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  • City Attraction

Akaka Falls State Park
Akaka Falls State Park

Akaka Falls State Park located north of Hilo, along the Hamakua Coast is a 420-foot waterfall falling through a lush tropical rain forest. It is one of the most beautiful waterfalls in Big Island tucked away off a mile long trail and surrounded with lush green foliage and flowers. The park in itself beholds lots of attractions and offers its visitors a paved hiking trail through the dense tropical forest. It’s the best place for hiking and taking photographs. Just close to the same trail is Kahuna falls which is another tourist attraction in Big Island.

Panaewa Rainforest Zoo
Panaewa Rainforest Zoo

The Panaewa Rainforest Zoo has got the distinction of being the only tropical zoo in the United States and should be in your list of must visit sites during your Big Island vacation. The zoo houses variety of rainforest animals and endangered Hawaiian animals, such as a white Bengal tiger, spider monkeys, lemurs, nene geese (the Hawaiian State bird), and over 80 other animal species. The Panaewa Rainforest Zoo also houses a botanical garden covered with orchids, bamboos, 100 varieties of palms, and a water garden.

Hawaii Tropical Botanical Garden
Hawaii Tropical Botanical Garden

The Hawaii Tropical Botanical Garden spread on an area of about 40 acres valley is strategically surrounded by beautiful waters of the ocean. The approach to the garden is in itself a major attraction passing through a 4 mile scenic drive. The botanical garden boasts of more than 2,000 species of plants including a vast variety of orchids, palms, heliconias, gingers, bromeliads, palms, and other rare and exotic plants. The beautiful valley surrounding the park comprises of a lovely jungle with natural paths, small streams, waterfalls, and a lily pond.

Downtown Hilo
Downtown Hilo

Downtown Hilo placed on the eastern coast at the mouth of Hilo Bay is Hawaii Island’s biggest small town. The ancient town features centuries-old wooden storefronts, of which many are on the National Register of Historic Places. Downtown Hilo houses a variety of sophisticated galleries, shops, restaurants and cultural sites. It’s the best place where visitors get a chance to experience the local culture and aloha spirit of the people of Hawaii’s Big Island. Top places to visit here include Hilo Farmers Market, Art Galleries, East Hawaii Cultural Center, The Pacific Tsunami Museum Lyman Mission House & Museum and lots more.

Puuhonua Honaunau National Historical Park
Puuhonua o Honaunau National Historical Park

Puuhonua o Honaunau National Historical Park, located on the Big Island, is spread on a vast area of 182-acre, brimming with lots of archeological sites and reconstructions of an ancient Hawaiian "Place of Refuge". The natives of Big Island consider this place as a sacred site which was once home to Hawaiian royalty and a place of refuge for those who broke a kapu (ancient Hawaiian law) or defeated military. Things to do at the park include a self guided tour, taking photographs of numerous green sea turtles sunbathing on the beach, and playing a game of kônane.

Muliwai Trail
Muliwai Trail

The Muliwai Trail is regarded as one of the most difficult excursions in Big Island, recommended only for experienced hikers in good physical condition. The Muliwai Trail located on the northeastern side of the island comprises of an 18 mile tricky trial which zigzags up the western wall of Waipio Valley, climbing approximately 1,200` to the plateau. From here it leads across the plateau area to Waimanu, crossing 12 gulches that are up to 500` deep, then descends another 1,200` into Waimanu Valley. The entire trail passes through steep, rocky, muddy, deeply eroded and even slippery paths.

Humuula Trail
Humuula Trail

The HumuulaTrail is another adventurous attraction of Big Island, located on the northeastern side of the island. The trail spanning 10.5 mile first passes through mixed exotic forest, then native Koa/Ohia forest, and finally through former pasture, before rising 3,250` in elevation in 5.5 miles to reach the old Civilian Conservation Corps camp and Ranger station at Keanakolu. The entire trail is somewhat difficult as it is not well maintained and becomes difficult to negotiate in the wet conditions.

Kilauea Volcano Hike
Kilauea Volcano Hike

One of the most sought after excursion in Big Island is to undertake a Kilauea Volcano hike. There are lots of hiking tours being organized by certified Volcano Guides who take visitors on Volcano Hiking Tour to places where lava flows from a volcano in the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park which was established in 1916. Kilauea is an active volcano which has been erupting continuously since January 3, 1983 and has a crater of about 6x6 kilometers with a depth of 165 meters.

Big Island Eco Adventure Zipline Canopy Tour
Big Island Eco Adventure Zipline Canopy Tour

One of the most exhilarating adventures fit for all ages is a Big Island Eco Adventure Zipline Canopy Tour being organized in Big Island. There are lots of Eco Adventure Zipline Canopy Tours being organized in Big Island, especially in north Kohala region which takes visitors and guests to exciting places surrounded with lush canopy, beautiful waterfalls and fascinating ocean views. The entire tour features exciting ziplines, crossing suspension bridges and lots more fun and excitement.

Valley Waterfall & Rainforest Hiking Adventure
Valley Waterfall & Rainforest Hiking Adventure

There is no dearth of hiking adventures in Big Island as this place is known throughout the world for a wide variety of ecosystems, trails, coastal dunes, shrub lands, rainforests, and high alpine deserts. The Valley Waterfall & Rainforest Hiking Adventure takes visitors to the historic cliff-side trail carved into the wall 1000 ft. above the Pololu Valley floor where you'll encounter beautiful waterfalls and breathtaking views. It then reaches the Kapoloa Falls, which plunges from the crest 300 ft. above you and cascades across the trail falling another 200 ft. into a deep chasm.

  • Beaches
Hapuna Beach State Park
Hapuna Beach State Park

Hapuna Beach State Park located on the western side of Big Island is regarded as one of the most popular beach on the island. The beach boasts of one-half mile long stretch of white sand which is over 200 ft. wide with crystal clear waters. During summers the entire beach is buzzing with lots of recreational activities like swimming, boogie boarding, snorkeling, frolicking and sunbathing. In the winters the wild thundering waves attract surfers to indulge in their favorite water sport.

Punalu'u Beach
Punalu'u Beach

The exquisite black sand Punalu’u Beach strategically placed between Kua Desert and Ka Lea has got the distinction of being one of the most beautiful beaches in Big Island. Due to its far south location, the beach is somewhat secluded with scarce facilities but still visitors make it a point to travel here and enjoy its unseen and unknown attractions. The main attraction at the beach is its freshwater springs that bubble up from the cove’s floor chills the water somewhat, making it all the more refreshing during summer months.

Kahalu'u Beach Park
Kahalu'u Beach Park

Kahalu’u Beach Park sandwiched between Kailua-Kona and Kealakekua is easily one of the most popular beaches in Big Island. The beach park offers lots of amenities and facilities for its visitors including lots of open parking space, equipment rental stalls, a covered pavilion, and a snack bar. The natural reef far offshore prevents the waters from getting too rough, making a terrific snorkeling opportunity. Since the beach is easy to access, it tends to get crowded early since thousands of locals and tourists flock here to take advantage of the calm turquoise waters.

Mauna Kea Beach
Mauna Kea Beach

Mauna Kea Beach located to the south of Hapuna Beach is considered as one of the top beaches in Hawaii. It is one of the most scenic beaches in Big Island with miles of smooth golden sands flanked by lush coconut groves on one side and on the other side by calm, crystalline waters protected from strong currents by a series of offshore lava flows. The beach is maintained by private resort which allows limited visitors so it is recommended to arrive early and save embracement.

Anaeho'omalu Bay and Waikoloa Beach
Anaeho'omalu Bay and Waikoloa Beach

Anaeho'omalu Bay and Waikoloa Beach is another top beach in Big Island recognized for its metallic, yellow-hued sands that earn it the nickname "Gold Coast." The crystal clear blue waters of the bay are ideal for indulging in a variety of water sport activities like snorkeling, scuba, kayaking, surfing, and windsailing. The beach has got the distinction of housing several popular resort hotels which lies within easy walking distance of the beach. The main attraction during the winter is whale watching which make an annual pass by Anaeho'omalu Bay.

 
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