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The 18 Best Things To Do In Kona, Hawaii – Be My Travel Muse


Modified: December 27, 2023

by Juanita Porterfield



Welcome to Kona, Hawaii – a tropical paradise filled with stunning natural beauty, rich cultural heritage, and a laid-back island vibe. Located on the western coast of the Big Island, Kona offers a wide array of activities and attractions that cater to every traveler’s interests.


Whether you’re seeking adventure, relaxation, or cultural immersion, Kona has something for everyone. From exploring historical sites and immersing yourself in the local Hawaiian culture to basking in the sun at pristine beaches and indulging in delicious cuisine, Kona has it all.


One of the must-visit attractions in Kona is the Kona Coffee Living History Farm, where you can delve into the fascinating history of coffee production in Hawaii. Immerse yourself in the sights, sounds, and aromas of a working coffee farm, and learn about the intricate process of cultivating and processing Kona coffee.


For history enthusiasts, a visit to the Pu’uhonua o Honaunau National Historical Park is a must. This sacred site, also known as the Place of Refuge, offers a glimpse into ancient Hawaiian traditions and customs. Explore the grounds, admire the ancient temples, and learn about the cultural significance of this sacred place.


Old Kailua Town is another gem in Kona, offering a charming and picturesque setting. Take a leisurely stroll through the town’s quaint streets, lined with boutique shops, art galleries, and vibrant restaurants. Immerse yourself in the local Hawaiian atmosphere, and don’t forget to stop by the historical landmarks such as the Mokuaikaua Church, the oldest Christian church in Hawaii.


Nature lovers will be in awe of the natural wonders that Kona has to offer. Kealakekua Bay, with its crystal-clear waters and vibrant coral reefs, is a haven for snorkelers and divers. Explore the underwater world filled with tropical fish and marine life, and don’t miss the opportunity to spot dolphins and sea turtles in their natural habitat.


If you’re up for an adventure, a trip to Mauna Kea Summit is a must. Standing at over 13,000 feet, this dormant volcano offers breathtaking panoramic views of the island. Marvel at the stunning sunset or stargaze under the clear night sky, and experience the awe-inspiring beauty of the world above.


These are just a few examples of the incredible experiences awaiting you in Kona, Hawaii. So pack your bags, embrace the aloha spirit, and get ready for an unforgettable journey through this tropical paradise.


Visit the Kona Coffee Living History Farm

A trip to Kona would not be complete without immersing yourself in the rich history and culture of Hawaiian coffee production. The Kona Coffee Living History Farm provides a fascinating glimpse into the past, as it showcases the traditional farming methods and tools used in the 1920s.


Located in Captain Cook, this living history farm offers a unique opportunity to learn about the process of cultivating and processing Kona coffee. As you wander through the farm’s lush grounds, you’ll be transported back in time to an era when coffee production was a labor-intensive process carried out by hand.


During your visit, you’ll have the chance to see the coffee trees, learn about the different varieties of coffee, and even pick some ripe coffee cherries yourself. Knowledgeable guides will provide insights into the history of Kona coffee and explain the meticulous steps involved in drying and roasting the beans.


One of the highlights of the Kona Coffee Living History Farm is the chance to meet and interact with the friendly and passionate farmers who continue to preserve and promote the legacy of Kona coffee. They will gladly share their expertise and stories, giving you a deep appreciation for the hard work and dedication required to produce this world-renowned coffee.


As you explore the farm, you’ll also gain a deeper understanding of the cultural significance of coffee in Hawaiian history. Coffee has played a vital role in the economic development of the islands, and it continues to be a source of pride for the local community.


Before you leave, be sure to visit the farm’s gift shop, where you can purchase a bag of freshly roasted Kona coffee beans to take home as a delicious souvenir. You can also sample different brews and discover the unique flavors and aromas that make Kona coffee so exceptional.


Visiting the Kona Coffee Living History Farm is a truly enriching experience that allows you to connect with the land, the people, and the history of Kona. It’s a must-visit for coffee lovers and anyone interested in immersing themselves in the rich cultural heritage of Hawaii.


Explore the Pu’uhonua o Honaunau National Historical Park

Step back in time at the Pu’uhonua o Honaunau National Historical Park, a sacred site that offers a glimpse into ancient Hawaiian traditions and customs. Located on the coast south of Kona, this historical park is also known as the Place of Refuge.


As you enter the park, you’ll be greeted by stunning natural beauty, with palm-fringed beaches, crystal-clear waters, and lush vegetation. The park is divided into two main sections – the royal grounds and the pu’uhonua (place of refuge).


The royal grounds were once the residence of Hawaiian chiefs and served as a place of political and ceremonial significance. Explore the remnants of ancient temples and royal structures, and imagine what life was like for the Hawaiian nobility.


Make your way to the pu’uhonua, which served as a sanctuary for those who had broken ancient Hawaiian laws or had run afoul of warriors in battle. It was believed that reaching the pu’uhonua granted individuals a second chance – a refuge where they could find safety and forgiveness.


Wander through the pu’uhonua and discover the meticulously constructed walls that provided protection for those seeking refuge. Admire the sacred temples and heiau (temples) that were used for worship and connect with the spiritual energy of the place.


Visitors can participate in guided tours or explore the park at their own pace, following the well-maintained pathways that wind through the grounds. Throughout your visit, you’ll have the opportunity to learn about the history, cultural practices, and legends associated with this sacred site.


