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Aside from Volcanoes National Park, please tell me why you love the Big Island of Hawaii

Aside from Volcanoes National Park, please tell me why you love the Big Island of Hawaii

Old Jan 7th, 2002, 02:13 PM
  #1  
Amy
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Aside from Volcanoes National Park, please tell me why you love the Big Island of Hawaii

I am debating whether I should add the Big Island as part of my vacation to Hawaii. Please tell me why I shouldn't miss it.
 
Old Jan 7th, 2002, 02:39 PM
  #2  
Wendy
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I would definatly say to go. It's such a truer view of life in Hawaii. Plus there are drastic differences in the landscape of the island which are hard to find anywhere else. It is definatly much more quiet and relaxed. Maui and Big Island are my 2 reasons for going to Hawaii!
 
Old Jan 7th, 2002, 06:42 PM
  #3  
Celeste
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It is much more undeveloped than Maui and there are hundreds of beautiful places. It's what Maui USED to look like.
 
Old Jan 7th, 2002, 09:06 PM
  #4  
ALF
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If you are into stargazing, Mauna Kea is possibly the world's best site! There is a public observatory about 2/3 of the way up where observatory staff set up telescopes and give talks most evenings. Bring warm clothing!
 
Old Jan 7th, 2002, 09:24 PM
  #5  
Indie
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Well, actually Celeste, Maui hasn't looked like the Big Island looks now in many thousands of years. The BI is much more barren in most spots than Maui, partly because much of the BI is more recently formed.
Maui is much more lush overall.
If you're only referring to tourism, yes, 30 years ago Maui was more like the BI is now.
 
Old Jan 8th, 2002, 08:31 AM
  #6  
cg
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Watching the sea turtles play in the waves on the south shore (we saw them on other islands, but this sticks in my mind more).

Driving north of Hilo on the east side of the island. Bridges over lush valleys with waterfalls and crashing blue waves. Laupahoehoe Beach - huge waves and waterfalls cascading into the ocean along the cliffs. One of the most beautiful places I've been.

Relative lack of touristy-ness in lots of areas. I'm ashamed to say, one day we were desperate for McDonalds for lunch. We couldn't find one, which made me annoyed and kind of happy at the same time.

And, of course, the volcanoes.

There are lots of other things, but that's the main hit list.
 
Old Jan 8th, 2002, 11:02 AM
  #7  
Kim
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I agree with everything that's been said about the Big Island. I've been to almost all the others, and the Big Island is by far my favorite. It has the perfect blend of nature and commercialism. The lava fields are awe inspiring, and if you go in the winter time you'll see tons of whales frolicking near the shore. Don't pass it up, you won't regret it!
 
Old Jan 8th, 2002, 01:04 PM
  #8  
Amy
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Kim, it sounds like you really love the Big Island! I would love to hear more about it from your point of view. Please tell me what you think shouldn't be missed. Thanks very much!
 
Old Jan 8th, 2002, 01:43 PM
  #9  
Julie
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Just went to the Big Island in December (we've been to Kauai on other trips). The Big Island had great snorkeling (warm water, lots of fish) We even snorkeled with the sea turtles. We also loved hiking in Hawaii Volcanoes National Park and seeing the lava flowing into the ocean.
 
Old Jan 8th, 2002, 01:53 PM
  #10  
Frank
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Why the Big Island?
incredibly scenic half-day and full-day car rides up the north kohala mountain road (hwy 50); to the lush Hamokua Coast, with a recommended horseback ride down in the Waip'io Valley and stops at Akaka Falls and the Botanical Garden. Nothing compares to this "tropical" experience on Maui, in my opinion!
 
Old Jan 9th, 2002, 03:31 PM
  #11  
Amy
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All of you have truly inticed me to visit the Big Island. It sounds like I would really love it. Now, if you could share your opinion on how many nights we should stay, and where we should stay? Is one side of the island preferable to the other -or should we split the stay between both sides? Thanks for the advice!
 
Old Feb 7th, 2002, 08:47 AM
  #12  
Kate
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Up Up Up
 
Old Feb 7th, 2002, 08:53 AM
  #13  
sss
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Waipio Valley, Hamakua Coast, City of Refuge, and other sites signicant to Hawaiian history.
 
Old Feb 8th, 2002, 04:22 AM
  #14  
lani
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when people used to come and visit me when i lived in hawaii we would always take them to the big island as first choice neighbor island. in addition to volcanoes park, we would go to the city of refuge, akaka falls and through waimea. other places if time allowed.

as for splitting nights on either side, it really depends on what you want to do. if you want to hike around the park or try and see a lava flow (i think one recently stopped) most people would tell you to stay overnight near there, either a volcano village b/b or a hotel in hilo (45 min drive).

if you want to go up to the mauna kea observatory it takes at least a half-day so you would be advised to stay in kona. i think that whale watching is off the kona coast, and also the better places to snorkel (try kealakekua bay, an underwater park).

also consider the driving distance - from kailua-kona it is about 96 miles to volcano park, and although most of the road is straight nearer the kona side is a lot of bends and the road is only one lane in either direction. if you go around through kamuela it is even longer, although the scenery that way is a lot nicer.

if you like hiking you might want to try going down to green sands beach near south point - the olive-colored sand is really beautiful to see.

have a great time on your vacation!
 
Old Feb 8th, 2002, 08:09 AM
  #15  
TWB
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My husband & I vacationed (10 days) on the Big Island in August about 4 years ago. We stayed in a wonderful house overlooking Hilo Bay. In spite of the sometimes heavy rain (mostly at night--kind of exciting!), we really enjoyed the lush side of the island. Most other posts have told you highlights of the island that we also enjoyed. Don't miss a trip down to the Waipea (sp?) canyon--paradise! Also, great restaurant on north shore in little "artsy" town, the Bamboo. They have the best pot stickers I've ever eaten and often have live entertainment. We also enjoyed the fish auction in Hilo and the farmer's market. One thing I really noticed was the intensity of colors--the blue of the water and white of the pounding surf against the black sand beaches is stunning. We left the island and went on Kauai which seemed lack-luster and commercial by comparison. Have fun!
 
Old Feb 8th, 2002, 01:34 PM
  #16  
Shain
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Hi Amy,
I went to BIg Island two times.
Especially the dramtic landscapes and the variety of different colors that you see while travelling around the island is just magnificent.
Especially if you go on the "Saddle road" and cross the island in between those two big volcano tops is a everlasting ride. I remember always my first impression as we were on the north end of this road, overlooking the Kawaihae coast, while sunset was in progress and a ver ystrong warm wind were blowing up the mountainside, where everything was again green. That was a breathtaking view and scenery.
Shain
 

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