Chinatown
About
As a historic district in Honolulu, Chinatown offers a charming way to spend the afternoon. The area is a time-honored juxtaposition of old and new, where traditional markets co-exist with swanky art galleries. Stroll down Maunakea Marketplace where you can find exotic fruits, traditional herbs, and even watch noodles being made. You can also people-watch at River Street Pedestrian Mall and snap a photo of the iconic Hawaii Theater nearby. Get here via the Waikiki Trolley Hop-on-hop-off trolley tour, on a Hawaii food walking tour where an expert will bring you to all the must-eats in the area. – Tripadvisor
Suggested duration
1-2 hours
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  • D L S
    32 contributions
    Fascinating Chinatown Honolulu
    The city bus can take a visitor downtown to visit an authentic Chinatown filled with locals and color. Shops, markets and interesting architecture abound. Flower stalls sell inexpensive leis, markets have food stalls with Asian ethnic cuisines. I enjoyed dim sum. Right next door is the Arts District which is gentrifying so don’t delay or it will be filled with yuppies and millennials.
    Visited February 2023
    Travelled solo
    Written 8 February 2023
  • Patricia S
    6 contributions
    scary and sad
    Scary. homeless everywhere and few shops even open if we were brave enough to leave the car. GPS brought us to a very bad area and we had a hard time getting out. hawaii needs to help these people asap
    Visited May 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 15 May 2023
  • Tuperdu2
    San Diego, California10 contributions
    Star of the show is Mei Mei
    Mei Mei Chinese BBQ is a must eat! $12 for the meal and for the flavors and quality we were impressed. Only 4 stars for Chinatown tho because it’s extremely desolate now and kinda a ghost town. I would say worth the trip for the meal and that’s about it. Nothing to see in Chinatown tbh :( sad but true.
    Visited September 2023
    Travelled with family
    Written 18 September 2023
These reviews are the subjective opinion of Tripadvisor members and not of TripAdvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Detailed Reviews: Reviews order informed by descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as cleanliness, atmosphere, general tips and location information.
Popular mentions

3.0
704 reviews
Excellent
97
Very good
204
Average
212
Poor
121
Terrible
71

Tuperdu2
San Diego, CA10 contributions
Sep 2023 • Family
Mei Mei Chinese BBQ is a must eat! $12 for the meal and for the flavors and quality we were impressed. Only 4 stars for Chinatown tho because it’s extremely desolate now and kinda a ghost town. I would say worth the trip for the meal and that’s about it. Nothing to see in Chinatown tbh :( sad but true.
Written 19 September 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Jaym35x
Massapequa, NY97 contributions
Jul 2023 • Family
Went to look for a smoothie we tried 13 years ago found the spot and it tasted the same. Cool experience and plenty of cheap eats and little shops to get little trinkets reminded me of canal st in Brooklyn
Written 26 July 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Llewellyn53
Melbourne, Australia4,182 contributions
Jun 2023
Chinatown is still a vibrant shopping area typical of Chinatown areas elsewhere. Yes it is sad to see the number of businesses that have closed in the area but there is a constant local police presence which is reassuring. We go to buy fresh fish (sea bass and salmon) and fruit and vegetables. It is also the only place we have been able to buy Laoganma crispy chilli in oil. There are multiple outlets so check them out before deciding where to buy the best deal. Remember to take an insulated pack to keep the fish cold. Sellers will offer free ice in bags as chiller packs.
Written 24 June 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

J-Yves H
San Francisco, CA5 contributions
Jun 2023
This place is not scary as some would suggest. You can find a few homeless people. Some places can be smelly, the same you can see all around Honolulu. But thats not Chinatown. All stores and markets are colorful and vibrant. You can buy Good and cheap Chinese/Japanese food. Its really a Chinatown for Asians, without all tourist traps.
Written 8 June 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Patricia S
Tallahassee, United States6 contributions
May 2023 • Couples
Scary. homeless everywhere and few shops even open if we were brave enough to leave the car. GPS brought us to a very bad area and we had a hard time getting out. hawaii needs to help these people asap
Written 15 May 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Trek20354283288
1 contribution
Mar 2023 • Couples
Turn out to be one of my fav spot on Honolulu! Worth to visit. It took me back to the 1899. If you are a fan of history, you would love this place.
Written 28 March 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Ocean76_12
Edmonton, Canada18 contributions
Feb 2023 • Family
Wow what a dump. I don’t know what has happened but it’s still happening. Filthy, dingy, sketchy as heck. Food good if you want to stick around but don’t venture too far in
Written 24 February 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

D L S
32 contributions
Feb 2023 • Solo
The city bus can take a visitor downtown to visit an authentic Chinatown filled with locals and color. Shops, markets and interesting architecture abound. Flower stalls sell inexpensive leis, markets have food stalls with Asian ethnic cuisines. I enjoyed dim sum. Right next door is the Arts District which is gentrifying so don’t delay or it will be filled with yuppies and millennials.
Written 8 February 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Jessica
1 contribution
Jan 2023 • Couples
Smells terrible, a lot of shops are boarded up. We went there for Maguro brothers. A lot of homeless people
Written 28 January 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

voxmaninnaples
Campania, Italy12 contributions
Dec 2022
So I have been to several "ChinaTowns" around the world including one of the largest located in Yokohama Japan. So I kind of knew what to expect. CHinatowns tens to be in sketchy areas that tend to attract homeless. But one unusual thing about homeless in Honolulu, they are less likely to be violent or unruly than other places. HPD here really cracks down hard on them ( I've witnessed a few incidents). On to the reason to go. We currently live in Oahu so we like to go to places like this for the cheaper, larger variety of fruits and veggies. Fresh fish and spices. My wife gets her mani-pedi's there because they are 1/3 - 1/2 the cost eslewhere. ( mani in Oahu will cost 55). If you like Chinese cultural items, and trinkets, you will find them here. You will see some historical buildings that give you an idea of what old honolulu looked like back when that area was strictly for Chinese. Yes, there is the smell of marijuana in the air, but guess what? You will smell that anywhere in Honolulu. Weed is basically legal here. Safety, spend 3-5 dollars and park in the garage for godsake. Not on the street. better for you and your car.
Written 16 December 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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CHINATOWN: All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (with Photos)

Frequently Asked Questions about Chinatown