As you wander the park, keep your eyes peeled for wildlife such as sea turtles, dolphins, and tropical birds, as the park is home to a diverse array of marine and avian life.


Take the time to relax on the pristine beach within the park, where you can soak up the sun, go for a swim, or simply enjoy the peace and tranquility of the surroundings.


A visit to the Pu’uhonua o Honaunau National Historical Park is a chance to not only explore the natural beauty of Hawaii but also to immerse yourself in the cultural and historical significance of the island. It’s an experience that will leave you with a deep appreciation for the traditions and customs of the Hawaiian people.


Take a Stroll through the Scenic Old Kailua Town

Immerse yourself in the charm and history of Kona by taking a leisurely stroll through the scenic streets of Old Kailua Town. Located on the western coast of the Big Island, this vibrant town is a delightful blend of rich cultural heritage and modern attractions.


As you wander through the quaint streets of Old Kailua, you’ll be enchanted by the colorful storefronts, wooden buildings, and relaxed atmosphere. This historic town was once a bustling center for the Hawaiian monarchy, and remnants of its past can still be seen today.


Start your exploration at Ali’i Drive, the main thoroughfare that runs along the oceanfront. Enjoy stunning views of the turquoise waters and swaying palm trees as you meander along the coastal road. Along the way, you’ll find a myriad of shops, art galleries, cafes, and restaurants to satisfy every taste.


Art enthusiasts will appreciate the numerous galleries showcasing the work of local artists and artisans. Browse through a variety of mediums, from paintings and sculptures to handmade jewelry and traditional Hawaiian crafts.


History buffs will be delighted by the Mokuaikaua Church, the oldest Christian church in Hawaii, which dates back to 1820. Step inside and admire the stunning architectural features and learn about its historical significance in the development of Christianity in the Hawaiian Islands.


Wander further into the town and discover the Hulihe’e Palace, a stately oceanfront residence that served as a summer home for Hawaiian royalty. Take a guided tour of the palace and immerse yourself in the opulence and fascinating history of the Hawaiian monarchy.


Don’t forget to explore the local farmers market, where you can sample fresh tropical fruits, local delicacies, and homemade treats. Engage with the friendly vendors and experience the vibrant flavors of Hawaii.


For those seeking a bit of relaxation, head to the scenic Kona Bay where you can kick back on the sandy beach or find a shady spot beneath a palm tree. Spend some time soaking up the sun, swimming in the clear waters, or simply watching the surfers ride the waves.


As the day comes to an end, be sure to catch a stunning Kona sunset. Find a comfortable spot along the shoreline, and witness the vibrant hues of orange, pink, and purple as the sun dips below the horizon. It’s a magical experience that epitomizes the beauty of Kona.


Old Kailua Town is a must-visit destination in Kona, offering a perfect fusion of history, culture, and natural beauty. So take your time, savor the sights, and immerse yourself in the relaxed atmosphere of this charming coastal town.


Snorkel or Dive at the Stunning Kealakekua Bay

Prepare to be enchanted by the breathtaking beauty of Kealakekua Bay, renowned for its crystal-clear waters, vibrant coral reefs, and abundant marine life. Located on the Kona Coast, this picturesque bay is a haven for snorkelers and divers seeking an unforgettable underwater adventure.


One of the main attractions of Kealakekua Bay is the pristine coral reef that thrives in the protected waters. Strap on your snorkeling gear or scuba gear and dive into a world teeming with colorful tropical fish, graceful sea turtles, and an array of fascinating marine species.


Once underwater, you’ll be mesmerized by the vibrant colors and intricate formations of the coral reef. Swim alongside schools of tropical fish, including yellow tangs, butterflyfish, and triggerfish, as they dart in and out of the coral. Keep your eyes open for the majestic sea turtles that call this bay home, as they gracefully glide through the water.


For those who prefer to stay on the surface, snorkeling at Kealakekua Bay is equally rewarding. Simply grab your mask and snorkel, and float above the mesmerizing coral gardens. Marvel at the intricate structures and watch as the marine life goes about their daily activities.


While snorkeling or diving, make sure to keep a respectful distance from the coral and other marine life. As a responsible visitor, it’s important to protect and preserve the fragile ecosystem of Kealakekua Bay.


Your visit to Kealakekua Bay wouldn’t be complete without a stop at the iconic Captain Cook Monument. Located on the rocky cliffs overlooking the bay, this monument commemorates the spot where the famous British explorer, Captain James Cook, first set foot on the island of Hawaii.


After your dive or snorkel session, take the time to relax on the golden sandy beach and bask in the warm Hawaiian sun. Enjoy a picnic lunch or simply unwind and soak in the natural beauty that surrounds you.


A visit to Kealakekua Bay offers a truly unforgettable experience. Whether you’re a seasoned diver or a beginner snorkeler, the abundant marine life and stunning coral reefs will leave you in awe. So grab your gear, dive in, and discover the underwater wonders of Kealakekua Bay.


Discover the Captivating Mauna Kea Summit

A journey to the summit of Mauna Kea is an exhilarating experience that takes you to great heights, both physically and metaphorically. Standing at over 13,000 feet, this dormant volcano is the highest point in Hawaii and offers breathtaking panoramic views of the island.


Embark on a guided tour or drive yourself up the winding road to the summit, where you’ll encounter a landscape unlike any other. As you ascend, you’ll notice the dramatic change in scenery, transitioning from lush green forests to barren volcanic terrain.


