Last Updated on January 19, 2024 by Kelly
The Dole Pineapple Plantation is a must-see attraction on the island of Oahu in Hawaii. You’ll find so much more than just pineapples! The Dole Pineapple Plantation has a train, garden, maze, gift shop, and more. If you’re a Disney fan, you’ll also find the world-famous Dole Whip ice cream for purchase at the plantation.
We visited the Dole Pineapple Planation and really enjoyed our afternoon there. In this post, we’re sharing our full review of the Dole Pineapple Plantation in Hawaii.
About the Dole Pineapple Plantation
Pineapples are not a native fruit to Hawaii. Scholars believe that pineapples were first brought to Hawaii from South America. They thrived in the tropical environment and they soon became a popular export.
In 1899, James Dole arrived to Hawaii from Massachusetts. He purchased land in Oahu and started cultivating pineapple. He then created two canneries because the pineapples were a better export when canned. Residents on the mainland couldn’t get enough of the canned pineapple, and the company grew very quickly.
The Dole Pineapple Plantation added a roadside fruit stand in 1950. In 1989, the plantation became a tourist attraction as Hawaii’s “Pineapple Experience.“
Currently, over a million visitors visit the Dole Pineapple Plantation each year!
Essential Information About the Dole Pineapple Plantation:
- Address: 64-1550 Kamehameha Hwy, Wahiawa, HI 96786
- Website: https://www.doleplantation.com/
- Phone: 808.621.8408
- Hours: 9:30am to 5:30pm (closed on Christmas Day)
What to Do at the Dole Plantation
There’s a lot to see at the Dole Pineapple Plantation! If you want to do all of the activities, you could easily spend several hours at the plantation.
Here’s a few things you can do while at the Dole Pineapple Plantation:
Pineapple Express Train
The Pineapple Express Train will take you on a tour of the plantation. The train ride is approximately 20-minutes long and costs $13.75 for an adult at the time of this writing (subject to change).
The Dole property has several different trains. When we visited, we rode the Ohana Express Train, which is their newest train. It hauls 3 open-air passenger cars. The train took us all through the property, and we got to see lots of crops, including pineapples, lemons, limes, and bananas. The train also went by the Tanada Reservoir, which was really pretty.
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The line for the train can be long, so plan your visit accordingly. When we arrived on a Saturday afternoon, it was a 30-minute wait. We saw signs, though, that it could be up to 2 hours. We recommend arriving to the plantation earlier in the morning if possible.
Our toddler was thrilled to be able to ride the train! We were able to fit three adults and a toddler (sitting on lap) in our row. We liked this experience because we could relax while we learned all about the local agriculture.
Plantation Garden Tour
We purchased tickets to Plantation Garden Tour. An adult ticket was $8 at the time of this writing (subject to change). The self-guided garden tour contained a number of interpretive signs.
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We really enjoyed seeing the cacao pods that are used to make Waialua’s amazing chocolate. I also liked seeing the tropical flowers (hibiscus, plumeria, and bird of paradise).
Pineapple Garden Maze
Dole’s Pineapple Garden Maze was named the world’s largest maze in 2008. The maze covers 3 acres, has 2.5 miles of trails, and over 14,000 plants. At the time of this writing, an adult ticket costs $9.25 (subject to change).
We didn’t complete the maze because we were visiting with our toddler, but it looked like a lot of fun! If you’re up for a challenge, see how long it takes you to complete it. There’s a free app you can download that will teach you about the different stations throughout the maze.
Be sure to see all our articles about things to do in Hawaii!
Dole Whip at the Dole Pineapple Plantation
If you purchase one thing at the plantation, make sure that you get the Dole Whip! The Dole Whip is pineapple soft-serve ice cream. It’s super-popular at Disney parks and has a cult following.
The cups are pretty big, and we think you could easily share them. We thought the Dole Whip was the perfect balance of refreshing and sweet. We ordered a plain Dole Whip and another topped with chunks of pineapple. Other toppings include coconut flakes, li hing powder, and rainbow sprinkles.
