Big Island of Hawaii: to market, to market…

29 July 09

| Shopping In Paradise |

Makuu rambutan

No green travel is truly complete without a visit, up close and personal, to the tender greens, vibrant veggies, and luscious fruits that define the local food scene. Even if you’re not cooking on your journey, you’ll meet these same beauties again on the plates of the best green restaurants. At farmers’ markets you’ll also meet the organic farmers whose hard work makes it all possible. And rub shoulders with the locals who care most about supporting local agriculture. It’s a great chance to ask questions about the must-sees for the green traveler. What’s that funny looking fruit anyway, and how do I eat it? Where do you go around here for a great local and organic meal? Would it be OK for my kids and me to visit your farm?

Our recommendation for the Big Island of Hawai′i: the Maku’u market. A farmers’ and flea market combined, this weekend event becomes the town square of counter-cultural Puna, on the windward side of the island south of Hilo. It’s not as famous (or touristy) as the Hilo market, but trust us. Along with great people-watching, you’ll find glorious organic fruit and produce, food vendors (look for the family stand that peddles organic coconuts … a few quick machete chops and you’re savoring its sweet water and meat), Hawaiian crafts, jewelry, plants, and much more. Watch for the hubbub along Highway 130 near mile marker 8, Saturdays and Sundays, 8 am – 2 pm.

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