At the summit, you’ll be greeted by awe-inspiring vistas of the surrounding valleys, mountains, and the vast expanse of the Pacific Ocean. On a clear day, you may even have the chance to witness the phenomenon known as the “horizon glow,” where the curvature of the Earth creates a line of light on the distant horizon.


Mauna Kea is renowned for its world-class astronomical observatories, making it a paradise for stargazers and astronomy enthusiasts. Experience the magic of the night sky as you observe celestial wonders through powerful telescopes, guided by knowledgeable astronomers who will explain the mysteries of the universe.


However, visiting the summit of Mauna Kea requires careful preparation. The high altitude can cause altitude sickness, so it’s important to acclimate slowly and listen to your body. Dress warmly, as temperatures at the summit can drop below freezing, and bring plenty of water to stay hydrated.


While the journey to the summit is captivating, it’s also important to respect the cultural significance of Mauna Kea to the Native Hawaiian people. The mountain is considered a sacred site, with deep cultural and spiritual importance. Take the time to learn about the cultural significance and history of Mauna Kea, and ensure you follow any guidelines or protocols set forth by the local community.


Visiting the summit of Mauna Kea is a truly transformative experience, where you can witness the grandeur of nature and gain a new perspective on our place in the universe. Whether you’re a nature lover, an adventure seeker, or simply someone in search of awe-inspiring vistas, the captivating Mauna Kea Summit is not to be missed.


Behold the Fascinating Marine Life at the Kaloko-Honokohau National Historical Park

Step into a world of wonder and marvel at the captivating marine life in the waters of Kaloko-Honokohau National Historical Park. Located on the Kona coast, this park not only offers a glimpse into ancient Hawaiian culture but also provides a thriving habitat for a diverse array of marine species.


As you explore the park, you’ll be mesmerized by the crystal-clear waters that reveal a vibrant underwater world. Snorkelers and divers are in for a treat, as the park is home to an abundance of marine life, including colorful tropical fish, graceful sea turtles, and even the occasional manta ray or dolphin.


One of the highlights of Kaloko-Honokohau is the Honokohau Beach, a pristine stretch of golden sand where you can relax and soak up the sun before venturing into the water. Pack your snorkel gear and dive into the turquoise waters, where an underwater paradise awaits you.


As you swim among the coral reefs, keep an eye out for the brightly colored fish that dart in and out of the coral formations. You may spot the popular Humuhumunukunukuapua’a, the state fish of Hawaii, or the striking Moorish idol. Be sure to stay a respectful distance from the coral and other marine life, as they are delicate and should be protected.


One of the most remarkable aspects of the park is its resident population of green sea turtles, known as honu in Hawaiian. These gentle creatures often frequent the waters near the shoreline, creating an unforgettable experience for visitors. Observe their graceful movements and admire their ancient presence in the ocean.


If you’re lucky, you might even witness the acrobatic displays of spinner dolphins or the graceful glide of a manta ray passing by. These encounters with marine life are a testament to the pristine conditions of the park’s waters and the importance of preserving this fragile ecosystem.


While exploring the park, take the time to also learn about the cultural significance of Kaloko-Honokohau. Discover ancient fishponds, historic Hawaiian heiau (temples), and petroglyphs that depict the rich history and traditions of the Hawaiian people. Interpretive signs and guided tours are available to provide insights into the cultural heritage of the area.


Kaloko-Honokohau National Historical Park is a true gem of Kona, where you can witness the beauty and diversity of the marine world while immersing yourself in the history and culture of Hawaii. So grab your snorkel gear or dive equipment and get ready to behold the fascinating marine life that awaits you at this remarkable park.


Experience the Cultural Significance at the Hulihe’e Palace

Immerse yourself in the rich history of Hawaii by visiting the Hulihe’e Palace, a historic landmark that showcases the cultural significance of Kona. Located on Ali’i Drive in the heart of Kailua-Kona, this magnificent palace offers a glimpse into the royal heritage of the Hawaiian Islands.


Originally built in 1838, the Hulihe’e Palace served as a cherished summer retreat for the Hawaiian monarchy. The elegant two-story structure, constructed from lava rock and native hardwoods, is a beautiful example of the architectural style from the era.


As you explore the palace, you’ll have the opportunity to view the exquisite collection of artifacts and personal belongings that once belonged to Hawaiian royalty. Admire the ornate furniture, delicate artwork, and intricate craftsmanship that reflect the opulence and grandeur of the Hawaiian monarchy.


Knowledgeable guides will lead you through the rooms, providing insights into the history and cultural significance of the palace. Learn about the customs and traditions of the Hawaiian people, and gain a deeper understanding of the royal lifestyle that once thrived within these walls.


One of the highlights of the Hulihe’e Palace is the beautifully manicured Victorian-style garden, which surrounds the building. Take a leisurely stroll through the lush gardens, filled with vibrant flowers, native plants, and towering coconut palms. The tranquil atmosphere offers a peaceful respite from the bustling streets of Kona.


Throughout the year, the palace hosts various cultural events and festivals that celebrate Hawaiian traditions. From hula performances and live music to craft fairs and demonstrations of traditional arts, these events provide a vibrant and immersive experience into Hawaiian culture.


