locals say, or from the highlands to the sea, the road travels over grassy terrain with panoramic views of the mountains and the ocean.
- At Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, observe the island’s development. Despite being the largest of the Hawaiian islands, Kilauea and Mauna Loa, two active volcanoes in Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park, give the island its youthful appearance. If there are any updates on volcanic activity, visit the National Park Service website; regardless of eruption, there are still lots of things to do inside the Unesco World Heritage Site.
Before enjoying a scenic drive on the Crater Rim Drive, explore the lava fields while paying attention to nene geese, dangerous caterpillars, and Hawaiian hawks. Avoid the temptation to try and take some plants with you if you don’t want to face the wrath of Kilauea, the unpredictable Hawaiian volcano and home of the fire goddess Pele.
- Discover Kauai’s culinary scene. Through the traditional Hawaiian ahupua’a, or land division system, which is described by segments of mountain, valley, river, and sea and connected to old agricultural and spiritual activities, the Waip Foundation’s three-hour food tour creates a taste journey. Local foods, including ‘ulu (breadfruit), guava, and liliko’i, may be enjoyed (yellow passion fruit).