With so many cultures represented on the Big Island, we have an equally wide array of restaurants and places to eat. Some will be more local and some international. If you're missing your mainland flavors, however, there are American chain restaurants such as McDonalds, Burger King, Taco Bell, Jack in the Box, Panda Express, Starbucks, Subway and Baskin Robbins in Hilo.
Below are just a few restaurants around Hilo. Ask around for suggestions and visit Yelp and other sites for recommendations and reviews.
Ken's House of Pancakes
Considering you're a college student, you will want to know where the 24 hour restaurants are. This is the most common solution to the late night munchies. Visit the Ken's House of Pancakes website.
If you want monstrous portions of Mexican food and freshly made chips, this is your place. It's a lively place with music and features a different artist's work every few weeks. Visit the Lucy's Taqueria website.
Let's face it, we live next to an ocean! And with ocean-based cultures comes sushi! Consider this a budget friendly outing, where each roll can be as little as $3, though the average is around $5. Visit the Ocean Sushi website.
Naung Mai is a casual hole-in-the-wall Thai Restaurant with all types of curry, stir fry, and Pad Thai. Large portions for around $11-18 (as spicy or as mild as desired). Visit the Naung Mai website.
Fancy dinner location for you and a date. Pineapples has a nightly singer and is usually by reservation as it tends to fill up fast. Entrees range anywhere from $11-25. Visit the Pineapples website.
Again, these are only a few. We have Japanese, Thai, Indian, Mexican, Hawaiian restaurants and more in addition to the typical burger, ice cream or dinner options to which you may be accustomed.
Around the Island
These locations will probably need a car, or may be hit on the way to and from your island adventuring!
Known throughout the island for Malasadas, a dessert pastry, similar to a donut, with many options of cream filling. These tasty deserts are around $1-2 in addition to their other meal items which are all under $13. Visit the Tex's Drive-In website.
Punaluʻu Bake Shop
On your way to South Point go sample some of the sweet Hawaiian Breads and Kaʻū coffee they have to offer. And enjoy it in their outdoor garden picnic tables. Visit the Punaluʻu Bake Shop website.
Aliʻi Drive in Kona
It is the street where tourists gather around on Kona side. Therefore, Aliʻi Drive is lined with shops and restaurants of all kinds.