Plate Lunch

I'm going to Hawaii for Thanksgiving. If you have any suggestions for places to go, things to see, food to eat — please leave a comment. I would really appreciate it! Photo by krobinson [flickr]


  1. d, we're going to Oahu, Kauai, Maui and Hawaii. About 3-4 days on each island.

  2. im not much help but i would love to hear how it goes. we are going the 2nd week of dec for the first time and its with our 3.5 yr old. have a great trip!

  3. jennifer, We're taking our two-year-old. I'll let you know how it goes.

  4. On O'ahu: Hike to Manoa Falls. Andy's Sandwiches & Smoothies on East Manoa Road. Oven-warm Leonard's original malasadas.

  5. totally random-sounding, I know, but we loved buying SPAM o-musubi at the supermarket. Omelette, rice, seaweed--and SPAM.

  6. when Elsa was born, we got a SPAM bib and SPAM sippy cup from one Hawaii loving friend.

  7. Here are a few suggestions:


    - Lanikai Beach: For a mellow, untouristy beach experience. the gentle water is great for kids. Do a google image search on it.

    - Hanauma Bay: nice snorkeling. giant turtles.

    - North Shore: fun to go to sunset beach to watch the crazy people surf if the waves are high. it's an amazing sight.

    - Bishop museum: good rainy day choice. lots of interesting objects. touristy but nice.

    - fort ruger market for poke (http://oishiieats.blogspot.com/2006/09/fort-ruger-market.html)

    - diamond head market & grill

    from the picture on the post it looks like you're onto the whole plate lunch thing...


    - road to hana is a must (and probably already on your list.). seven sacred pools, etc.

    look out for coconut candy:


    - paia fish market: great fish sandwiches. paia is a nice, mellow hippie town.

    - haleakala - not a must and perhaps not ideal w/ a baby (its windy) but it looks like another planet out there. lots of nene birds

    can't remember much on the big island and you can't go wrong anywhere on kauai. heaven on earth.

    have fun.

  8. Casey mentioned this post to me and asked if I had any suggestions. My husband and I just got back from our honeymoon there and it was probably the most incredible place I've ever been. Luxurious and untamed at the same time. Here are some suggestions, and I'm trying to keep in mind kid-friendly places:

    Big Island -
    Place of Refuge (Pu'uhonua o Honaunau) - very nice spot to walk around, some historical structures, a nice lava beach, and we saw a few sea turtles there

    The town of Kona was generally very cute, we stayed at this awesome place called the Kona Tiki

    Hapuna beach was our favorite beach that we went to, great swimming

    Hawaii Volcanoes Park - tons and tons of hiking, if that's your thing. But as of the first week of October, the lava flow wasn't viewable from land, which was a bit disappointing.

    Maui -
    I loved Lahaina, pretty touristy but fun to wander around

    Haleakala was very cool, but we went for the sunset instead of the sunrise, so our schedules wouldn't get too screwed up. It does get very cold though.

    The Road to Hana was pretty, but honestly it's soooo long that I'm not sure it would be too much fun with a two year old. Not to mention stopping along the way is not as easy as the guidebooks would have you believe.

    An alternative to the Hana Highway , depending on where you're staying, is to drive a bit north of
    Ka'anapali & Napili toward the top of the island. There's some great places to hike from with breathtaking scenery, and parking is much easier.

    The beach path in Ka'anapali was a nice walk at sunset. It goes past all of the mega fancy resorts, so it's good for gawking. Oh, and here's a kid-friendly tip: the path is for the public, but you're walking right past all of these incredible hotel pools, some of which had huge kiddie amusement pools, and it didn't seem like there would be any way for the hotels to know that you're not a guest.

    We used these two great guidebooks, Hawaii Revealed and Maui Revealed, I think they do one for every island. The only warning if you do use them is that they tend to downplay the difficulty of some of the hikes, in particular the "Olivine Pools" on Maui.

    I'm so excited for you! Going there was a life-changing experience for me. No matter what you do, just driving around and taking in the scenery will fill your time. Oh, and my husband ordered the plate lunch pretty much everywhere we went and was never disappointed.