65 Best Places to Shop in Big Island, Hawaii

As Hawi Turns

Fodor's choice

Housed in the 1932 Toyama Building, this landmark North Kohala shop stocks sophisticated women's resort wear made of hand-painted silk or high-quality cotton in tropical designs by local artists. There are also plentiful vintage treasures, jewelry, gifts, hats, bags, and toys, plus handmade ukuleles by local luthier David Gomes.

Basically Books

Fodor's choice

The legendary shop stocks one of Hawaii's largest selections of maps, including topographical and relief maps, and Hilo's largest selection of Hawaiian music (feel free to ask for advice about your selection). It also has a wealth of books about Hawaii, with great choices for children. If you need an umbrella on a rainy Hilo day, this bookstore has plenty of them.

Big Island Candies

Fodor's choice

A local legend in the cookie- and chocolate-making business, Big Island Candies is a must-see for connoisseurs of fine chocolates. The packaging is first-rate, which makes these world-class confections the ideal gift or souvenir. Enjoy a free cookie sample and a cup of Kona coffee as you watch through a window as sweets are being made. The store has many interesting products, but it is best known for its chocolate-dipped shortbread cookies. 

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Gallery of Great Things

Fodor's choice

You might lose yourself exploring the trove of fine art and collectibles in every price range at this gallery, which represents hundreds of local artists and has a low-key, unhurried atmosphere. The "things" include hand-stitched quilts, ceramic sculptures, vintage kimonos, original paintings, koa-wood bowls and furniture, etched glassware, Niihau shell lei, and feather art by local artist Beth McCormick.

Hula Lamps of Hawaii

Fodor's choice

Located near Costco in the Kaloko Light Industrial complex, this one-of-a-kind shop features the bronze creations of artist Charles Moore. Inspired by the vintage hula-girl lamps of the 1930s, Moore creates art pieces (both dancing and non-dancing) sought by visitors and residents alike. Mix and match with an array of hand-painted lampshades.

Kilauea Kreations

Fodor's choice

Beautiful hand-stitched Hawaiian quilts grace the walls here, quilting kits and books are plentiful, and the vast inventory of tropical fabrics is amazing. The friendly proprietors also offer fine art, photography, cards, and cool souvenirs you won't find anywhere else. A second location, Kilauea Kreations II in downtown Hilo, features a larger store and collection of fabrics as well as classroom space.

Kimura's Lauhala Shop

Fodor's choice

Originally a general store built in 1914, this shop features handmade products crafted by local lauhala weavers, who use the leaves of the hala tree. Among the offerings are hats, baskets, containers, and mats, many of which are woven by the proprietors. Owner Alfreida Kimura-Fujita was born in the house behind the shop, and her daughter Renee is also an accomplished weaver. The shop is closed Sunday–Tuesday.

Kona Wine Market

Fodor's choice

Near Costco, this longtime local wine store carries both local and imported varietals (with more than 600 high-end wines), specialty liquors, champagnes, 150 craft beers, gourmet foods, and cigars. There are even some accessories for home brewers. As a bonus, the market delivers wine and gift baskets to hotels and homes, and it offers complimentary tastings Fridays from 3 to 6.

Lava Light Galleries

Fodor's choice

C. J. Kale is an accomplished, award-winning photographer famous for capturing extraordinary images of lava flowing through the curl of a wave. Not a believer in using photo manipulation or special effects, Kale produces work that is as authentic as it gets. He and gallery partners Linda and Don Hurlzeler showcase their fine images of the beauty of Hawaii and other scenic places around the world.

Mrs. Barry's Kona Cookies

Fodor's choice

Since 1980, Mrs. Barry and her family have been serving yummy homemade cookies, including macadamia nut, white chocolate–macadamia nut, oatmeal raisin, and coffee crunch. Packaged in beautiful gift boxes or bags, the cookies make excellent gifts. She even makes cookies for the family dog. Stop by on your way to Costco or the airport and pick up a bag or two or three—or just ask Mrs. Barry to ship your stash instead.

Sugar Coast Candy

Fodor's choice
Located on the bayfront in downtown Hilo, this beautifully decorated candy boutique is a blast from the past, featuring an amazing array of nostalgic candies, artisan chocolates, and wooden barrels overflowing with saltwater taffy and other delights.

Two Ladies Kitchen

Fodor's choice

This hole-in-the-wall confections shop has made a name for itself thanks to its pillowy mochi. The proprietors are best known for their huge, ripe strawberries wrapped in a white mochi covering, which won't last as long as a box of chocolates—most mochi items are good for only two or three days. To guarantee you get your fill, call and place your order ahead of time. 

Waimea General Store

Fodor's choice

Since 1970, this Waimea landmark at Parker Square has been a favorite of locals and visitors alike. Although specialty kitchenware takes center stage, the shop brims with local gourmet items, books, kimonos, and Hawaiian gifts and souvenirs.

Westside Wines

Fodor's choice

Tucked away in a small downtown Kona retail center below Longs, this nifty gourmet wine and spirits shop offers restaurant-quality "wine list" wines at affordable prices. It's also the place to find large-format craft beers, Champagne from France, single-malt whiskies, organic vodka, small-batch bourbon, rye whiskey, fresh bread, and artisan cheeses from around the world. George Clooney's Casamigos tequila is the store's house tequila. A certified wine specialist, proprietor Alex Thropp was one of the state's top wholesale wine reps for decades. Wine tastings take place Friday and Saturday afternoons from 3 to 6.

