Scroll to Continue
Lūʻau of Hawaiʻi
One of the most festive experiences to be had on a visit to the Hawaiian Islands is a lūʻau – a Hawaiian feast featuring lively music and vibrant cultural performances from Hawaiʻi and greater Polynesia.
History of the Lūʻau
The first feast in Hawaiʻi resembling a modern-day lūʻau was probably held in 1819. Before then, the kapu system of restrictions, religion and resource management separated men and women at mealtimes, even in times of celebration. Other names for these feasts are ʻahaʻaina or pāʻina, but over the course of time, the nickname lūʻau – a reference to the taro leaves at the core of many popular dishes – stuck.
Two centuries later, lūʻau are still being celebrated. But it is important to note that despite the name and its Hawaiian roots, not all food or entertainment at a lūʻau today is Hawaiian. A contemporary lūʻau in Hawaiʻi reflects our multi-cultural society. Food at a family lūʻau is as diverse as the various branches of the family tree. Entertainment at a visitor lūʻau often includes dances and music from other Polynesian cultures.
Popular Lūʻau Dishes
- Poi: Pounded taro plant root; a starch meant to be eaten with everything.
- Kālua Pig: Pork prepared in an imu (underground oven) and shredded.
- Laulau: Meat wrapped in lūʻau (taro) leaves and steamed, traditionally prepared in an imu.
- Haupia: Coconut pudding.
- Poke: A term that literally means to cut into pieces, this newly global delicacy is traditionally prepared with raw fish, shoyu (soy sauce), green onions, kukui nut (candlenut), and limu (seaweed).
Find a Lūʻau to Attend
Lūʻau on Maui
Learn more about Lūʻau on the island of MauiMore
Lūʻau on the Island of Hawaiʻi
Find more information about Lūʻau on the Island of Hawaiʻi.More
Lūʻau on Oʻahu
Read more about Lūʻau on the Island of Oʻahu.More
Lūʻau on Kauaʻi
Find more information about Lūʻau on the island of Kauaʻi.More
Where to Experience a Lūʻau
Maui's oldest family-owned and operated sailing company celebrating over 45 years of Ocean Adventures [...]
For over 20 years, Maui Ocean Center has operated with one mission at its core —fostering [...]
Pacific Whale Foundation is a nonprofit organization founded in 1980 to protect a declining humpback [...]
Hawaiian Paddle Sports provides authentic sustainable eco-tours that encourage guests to discover a [...]
Maui Stand Up Paddle Boarding is pleased to offer stand-up paddleboarding lessons, tours, rentals, and [...]
Explore a forbidden coastline formed by Mt. Haleakala's last eruption. Experience close encounters with [...]
Dive into an adventure over 120 feet below the sea with Atlantis Submarines Maui. Explore spectacular [...]
Maui Surf Lessons offers private surf lessons, stand up paddleboarding and surfing canoe tours on Maui
Hawaii Mermaid Adventures is an eco-tour company providing mermaid swim lessons, mermaid tail sales and [...]
Escape from the crowds, buses and tour boats and see Maui from the ocean perspective! Connect with your [...]
Opened in 1971, Kula Botanical Garden was developed by Warren and Helen McCord. The garden is located on [...]
Situated on 40 acres on Ka’anapali Beach, this resort is an authentic Hawaiian experience set in [...]