Coffee drinkers will recognize Kona as the source of some of the best beans in the world. Get your blood pumping with a walk along the “Royal Footsteps” waterfront stretch of Alii Drive, or take stargazing to the next level with a nighttime visit to the summit of Mauna Kea. Waterfalls, volcanoes, and soft black sands are just some of the natural features that make Kailua unique. Shimmy your hips at a hula-filled luau, or get an eyeful of native history at the Kamakahonu compound.
Things to do in Kailua-Kona
5 based on 764 reviews
We pride ourselves in serving great BBQ Baby Back Ribs, Burgers, Home Made Honey BBQ Sauce, and Kona Coffee Steak Rubs. Order our famous 23 hour slow Roasted Prime Rib For the holidays or any occasion (need a 2 day notice) Come sit and dine in our outdoor seating area, or do take out. Mahalo Tim & Joanna TJ'S BBQ
Excellent ribs, they appear to be cooked a very long time. Not sure what wood (fuel) they use or how they make their sauce; they wouldn’t share their recipe with me. (As if they would.). Friendly service. The shack has a few tables with umbrellas to protect you from the cancer-causing sun, in a pleasant courtyard. The courtyard has room for young children to romp around while your order is prepared. Hamburgers were also excellent. I would try and order early in the afternoon as they do run out of ribs. We normally split an order of the half-rack of ribs as we are trying to watch our weights. Not doing so well with that when there are good ribs nearby.
5 based on 143 reviews
We are a Creperie located in the Ali'i Gardens Marketplace. We offer a wide variety of fresh, locally grown products, as well as gluten free, and dairy free options. Our outdoor seating is both covered, and uncovered. We are a husband and wife team with no employees so we are very dedicated to providing great food, great service, and an all around great experience at a very reasonable price. So if your looking for a great meal, snack, locally grown coffee, or a fresh fruit smoothie it would be our pleasure to serve you! Mahalo, Maja and Michael Waring
Miya & Michael offer amazing crepes in Alii Gardens market setting -- our fave is the Captain Cook crepe, but our friends loved the Mediterrean one also. It's worth the short 1.5 mile trip from Kona village to this cute market to get these awesome savory or sweet crepes!
4.5 based on 1 reviews
This place was at street level of the condo we rented and we had lunch here both times we were around. Absolutely loved it, really fresh and clean tasting. I had poke bowls both times, wife had a bowl and a cooked ahi plate once. Between us I think we had 4 kinds of poke and 3 different sides and thought all of them were great, and my wife liked the ahi a lot. Hopefully we can get back someday.
4.5 based on 639 reviews
‘ULU Ocean Grill & Sushi Lounge is the breathtaking new oceanfront fish and seafood restaurant at Four Seasons Resort Hualalai, where Executive Chef James Babian’s acclaimed “R.S.A. - Regional, Seasonal and Artisanal” cuisine is served in Hawaii’s most beautiful setting - alongside the surf and under the stars. The restaurant showcases a stylish blend of Hawaiian architecture and modern flair - a lively, informal setting where guests are inspired, surprised and delighted by the Hawaii’s beauty and the flavors of the Pacific, through an innovative menu with playful tableside presentation. Cuisine is prepared oven roasted, flame grilled and wok fired, while an extensive wine list, with a special selection of boutique wines is presented via iPad. The modern sushi lounge and ocean view bar feature the Island's freshest sushi, as well as craft cocktails, sake and Japanese beers. Casual, friendly and knowledgeable servers guide guests through a social dining experience not to be forgotten.
A lot has been written already about Ulu so let me just add my name to the list of devoted fans. Of course Four Seasons hotels typically come close to perfection, but Ulu achieves a rare balance between Hawiian friendliness and perfectly precise professional service. The food was exciting and delicious. Our waiter Bronson was so warm and welcoming while never being intrusive, and somehow timed the entire dinner perfectly. Knowledgeable and fun, he made the evening a perfect one.
The setting could not be more perfect, beautiful beachside dining at sunset. When compared to restaurants in the same quality level, Ulu is also a serious value.
Though not cheap, This caliber of food could easily be found for double the price at far inferior locations. 5 people with wine and after dinner drinks came to just over $600, an amazing value.
I’ve eaten here quite a number of times when visiting the Big Island and the experience has been consistently stellar. What a treat!
4.5 based on 248 reviews
Delicious American char-grilled food with Hawaiian influences, served quickly and inexpensively. Featuring as many local ingredients as we can, including the delicious Punalu'u Bake Shop Hawaiian sweetbread buns for almost all of our sandwiches, goat cheese from Hawaii Island Goat Dairy, lettuce raised in Waimea, and tomatoes from Oahu. All of our burgers, fish, chicken and hot dogs are char-grilled for smokey goodness! We're the only place on the entire Big Island to get Vienna Beef hot dogs, the best hot dogs in the world! And we're also the only place in the state of Hawaii to get that Midwestern classic, the pork tenderloin sandwich. The sweetbread makes them amazing! Our French fries and onion rings are fresh cut every day. We lightly batter our onion rings, which makes them crunchy and delicious! Do you want to taste what fresh fish tastes like char-grilled? It's amazing, and we offer it here. We only offer fish caught here in Hawaii, and it's never, ever frozen. It's wonderful to live in a place where you can eat fish pulled out of local waters! We're a little hard to find but worth the effort. We're in the back of Ali'i Sunset Plaza, behind Lava Java and The Sandal Stop.
