Are hawaiian luaus worth it?

In my opinion, I think it's definitely worth planning to go to a luau party on your Hawaiian vacation.


offers traditional Polynesian and Hawaiian food that you might not find on a resort menu. They seem to be a good, fun cultural experience. They also look expensive.

I know it all depends on personal preference and whether your budget allows it, but I would like to get some personal opinions. If you're planning your first trip to Hawaii, I definitely suggest booking a luau. It's an easy way to get into Hawaiian culture. Some luaus are mixed in potato salad (my favorite) and others have grated carrots, but otherwise it's mostly macaroni, mayonnaise and a little spices.

I used to be surprised when people told me they didn't know what a Hawaiian luau was (some thought it was a fancy dinner). While most people think that luaus only include Hawaiian hula dances, it's actually quite rare that they only have Hawaiian dancing. So, since I run a travel site in Hawaii, I felt compelled to write a post explaining what a luau is (and what it isn't), describing what to expect, and showing some of the best luaus in Hawaii. Although I used to think the answer was a simple yes, I now realize that it really depends on what kind of vacation in Hawaii I'm planning.

And since luaus parties can be canceled due to rain, it's good to have vacation days left in Hawaii in case you need to reschedule them. Honestly, many luaus are aimed at tourists and feature cheesy jokes, mediocre dances and lots of alcohol. However, it should be a crime for souvenir shops to lure you with a free necklace just to offer you the most generic and expensive Hawaiian souvenirs possible. So this time, with our children 3 years older than our last trip, I wanted to book a luau and see for ourselves if it was worth the money.

We don't do luaus on every visit, but every few years they've been worth it, at least for us. Some luaus allow you to bring a stroller so that your baby or toddler can sleep while you can enjoy the show.

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