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A luau is at the top of the list for many on a Hawaii vacation. It will now be easier to enjoy one popular luau on the Big Island of Hawaii. The Mauna Kea Beach Hotel is adding a Friday evening luau to its weekly schedule, along with the long-standing Tuesday luau.
The entertainment and food at a luau can serve as a short course in Hawaiian culture. Guests can watch as kalua pig is cooked in an underground imu pit and then served as part of the menu. Lifting the cooked pig from the pit is called the imu ceremony, it begins at 5:45 pm followed immediately by dinner.
As with most luau, the buffet menu includes traditional Hawaiian dishes such as lomi lomi salmon, ahi poke, smoked pork and cabbage, chicken long rice and poi. If you don’t feel adventurous, there are plenty of salads, fish and meat entrees that are familiar to mainland palates. When faced with such bounty, it is hard to save room for dessert but it would be a terrible waste to miss the haupia, warm Mauna Kea bread pudding, or warm baked Big Island banana and coconut pudding. That’s only about half of the dessert menu!
With dinner at sunset, the music and hula continue after dark, the perfect setting for fire dancers. A luau takes the entire evening, and is often the major event of the day for Hawaii visitors. One reason is the time, another is the expense. The Mauna Kea Beach Hotel luau is $96 for adults and $48 for children ages 5-12. That’s in the general price range for other luau on Oahu. There is an option to attend only the show for $36 (adult) or $19 (children). I haven’t seen that listed as an option for the Oahu luau. While you would miss the fabulous food, it might be something families with picky eaters would find attractive.
The first Friday evening luau will be July 15.
Photo credit: Prince Resorts Hawaii.