Visiting the Hulihe’e Palace is not only a chance to admire its architectural beauty but also an opportunity to connect with the history and customs of Hawaii. It offers a deeper understanding of the rich cultural heritage that continues to shape the island’s identity.


Before you leave the palace, be sure to visit the palace gift shop, where you can find a variety of locally made crafts, artwork, and souvenirs. Support local artisans and take home a piece of Hawaiian culture as a memento of your visit.


Experience the cultural significance of Hawaii at the Hulihe’e Palace and gain a deeper appreciation for the history and traditions of the Hawaiian people. It’s a must-visit destination for anyone seeking to delve into the royal past and immerse themselves in the rich cultural heritage of Kona.


Go on an Adventurous Hike to the Stunning Pololu Valley

Prepare yourself for an unforgettable adventure as you embark on a thrilling hike to the stunning Pololu Valley. Located on the northern coast of the Big Island, this remote and picturesque valley offers breathtaking views, dramatic cliffs, and a sense of serenity that will leave you in awe.


The journey begins at the Pololu Valley Lookout, where you’ll be greeted by panoramic vistas of the valley below. The view alone is worth the trip, but the real magic lies in venturing down into the valley itself.


The hike down to the valley floor is a challenging one, with steep terrain and uneven footing. But as you descend, you’ll be rewarded with spectacular scenery at every turn. Lush greenery, cascading waterfalls, and rugged cliffs surround you, creating a sense of wonder and tranquility.


As you continue along the trail, you’ll come across a secluded black sand beach, where you can take a break and soak in the beauty of your surroundings. The contrast of the dark sand against the azure waters creates a mesmerizing scene that’s perfect for capturing unforgettable memories.


For the more adventurous hikers, continue past the beach and explore the valley’s hidden gems. Follow the trail that winds through the lush vegetation and discover hidden viewpoints that offer even more breathtaking vistas.


While hiking in Pololu Valley is a thrilling experience, it’s important to be prepared. Wear sturdy hiking shoes, bring plenty of water, and wear sunscreen to protect yourself from the intense Hawaiian sun. Remember that the hike back up can be challenging, so pace yourself and listen to your body.


As you journey through the Pololu Valley, take a moment to appreciate the natural beauty that surrounds you. Marvel at the power of nature as you witness the cliffs that plunge into the ocean and the lush rainforest that thrives in the valley.


Pololu Valley offers a unique opportunity to disconnect from the hustle and bustle of everyday life and reconnect with nature. It’s a place where you can appreciate the true majesty of the Big Island and create memories that will last a lifetime.


Whether you’re an experienced hiker or someone seeking an adventure off the beaten path, exploring the stunning Pololu Valley will surely be a highlight of your visit to the Big Island of Hawaii.


Embark on a Thrilling Manta Ray Night Dive

Prepare yourself for an exhilarating and magical experience as you embark on a thrilling manta ray night dive off the coast of Kona. This unique adventure offers a rare opportunity to witness these graceful creatures up close and personal in their natural habitat.


After sunset, you’ll board a boat and venture out into the calm waters of the Pacific Ocean. Led by experienced guides, you’ll reach a designated spot known for its manta ray activity. The boat will anchor and an array of powerful underwater lights will be positioned to attract plankton, which in turn, attracts the majestic manta rays.


As you plunge into the warm, dark waters, you’ll don your snorkel or scuba gear and prepare for an encounter like no other. The underwater lights illuminate the area, creating a mesmerizing glow, and soon, the manta rays begin to appear.


These gentle giants, with wingspans reaching up to 20 feet, gracefully glide through the water, performing graceful loops and somersaults as they feed on the tiny plankton. It’s a captivating and awe-inspiring sight that will leave you spellbound.


Swimming alongside these magnificent creatures is an unforgettable experience. You’ll feel a sense of wonder as they effortlessly glide just inches away from you, displaying their grace and beauty. Listen to their enchanting song-like vocalizations, which can be heard through special underwater speakers, adding to the otherworldly ambiance of the dive.


During the dive, experienced guides will ensure your safety and provide information about these fascinating creatures. They’ll share their knowledge about manta ray behavior, conservation efforts, and the importance of protecting their fragile ecosystem.


Even if you’re not a scuba diver, you can still participate in the manta ray night dive. Snorkelers can observe the spectacle from the surface, with an unobstructed view of the majestic rays as they glide beneath them. It’s an equally thrilling experience that offers a unique perspective.


Participating in a manta ray night dive is about more than just witnessing the beauty of these incredible creatures. It’s an opportunity to connect with the underwater world, appreciate the importance of conservation, and gain a greater understanding of the delicate balance of marine ecosystems.


Kona is renowned for its manta ray night dives, and the experience is sure to leave you in awe. So prepare to be amazed as you embark on this thrilling adventure and create memories that will last a lifetime.


Visit the Puako Petroglyph Preserve

Step back in time and explore the ancient rock carvings at the Puako Petroglyph Preserve. Located along the rugged coast of the Big Island’s Kohala Coast, this archaeological site offers a fascinating glimpse into the rich history and culture of Hawaii’s first inhabitants.


The Puako Petroglyph Preserve is home to one of the largest collections of petroglyphs in Hawaii. These intricate rock carvings, known as ki’i pohaku in Hawaiian, were created by Native Hawaiians hundreds of years ago and hold great cultural significance.


