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 (Maunakea), and some seriously good coffee from the famous Kona district, and also from neighboring Kau.

Home to eight of the world’s 13 sub-climate zones, this is the land of fire (thanks to active Kilauea volcano) and ice (compliments of not-so-active Maunakea, topped with snow and expensive telescopes). At just under a million years old, Hawaii is the youngest of the main Hawaiian Islands. Three of its five volcanoes are considered active: Mauna Loa, Hualalai, and Kilauea. The Southeast Rift Zone of Kilauea has been spewing lava regularly since January 3, 1983; another eruption began at Kilauea's summit caldera in March 2008, the first since 1982. Back in 1984, Mauna Loa's eruptions crept almost to Hilo, and it could fire up again any minute—or not for years. Hualalai last erupted in 1801, and geologists say it will definitely do so again within 100 years. Maunakea is currently considered dormant but may very well erupt again. Kohala, which last erupted some 120,000 years ago, is inactive, but on volatile Hawaii Island, you can never be sure.

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Hilo 23

The Kona Coast 21

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North Kona 3

South Kona and Kealakekua Bay 18

The Kohala Coast 16

Kailua-Kona 13

The Hamakua Coast 11

Kau and Ka Lae 7

Puna 7

Hawaii Volcanoes National Park and Vicinity 5

Waimea 4

Mauna Kea 1

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Archaeological Site/ Ruins 8

Bath/ Hot Spring 1

Beach–Sight 30

Body Of Water/ Waterfall 4

Building/ Architectural Site 3

Castle/ Palace/ Chateau 1

Cave 2

Cemetery 1

Farm/ Ranch 7

Forest 1

Garden/ Arboretum 6

Historic District/ Site 6

Industrial Site/ Mill/ Factory 2

Information Center 1

Island 1

Local Interest–Sight 1

Marina/ Pier/ Dock 2

Market/ Bazaar 1

Memorial/ Monument/ Tomb 4

Military Site 1

Mountain–Sight 1

Museum/ Gallery 11

Nature Preserve/ Wildlife Refuge 1

Neighborhood/ Street 2

Observatory/ Planetarium 3

Park (National/ State/ Provincial) 23

Park/ Playground 2

Pedestrian Mall 1

Pool 1

Public Art (Mural/ Sculpture/ Statue) 1

Reef 1

Religious Building/ Site/ Shrine 9

Scenic Drive/ Tour 2

Store/ Shop/ Mall 2

Tour–Sight 2

Town/ Village 8

Trail/ Path 9

Viewpoint/ Scenic Overlook 3

Volcano 1

Winery/ Brewery/ Distillery 1

Zoo/ Aquarium 2

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Historical 5

Big Island Sights

Showing 23 out of 23 Results

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Akaka Falls State Park

  • Body Of Water/Waterfall

A paved, 10-minute loop trail (approximately ½ mile) takes you to the best spots to see the spectacular cascades of Akaka. The majestic...

Hapuna Beach State Recreation Area

  • Beach–Sight

One of Hawaii's finest beaches, Hapuna is a ½-mile-long stretch of white perfection. The turquoise water is calm in summer with just...

Hawaii Volcanoes National Park

  • Volcano

Kilauea Volcano has been spewing lava rather dramatically since its current eruption began in 1983, and it shows no signs of abating.

Hawaii Volcanoes National Park: Kahuku Unit

  • Park (National/State/Provincial)

Located off Highway 11 at mile marker 70.5, the Kahuku section of the park takes visitors over many trails through ancient lava flows...

Hookena Beach Park

  • Park (National/State/Provincial)

The 2½-mile road to this quiet, secluded little gem feels like you're venturing off the beaten path. The area is rich in history, with...

Ka Lae (South Point)

  • Park (National/State/Provincial)

It's thought that the first Polynesians came ashore at this southernmost point of land in the United States, also a National Historic...

Kaloko–Honokohau National Historical Park

  • Archaeological Site/Ruins

The trails at this sheltered 1,160-acre coastal park near Honokohau Harbor, just north of Kailua-Kona, are popular with walkers and hikers.

Kalopa State Recreation Area

  • Park (National/State/Provincial)

North of 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...

Kealakekua Bay State Historical Park

  • Beach–Sight

This underwater marine reserve is one of the most beautiful spots in the state. Dramatic cliffs surround super-deep, crystal-clear, turquoise...

Kekaha Kai State Park—Kua Bay Side

  • Beach–Sight

This lovely beach is on the northernmost stretch of the park's coastline on an absolutely beautiful bay. The water is crystal clear,...

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