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Hilo Hawaii, Places to Eat, Things to Do

Every once in a while someone asks, “what is there to do in Hilo?”, and “where is a good place to eat?”

Doris and I always check out the farmers market and Bears Coffee first chance we get to go downtown.  #1 local attraction:  the farmers market (Kamehameha and Mamo St).  Fresh fruit, food, all kinds of stuff.   It’s on most days but not every day.   #2 for us anyways, is Bears Coffee,  one door down from the corner of Keawe near Wainuenue.  Hilo restaurants –  Hilo is full of holes in the wall and comfort family restaurants.   Puka puka Kitchen is a good lunch shop on Kamehameha, and there are are sandwich shops, Mexican, Thai, etc within a few blocks of each other in Hilo Town.   Look at Google Maps, there is a lot there actually. Bears is an awesome coffee shop with the best Belgian waffle ever.   There is a Kawa/Coffee bar on the front street.   The infamous loco-moco (originally a 4″ diameter by 3″ inch high paper cylinder layered package:  rice on the bottom, then a hamburger patti,  a fried egg all covered with brown gravy)  was invented in Hilo at the  Cafe 100 (Kilauea Ave).  Tripe stew is good there too.  You could do a coffee/tripe stew/loco moco tour of Hilo.  Malasadas:  You may have to travel out of Hilo.   Family favorites for Japanese food are Miwa’s at the old Hilo Shopping Center and Miyo’s, at the Wailoa Resort remnant adjacent to Wailoa State Park.  Malasadas at famous Tex’s Drive in on the main highway in Honokaa (40 mi North of Hilo).  There is also a roadside malasada place on the highway in Papaiko. Go to Suisan fishing dock by Liliuokalani Park for the heart-attack  breakfast or plate lunch – super-local easy going friendly. For healthy – PukaPuka Kitchen on Kamehmeha downtown. Check out  Ruben’s for Mexican. Hilo is famous for bakeries and sweets – there are many big and small. Save money – farmers market downtown for vegies, snacks, fresh fruit (Kam and Mamo street? around there).  Hilo beaches are great but different – have more lava than sand – and cold fresh water boils into the sea from springs everywhere – 4-Miles (Leleiwi  Beach Park past Keaukaha) for quick swim in the lagoon – and swim /snorkel at Richardsons .  Weather usually clears up by mid morning and the beaches are sunnier than Hilo town.  Check out the Honu sea turtles basking in the shallow water at these places, especially Leleiwi and Richardson.

The standard visitor sites are 1)downtown,  2) the Hilo beaches past Keaukaha, 3) Rainbow Falls and the Wailuku River,  4) Boiling Pots Piihonua on the Wailuku River.  5)  Tsunami museum (hilo is famous for being devastated by tsunami ),  6) snacks and sweets.

Things get quiet at night.

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