Where Are the Luaus of Oahu?
From the surfer’s paradise of the North Shore to the tourism capital of Hawaii on the southern coast, the island of Oahu is a land of incredible scenery, unforgettable thrills, and adrenaline-pumping adventures. It’s also the island where you find some of Hawaii’s best luaus.
Scattered all across the island, you find evening celebrations that capture the spirit of the islands while providing participants a glimpse into the fascinating cultures of the Polynesian Islands.
Here’s a look at some of the most popular luaus, arranged by location.
On the North Shore of the island known as the Gathering Place, you find a small-town vibe that offers plenty for guests to enjoy. This is the home of two of the North Shore’s best luaus: the Ali’i Luau at the Polynesian Cultural Center and Toa Luau.
Located at the Polynesian Cultural Center, the Ali’i Luau is about as family-friendly as you get. A lack of alcohol and so many cultural activities make this a perennial favorite. Be sure to arrive early, since the luau comes with access to all of the fun and educational activities of the Polynesian Cultural Center. Before you sit down to the delicious luau buffet, you can take a journey across the Pacific, and visit multiple villages that depict life in five of the island nations that contributed to Hawaii’s traditions.
Located on the other side of Oahu’s North Shore is Toa Luau. Set within the stunning Waimea Valley, Toa Luau provides access to the botanical gardens, Waimea Falls, and cultural sites. It’s a fascinating backdrop for a luau, providing incredible views of the island’s natural beauty. Here, you can enjoy an authentic imu demonstration, as the roasted pig is removed from the traditional underground, lava rock-lined oven.
When you stay in Waikiki, you’re only a few minutes drive from several top-notch luaus. In this cluster, each luau brings something unique to the table.
Diamond Head Luau
Before the sun sets and shadows overtake the island, enjoy striking views of the iconic Diamond Head Crater. And that’s only one of the perks when you take part in the Diamond Head Luau. Another one is the free access to Waikiki Aquarium before the pre-luau activities begin. But for many guests, the biggest draw of all is the farm-to-table food. You won’t find a spread of Polynesian delicacies made from ingredients this fresh anywhere else. Crisp vegetables, ripe fruit, and perfectly cooked meats are just a few of the best things Diamond Head Luau has to offer.
In addition to the traditional luau music and dancing, Rock-A-Hula Luau integrates a Las Vegas-style rock ‘n roll show. The Legends in Concert is a tribute to the classic musicians of rock and roll and features impersonators of Elvis Presley and Michael Jackson. The Hawaiian twist is that the music and background dancers integrate a local style for one of the most entertaining luau productions on Oahu. Beyond the incredible live entertainment, Rock-A-Hula is a traditional luau, with a buffet of delicious food.
Luaus are known for bringing people together, and the Nutridge Luau, which takes place on a glamorous estate high above the city, focuses on a more intimate setting. Replacing large crowds with a smaller group of people, Nutridge is easily the most mellow luau, but that’s not to say it’s boring. The views alone from the elevated position are breathtaking and provide the perfect backdrop for such a quaint and personal luau, especially when the sun starts to set.
Along the eastern coast, you’ll find a luau that uses its location perfectly to entertain and educate.
Ka Moana Luau
Ka Moana Luau takes place at Sea Life Park, an aquatic adventure that brings the best of the Pacific Ocean to you. With your admission to Ka Moana Luau, you’re also invited to experience this incredible attraction, and it’s the perfect way to explore the wonders of the deep without getting wet. In the evening, you take part in a luau you won’t forget. Cultural activities, Polynesian (temporary) tattoos, and ukulele lessons provide a great lead-up to a feast of delicious cuisine and a night of live performances. All of this set in one of the best views you’ll have with a Hawaiian luau.
On the opposite end of the island, one of the Oahu’s top-rated luaus awaits to provide you with an evening of fun and entertainment. Headlined by the luau’s creator, there is a lot of personality in West Oahu.
Chief’s Luau at Wet ‘n Wild
Chief Sielu Avea elevates Chief’s Luau at Wet ‘n’ Wild to unexpected heights with his own brand of humor. Chief’s Luau goes has all the elements of a traditional luau, with cultural activities and fun that will leave you hungry for the abundant buffet of locally sourced food. The evening entertainment is given an added layer of fun, as Chief Sielu serves as the emcee for the night, joking with the crowd and making the evening even more fun.