2400 Fahrenheit

At the end of Old Volcano Road near Volcano Village, this small gallery and studio has hand-blown glass inspired by the eruption of Kilauea and the colors of the tropics. You can see the artists in action Thursday through Sunday from 10 to 4, and other days by appointment.

Ackerman Galleries

Kapaau-based artist Gary Ackerman features his oil paintings and multimedia art in an impressionistic and abstract style at this small gallery. 

Alii Gardens Marketplace

The outdoor stalls at this mellow, parklike market, open daily except Monday, offer tropical flowers, produce, soaps, kettle corn, coffee, coconut postcards, cookies, jewelry, koa wood, clothing, antiques and collectibles, handmade lei, silk flowers, and kitschy crafts. The made on-site barbecue is a real hit. A food kiosk also serves shave ice, fish tacos, coconut water, fresh-fruit smoothies, and hamburgers. Free parking and Wi-Fi are available.

75-6129 Alii Dr., Kailua-Kona, Hawaii, 96740, USA

Bamboo Gallery

The real draw of the Bamboo Restaurant is its attached art gallery, which tempts browsers with elegant koa-wood furniture and an array of gift items, such as hand-sewn crafts, boxes, jewelry, and even upscale aloha shirts.

Blue Ginger

The Waikoloa branch of this fashion veteran offers really sweet matching aloha outfits for the entire family in tropical batik prints. Handbags, shoes, robes, jewelry, and lotions are also sold here.

Coconut Grove Marketplace

The meandering oceanfront marketplace includes gift shops, cafés, restaurants (Outback Steakhouse, Humpy's Big Island Alehouse, Thai Rin, Lava Java, Foster's Kitchen, Fumi's Kitchen), sports bars, sushi, boutiques, crystal stores, Jack's Diving Locker, a running shop, and several art galleries. At night, locals gather to watch outdoor sand volleyball games held in the courtyard or grab a beer and enjoy live music. Directly adjacent is Ali'i Sunset Plaza, which is served by the same large parking lot. 

Crackseed, Etc.

As local as it gets, this little shop is a classic Big Island tradition, selling preserved Hawaiian-style seeds, li hing mui (sweet and sour plums), Japanese snacks such as arare (small crackers), and handmade candies, in addition to authentic Hawaiian souvenirs.

65-1290 Kawaihae Rd, Waimea (Hawaii County), Hawaii, 96743, USA

Dovetail Gallery & Design

Woodworker Gerald Ben and his wife, Renee, own this fine gallery that specializes in offering contemporary and abstract pieces while supporting the Holualoa arts community. It features a variety of art, including woodworking, sculpture, ceramics, photography, and painting. 

Dragon Mama

Step into this hip downtown Hilo spot to find authentic Japanese fabrics, futons, and gifts along with elegant clothing, sleepwear, and tea-service accoutrements. Handmade comforters, pillows, and futon pads are sewn of natural fibers on-site.

Elements Jewelry and Fine Crafts

The beautiful little shop carries lots of original jewelry handmade by local artists, as well as carefully chosen gifts, including unusual ceramics, paintings, prints, glass items, baskets, fabrics, bags, and toys.

Firehouse Gallery

Supporting the Waimea Arts Council, the gallery presents annual juried shows of local art as well as solo and group exhibitions by its many award-winning multimedia artists and artisans. It's in Waimea's original firehouse building at the intersection of Lindsey Road and Mamalahoa Highway.  Always call to check before visiting, as the gallery is staffed by volunteers and hours aren't always regular.

Glass from the Past

A fun place to shop for a quirky gift or just to browse before or after a visit to Akaka Falls, the store is chock-full of old Hawaiian bottles, antiques, vintage clothing, Japanese collectibles, and interesting ephemera. There's often even a "free" table out front to add to the discovery.

Harbor Gallery

Since 1990, this gallery has been enticing visitors with a vast collection of paintings and sculptures by more than 200 Big Island artists. There are also antique maps and prints, wooden bowls, paddles, koa furniture, jewelry, and glasswork. The shop hosts two annual wood shows and actively supports the local arts community.

Hawaii Cigar and Ukulele

It may seem like an odd combination to offer, but this funky little shop knows how to do both right. Handcrafted instruments start at just $100 and are made by local master luthiers David Gomes and Mark Evans. One lesson is included with your purchase, and they also have a great selection of other stringed instruments and accessories. Cigar lovers can sit in the lounge and enjoy a custom, hand-rolled Nicaraguan cigar for just $10. Or you can partake of the CBD option if cigars aren't your thing, then browse the cool selection of Hawaiiana in the gift shop before you leave.

55-3419 Akoni Pule Hwy., Hawi, Hawaii, 96719, USA

Hawaiian Quilt Collection

The Hawaiian quilt is a work of art that is prized and passed down through generations. At this store, the oldest quilt retailer in Hawaii, you'll find everything from hand-quilted purses and bags to wall hangings and blankets. More than likely, a friendly Hawaiian tutu (grandma) will be in the shop talking story. You can even get a take-home kit and sew your own Hawaiian quilt.  

Hilo Coffee Mill

In addition to a fantastic coffee-farm tour, the Hilo Coffee Mill sells coffee from a variety of local producers, along with locally made baked goods, candies, artwork, and gifts. Free coffee samples are offered. The mill is closed Sunday and hosts a farmers' market Saturday 8 to 1.