Many who come to the island looking for something unique and special to enjoy during their stay or to take home to their friends back home usually go no further than the local shopping mall or the lobby gift shop. However, those who have vacation accommodations that include gourmet or even simple kitchens should take the time to put those appliances to work by first visiting one of several good Hawaii farmer‰'s markets.
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Open on Saturday mornings, this is by far the best largest and most popular is the Kapiolani Community College Farmer’s Market. Sponsored by the Hawaii Farm Bureau, this market was conceived as a local resource and has burgeoned over the years to be one of the very few places where locals and tourist intermingle while shopping. The market is filled with all types of fresh island produce, breads, sweets and treats packed and ready to go to friends back home or to enjoy on your feet in the parking lot. It’s the perfect spot to gather up some unique and tasty items for vacation condo kitchen cooking bliss.
Here are some of the more popular items at the market:
Nalo Greens from Waimanalo – Yes, the very same served in high-end Waikiki restaurants.
Kahuku Corn – Some of the sweetest corn ever!
Kauai Shrimp – Fresh and tasty from the Garden Isle
Farm Raised Moi- Perfect for the condo grill not to be missed!
Organic Beef –From North Shore Ranchers. Get a rib eye to go with that local beer
Sea Asparagus Pesto – Nutritious and yummy and pe3rfect for a quick pasta dinner.
Macadamia Nuts- Yes still in the shell!
Fresh Breads – Bale does great pastries and desserts too
Lilikoi Butter – Yum yum yummy! Needs to be placed in checked luggage to travel
Since this market is incredibly popular the experience can be somewhat of a challenge for those who arrive unprepared. Here are a few tips to make your visit a more enjoyable one:
Expect hoards of people and arrive early. Islanders, tourists, the young and old everyone from everywhere.
Be prepared to wait in line for samples and to purchase items. Although the booths are well staffed, they are often overwhelmed by he crowds.
Expect to wait for a parking space. The community college parking lot is huge but not huge enough.
Take the trolley from Waikiki. This avoids the hassle of parking but the trolleys are full on the return trips making for a long line at the market boarding area.
Bring your own bags. Recycle and reuse in paradise!
Kapiolani Community College
4303 Diamond Head Road
Honolulu, HI 96816-4421
Hours: Saturday, 7:30 a.m. to 11:00 a.m.