We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Fun to wander around”
Review of Chinatown

Book In Advance
More Info
and up
Make Your Own Chocolate Bar Class in Chinatown Oahu
Ranked #92 of 324 things to do in Honolulu
More attraction details
Attraction details
Fee: No
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Owner description: Buzzing with vendors, shoppers, business people and tourists, this sliver of Downtown Honolulu is an exciting mix of history, mystery and fun. Amid the lei stands, noodle factories, hole-in-the-wall eateries and herbal medicine shops, the Oahu Market attracts locals recognizing it for savory selections of fresh meats, fish and produce. Remember to frequently look up from the street level while walking around the district since many of the old buildings that were renovated have retained their original façade and completion date on the second story.
Useful Information: Bathroom facilities
El Paso, Texas
Level Contributor
82 reviews
29 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 53 helpful votes
“Fun to wander around”
Reviewed May 20, 2013

Forget the paid tours and go yourself. Easy to get to on The Bus, Chinatown is a compact area with many markets that are fun to explore. Like others have said, it is best to go early. Many shops will open at 6am, but going around 9-9:30 gives you plenty of time to look around and hit a place for lunch around 11 before the local business crowd comes in. (Legends at the Chinese Cultural Center was recommended to us by a local vendor and it was great with few tourists.) everything is closed up by 2pm and it is not recommended at night.

Look for the lei shops. Absolutely beautiful traditional and fancy leis are hard to choose from, have a heavenly scent, and are reasonably priced.

When I first researched our vacation, I found a food tour of Chinatown for $105 per person. Looking closer, I realized we could do the same thing ourselves and save $200. Chinatown is easy to see and enjoy without somebody ripping you off.

A word of caution that there are homeless people camped out on the sidewalk along River Street. Nobody bothered us, but it is a little disconcerting.

Visited May 2013
2 Thank Transplant_Texan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

532 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Korean first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
San Francisco, California
Level Contributor
333 reviews
39 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 118 helpful votes
“Not what I thought.”
Reviewed May 20, 2013

I've always wanted to visit there, and compare it with the Chinatowns in San Francisco and Oakland. Make sure you don't stay too late, a different "clientele" comes out later in the evening. A little bit on the dirty and grimy side. Interesting to go into the meat markets and produce areas. Lots of fresh vegetables to select from, some exotic. All in all, I probably wouldn't go back in the future.

Visited June 2012
1 Thank Norm1983
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Atlanta, Georgia
Level Contributor
12 reviews
8 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
“Don't bother”
Reviewed May 6, 2013

This was the only disappointment of our trip. It was dirty, un-interesting and not worth the time. Maybe we were expecting to duplicate the wonderful experience we had in Chinatown in San Francisco.

Visited April 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Makakilo, Hawaii
Level Contributor
72 reviews
31 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
“Chinatown, my Chinatown”
Reviewed May 6, 2013

It's a fun place to shop and eat. I like the variety and one of a kind shops here. The variety of restaurants is also a treat.

Visited January 2013
1 Thank GoCarolyn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
33 reviews
8 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
“Gotta get there between 10-4 daily”
Reviewed April 17, 2013

We always go to Chinatown, but you need to go during 10 to about 4, they seem to close early. We took the city bus. I find unique gifts there and not too bad money wise.

Visited December 2012
1 Thank Jean C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers who viewed Chinatown also viewed


Been to Chinatown? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing