Posted on January 8, 2019

The Gateway Buffet: A Day of Polynesian Hospitality

The Gateway Buffet at the Polynesian Cultural Center

by Hayley L., January 8,  2019

A crowd gathers for a cultural demonstration at the Polynesian Cultural Center
Every village has demonstrations, games, and activities

A luau is an activity that usually fills an evening, sometimes a bit more. But one venue offers a deeper cultural experience that can easily take up an entire day, or even more! The Gateway Buffet at the Polynesian Cultural Center is located in La’ie, on the scenic windward side of Oahu. It’s a little more than an hour’s drive from Honolulu and every mile is gorgeous.

The Polynesian Cultural Center lets you get face-to-face with Hawaiian culture and traditions from all around the Pacific. The Gateway Buffet includes a 3-day pass to the center. You may want to consider spending more than one day exploring and learning all about the varied cultures of Polynesia.

A Full Day of Activities

The villages at the Polynesian Cultural Center all offer activities that delight young and old visitors.
Games and activities delight young and old

The Polynesian Cultural Center consists of six villages, each representing a different Polynesian region. As you make your way through the villages, you have the opportunity to explore their distinct cultures. Try your hand at traditional crafts and see art from around the Pacific Islands. Meanwhile, you’ll get a chance to meet people from all over the Polynesian Triangle.

A canoe shuttles you to the first of the villages, and from there, it’s a delightful stroll between the others. There are many shops, boutiques, and food vendors on-site if you should need a treat. And if you’re a sports fan, the PCC is also home to the Hawaiian Football Hall of Fame. Don’t miss the 4D movie, either. The film takes you on a trip through time and space back into the ancient past of the Hawaiian Islands.

The Gateway Buffet – Let’s Eat!

Dining Hall for the Gateway Buffet at the Polynesian Cultural center, Laie, Hawaii.
The Gateway Buffet is held in a stunning open-air hall 

A highlight of the luau-themed dinner buffet is the slow-roasted kalua pig. However, this buffet features far more options than you’ll ever find at a traditional luau. In addition to several entree options starches, and sides, there’s a poke bar, salad bar, dessert bar, and a kids’ menu.

You can dine whenever you like, as long as it is between 4:30 pm and 6:30 pm. And you’ll love listening to live Hawaiian music and looking at the massive murals that decorate the open-air dining hall.

Please be advised that the Polynesian Cultural Center does not serve alcohol. Nor does it allow it to be consumed on its premises

Enjoy a Polynesian Extravaganza

The "Ha: Breath of Life" is held immediately after the Gateway Buffet ends.
“Ha: Breath of Life”, is an award-winning production

After dinner, the evening entertainment awaits. “Ha: Breath of Life” is a lavish production featuring dozens of singers, dancers, and actors who tell the timeless love story of Mana and Lani. Inspired by Polynesian mythology, the show fuses traditional storytelling with state-of-the-art surround sound, special effects, and animations.

If you want to make your trip to the Polynesian Cultural Center entirely stress-free, you can opt to add round-trip transportation from Waikiki to your package. Pick-up is offered at 10 AM or 12 noon to take you to the windward side of Oahu and returns around 10.30 PM. A bonus with this option is not only do you enjoy a safe trip home after a long day out, your driver also points out all the beautiful sights along the way!


Come Back for More!

Canoe Passengers ride to a new island village at the Polynesian Cultural Center

If you have time, you should spend more than one day at the Polynesian Cultural Center to take in all the villages and participate in all the activities without rushing. A return visit to the Polynesian Cultural Center can easily be combined with a tour around the world-famous North Shore of Oahu, with its iconic surf spots, historic Haleiwa town, and stunning beaches.

Click here to book the Polynesian Cultural Center’s Gateway Package!

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