Which Island Is The Big Island Hawaii – Hilo has its own uniqueness that you won’t find anywhere else on the Big Island. These include great restaurants and other shops where you can find local specialties, but also many exciting adventures in one hour.
Hilo is on the newer side of the island, and a short drive southwest takes you to the Puna area, where you can access volcanic hot pools and lava flows. Check out our complete list of things to do in Hilo to explore all of your options.
Which Island Is The Big Island Hawaii
If that’s your thing (it’s ours!), stargazing is a fun option. The saddle to the Mauna Kea visitor center is not
Big Island Airports
Long and available for all cars. The Visitor Center is a great place for stargazing, with free stargazing most nights. All summit hikes require more preparation or visits.
Mauna Kea Observatory Telescope, Hawaii. Visibility: Subaru Telescope, WM Keck Observatory, NASA Infrared Telescope Facility
The area around Hilo is very quiet due to heavy rains. Take some time to explore one (or both) of the great scenic spots near Hilo: the Onomea Scenic Drive (or pepeekeo) just north of Hilo and Kapoho Kalapana Road in Puna. The final scenic drive will take you past the hot volcanic pools!
The Kapoho Kalapana Trail in Puna on the Big Island of Hawaii is one of the most beautiful trails on the Big Island. Combine this trail with a visit to a nearby hot spring
The Big Island And Maui
You should also try to see at least one of Hilo’s (or nearby) four spectacular waterfalls. If you have more time or want to spend the day in Kona, head north to explore Hamakua Beach.
Hilo has good access to the lava flows that flow from the slopes of Kilauea Volcano into the ocean. If you plan on going lava viewing, be sure to read our lava viewing guide as you may not see active lava on the surface.
The entrance to Hawaii Volcanoes National Park is a 45-minute drive down Route 11 from Hailo, past charming Volcano Village. The park is a great way to experience the volcano and we think it’s the #1 “must visit” in the state!
The hike to the lava flow can be strenuous, but it’s worth every drop of sweat!
Hawaii Island Travel Guide: Where To Stay On The Big Island
Hilo is the most popular departure point for helicopter tours – a tour departing from the Hilo airport lets you see tropical waterfalls and active lava fields in an hour.
This short flight time makes a trip from Hilo much cheaper than a helicopter ride from the west coast of the Big Island. Learn more about helicopter tours from Hilo.
It’s easy to find good local food in Hilo, and Two Women’s Kitchen’s strawberry mochi is one thing.
The Hilo Farmers Market is another great and central place to buy fresh produce and good souvenirs for those back home, ever heard of “loco moco”? Loco moco is a local favorite with steamed rice, hamburger buns, fried egg and whole grain gravy. You can find them in many (if not all) restaurants, but Cafe 100 is where loco moco was born and now serves over 30 varieties.
Hilo Or Kona, Hawaii: Where To Stay On The Big Island
You can find more of our local recommendations for places to eat in our Restaurants in Hilo section.
We’ve rounded up the 7 islands of Hawaii, including 6 of the most popular island destinations for tourists! Check out the map of the Islands of Hawaii below and find out what to do in each one.
Whether you’re looking for a great Hawaiian experience or a relaxed vacation without compromising tourist comfort, the island of Hawaii is for you.
If you’ve never been to Hawaii or ventured far from your favorite island, a map of the Islands of Hawaii can help broaden your horizons. But looking at a map, it’s hard to tell which islands are worth seeing.
Hawaii’s Big Island Travel Guide
View a map of the Hawaiian Islands and get a brief overview of the islands below. You’ll be able to narrow down which island (or islands) you want to visit on your next trip to paradise!
Oahu means “gathering place” in Hawaiian and the name fits. This bustling city is the most populated on the island and receives the most visitors of all the Hawaiian Islands! It is located on world famous Waikiki Beach and the North Shore, the surfing capital of the world.
People come to Oahu for the ultimate Hawaiian experience with a premium sense of luxury. There are tons of hotel and lodging options, fine dining, upscale shopping, and plenty of casual beach spots.
Find the Polynesian Cultural Center here and see a luau show, travel to the North Shore in the evening, take a beach cruise, sip fruity cocktails on tropical beaches, and relax on Waikiki Beach.
Exploring The Big Island
People love to visit the historic sites and museums of Oahu and Pearl Harbor (not “the” as the locals say). Check out the Pearl Harbor National Monument, the Arizona Memorial, the USS Bowfin Submarine Museum, the Pearl Harbor Aviation Museum and the Missouri Battleship Memorial.
Maui is the second largest island in Hawaii and is a popular destination for adventure travelers who want to experience Hawaii’s many attractions and activities.
In Maui, you can travel the famous Hana Road, which leads to Waianapanapa State Park, home to spectacular waterfalls and otherworldly black sand beaches. Visitors marvel at the breathtaking views of Haleakala Volcano and the Iao Valley.
In winter, watch the spectacular migration of humpback whales, try your hand at scuba diving and windsurfing (popular island activities), and island hopping to experience nearby Molokini Island.
Amazing Things To Do On The Big Island Of Hawaii (2023)
Or walk Front Street in Lahaina and see the largest banyan tree in the nation. If you are interested in exploring Maui beyond the beach, you will enjoy visiting a tropical cocoa farm.
Maui Kuia Chocolate Estate offers tours of their cocoa farm located in the mountains of West Maui. There are plenty of hotels, shops, restaurants, and activities to keep you busy during your stay on Maui!
Hawaii is rightfully called the Big Island. That’s nearly double the size of all the Hawaiian islands combined! The Big Island is perfect if you want to explore the vast expanses of tropical paradise with must-see Hawaiian attractions.
Hawaii is home to the world’s largest and most active volcanoes: Kilauea and Mauna Loa, located in Hawaii Volcanoes National Park.
The Ultimate Guide To Hawai’i Island
These volcanoes are very active, so we recommend checking online for updates on eruptions that could affect your travel plans. If you’ve always wanted to see the dangerous majesty of a towering volcano ablaze with incandescent lava, this is the place to be.
Take a scenic hike along the Chain Crater Trail, snorkel with friendly local manta rays, chase the island’s eastern waterfall, visit a coffee farm, or visit a seahorse farm (yes, that’s the real thing). History buffs will enjoy Puhonua or Honunau National Historical Park.
Nature lovers, look no further than Kauai, Hawaii’s ‘Garden Isle’. This tranquil spot on the Pacific Ocean is home to the lush tropical vegetation and wide beaches that Hawaii is famous for.
Here you can enjoy the best of Hawaii’s diverse natural beauty, including mountains, beaches, canyons, waterfalls, and Napali Beach. Kauai is perfect for adventure seekers who want a taste of the “real” Hawaii. Napali’s 17 miles of coastline is accessible by helicopter or a strenuous hike.
Which Side Of The Big Island Is Better?
Swimming, boating, abundant wildlife (sea turtles and Hawaiian monk seals are often seen), and views of Olokele Canyon and Waimea Canyon make Kauai a very special place.
Don’t miss Manavaiopuna Falls – 400 feet tall, seen in Jurassic Park. Relax at Poipu Coastal Park, stroll through old sugar cane plantations that wind through the mountains, and sample local delicacies and delicacies.
Molokai is an ideal Hawaiian Islands destination for travelers who are often off the beaten path. It is not a tourist island, but tourists and sightseers are welcome here.
If you want to experience Hawaii like a local, plan your stay here. Tourists say there are no lighthouses on Molokai, so it feels like stepping back in time with the tropical backdrop.
The Perfect Big Island Itinerary For 2023: 7 Days In Paradise
This less developed island is much less crowded than the popular islands
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