As you enter the preserve, you’ll be greeted by a trail that meanders through the lava fields, taking you past countless ancient petroglyphs. These carvings depict various symbols, shapes, and figures, each with its own unique meaning and story.


Walking among the petroglyphs is a truly awe-inspiring experience. Marvel at the artistry and craftsmanship of these ancient carvings and imagine the stories they tell about the lives and beliefs of the early Hawaiian people.


While the exact meanings behind many of the petroglyphs remain a mystery, knowledgeable guides are available to provide insights and interpretations. They can share information about the significance of certain symbols, the cultural practices associated with petroglyphs, and the historical context in which they were created.


The preserve is also home to a wide array of native plants and wildlife, making it a great place for nature enthusiasts to explore. Keep an eye out for tropical birds, geckos, and other unique creatures that call this area home.


It’s important to approach the petroglyphs with respect and care, as they are fragile and susceptible to damage. Stay on designated pathways and avoid touching or altering the carvings in any way, ensuring they are preserved for future generations to appreciate.


A visit to the Puako Petroglyph Preserve is a journey back in time, allowing you to connect with the ancient traditions and culture of Hawaii. It’s a unique opportunity to witness the artistic legacy of the early Hawaiian people and gain a deeper understanding of their customs and beliefs.


So take a walk through history, immerse yourself in the mystical ambiance of the Puako Petroglyph Preserve, and let the stories engraved in the lava rocks transport you to a different time and place.


Enjoy Water Activities at Kahalu’u Bay

For a day of sun-soaked fun and incredible underwater adventures, head to Kahalu’u Bay, a pristine beach located on the Big Island’s Kona coast. Known for its calm and crystal-clear waters, Kahalu’u Bay offers the perfect setting for a range of water-based activities that are sure to delight visitors of all ages.


Snorkeling is a popular activity at Kahalu’u Bay, thanks to its vibrant coral reef and abundant marine life. Strap on your snorkel gear and dive into the warm Pacific waters to discover a dazzling world beneath the surface. The bay is home to a diverse array of tropical fish, such as triggerfish, tangs, and parrotfish, as well as graceful sea turtles that glide effortlessly through the water.


No snorkel gear? No problem! There are rental shops conveniently located near the beach where you can easily obtain all the necessary equipment. Friendly staff will be ready to assist you in finding the perfect gear to ensure a comfortable and enjoyable snorkeling experience.


For those seeking a more thrilling water adventure, Kahalu’u Bay is an ideal spot for stand-up paddleboarding (SUP). Glide across the calm waters on a paddleboard, taking in the breathtaking coastal scenery and enjoying a unique perspective of the bay. SUP rentals are available nearby, making it easy to try this popular activity.


Surf enthusiasts will also find enjoyment at Kahalu’u Bay. The bay’s gentle waves and sandy bottom make it an ideal spot for beginner surfers looking to catch their first wave. Local surf schools offer lessons for all skill levels, allowing you to experience the thrill of riding the waves in a safe and controlled environment.


If you’d rather sit back and relax, simply spread out your beach towel and soak up the warm Hawaiian sun. The palm-fringed shoreline of Kahalu’u Bay is perfect for sunbathing and picnicking, providing a tranquil and picturesque setting for a day of leisure.


It’s important to note that Kahalu’u Bay is also a designated Marine Life Conservation District. This means that visitors should be mindful of the environment and ensure they do not touch or disturb the coral or marine life. Respect the rules and regulations in place to help preserve this unique ecosystem.


Kahalu’u Bay offers endless opportunities for water-based fun and memorable experiences. From snorkeling and stand-up paddleboarding to simply lounging on the beach, there’s something for everyone to enjoy. So grab your gear, dive in, and create lasting memories at this remarkable coastal gem.


Learn about Hawaiian History at the Mokuaikaua Church

Delve into the rich history and cultural heritage of Hawaii by paying a visit to the Mokuaikaua Church, a significant landmark located in Kailua-Kona. Known as the “First Christian Church” in Hawaii, Mokuaikaua Church stands as a testament to the enduring history of the Hawaiian people and their interactions with Western influences.


Built in 1837, the church is an architectural masterpiece that reflects a blend of traditional Hawaiian craftsmanship and Western architectural styles. The exterior showcases lava rock walls, while the interior boasts koa wood furnishings, stunning stained glass windows, and a classic missionary pulpit.


As you step inside, you’ll be transported back in time to an era when Christianity first arrived in Hawaii. Take a moment to admire the intricate details and craftsmanship of the church’s design, a tribute to the skills of the native Hawaiian artisans who contributed to its construction.


A visit to Mokuaikaua Church offers an excellent opportunity to learn about the profound impact of Christianity on the Hawaiian Islands. Explore the historical exhibits and displays that provide insights into the arrival of the first missionaries, their interactions with the local population, and the subsequent changes in Hawaiian society.


Knowledgeable docents and volunteers are readily available to guide you through the church and share captivating stories and anecdotes about its significance in Hawaiian history. They can provide information about the traditions and customs of the early converts, as well as the pivotal role Mokuaikaua Church played in shaping the cultural landscape of Hawaii.


Aside from its historical and cultural significance, Mokuaikaua Church remains an active place of worship to this day. Attend a service if you have the opportunity and witness the harmonious blend of Western and Hawaiian spiritual practices in this sacred space.


Located in the heart of Kailua-Kona, Mokuaikaua Church is surrounded by other historical landmarks, charming shops, and vibrant restaurants. Take the time to explore the surrounding area and immerse yourself in the local culture, making your visit to Mokuaikaua Church a truly enriching experience.


