Saturday, May 26, 2012

Dole Plantation in Wahiawa, Hawaii

Gift shop and restaurant is located in the main building at Dole Plantation.
Dole Plantation visitor map.
(above photos: TheHopefulTraveler)
This is one of a series of posts about the Dole Plantation visitor attraction.

At one time pineapple was a king crop in the Hawaiian Islands. Though the crop is now grown cheaply elsewhere, the heritage of the fruit remains on the island of Oahu at the Dole Plantation. Located 40 minutes from Honolulu and en route to the North Shore the attraction is worthwhile for morning or afternoon of fun not only for visitors but locals too.

I had time to spare while going to a business meeting in the town of Waialua, I got call that the meeting was pushed back two hours. It was too late to return back to my office but fortunately the call came while I was approaching Dole Planation and decided to make a lunch out of the visiting the attraction.

Aerial view of Dole Planation in Wahiawa. (photo: Dole Plantation)
For the longest time I've been wanting to visit the "World's Largest Maze" and now I got the chance. Hopefully I could do it before my meeting time. Other things to do include the Pineapple Express and Plantation Garden Tour. These three attractions each carry an admission. It's free to visit the gift shop, the Plantation Grille restaurant and the Pineapple Variety Garden. This and the next few posts will cover these individual attractions.

Visit for more information. Hours: Visitor Center 9:30am-5pm daily.
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Dole branded t-shirts.
The vast gift shop floor.
(above photos: TheHopefulTraveler)
Call it a tourist trap if you will but at least the shop carries many worthwhile products related to the Dole Plantation. Many products carry the Dole name from shirts to candied pineapple chunks and mango slices. Perhaps more interesting is the salad dressings in lilikoi, Maui onion ponzu and pineapple flavors. You can even find Maui onion salsa. A whimsical dispenser sells pineapple flavored candy.

The shop's Waialua Chocolate gained national attention when Art Smith, Oprah Winfrey's personal chef, was smitten by the confection. The chocolate is grown on the North Shore of Oahu and consists of 70% cacao. This item and other Dole Plantation products are available online at
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Dole brand pineapple chunks and mango slices.
Salad dressings in lilikoi, Maui onion ponzu and pineapple flavors.
(above photos: TheHopefulTraveler)

The restaurant is the only place to eat for a few miles so if you're hungry when at the Dole Plantation, this is it. The menu selections include cheeseburgers, hot dogs and salads and their signature Dole Whip soft serve ice cream. Visit the to download a copy of the menu. There's also the Waialua Roasters coffee bar for those craving a caffeine fix. The Plantation Grille is open 10:30am-4:30pm.

The dining tables are all outside. Most are beneath umbrellas but some are located in the shade of the restaurant building. I had already eaten before heading out the day. So I just grabbed a cool iced coffee and then went to challenge myself to complete the Pineapple Maze before heading my rescheduled meeting time.

Waialua Roasters coffee bar.
Outdoor restaurant seating at the Pineapple Grille.
The Pineapple Grille interior.
Stocked shelves of Dole Plantation food products.
Maui Onion Salsa.
The gift shop also sells other favors such as these tropical mango
macadamia nut cookies.
Pineapple candy dispenser.
Bromeliad plants like the walkway to the Dole Plantation entrance.
(above photos: TheHopefulTraveler)


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