The gift of a Hawaiian lei is a fun and unique local tradition that has been a large part of the Hawaiian culture for centuries. Leis are presented at countless different ceremonies from graduations to weddings. I remember seeing students at my high school graduation with so many leis around their neck that all you could see was their eyes.
Most tourists don’t realize that there are countless variations of leis that are given as gifts. Of course a flower lei is the most recognized, but there are very intricate cloth leis, kukui nut leis, shell leis, money leis, and candy leis. And a new company called HawaiiCandyLeis.com wants to bring the tradition of candy leis to the rest of the United States.
According to the company website, HawaiiCandyLeis.com will make each customer their own customized candy lei and ship it anywhere in the U.S. Customers get to pick from top candy and chocolate bars made and sold in Hawaii, like Hawaiian Host chocolate covered macadamia nuts, Wow-Wee Maui chocolate bars, gourmet Honolulu Cookie Company shortbread cookies, and even snacks that only the locals know about, like li hing mui gummy bears. For those unfamiliar with Li hing mui, (see my prior post) it is a very tart/salty flavoring that you either love or hate (most kids that have grown up in Hawaii will love it).
So, I encourage you to think outside the box the next time you are brainstorming gift ideas for a loved one, and tear a page out of the Hawaiian gift-giving book. These Hawaiian candy leis only cost $21.99, and that includes shipping!