Visiting Mokuaikaua Church is a chance to gain a deeper understanding of Hawaiian history, the influence of Western missionaries, and the resilience of the Hawaiian people. It is a place where past and present converge, inviting visitors to appreciate the cultural heritage of the islands and reflect on the transformative power of faith.


Take a Scenic Drive along the Mamalahoa Highway

Embark on a picturesque journey along the Mamalahoa Highway and immerse yourself in the natural beauty and cultural charm of the Big Island of Hawaii. This scenic drive takes you through lush landscapes, charming towns, and historic sites, offering a truly unforgettable experience.


The Mamalahoa Highway stretches along the western coast of the island, winding through rolling hills, verdant forests, and breathtaking coastal views. As you cruise along the road, take in the panoramic vistas of the Pacific Ocean, with waves crashing against rocky cliffs and stunning beaches beckoning you to stop and explore.


One of the highlights of this drive is the opportunity to visit charming coffee plantations and sample the world-renowned Kona coffee. Spend some time at the coffee farms, where you can learn about the cultivation and production of this famous beverage, and taste the rich flavors for yourself.


As you continue your journey, you’ll come across quaint towns and historic sites that provide a glimpse into Hawaii’s past. Stop in Waimea, known for its paniolo (cowboy) culture, and explore the local shops and galleries offering unique Hawaiian crafts and artwork. Be sure to try some delicious local cuisine at one of the charming restaurants in town.


Further along the drive, make a stop at Pu’ukoholā Heiau National Historic Site, a significant cultural site that holds great historical and spiritual importance. Explore the ancient temple and learn about the history of this sacred place, which played a key role in the unification of the Hawaiian Islands.


Take a side trip to the beautiful Waipi’o Valley, a verdant oasis nestled between towering cliffs. While access to the valley floor is limited, the viewpoints offer breathtaking vistas of lush fields, cascading waterfalls, and the pristine black sand beach. It’s a sight that will leave you in awe.


Don’t forget to make a stop at the Akaka Falls State Park, where you can take a short walk through a tropical rainforest and witness the dramatic 442-foot Akaka Falls plunging into a scenic gorge. The lush vegetation, vibrant flowers, and the sound of cascading water create a truly serene atmosphere.


Throughout your drive along the Mamalahoa Highway, keep an eye out for hidden beaches, roadside fruit stands, and other hidden gems that lie just off the beaten path. You never know what surprises await you as you venture deeper into the island’s natural wonders.


Immerse yourself in the beauty and charm of the Big Island as you journey along the Mamalahoa Highway. With its breathtaking vistas, historic sites, and delightful detours, this scenic drive is a must-do for anyone seeking to explore the wonders of Hawaii.


Explore the Beautiful Waikoloa Beach Resort

Nestled along the stunning Kohala Coast, the Waikoloa Beach Resort offers a world-class tropical getaway with its picturesque beaches, luxurious accommodations, and an array of activities for every traveler to enjoy.


Start your exploration by spending a day at one of the resort’s beautiful beaches. Anaeho’omalu Bay, also known as A-Bay, is a dreamy crescent-shaped beach with soft white sand and crystal-clear turquoise waters. Bask in the warm Hawaiian sun, take a refreshing dip in the ocean, or try your hand at exciting water sports like snorkeling or stand-up paddleboarding.


If you’re a golfer, you’re in for a treat. The Waikoloa Beach Resort boasts two championship golf courses: the Waikoloa Beach Course and the Kings’ Course. Tee off amidst stunning coastal and volcanic views, and challenge yourself on meticulously designed fairways and greens.


Discover the rich cultural heritage of Hawaii at the resort’s historic fishponds. These ancient structures, known as “loko i’a,” were used to cultivate fish for the Hawaiian royalty. Take a leisurely stroll along the paths that wind through the ponds and learn about the traditional fishing practices that have sustained the Hawaiian people for centuries.


Indulge in retail therapy and dining at the Kings’ Shops and Queens’ MarketPlace. These vibrant shopping centers offer a range of boutiques, galleries, and upscale retailers. From designer fashion to local crafts, you’re sure to find the perfect souvenir or trendy piece to take home. Treat yourself to a mouthwatering meal at one of the many restaurants offering diverse cuisines, from Hawaiian fusion to international flavors.


For an immersive cultural experience, attend the Waikoloa Beach Marriott’s Sunset Luau. Delight in a traditional Hawaiian feast, witness captivating hula performances, and feel the aloha spirit as live musicians serenade you with melodic island tunes. Immerse yourself in the captivating storytelling and rich traditions that have been passed down through generations.


For those seeking relaxation, indulge in a rejuvenating spa treatment at one of the resort’s luxurious spas. Let skilled therapists pamper you with soothing massages, invigorating body wraps, and revitalizing facials. Surrender to the tranquil ambiance and let your worries melt away.


The Waikoloa Beach Resort is also a gateway to explore nearby attractions such as the dramatic landscapes of the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park or the breathtaking Pololu Valley. Take a day trip to these natural wonders and witness the raw beauty of the Big Island.


Embrace the tropical paradise of the Waikoloa Beach Resort, where stunning beaches, world-class amenities, and a vibrant atmosphere converge to create an unforgettable vacation experience. Whether you’re seeking adventure, relaxation, or cultural immersion, this enchanting resort has it all.


