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The Big Island is one of our top choices for the best Hawaiian Island experience – from the very moment you see the island you’ll see fiery volcanoes and sparkling waterfalls, black-lava deserts and snow-capped mountain peaks as well as tropical rainforests and alpine meadows, not to mention a glacial lake and miles of golden, black, and even green-sand beaches. Big Island offer great entertainment and many different activities. So, if you’re looking to get away from it all and back to nature in its most primal state, this will be your idea of paradise!
One of the best things about the Big Island is the incredible choice of scenery and activities where you can observe erupting volcanoes; swim with dolphins; ponder the stars from the world’s tallest mountain and lay by an incredible pool. The Big Island is also a great destination for golf enthusiasts. Be sure to bring your clubs with you or rent them locally. You can go skiing in the morning and surf in the afternoon. With Tour America you can do all this and more!
Look into the mouth of one of the world's most active volcanoes at the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. Here you can see active lava flows up-close, which is the main reason why most people come here. Not many other places in the world provide this kind of opportunity. In 1980, the park was named an International Biosphere Reserve by UNESCO, and in 1982, it was given World Heritage status. There are a number of attractions within the park, and it can easily take a few days to visit the most popular ones.
The central point at Hawaii Volcanoes National Park is Kilauea Caldera, (also known as Kilauea Crater). Many attractions are located along this area. The Kilauea Visitors Center is also located here, where you can pick up park maps and camping permits and learn more about the Big Island's geology and volcanic history. Also, visit Jaggar Museum, where you can learn about the past and present volcanic activity in the park. The museum features a multi-media display including photos, maps, paintings and video presentations.
Visit The Ka'u Desert. Here in the south-western area of the park is a large expanse of semi-arid lava plain, interspersed by a few plants and bushes. There are a few hiking trails in this desolate area. However, an easier and more interesting walk is the half-mile Devastation Trail, a paved path across a cinder field surrounded by dead tree trunks. It is one of the most photographed areas in the park. And don't forget to visit Mauna Loa- the most massive mountain in the world... There is so much you can do here!
Big Island Attractions:
Big Island Candies, Captain Cook Monument, Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, Hilo Clock, Kaimu Beach Eco-Path, King Kamehameha Statue, Lava Tree State Park, Manuka State Wayside Park, Mauna Kea Observatory and Summit, Mauna Kea State Recreation Area, Mauna Loa Macadamia Nut Company, Pana'ewa Rainforest Zoo, Pololu Valley, Saddle Road, Star of the Sea Painted Church, Thurston Lava Tube, Volcano Art Center, Volcano Winery, Waipio Valley.
Big Island Beaches
The Big Island of Hawaii has a coastline of about 428 km and Big Island beaches are the most diverse in all of Hawaii. Here you can find black sand beaches, red sand beaches, golden sand beaches and even green sand beaches. You couldn't ask for more! The best sandy swimming beaches are located on the Kona coast. This is where many hotels are located and where most visitors like to stay for their Big Island vacation. Snorkelling and diving locations on the Big Island are plentiful. And then there are several tide pool locations, such as the Kapoho Tide Pools, which are like an outdoor Jacuzzi - with the only difference that they are volcanically heated.
Big Island Beaches:
Ahalanui Park, Ai'opio Beach, Alula Beach, Anaeho'omalu Beach, Carlsmith Beach Park, Crystal Cove, Hakalau Bay, Hapuna Beach Park, Hilo Bay Beachfront Park, Holoholokai Beach Park, Honaunau Bay, Honokohau Beach, Honoli'i Beach Park, Honomalino Bay, Ho'okena Beach Park, Isaac Hale Beach Park, James Kealoha Beach Park and much more.
Big Island of Hawaii Waterfalls:
Hi'ilawe Falls, Kapoloa Falls, Rainbow Falls.
Big Island Botanical Gardens
Big Island's botanical gardens are just amazing. Here you will be able to see a variety of tropical flowers, plants and waterfalls. Due to its fertile volcanic soil and moist climate, the most gardens are able to support an exceptional bounty of species from around the world. The gardens are also home to a wide variety of fauna, including many colourful birds and reptiles. Here you'll find the gold dust day gecko, a native of Madagascar with striking yellow speckles along its neon green back. The Indian mongoose, a small, agile rodent introduced to the Islands in the 1880s, also makes its home here.
Big Island of Hawaii Botanical Gardens:
Amy B. H. Greenwell Ethnobotanical Garden, Hawaii Tropical Botanical Garden, Hi'iaka's Healing Herb Garden, Lili'uokalani Gardens, Nani Mau Garden, Pua Mau Place Arboretum and Botanical Garden, Sadie Seymour Botanical Gardens, World Botanical Garden.
Big Island Ancient Sites:
Ahu'ena Heiau, Kue'manu Heiau, Mo'okini Luakini Heiau, Naha Stone, Pu'uhonua o Honaunau National Historical Park, Pu'ukohola Heiau.
Big Island Museums:
Anna Ranch Heritage Center, East Hawaii Cultural Center, Hulihe'e Palace, ‘Imiloa Astronomy Center, Laupahoehoe Train Museum, Lyman House Museum, Onizuka Center for International Astronomy, Pacific Tsunami Museum, Parker Ranch Visitor Center & Museum.
Check some amazing videos of Big Island:
Between star chefs, and a crop of quality new local farms, the Big Island restaurant scene has been heating up in the past couple of years. In the past it used to be a pleasant surprise for visitors to discover a gourmet meal on the island, but now food writers from national magazines are praising the chefs of the Big Island for their ability to turn the local bounty into inventive blends of the island's cultural heritage. Some of the most popular restaurants would be the Bamboo Restaurant on the Kohala Coast, Chef Daniels Seafood Café in Waimea and Fujimama’s in Kailua-Kona to name just a few.
Shopping in Big Ireland
The Big Island of Hawaii may not have the giant malls and shopping centers that you’d find on Oahu or even Maui, but there are still plenty of shopping opportunities to be found on the island. From trend-setting resort shops along the Kohala Coast to the Wal-Mart in Hilo (a favorite night-time hangout spot for locals), the Big Island has enough venues to satisfy any shopaholic.
Weather in Big Ireland
The best thing about the Big Island's weather is that it is very localized. You may be driving along the island and be in a rain storm one minute and in bright sun the next. This variety of weather allows you to fully experience its sun-drenched beaches, misty rainbow-filled valleys, pristine waterfalls, cool highlands, and lush mountains.
Average Monthly Temperatures