The Dole pineapple plantation is the second most visited attraction on Oahu, Hawaii. It offers tours of the gardens, pineapple demonstrations, souvenirs and a cafe.
Stop by the Dole Pineapple Plantation on Oahu on your way to the North Shore to learn more about how pineapples became important to Hawaii and to try the famous Dole Whip.
If you are visiting Hawaii with your family or kids, and looking for things to do in Oahu, you will want to stop by the Dole pineapple plantation.
The kids will love the Pineapple Express Train tour for the novelty of riding a train. Older kids and adults will enjoy the garden tour, the 3 acres maze which features 14,000 Hawaiian plants, and the history of how James Drummond Dole made the pineapple a US household fruit.
For those not in the mood for a tour, you can still stop at the Dole Plantation Store on Oahu to shop for souvenirs or enjoy a delicious Dole Whip in the cafe. There is a free garden available on the grounds with a large koi pond as well.
On the Dole Plantation store you will find a variety of edible products as well as unique souvenirs from Hawaii – jewelry, fabric for quilting, Hawaiian shirts and dresses, leather goods and more.
And if you stop by when the staff at the Dole plantation is doing a pineapple demonstration, you will learn how to reduce the acidity of the pineapple and how to peel it properly.
Lastly, when you visit the Dole plantation, or visit Hawaii in general, you have to try the local pineapple. It’s absolutely the BEST! Local custom is to sprinkle a little plum powder (Li Hing) on top!
How Pineapples are Grown
When you drive by the Dole Plantation on your way to the North shore you will pass the pineapple fields. Take some time to appreciate how this popular fruit is grown.
Hawaii produces more than 400 million pineapples a year, much of which is exported to the mainland. When agriculture was still the main commerce of Hawaii, pineapple and sugar cane were the two crops that generated income for the island. Because of this, many crop laborers migrated from Japan and China to work on farms.
Pineapple is still a very time-consuming and manual crop to grow.
The fruit has to be harvested by hand and it takes 18-20 months to harvest one pineapple and 15 more months for a second harvest.
Pineapples also require the right elevation, high temperatures during the day and cooler temperatures during the night to grow and develop its sweetness.
Growing Pineapple at Home
If you want to try growing it at home, here is what you need to do:
- Twist the leafy top out of the fruit.
- Store the top in a dry place for a week to let the bottom dry.
- Plant the leafy plant in a well irrigated planter with good soil and up to 30% compost.
- Once the fruit grows, start the process again.
Tours of Oahu that Include a Stop at Dole Plantation
Most tours of Oahu, include a stop at Dole Plantation. It’s the perfect way to see it without worrying about transportation and with a guide.
Click here for the tours that stop at Dole Plantation on Oahu.
Dole Plantation Tour Costs, Hours and Directions
Dole Plantation Tours Costs
There are three tours at the Dole Plantation that require a ticket. You can purchase each ticket online up to 24 hrs before the day you plan to visit or on site.
If you plan on doing more than one activity at Dole Plantation, you should buy a combo ticket for a discount.
Tours and gardens close at 5pm.
Pineapple Express Train Tour
A 20 minutes ride on vintage open train with a narrated history of the Dole plantation.
Adults: $11.50 and children (4-12): $9.50
Pineapple Garden Maze
A 3 acres maze made up of more than 14,000 Hawaiian plants this maze is great for garden lovers. You can download the free app for more information on the plants as you walk through.
Adults: $8.00 and children (4-12): $6.00
Plantation Garden Tour
A self-guided garden tour of native flower species of Hawaii.
You can download the free up for folklore tales of old Hawaii.
Adults: $7.00 and children (4-12): $6.25
Dole Plantation Hours and Directions
Open daily from 9:30am- 5:30pm.
Address: 64-1550 Kamehameha Highway
From Waikiki by car, it takes 40 mins.
- From Waikiki, take H-1 West.
- Take H-2 North (Exit 8A).
- From H-2 take Exit 8 to Wahiawa.
- Take Kamehameha Highway (99).
From Waikiki by bus it takes around 2 hrs and costs $5.50 for a day pass.
- Take bus 13 northbound (“Liliha-Puunui” route).
- Get out at Kapiolani Blvd. and Piikoi St. (Stop ID #19).
- Board bus 52 (“Wahiawa-Haleiwa” route) to Dole Plantation.
More Resources to Help You Plan Your Visit to Oahu
And if you need transportation from the airport to your hotel, book it here.
If you are traveling to Oahu, you might also like these posts:
- How to Choose the Best Luau on Oahu for Your Hawaiian Vacation
- Top 10 Free Things to Do in Waikiki
- Where to Shop for Souvenirs on Oahu