2023 Events and Festivities

If you plan to visit The Island of Hawaii in April this year, there are a few key points on the calendar for you to pay attention to. Perhaps in contrast to its geographically smaller neighbors, The Big Island is pooling resources, people, performers, and more into a smaller number of more significant events. These diverse events offer everything and more that a curious, enthusiastic, and very hungry/thirsty traveler could want.    

Big Island style for April 2023 seemingly is: throw a big, complete super-festival and taste, smell, and feel it all, all at once. There will be a decades-running arts, crafts, and food festival. There will be an iconic hula festival with direct roots in the Kingdom of Hawaii in the 19th century. And there will be a glorious chocolate festival. What more do you need?

Here are three epic and fantastic events/festivals you can’t miss while visiting the Big Island in April 2023.

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30th Annual Hawaii Arts, Crafts, and Food Festival

If there is a quintessential activity for visitors to the Hawaiian Islands, it might look an awful lot like this. All the boxes are seemingly checked - for three days straight, food, dance, art, live music, prize giveaways, and more are all combined into one epic cultural celebration. That it is a tradition now 30 years deep speaks to its timeless appeal for visitors of all ages and interests. 
When: April 13th - April 15th, 9 AM - 4 PM
Where: V421 Makalika St, Hilo (Nani Mau Gardens)
More Info: Hawaii Arts and Crafts Festival

60th Annual Merrie Monarch Festival

Speaking of timeless appeal, this iconic hula festival is now at its 60th annual iteration. Merrie Monarch Festival has been showcasing Hawaiian culture for an inspiringly long time, attesting to the unending importance of hula. But amazingly, the festival can trace its origins even further back than that. In 1886, King David Kalakaua celebrated his 50th birthday by hosting what came to be remembered as the “Silver Jubilee” on the grounds of Iolani Palace. Merrie Monarch Festival continues what was started on that fateful day nearly 140 years ago.     
We recommend checking the festival’s official website for more info and updates.
When: Sunday, April 9th - Saturday, April 15th
Where: 350 Kalanikoa St, Hilo (Edith Kanakaole Stadium)
More Info: ​​https://www.merriemonarch.com/

Big Island Chocolate Festival

Some cultural touchstones like the festivals mentioned above, lovely though they are, may require a brief explanation for the average Hawaii visitor to recognize what they are about. Not so with this one. Indeed, we suspect the Big Island Chocolate Festival hasn’t had to invest much in developing enticing catchphrases to put below the name. What more must we tell you to convince you this is worth attending? How about this - VIP tickets also include sunset dancing and unlimited wine!

When: Friday, April 28th; Saturday, April 29th
Where: The Westin Hapuna Beach Resort
More Info: https://bigislandchocolatefestival.com/

Whether tasting world-renowned chocolate or hula dancing, April on the Island of Hawaii is set to have no shortage of interesting and memorable activities for visitors to immerse themselves in.

We hope you found this introductory guide to be a helpful resource for planning your visit. Mahalo, and see you in April! 

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