Shopping on the Big Island
Whether you prefer bargain hunting or luxury brands, the Big Island is big enough to have it all. From exotic fruits at farmers’ markets to unique souvenir treasures, there’s something here for everyone’s shopping tastes! Don’t worry, Hilo and Kona also have big chain stores such as Target, Wal-Mart, and Ross, in case you’ve forgotten some necessity for your vacation. Check out our favorite places to go for Big Island, Hawaiʻi shopping below!
There’s no doubt about it: Farmers’ markets are hip here. Locals like to meet with farmers and know where their food is coming from, and you can too at one of the island’s many weekly market happenings. Farmers’ markets are also one of the best places to buy locally made gift and souvenir items, generally directly from the artisan.
- Hilo: Every day is market day in downtown Hilo, though Wednesday and Saturday offer much bigger markets. Find a prime selection of fruits and vegetables you’ve never seen before, along with great lunch selections scattered throughout the market.
- Waimea: Saturday mornings are all about the farmers’ markets in this ranching town in North Hawaiʻi. There are three markets in town on Saturday mornings, and all day Wednesday at Pukalani Stables behind Parker Ranch Shopping Center.
- Honokaʻa: Hāmākua Harvest is on the Hilo end of town on Sunday mornings. There’s live music and educational workshops weekly.
- Kona: There’s an everyday market in downtown Kailua-Kona on Aliʻi Drive, as well as the South Kona Green Market in Captain Cook on Sunday mornings.
- Puna: Makuʻu Market, located on the highway between Keaʻau and Pahoa on Sunday mornings, is a truly eclectic mixture, reflective of the community. Find smoked meat, organic coconuts, and vintage ephemera.
Main Street Magic
As you’re searching for that perfect gift or keepsake from your trip, remember that often the best place to find it is on “main street.” As an island of small towns, we cherish our local small business districts and the unique qualities they offer shopping on the Big Island. In Hilo’s Bayfront area, you’ll find local bookstores, high-end Hilo fashion designers, and unique artwork. On Aliʻi Drive in Kailua-Kona, stroll along piers and past royal residences while searching out that perfect gift (or ice cream cone). Many stores pride themselves on offering 100% local goods; patronize one of these to make sure your dollars stay here and support the community. Aloha Grown in Hilo and Big Island Grown in Honokaʻa are two to look for.
Finally, the Mall
If you’re not necessarily looking for anything in particular, but just enjoy shopping, there are a few malls on the island as well. Probably the nicest for hanging out with the family is the Queens’ Shops at Waikoloa Beach Resort. Enjoy the landscaping, fish ponds, and outdoor areas while checking out some great shops and restaurants.
Happy treasure hunting during your Hawaiʻi Big Island shopping trip!