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“Free and worth your time”

Hawaii State Art Museum
Ranked #77 of 331 things to do in Honolulu
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Owner description: The Hawai'i State Foundation on Culture and the Arts invites you to visit the Hawai'i State Art Museum (HiSAM). HiSAM is located on the 2nd floor of the No. 1 Capitol District Building, 250 South Hotel Street, Honolulu, Hawai'i, 96813. Admission is free at all times. Museum Hours: Tuesday through Saturday 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. First Friday, the downtown art event held on the first Friday of each month, 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. (galleries close at 8:30 p.m.) Closed Sunday, Monday, and all state and federal holidays. HiSAM has four galleries - the Diamond Head Gallery, the Ewa Gallery, the Sculpture Lobby, and the Sculpture Garden. All artwork on display has a connection to Hawaii (e.g. artist born in raised in Hawaii). Exhibition information is available on our website. Parking is available across the street in the Ali'i Place parking structure (entrance at 1099 Alakea St, cash only) or at Iolani Palace (metered parking, 25 cent coins only). Several TheBus lines stop in front of or close to the building. If you are taking a taxi cab, there is a small pull in area on Richards St. Wheelchair access from the Richards St. entry gate, on the Richards St. side of the building.
Useful Information: Wheelchair access, Activities for young children, Stairs / elevator, Bathroom facilities, Food available for purchase
Reviewed April 27, 2013

The Hawaii State Art Museum is a small contemporary art museum on the edge of downtown Honolulu. Admission is free, and it's a great companion to some great attractions in the area. The museum is open from 10am to 4pm, Tuesday through Saturday.

There are two galleries containing works of art related to Hawaii and its people, as well as a sculpture garden (opened in May 2012) and a children's area. The restaurant is the Grand Cafe, a notable eatery formerly on Pauahi street in Downtown Honolulu.

Pros:
**Free. Leave a donation in the box, if you want.
**(Powerfully) Air conditioned. On a hot day, this is a great rest stop when exploring downtown.
**Three well-maintained restrooms. All of them are very clean, and one of them is nicer than my house.
**The restaurant. 'Iolani Palace doesn't have a restaurant, and this is a good option for a "double-play" with that attraction.
**Contemporary Art. If you like contemporary art, then this has a ton. A good complement to the nearby downtown art galleries.
**The children's area provides a hands-on environment for young children.

Cons:
**Street Parking is metered, with limited nearby free parking on Saturday.
**Restaurant is closed on Saturday. Not many food options on Saturday in the area.

Best reasons to go:
**First Friday (of each month, 6pm). A family-friendly entertainment option on an otherwise rowdy night.
**Second Saturday (of each month, 11am). Additional hands-on (often "make-and-take") activities appropriate for children. A great time for families to visit.
**If you are traveling by bus. The museum is located at a very popular transfer point for many bus lines, and a quick stop in the museum can help pass the time until the next bus comes.
**Convenient to 'Iolani Palace, the capitol building, the Kamehameha statue, Chinatown, and the cruise ships.
**If it's raining...you need something to do.

6  Thank EatTheBus
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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59 - 63 of 105 reviews

Reviewed March 17, 2013

We really enjoyed this place. We saw the work of a local artist, LeoHone at a Waikiki gallery and it got us wanting more art. It lead us here and we were glad we went. Lots to see. They have a little place to eat there too.

Thank eyelive2travel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 30, 2013

In mid-January,2013 restaurant became Grand Cafe. Spokesperson for museum described the menu as American comfort food.

2  Thank Boaz37
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 27, 2013

Not large, but all the art is by native Hawaiians on mainlanders who have moved to Hawaii. Worth a visit especially if you have a rainy day like we did.

Thank travelnguy12
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 16, 2012

I really enjoyed this museum. I can't put my finger on any particular exhibits that really "made" the deal for me, it was the overall experience that I enjoyed. It was relaxing, and interesting, and a good atmosphere, and beautiful works of art.

Thank JennBrown
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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