Relax at the Tranquil Manini’owali Beach (Kua Bay)

Escape to a tranquil oasis along the Kona coast at Manini’owali Beach, also known as Kua Bay. This hidden gem offers a serene and picturesque setting that is perfect for those seeking relaxation and a quintessential Hawaiian beach experience.


As you arrive at Manini’owali Beach, be prepared to be greeted by the sight of powdery white sand, crystal-clear turquoise waters, and swaying palm trees. The beach’s untouched natural beauty is a breathtaking sight that will instantly put you in a state of tranquility.


Find the perfect spot on the shore, spread out your beach towel, and soak up the warm Hawaiian sun. Let the gentle ocean breeze caress you as you listen to the soothing sound of waves breaking on the shore. The peaceful ambiance of Manini’owali Beach makes it an ideal destination for unwinding and letting go of everyday stress.


Take a leisurely swim in the calm waters, feeling the refreshing embrace of the ocean. Snorkelers will be delighted by the underwater wonders that await just off the shore. Dive into the clear waters and discover a vibrant underwater world teeming with colorful fish and thriving coral reefs.


Manini’owali Beach is also a popular spot for bodyboarding and boogie boarding due to its small to moderate-sized waves. Feel the exhilaration as you catch a wave and ride towards the shore, enjoying the thrill of being carried by the ocean’s energy.


It’s worth noting that facilities at Manini’owali Beach are limited, so be sure to bring all the essentials, including food, water, and sunscreen. The lack of amenities only adds to the untouched and natural charm of the beach, allowing you to fully immerse yourself in the serenity of the surroundings.


Make your visit to Manini’owali Beach even more unforgettable by staying until sunset. As the golden hour approaches, the sky is adorned with hues of pink, orange, and purple, casting a magical glow over the horizon. Witnessing the sunset from this tranquil beach is an experience that will leave you in awe of nature’s beauty.


Manini’owali Beach (Kua Bay) offers a serene and idyllic environment that allows you to truly unwind and connect with nature. Whether you’re lounging on the soft sand, exploring the underwater wonders, or simply taking in the beauty of the surroundings, a visit to this tranquil beach is a perfect retreat for relaxation and rejuvenation.


Indulge in a Traditional Hawaiian Luau Experience

No visit to Hawaii is complete without immersing yourself in the rich cultural tradition of a Hawaiian luau. A luau is a vibrant celebration of Hawaiian culture, featuring a feast of delicious food, captivating music and dance performances, and a warm sense of aloha that envelops guests in a true Hawaiian experience.


During a traditional luau, you’ll have the opportunity to feast on a delectable spread of Hawaiian cuisine, showcasing the unique flavors and ingredients of the islands. Indulge in kalua pig, roasted in an underground imu (oven), tender chicken, fresh seafood, and a plethora of tropical fruits and vegetables. Don’t forget to try traditional dishes such as poi, laulau, and haupia for a true taste of Hawaii.


As you feast on the authentic Hawaiian fare, you’ll be entertained by talented musicians and hula dancers who will transport you to the heart of Hawaiian culture. Revel in the enchanting melodies of the ukulele and the rhythmic beats of the drums, as the dancers showcase graceful hula movements that tell stories of legends, history, and the aloha spirit.


Participate in the festivities by learning to dance the hula yourself. Hula lessons are often offered during the luau, giving you the chance to sway your hips and move your hands in harmony with the music. It’s a joyful and interactive experience that allows you to become a part of the celebration.


Immerse yourself in the cultural significance of the luau by taking the time to appreciate the ancient customs and traditions that are woven into the performances and rituals. From the blowing of the conch shell, symbolizing the beginning of the festivities, to the lighting of the torches at sunset, each aspect of the luau is steeped in cultural symbolism and meaning.


While luaus can be found throughout the Hawaiian Islands, attending one in an outdoor setting, surrounded by tropical gardens or overlooking the ocean, enhances the sensory experience and adds to the overall ambiance of the event.


Whether you’re attending a luau as a solo traveler, with a loved one, or with a group of friends and family, the warmth and spirit of aloha will make you feel like part of the ohana (family) as you join in the festivities.


A traditional Hawaiian luau is an experience that captures the essence of Hawaii – its history, heritage, and the spirit of aloha that permeates every aspect of the islands. So be prepared to feast, dance, and immerse yourself in the vibrant celebration of Hawaiian culture found at a traditional luau.


Discover the Remarkable Pu’u Wa’awa’a Cinder Cone State Park

Escape to the otherworldly landscape of Pu’u Wa’awa’a Cinder Cone State Park, a unique natural wonder located on the slopes of the Big Island’s Hualalai volcano. This remarkable park offers a glimpse into the volcanic history of Hawaii, with awe-inspiring scenery and a variety of outdoor activities for visitors to enjoy.


As you explore Pu’u Wa’awa’a Cinder Cone State Park, you’ll be captivated by the stark beauty of the cinder cone itself. This volcanic formation, composed of loose fragments of lava, creates a dramatic contrast against the surrounding landscape. Hike up to the summit of the cone and marvel at the panoramic views that unfold before you.


The park is home to diverse ecosystems, including dry forests, grasslands, and lava tubes – natural tunnels formed by molten lava. Take a leisurely stroll along the park’s well-maintained trails and immerse yourself in the tranquility of nature. Keep an eye out for endemic plants and wildlife that thrive in the unique conditions of the area.