We tried 5 of their burgers and they were all amazing! And so unique! Mac nut pesto goat cheese was my favorite. Their fries are DELISH! Hot mess was such a fun way to experience the best Kalua pork sandwich! Great prices!
4.5 based on 255 reviews
We went looking for this place and honestly almost turned around when we got there. It looks like nothing from the outside, a couple of dark windows a not-so-upscale strip mall. We weren't even certain it was open. But it was and we didn't, and boy am I glad! This place is awesome. I'm a huge fan of lau lau and I have to say that the lau lau here was better than every place I've had it outside of Ono's in Waikiki -- don't get me wrong, it's hard to make a bad lau lau, but most of them tend to have pockets of pretty fatty pork. This one does not -- it's just pork. It's also the only one I've had that doesn't remove the outer (inedible) leaves, so you have to work around those. Also, we tried the Garlic Furikake Chicken. OMG! Fantastic. It's boneless chicken (but the size of fried chicken pieces) with a coating a sauce that's sort of chewy (almost like a General Tso's chicken, but not the same flavor). Delicious. Try some. Sit in or take out. Oh and I had a loco moco too. Yum!
4.5 based on 384 reviews
So on our quest to find somewhere healthy to eat we stumbled across this place thanks to yelp reviews. And it did not disappoint! Delicious acai bowls! Large portions as well. Side note, that is all they serve. (No coffee sadly.) We spent the next few days on the other side of the island trying to find similar places like this with no luck. I’m already back on the mainland and missing this place!!
4.5 based on 2 reviews
Jackie Rey's Ohana Grill is a casual local's joint featuring fresh seafood, steaks, pasta and a variety of salads at affordable prices. The restaurant (named after our daughter) is the culmination of much hard work and the dedication of ourselves and our crew. We invite you to be our guests and experience great food and old fashioned hospitality, island style. Angie and Paul—Proprietors of your Local Ohana Grill. Established 2004.
It is hard to understand the good reviews. I wanted to like this place. The restaurant has a depressing dirty decor and atmosphere. It needs a clean up and renovation. Even the ceiling is water marked and sagging. The food was burger style and pricey. Nothing was great. Off the beaten track far from any views or the ocean. I felt sorry for them. They need a new location and menu.
4.5 based on 736 reviews
Ultimate Burger is a Locally Owned by Chef Makani, Big Island born and raised. Chef Makani created this "Quick-service" Burger restaurant catering to a broad spectrum of diners, including Vegetarian, Gluten-sensitive, and even Vegan guests. Ultimate Burger is known for being "with the times," serving Organic and local ingredients from the Big Island of Hawaii. Come taste the amazing fresh ground, grass fed Big Island Beef!!! Our music is not bad either! Ultimate burger features an open kitchen allowing guests to see the "magic" happen in the back of house. Priding themselves on teamwork, the UB crew is very quick and efficient, delivering freshly made Burgers cooked to order that are sure to delight, Don't forget to try the daily, freshly cut "Big Daddy Fries" served with Chef Makani's Citrus Aioli that's packed with flavor. From old fashioned to innovative Ultimate burger has it all.
The burgers here are so delicious they warranted a second visit! Located in a strip small, this fast casual restaurant promises fresh burgers made from local ingredients. I ordered the Ultimate Cheeseburger and it was so tasty! In addition to the usual fixings, the house made ultimate sauce, pickle slices and brioche bun put it over the top. The ultimate fries with house made aioli were also so good as was the house made lemonade. Everything is so fresh and flavourful. Service is quick and efficient even when the line is out the door. You have to eat here!
4.5 based on 625 reviews
Umekes is the home of the True Authentic Fresh Hawaiian Ahi Poke Bowls! Umekes means Bowl in the Hawaiian language and we have Poke bowls for everyone. Umekes will create your Poke bowl the way you want it raw or grilled (pulehu) with healthy sides you can get your high protein and low fat for the day. We serve samples to our customers as we want you to be able to happy with your Poke bowl. Stop by our three locations open Monday through Saturday for your Poke Pleasure. Alii Plaza, Lanihau Shopping Center and our newest restaurant Umekes Fishmarket Bar and Grill off of Kuakini Highway and Kaiwi Street. Call ahead and order or scoop on by Umekes where Aloha is served daily!
I wouldn't go out of my way to eat here again. Choices were good. They were flexible and substituted seared ahi on a salad for me. Flavors were a little bland. The restaurant is busy and the wait staff were very attentive and helpful.
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