Hawaii Island Places
The largest of all the islands, Hawaii Island continues to grow in size as lava flows into the sea. Beyond the volcano, there's so much to experience here and luxury resorts to eco-adventures.
The half-mile hike features both a paved path as well as an off-road trail and begins closer to the Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park entrance. This route is laden with cinders from the 60-plus year old eruption that is just beginning to show new signs of life as grass and shrubs take root and flourish amid harsh conditions – one should be prepared for anything from blazing heat to torrential downpours.
Downtown Hilo/Farmer’s Market
Historic Downtown Hilo is a quaint destination, featuring centuries-old wooden storefronts many of which are on the National Register of Historic Places with sophisticated galleries, shops, restaurants and cultural sites tucked inside. Be sure to visit the Pacific Tsunami Museum for a glimpse into the town’s dramatic past, and the daily farmer’s market, so you can enjoy the seasonal local produce.
Ken's House of Pancakes
Ken’s has been turning out breakfast for hungry locals (a rare find in Hilo). Allow some time to digest their extensive menu, but you’ll probably want to try their famous pancakes or waffles with coconut, passion fruit, or guava syrups.They have more than a dozen egg dishes, on top of the 20 omelettes, to choose from. Whatever you choose, save room for Ken’s macadamia nut pie, a perfect blend of salty and sweet.
Puuhonua O Honaunau National Historical Park
Under a canopy of palms trees, this quiet, seaside site evokes a sense of peace and forgiveness. Visitors can walk through the grounds and see stately kii (carved wooden images) surrounding Hale o Keawe, where the bones of 23 Hawaiian chiefs are interred. Another attraction is the massive Great Wall, measuring nearly 1,000 feet long, 10 feet high and 17 feet wide.
Kona Coffee Farm Tour
Kona coffee the economic mainstay of Hawaii Island is recognized as the best in the world, due to the ideal soil, altitude and microclimates in which it is grown. It’s also recognized as the most expensive, since every step, from planting to picking, is done by hand even after 200 years. You can tour some of the larger coffee farms (reservations are highly recommended) to meet the owners, taste their coffees, and see the different operations that make each farm unique.