Day 1 in Kona
Welcome to Kona! Upon arrival at the airport, you will go through customs and immigration. Should you opt to purchase a transfer to your hotel; a representative will be waiting for you as you exit immigration. Arrive at your hotel, check in and do not give in to jet lag! There is so much for you to see and do!
Begin with a leisurely stroll along Ali`i Drive, a coastal road in the heart of Kailua-Kona town, where you can explore the local shops and beautiful scenery. Here you will find many dining options along the ocean front with magnificent views. After lunch, take a walk to some of the historical sites in the area, including Hulihe`e Palace, St Peter`s Church and the Ahu`ena Heiau temple where King Kamehameha spent his retired life. Get acquainted with the area, you can take Keauhou Hone Express shuttle, that runs along Ali`i Drive and the entire length of Kailua-Kona for just $2 per person.
For your first evening in Kona check out one of the many beachfront luaus and enjoy some traditional Hawaiian entertainment, Island Breeze Luau is located at the Courtyard Marriot on Kona Beach, adjacent to the pier in Kailua Bay, a great spot to find restaurants and shops and catch a spectacular Kona sunset.
Day 2 in Kona
Start your day with a cup of traditional Kona coffee! Then visit one of the coffee farms on the island, such as Kona Coffee Living Farm or Hilo Coffee Mill, where you can take a tour and learn about the harvesting process and visit the orchards.
Head to Hawaii Volcanoes National Park and explore the wonders of two magnificent active volcanoes, Kilauea and Mauna Loa, here you will find hiking trails along with the Jaggar Museum. From here head over to Pu`uhonua o Honaunau National Historical Park where you can learn about island traditions with temples, replica koa wood carvings and some of the best snorkeling on the Big Island.
This evening make your way to Maua Kea summit the world`s tallest mountain standing at 13,796 feet above sea level, the observatory is located at the summit where you can take in the spectacular views of the sunset, stay and check out the stars as this is one of the best sites in the entire world for star gazing on a clear night.
Day 3 in Kona
Head over to the southern side of the island today and visit Waipio Valley located about 50 miles north of Hilo, this mile-wide valley is fed by Hiilawe Falls featuring a breathtaking double waterfall that drops over 1200 feet. Explore the lush green landscapes of the valley and check out the black sand beach where the valley meets the ocean.
Head south from here to Hakalau Forest where you can explore the fertile rainforest, a wildlife refuge featuring endangered species including forest birds. Akaka Falls is just south from here another state park where you can witness the dramatic Akaka Falls and Kahuna Falls; Akaka is the tallest free falling waterfall on the island.
Check out vibrant downtown Hilo, the island`s biggest small town. Stroll down Kamehameha Avenue facing Hilo`s beautiful crescent shaped Bay, discover the areas local art scene, galleries and unique shops. Grab some famous nuts at the Macadamia Nut Factory! Enjoy a meal at one of the local restaurants then wander through the beautiful Liliuokalani Gardens located on Banyan Drive.
If you have time to enjoy a spectacular boat tour and experience night swimming or snorkeling with the Manta Rays, it is a popular excursion on the island and would be the perfect end to your Big Island getaway!
Additional Days in Kona
Should you be able to spend additional days in Kona check out the Hilo Farmers Market (Full Market every Wednesday and Saturday) one of the best open-air markets in Hawaii featuring locally grown produce, coffee, nuts and baked goods along with local flowers, koa wood treasures, and souvenirs.
Check out the beaches! Hawaii is known for its beautiful beaches and miles of coastline, Manini`owali Beach is located at Kua Bay just north of the Kona airport and features one of the prettiest beaches on the Big Island and perfect for sunbathing, swimming and snorkeling. Magic sands beach is another stunning beach along the Kailua-Kona coast.
The Old Kona airport recreation area is on the Kuakini Highway and sits on 104 acres of land that include sports fields, aquatic center, gym, park and 217 acres of marine preserve with a coral reef. Papawai Bay is located just north of the park and a great location for shopping with two large shopping centers.
Honokohau National Historical Park is located in the Kona District south of the airport; the park is home to two Hawaiian fish ponds and four different ahu paua (traditional sea to mountain land divisions) and Jeju (sacred temples). Witness the beauty of the white sand beach and contrasting black lava coastline, hike several trails or take a trip to Honokohau harbor by boat or canoe.
Visit the Ala Kahakai National Historic trail, 175-mile long trail along the coastline of the Big Island, it was established to access the traditional Ancient Hawaiian culture along with the nature geology of the island.
Your Last Day in Kona
Depart from your hotel to the airport for your return flight home. We recommend that you purchase a private transfer to the airport if so the representative will meet you at your hotel with plenty of time to get you to the airport for your flight out.