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Chill out with a local favorite: shave ice

Aoki’s is a North Shore icon
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Don’t call it a snow cone. Sure, it has a base of ice topped with circus-bright colors, but the similarity ends there. Where snow cones are made from tiny, crunchy chunks of ice, Hawaii’s favorite treat is made of finer stuff. It’s fluffy and airy, much like freshly fallen snow. While most of the island residents refer to these as ‘shave ice’ or ‘shaved ice,’ folks from the eastern side of Hawaii Island may confuse you when they call it ‘ice shave.’ No worries; it’s all the same stuff. Order yours with azuki beans or li hing mui for real island flavor!



Matsumoto Shave Ice: Located on the North Shore of Oahu, this is the place to stop for refreshment when you’re out exploring the island. They make their own syrups.

Aoki’s Shave Ice: Another North Shore favorite, they have shave ice as well as ice cream, smoothies, and snacks.

Waiola Shave Ice: Ask for a snowcap if you’re up for something new. Reputed to have the fluffiest shave ice on Oahu. Try for yourself and see!


Annie’s Island Shave Ice: On Prison Street in Lahaina, Annie’s is off the beaten path, but worth looking for.


Hawaiian Blizzard Shave Ice: Only open in the afternoons, you’ll want to time your trip accordingly. Located in Kapaa down the street from the Kauai Coast Resort in the Kapaa Shopping Center.

Koloa Shave Ice: Located in historic Old Koloa Town, stop by after you’ve visited Kilauea Lighthouse.

Hawaii Island

Scandinavian Shave Ice: If you’re exploring Alii Drive, grab a shave ice then step outside to enjoy the view of Kailua Bay. Trust me; the keiki (child) size will be plenty.