While the stop at the Byodo-in Temple was my favorite spiritually and visually during a tour around Oahu, the most fun stop was at a macadamia nut farm on the North Shore. Why? Because you got to eat, AND you got to crack nuts.
Before you head to other popular destinations like the Polynesian Cultural Center and Kualoa Ranch, this little gem is hidden off the road in Kaneohe before you get to the North Shore. Tropical Farms is Oahu’s macadamia nut outlet, and if you visit while on a tour, you get all the free samples your belly can stand. Plus free coffee!
I didn’t even realize we had such a place! Hawaii is famous for mac nuts, but usually the Big Island boasts the best ones. I’m glad to say Oahu’s now also in the running.
There’s all sorts of glazed macadamia nuts for you to try…Honey roasted, Kona coffee, cinnamon, caramel roasted…even a garlic flavor. My parents bought a bag of the cinnamon mac nuts (which are so good, and very unique), and I went a little more traditional and went with a bag of honey roasted. Although a bag of Kona Coffee was a close second.
A bag is about $9. Kind of expensive, and while you can get them cheaper at ABC stores…what can I say, it’s an experience. Plus you just can’t get some of the flavors at other stores that you can here. The place is an organic farm, so I say support it and buy a bag!
Eventually we wandered outside after stuffing our faces with macadamia nuts, and came across a large tray of nuts. Not the kind that were prepped and glazed like we had tried, but nuts straight from a tree, ready to be cracked open.
We all tried our hand at it. The first time my dad took a rock and tried to get one open, he completely smashed the nut on the inside! It requires a more delicate touch.
After you crack it open, just pop it in your mouth! Dad eventually became quite the natural.
Once we were back on the bus, our tour driver Mario greeted everyone and asked, “So did all of you have fun cracking my nuts?” He liked puns. It was one of many throughout the trip.