Big Island Sights

Nicknamed "The Big Island," Hawaii Island is a microcosm of Hawaii the state. From long white-sand beaches and crystal-clear bays to rain forests, waterfalls, valleys, exotic flowers, and birds, all things quintessentially Hawaii are well represented here.

An assortment of happy surprises also distinguishes the Big Island from the rest of Hawaii—an active volcano (Kilauea) oozing red

lava and creating new earth every day, the clearest place in the world to view stars in the night sky (Mauna Kea), and some seriously good coffee from the famous Kona district, and also from neighboring Kau.

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Browse Sights

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Fodor's Choice

Area

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Kona Coast 29

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North Kona 1

South Kona and Kealakekua Bay 17

Hilo 25

Kailua-Kona 13

Hamakua Coast 12

Kohala Coast 8

Puna 6

Hawaii Volcanoes National Park 5

Kau 5

Mauna Kea 4

Waimea 4

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Category

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Archaeological Site/ Ruins 4

Beach–Sight 25

Body Of Water/ Waterfall 4

Building/ Architectural Site 1

Castle/ Palace/ Chateau 1

Cave 2

Cemetery 1

Farm/ Ranch 7

Festival–Sight 1

Forest 1

Garden/ Arboretum 6

Historic District/ Site 6

Hotel–Sight 1

Industrial Site/ Mill/ Factory 2

Information Center 4

Island 1

Marina/ Pier/ Dock 2

Market/ Bazaar 1

Memorial/ Monument/ Tomb 3

Military Site 1

Mountain–Sight 1

Museum/ Gallery 8

Nature Preserve/ Wildlife Refuge 1

Neighborhood/ Street 1

Observatory/ Planetarium 3

Park (National/ State/ Provincial) 13

Park/ Playground 2

Religious Building/ Site/ Shrine 6

Scenic Drive/ Tour 1

Store/ Shop/ Mall 1

Tour–Sight 5

Town/ Village 7

Trail/ Path 2

Viewpoint/ Scenic Overlook 2

Volcano 1

Winery/ Brewery/ Distillery 1

Zoo/ Aquarium 1

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Best For

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Family 19

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Big Island Sights

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Akaka Falls State Park

  • Park (National/State/Provincial)

An easy, meandering 10-minute loop trail (approximately 4/10-mile) takes you to the best spots to see the spectacular cascades of Akaka.

Hawaii Tropical Botanical Garden

  • Garden/Arboretum

Eight miles north of Hilo, stunning coastline views appear around each curve of the 4-mile scenic jungle drive that accesses this privately...

Honokaa Town

  • Town/Village

This quaint, clifftop village fronting the ocean was built in the 1920s and 1930s by Japanese and Chinese workers who quit the nearby...

Honolii Beach Park

  • Beach–Sight

One of the most consistent places on the east side to catch a wave, Honolii is popular with the local surf crowd. The beach is a mix...

Honomu

  • Town/Village

Honomu Town did not die when sugar did. Its sugar-plantation past is reflected in the wooden boardwalks and metal-roofed buildings of...

Kalopa State Recreation Area

  • Park (National/State/Provincial)

Past the old plantation town of Paauilo, at a cool elevation of 2,000 feet, lies this sweet 100-acre state park. There's a lush forested...

Kolekole Beach Park

  • Beach–Sight

This lush park is tucked away under a high bridge that crosses a gulch along Highway 19, between Akaka and Umauma falls. The beach is...

Laupahoehoe Point Park

  • Park (National/State/Provincial)

Here the surf pounds the jagged black rocks at the base of a stunning point. This is not a safe place for swimming, however. Still vivid...

Laupahoehoe Train Museum

  • Museum/Gallery

Behind a stone loading platform of the once-famous Hawaii Consolidated Railway, constructed about 1900, the former manager's house is...

Umauma Falls & Zipline Experience

  • Body Of Water/Waterfall

The only place to see the triple-tier Umauma Falls, this kid-friendly 200-acre park has 14 waterfalls and a classy visitor center. Like...

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