For outdoor enthusiasts, Pu’u Wa’awa’a offers excellent opportunities for birdwatching and wildlife spotting. The park is home to a variety of native bird species, including the endangered Hawaiian hawk, or ‘io. Grab your binoculars and try to spot these fascinating creatures as they soar through the sky or perch amidst the treetops.


For a more adventurous experience, embark on a hike to explore the ancient lava tubes that lie hidden underground. These natural tunnels provide a fascinating glimpse into the volcanic history of the area and are a favorite among adventurous visitors.


As you journey through Pu’u Wa’awa’a, you’ll come across interpretive signs and educational displays that provide insights into the geology, flora, and fauna of the park. Take the time to read and learn about the natural and cultural significance of this exceptional area.


Picnic areas are available within the park, providing the perfect opportunity to relax and appreciate the serene surroundings. Pack a delicious lunch and enjoy a leisurely picnic amidst the remarkable volcanic landscape.


Remember to come prepared when visiting Pu’u Wa’awa’a. Bring sunscreen, plenty of water, and appropriate footwear for hiking on uneven terrain. Respect the park’s fragile ecosystems and adhere to any regulations and guidelines to help preserve this unique natural treasure.


Pu’u Wa’awa’a Cinder Cone State Park offers a remarkable and enriching experience for nature lovers and outdoor enthusiasts. It is a place where you can connect with the volcanic history of Hawaii and immerse yourself in the captivating landscape of the Big Island. Discover the wonders of Pu’u Wa’awa’a and create lasting memories in this extraordinary natural oasis.


Sample Delicious Local Cuisine at the Kona Brewing Company

Head to the Kona Brewing Company for a true taste of Hawaii’s vibrant culinary scene. Situated in the heart of the Big Island’s Kailua-Kona town, this renowned brewpub offers not only a variety of refreshing craft beers but also a delectable menu featuring locally inspired dishes and flavors.


Start your culinary journey with a flight of their award-winning beers, expertly brewed on-site. From crisp, hoppy IPAs to smooth, rich stouts, the Kona Brewing Company offers a range of beer styles to suit every palate. Sip on your favorites and enjoy the relaxed and laid-back atmosphere of the brewpub.


Pair your brews with a selection of mouthwatering appetizers that showcase the flavors of the islands. Indulge in crispy coconut shrimp, tender kalua pork sliders, or tangy poke made from fresh, locally sourced seafood. These tasty bites are the perfect start to a memorable dining experience.


For a main course, explore the menu’s enticing array of dishes that highlight the bountiful ingredients Hawaii has to offer. Sink your teeth into a juicy local grass-fed beef burger topped with melted cheese and caramelized onions or savor the flavors of island-style fish tacos bursting with tropical salsa and tangy slaw.


Vegetarian and vegan options are also available, such as the flavorful Beyond Burger made from 100% plant-based ingredients. The Kona Brewing Company ensures there is something delicious for everyone, regardless of dietary preferences.


While the cuisine is a major draw, the Kona Brewing Company is also committed to sustainability and supporting local farmers. They strive to source ingredients locally whenever possible, ensuring that the dishes you enjoy have a minimal carbon footprint and help sustain the Hawaiian agricultural community.


As you dine at the Kona Brewing Company, you’ll also notice the focus on creating a welcoming and community-oriented atmosphere. The brewpub often hosts live music events, trivia nights, and other fun happenings that bring locals and visitors together. It’s a place where you can mingle, share stories, and create memories with fellow beer and food enthusiasts.


Before you leave, don’t forget to visit the on-site brewery store to browse a variety of merchandise, including clothing, glassware, and specialty beers available for purchase. Take a piece of the Kona Brewing Company experience home with you to continue savoring the flavors and memories long after your visit.


The Kona Brewing Company offers the perfect combination of delicious local cuisine, refreshing craft beers, and a lively ambiance. It’s a must-visit destination for food and beer lovers alike, providing an authentic taste of the vibrant culinary scene that Hawaii has to offer.



The stunning beauty, rich cultural heritage, and diverse array of activities in Kona, Hawaii make it a truly captivating destination for travelers. Whether you’re exploring historical sites, immersing yourself in the local culture, or indulging in outdoor adventures, there is something for everyone to enjoy in this tropical paradise.


From the immersive experience of the Kona Coffee Living History Farm to the cultural significance found at the Pu’uhonua o Honaunau National Historical Park, Kona offers a deep dive into Hawaiian history and traditions. The scenic Mamalahoa Highway takes you on a journey through panoramic landscapes, charming towns, and historic sites, while the pristine beaches of Manini’owali (Kua Bay) and the indulgent flavors of the Kona Brewing Company provide relaxation and culinary delights.


Whether you choose to snorkel at Kealakekua Bay, hike to the remarkable Pololu Valley, or witness the breathtaking sunset at Manini’owali Beach, be prepared to be captivated by the natural wonders and friendly aloha spirit that permeates every corner of Kona.


As you explore this tropical paradise, remember to embrace the cultural significance, respect the environment, and savor the authentic experiences that await you. Immerse yourself in the rich history, traditions, and flavors of Kona, and leave with memories that will last a lifetime.


So pack your bags, immerse yourself in the beauty of Kona, and let the vibrant energy and natural wonders of this enchanting destination captivate your senses.