Intensive English Program


We’ve been having more students studying in Hilo. This blog written by our peer mentor is perfect for those students who are new to Hilo! Invite your classmates and enjoy!


Whether it’s a quick lunch by myself, a casual lunch with friends, or a special night out with family, these are my three favorite restaurants in Hilo, Hawaii.

Pho Viet

Pho Viet has been my favorite “hole in the wall” since high school. The homemade pho is affordable, filling, and delicious. There was actually a time in high school where my friends and I would go at least 3 times a week. I’ve tried different pho places in Hilo, Kona, Oahu island, and even in California, and I personally think neither of them compares to Pho Viet’s pho. What really sets them apart is the housemade garlic chili oil. Adding just a little enhances the spice and flavor so much. As the small family restaurant has grown in popularity over the years, their prices have gone up a tiny bit. However, I believe it’s still well worth eating 3 times a week.







Address: 80 Kilauea Ave. Hilo, HI 96720
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Sakura Japanese Sushi
Whenever my friends and I are craving sushi, only one place comes to mind, and that is Sakura’s. The atmosphere is lovely, there is a variety of dishes, and the food is fantastic. Not only is their sushi delicious and fresh, but they go above and beyond with their food presentation. My friends and I will go here for birthday celebrations, special dinners, or even a casual lunch. No matter what the occasion is, if we’re craving sushi, we will definitely go to Sakura’s.







Address: 200 Kanoelehua Ave. Hilo, HI 96720
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Cronies Bar & Grill
If you’re looking for a good burger place in Hilo, look no further. Cronies is one of my family’s and friends’ favorite places to eat out. I am a huge fan of burgers and Cronies is my go-to place for big, juicy burgers. My personal favorite is the swiss and mushroom burger, but if I’m really hungry, I’ll opt for the “Tamashiro Burger”. Fun fact, the word crony means a close friend or companion. So next time you have a gathering with your friends, Cronies Bar and Grill is the perfect place.







Address: 11 Waianuenue Ave. Hilo, HI 96720
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