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Need some recommendations for 3 days on the Big Island

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Ann Arbor, MI
posts: 2
reviews: 1
Need some recommendations for 3 days on the Big Island

Hey all-

I'm going to be in Kona December 1st ~ 3rd. I'll have almost three full days (Arriving at 10am on the 1st and leaving 8pm on the 3rd). I would greatly appreciate any recommendations on how to fill my three days on the Big Island. I love national parks, water activities and sight seeing.

I have not booked any hotels yet so I would assume my best bet is to spend one night at Hilo? Thanks in advance for any help :-)

Aloha!

-Scott

Lodi, California
Destination Expert
for Cabo San Lucas
posts: 21,349
reviews: 31
1. Re: Need some recommendations for 3 days on the Big Island

I would stay in the Kona area and just visit Hilo, personally. Lots of great places-what is your budget? Better yet-call your local experienced travel agent. You can go look at the brochures and pick something that fits your needs. It is an incredible island! Enjoy!

kohala coast, hawaii
posts: 1,414
reviews: 32
2. Re: Need some recommendations for 3 days on the Big Island

Aloha Scott, if you're flying to the Kona airport, you should find lodging on the Kona Coast or in Kona itself. the drive from Kona to Hilo is over 2 hrs & I wouldn't recommend attempting it when you're jet lagged. if you want to stay in Hilo, you can fly directly into the Hilo airport. have a great trip!

Aurora, Colorado
posts: 254
reviews: 51
3. Re: Need some recommendations for 3 days on the Big Island

personally, I'd say stay in Kona and just drive to where you want to go each day... Volcano, Beach, waterfalls, etc... Hilo was not that exciting to us...

Minneapolis...
posts: 131
reviews: 1
4. Re: Need some recommendations for 3 days on the Big Island

We need atleast half day [I recommend a full day] to do some justice to the Volcano national park. It was fun walking on those old lava flows.

Ann Arbor, MI
posts: 2
reviews: 1
5. Re: Need some recommendations for 3 days on the Big Island

Thanks for all the replies. I'm going to be driving to Volcanoes National Park and spend the night there. The next morning i'll explore the park some more and then head over Hilo. The only decision I have left is where to spend the second night and what to do the last day on the Big Island. Any suggestions would be appreciated :-)

Aloha!

-Scott

Minneapolis...
posts: 131
reviews: 1
6. Re: Need some recommendations for 3 days on the Big Island

I enjoyed hiking the Polulu valley down to the black sand beach - it starts near the Kohala mule station. It is steep but do-able esp if we are physically active. It takes about 10-15 minutes to get down and a little more the way back up. But it was really worth. Good shoes and plenty of water highly recommended.

Waipio valley - we can hike [I didn't try that so no idea about the effort required ], or take a shuttle down, or do it on mule. I tried the shuttle and enjoyed the 4WD.Got to see some postcard-perfect views down.

Hamukua coast close to Hilo - waterfalls, tropical botanical gardens, stunning views. Also, there are lots of cute small plantation towns along the coast near to Hilo. There are also Akaka falls state park, Kole Kole state park [ this is a hidden gem - the waves crashing on the rocks are awesome]. I enjoyed the walk from Wailea [where I was staying in a B&B] to this park. The drive from Kona to Hilo itself is scenic - we can do it leisurely making stops, taking pictures and eating in any of those cute towns.

There are also nice cute plantation towns north of Kona - Hawi, Kapaa etc.

Mauna Kea stargazing adventure - I will say one-of-a-kind adventure. I went with the Arnott's lodge & hiking adventures in Hilo for this one. The drive itself was very adventurous- on the saddle road. I enjoyed more esp since I was not driving :-)

We hiked to the summit [short hike from a parking lot close to the summit] , watched the sunset above the clouds , and watched the stars and the milky way from about 9000 feet elevation. But this takes few hours. We started at around 2PM and returned at about 8:30 PM or so. [verify the timings if you go for this].Maybe it will be quicker in December if it gets dark earlier. Also, our guide told that winter is the best time to watch stars because of clear skies, when it is also colder. Just be prepared for the winter weather and wind on the top. I recommend carrying gloves and hats. I almost gave up on the hike [once in a lifetime chance] because my hands were exposed and I felt so weak with the wind. This in-spite of my body clothed warmly. But I say go for it if you like this. We may not get a chance again. There are tours from Kona also [one of them includes an astronaut on thier team, I heard], but is cheaper from Hilo. I found the Hilo tour to be about 70$ cheaper , but we have to take our own food. Our tour included a stop at the Rainbow Falls and a 7/11 store for us to buy food.

Good luck and have fun in BI.

Germany
posts: 2
7. Re: Need some recommendations for 3 days on the Big Island

Aloha Scott!

What did you get to see in your 3-day trip to the Big Island? Where did you stay?

Go blue!

Maria

Germany
posts: 2
8. Re: Need some recommendations for 3 days on the Big Island

Aloha Scott!

What did you get to see in 3 days on the Big Island? Where did you stay?

Go blue!

Maria

mckinney,tx
posts: 8
9. Re: Need some recommendations for 3 days on the Big Island

Just got back from a week on the BI and exlored all the major sights. I stayed in Hilo for three days. I now feel that staying in Hilo was something my trip could have avoided and not missed it.

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