You can also order a Pineapple Float (ice cream with pineapple juice), or have your Dole Whip in a waffle cone or waffle cup.
We were super impressed with the plantation’s gift shop. You wouldn’t believe how many pineapple-flavored and pineapple-scented products they sell! We saw dried pineapple chunks, chocolate-covered pineapple pieces, pineapple syrup, pineapple jam, and pineapple macadamia nut cookies (just to name a few). We bought a lot of souvenirs here, and we recommend that you give yourself some time to explore everything they have to offer.
Plantation Grille: Dole Plantation Restaurant
We spent several hours at the plantation, so we were glad the Dole Plantation had a restaurant on-site. My husband really enjoyed the Kalua BBQ Pork Combo, which included fresh pineapple on top of the barbecue sauce. I ordered a Loco Moco that was really satisfying. We also ordered a glass of pineapple juice which was the perfect beverage for our meal. You can check out the full menu for the Dole Plantation restaurant.
Tips for Visiting the Dole Pineapple Plantation
Here are a few tips for the Dole Pineapple Plantation:
- If you want to participate in the attractions that require admission, you can save money by bundling your tickets. If you purchase a bundle of the train, garden, and maze (for instance), it’s cheaper than buying each ticket separately.
- Bring a hat for sun protection. You’ll be walking around quite a bit outside.
- Bring sunscreen.
- Make sure that you at least try the Dole Whip!
- Although visiting the grounds is free, buy your tickets right away if you plan on going on any of the attractions.
- Make sure you have enough time to take a look at the gift shop. There are a lot of creative pineapple-flavored items!
- Don’t have room in your suitcase for souvenirs? You can order products online through the Dole Pineapple Plantation store.
How to Get to the Dole Pineapple Plantation
The Dole Pineapple Plantation is located in the center of the island of Oahu, closer to the North Shore.
You can easily reach the Dole Pineapple Plantation by car. We rented a car from Paradise Rent-a-Car and drove 26 miles from Waikiki to reach the plantation.
If you don’t have a car, there are a number of island tours that make stops at the Dole Pineapple Plantation. If you don’t want to worry about transportation, booking a tour is a great way to see the island.
You can take public transportation to the Dole Pineapple Plantation. Check out the current bus schedules in advance.
Frequently Asked Questions About the Dole Pineapple Plantation
How Much Time Do You Need at the Dole Pineapple Plantation?
Many tours offer quick 30-minute visits of the Dole Pineapple Plantation. That would be enough time to try a Dole Whip and browse the gift store. If you want to see all the attractions (train, maze, and garden), you could easily spend half a day at the property. We spent 4 or 5 hours there because we took our time walking around with our toddler.
How far away is the Dole Pineapple Plantation from Waikiki?
The Dole Pineapple Plantation is about 25 miles away from Waikiki Beach. Without traffic, it takes about 45 minutes to drive from Waikiki to the Dole Pineapple Plantation.
Is the Dole Pineapple Plantation worth visiting?
We definitely think the Dole Pineapple Plantation is worth visiting! If you have any interest in agri-tourism, the train ride is a great way to learn about the pineapple’s history in Hawaii. Our daughter also really enjoyed the train ride. I liked walking around the garden and taking photos of the beautiful flowers. My husband enjoyed the food best!
Is the Dole Pineapple Plantation currently open?
Yes, the Dole Pineapple Plantation is currently open. We recently visited the plantation and had a great time. The plantation is open from 9:30am to 5:30pm every day, with the exception of Christmas Day.
Summary: Our Visit to the Dole Pineapple Plantation
The Dole Pineapple Plantation is definitely worth adding to your Oahu itinerary. You’ll get to learn all about the pineapple industry, eat delicious pineapple, and explore the property. Our daughter especially loved visiting the plantation!
Disclaimer: We always strive for content accuracy. Since the time of publishing, travel-related information regarding pricing, schedules, and hours may have changed. Please see individual websites embedded in this post for the most current trip-planning information.