Recently as part of our family trip to Hawaii, we went to the Toa Luau, which is located in the Waimea Valley on the North Shore of Oahu. There are of course many different luaus and Hawaiian cultural events that you can participate in if you’re staying in Hawaii, but I am glad that we visited the Toa Luau. We attended Toa Luau on the last day of our trip, and it really served as an amazing capstone to our time here on the islands. In terms of disclosure, Toa Luau did send me complimentary tickets, so keep that in mind while reading my Toa Luau review if you think that may have played a part in how I am reviewing Toa Luau.
Toa Luau Location
Toa Luau is located in the Waimea Valley on what is considered the North Shore of Oahu. The address is 59-864 Kamehameha Hwy, Haleiwa, HI 96712 and it takes about an hour to get there from Honolulu, where were staying
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There are two (identical) shows each day, at 12:30 and 5pm. They say that the traffic can get bad during the afternoons, so make sure to leave yourself a little extra time.
Toa Luau Review – Cost
Toa Luau has three different price points.
- Silver – $115
- Gold – $145
- VIP – $175
The main differences is that you get extra drink tickets with the higher price points and you are seated closer to the stage. There are also discounts for children (12 and under). We were given Gold tickets and I felt like that was sufficiently close to the action.
Exploring the Waimea Valley and Waterfall
Your Toa Luau ticket also gives you complimentary access to the Waimea Valley, which includes a 3/4 mile trail through different exhibits on Hawaiian culture as well as native flora and fauna. There is also a 40 foot waterfall with swimming pool at the end of the trail. We thought this part was free, so we were bummed when we got there and saw the sign indicating that it would cost $143 for our family to go there.
But then I realized that it WAS included in our Toa Luau ticket, so we hiked up to the waterfall (the prices above are if you don’t have a luau ticket). We didn’t have time to swim in the waterfall / swimming hole, but you could come a bit early to do that.
Toa Luau Food
At the Toa Luau, you’re seated in tables of 10, so if your group is less than that, you’ll likely be sharing a table. Our family of 7 shared a table with one other couple.
The food consists of chicken, pork, rice, fruit, salad as well as a piece of coconut cake. It is all you can eat, and they encourage you to eat your fill. None of us could even finish our first plate, so that wasn’t an option for us. They did also have a vegetarian option which we registered for in advance.
Toa Luau Review
Check in for the 5pm luau was at 4:45, and then they have a variety of different interactive cultural demonstrations. There was dancing, palm leaf weaving, coconut husking and more. There was also a demonstration of the typical way that things are cooked over the fire in Polynesian culture. One interesting thing throughout the luau ceremony is that the same people that are doing the demonstrations are also the people that serve you the food and participate in the cultural dancing.
At 5:45, they had us take our seats and there was a brief kava ceremony.
Then they had about an hour-long show of various cultural dancing (Tongan, Hawaiian, Tahitian, Maori, Samoan and more)
The evening was capped off with a fire knife performance, which was quite impressive.
The Bottom Line
The Toa Luau is expensive, but in line with prices for other luaus on Oahu or the other Hawaiian islands. And the show was amazing – it was definitely the most talked about thing by my kids out of all the things that we did while we were in Hawaii. Check it out if you are in Honolulu or Oahu and looking for a luau.
Have you been to Toa Luau or other Hawaiian luaus? Leave your thoughts in the comments
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We’ve been to Hawaii a half dozen times with kids, but never done the Luau. Like you mentioned, it’s a pricey event for a family, and my favorite part of the islands is the hiking, snorkeling & diving. I love the dancing and cultural performances, but each time we go, we look up where free events are happening, and bring our own hawaiian barbecue. We think of it as our own budget luau 🙂
That is a cool idea! There is a free weekly hula show in Waikiki right on the beach that we visited that was a nice slice of Hawaiian culture. One nice thing about this Toa Luau was that they showed some of the differences between some of the different Polynesian cultures (us Americans tend to lump Tongans, Samoans, Maori, Tahitians, etc all into the same bucket). I got the impression (unconfirmed) that many of the participants also are affiliated with / work at the Polynesian Culture Center which is up the road in Laie