Not too long ago, I was sitting in an airport, on my way home to Kauai. The woman next to me was talking to her kids very excitedly about the yummy fresh fruit they were going to try when they arrived on the Garden Isle. She turned to me, and asked if I knew where to buy the best fruit on the island. I happily recommended she visit one of Kauai’s farmer’s markets. They’re a must-stop for both visitors and locals. Kauai farmer’s markets are full of fresh and organic produce, tropical baked treats, fresh-squeezed juices, and dozens of other local flavors.
Some fruits you must try (if they’re in-season) while on Kauai are papayas, lychee (see picture above), apple bananas, longan (cousin to the lychee), and, of course, mangoes. Kauai-grown lychee and mangoes are strictly summertime treats. It’s rare to find either during their off-season. If you’re lucky enough to get your hands on a fresh Kauai mango, I highly suggest chilling it in a little cooler, and taking it straight to the beach. Apple bananas, on the other hand, can be enjoyed year-round here. They’re smaller, and much sweeter than the standard bananas found in supermarket chains. My mouth is watering as I type!
One of my favorite Kauai farmer’s markets is located on the North Shore, at the Anaina Hou Park (right by Kilauea Mini Golf). It takes place on Saturday’s, from 9:00 AM to 1:00 PM. It’s not the largest of markets on the island, but has a wide variety of locally grown/made goods that my family and I always enjoy. Even better, it’s right next to the Wai Koa Loop trail-head. If you start early, you can walk the trail and return in time to peruse the market. Or, if you’re with keiki (children) take them to Kauai’s one and only mini golf right across the street.
Buying from Kauai’s farmer’s markets helps to support our hardworking local farmers, and makes Kauai a more self-sustainable little island. Best of all, it promises more healthy and delicious produce for everyone to enjoy. You don’t have to look far to find of of these bustling Kauai gems. Here’s a list of when & where they happen: