The Island of Hawaii, more often simply referred to as the Big Island, is famous for its incredible natural attractions, especially the volcanoes that have shaped and continue to shape the landscape. Originally formed by five volcanoes, the island still continues to grow as the active Kilauea spews lava into the ocean. So…what to do on The Big Island in Hawaii?
Hawaii for First Time Visitors:
- One Island or Island Hopping?
- Find Out Which Island is Right for You
- Have a Budget in Place.
- Book Your Hotel and Flights ASAP.
- Create an Itinerary.
- Book Activities Before You Go.
- Know What to Pack.
- Know-How to Get Around.
Once your Big Island travel arrangements are made, you may want to shift your focus to what you can do and see. Creating an itinerary for your trip has a number of benefits. It is important to remember that Big Island is filled with so much for you to do and see; so much that you may not have enough time to do so. Familiarizing yourself with popular Big Island attractions before your vacation can help you make sure that you visit the most highly rated and recommended sites, a few of which are outlined below.
Things to do in Hawaii:
- Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park. Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park.
- Akaka Falls State Park. Akaka Falls State Park.
- Pu’uhonua o Honaunau National Historical Park. Pu’uhonua o Honaunau National Historical Park.
- Waipio Valley.
- Kaunaoa Beach.
- Anaehoomalu Beach.
- Hilo Farmers Market.
- Hapuna Beach State Park.
If you really want to enjoy even a fraction of what the Big Island has to offer, you should plan on staying at least 7 days. However, we understand that reality often does not allow such a lengthy stay in Hawaii.
Things you definitely shouldn’t miss:
- Visit the Seahorse Farm in Kona.
- See the green and black sand beaches.
- Take a helicopter tour over an active volcano.
- Stargaze atop Mauna Kea.
- Tour a coffee plantation in Kona.
- Visit Hawaii Volcanoes, National Park.
- Waipio Valley Overlook: Big Island. The road along the Hamakua Coast ends with a view into one of the Big Island’s most remote areas. …
- Top of Mauna Kea at Sunset: Big Island. …
- Waimea Canyon: Kauai. …
- Kee Beach: Kauai. …
- Garden of the Gods: Lanai. …
- Road to Hana: Maui. …
- Haleakala: Maui. …
- Kalaupapa: Molokai.
Hawaii Volcanoes National Park
The Hawaii Volcanoes National Park is a must-see for all Big Island tourists. This National Park is situated on 377 square miles of a vast array of landscaping. Whether you are interested in traveling by car, foot, or bike, there is a large part of the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park that you can examine.
When traveling by car, you can visit the summit of the Kilauea volcano. Chain of Craters Road is also a must-visit in the park, as this is where lava once flowed over the road. With so much to do and see in the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, including guided tours and themed wilderness tours, you may want to stay onsite. What better way to end your day than camping? Camping is free as long as you paid admittance into the park.
Waipio Valley is also known as “The Valley of the Kings.” This Big Island attraction is a must-visit if the history and culture of Hawaii are of interest to you. Here, you will be able to explore an area that was once populated with native Hawaiians. There are unlimited hidden treasures in the area, including beautiful waterfalls, rivers, and tara fields.
To learn the history of the Waipio Valley, not just see it, a guided tour is recommended. Guided tours of “The Valley of Kings,” are available by way of car, horseback, and foot.
Hawaii Tropical Botanical Garden
The Hawaii Tropical Botanical Garden is often referred to as “A Garden in the Valley of the Ocean.” Due to close proximately, a visit to the gardens is advised either before or after a visit to “The Valley of the Kings.”
Guided garden tours are available for multiple trails, including the Onomea Falls and Palm Jungle Trail.
Puuhonua O Honaunau National Historic Park
If you are unable to visit the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, the Puuhonua O Honaunau National Historic Park is a must-visit for you. Situated on 180 acres of land, this National Historic Park is considered sacred ground. It was once a refuge and home to those who broke the law.
When visiting the Puuhonua O Honaunau National Historic Park, you can see the black lava rock, a sacred temple, wooden statues of Hawaiian gods, and so much more! The area is filled with beautiful fish ponds; therefore, you can enjoy a fishing adventure in addition to hiking and examining the historical background of Hawaii’s Big Island.
In addition to the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, the Puuhonua O Honaunau National Historic Park, and Waipio Valley, there are other popular and well-known attractions that you should place on your vacation itinerary. Those visiting the North Side of Big Island will want to examine Parker Ranch. Those visiting the South Side of the island should check out the views at the Ka Lea South Point.
Where to Stay on The Big Island:
Kona, is the place to stay on the island of Hawaii during your vacation. Kona offers better weather, the best beaches and snorkeling, newer resorts, more vacation rentals, and more nightlife compared to Hilo Town. Hilo is worth a visit but may not be worth staying for more than a night.
You’ll likely want to split your stay between Kailua-Kona on the west side and Hilo (or Volcano) on the east side during your trip. This will alleviate a lot of extra driving and allow you to experience both sides of the island.
Resorts to the north of the Kona side:
- Four Seasons Hualalai
- Fairmont Orchid
- Kings’ Land by Hilton Grand Vacations Club
- Mauna Lani Point
- Mauna Kea Beach Hotel
- Aston Waikoloa Colony Villas
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