Established in 1977, Big Island Candies is the oldest, biggest and probably best-known sweets shop on the island, located in Hilo. The most popular items are their chocolate-dipped shortbread cookies and chocolate-covered macadamia nuts. Seasonal offerings such as the Mika Mints, truffles and crunch bars are also among the favorites. There’s also an assortment of brownies, each of them given a distinct Hawaiian twist: coconut, peanut butter, and not surprisingly, macadamia nut.
The recipes are of course a well-guarded secret, but workers will gladly give you a tour of the factory. Here you will see how each ingredient is picked, each nut carefully selected and each finished product wrapped in the signature BIC packaging. You’ll even get free samples of their shortbreads and the famous Kona coffee, one of the most expensive coffees in the world.
The store is open Mondays to Sundays from 8:30 am to 5:00 pm. Factory tours are offered on a walk-in basis, although large groups are advised to book in advance. The store is a tourist mecca, so it can be quite crowded at times because many local bus tour companies stop here on the way to other island attractions.
Big Island Candies Overview
Popular for their chocolate dipped shortbreads, chocolate-covered macadamia nuts, brownies and other sweets
Many tour buses stop here, so it can be a little busy