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Big Island (Hawaii) 250 photo trip report

Chicago, Illinois
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Big Island (Hawaii) 250 photo trip report

Hello! ... My wife, 18-year-old son and I (we are in our 50s) just returned a week ago from a marvelous 15 day stay on the Big Island. I just finished a trip report, with many photos. The actual trip report is embedded within the captions. To read the captions easily, single click on the photo and the caption will show up below the photo; then you can navigate by clicking on the faint arrows to the left or right of each image ... or, of course, you can use the arrow keys on your keyboard. To go back to the album, so you can see all the photos at a glance by scrolling up and down, click back on the album name highlighted in blue above.

You can also control the size of the thumbnails, if you wish, by sliding the bar back and forth in the upper right. For anyone interested in the details of what settings I used for a particular photo, you can click on the two tiny blue arrows in the far upper right - make sure they are turned to the right and the photo details will show up. To turn this feature off, click on them so that the blue arrows face left again.

Because I ended up making this album with all its captions quite long (I couldn't help myself ... fifteen days gave us plenty of time to really see many of the island's treasures and do some more offbeat activities and tours). Since it's rather lengthy and you might not want to read captions for things that don't interest you, I am going to provide a "table of contents" of sorts. The photos are numbered.

Intro and Volcano house rental 1-8

Hawaii Volcanoes National Park hikes 9-52

area surrounding Volcano 53-58

Black Sand Beach (Punalu'u) and Tibetan temple 59-72

Puna district 73-84

Hilo area 85-90

Akaka Falls and Hawaiian Tropical Botanical Gardens 91-100

Our condo at Mauna Lani and Makaiwa Beach area 101-127

beaches and sights along Kohala Coast 128-144

Kohala Mountain Road and Hawi to Polulu 145-162

farm tours around Honoka'a and Waipi'o Valley 163-179

Mauna Kea stargazing and sunset 180-193

Kailua-Kona 194-200

night manta snorkel 201-206

chocolate tour 207-211

Kealakekua Bay kayak/snorkel 212-232

House of Refuge, Two Step snorkeling ++ 233-250

You'll get a gold star if you read every word I wrote, ha, ha!

I use a Nikon D7000, a type of digital SLR and shoot primarily with an 18-135mm zoom, plus a super wide angle lens (10-20mm). For the underwater shots, I used a Canon D10.

OK, here's the Big Island trip report link to my Picasa album:


If you're interested in improving your travel photos and are a relative beginner to photography, I wrote out twenty helpful tips for people who were asking questions after I did a similar Kauai photo trip report. Here is that TA link: tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g29218-i304-k33041…

If you planning on a trip to several islands, the link to my Kauai photo album and captions is this, if you are trying to compare islands (ah, such sweet choices!): https:/…KauaiDecember2009

If you have specific questions about Kauai, could you please post them in my original Kauai TA post, to keep them separate from this BI thread? That link is this: tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g60625-i1817-k3295…

If you would like to see other trips besides those from our two Hawaiian Islands trips, you can click once within Picasa, the phrase "my photos" highlighted in blue in the upper left. That tab will take you to other trip albums over the last five years.

Please, if you see any mistakes I made in place names, animal or plant identifications ... or any other factual errors, I would most appreciate it if you would call any such errors to my attention. I will quickly make any necessary adjustments.

I very much enjoy interaction with other TA members after posting my web album/trip reports. This album and captions are a sort of visual diary for me and my family ... but they are also meant to help those of you who are planing a trip to the Big Island.

Special thanks to three BI destination experts who were instrumental in helping me plan out this trip ... KamaainaK, SheaG and Typicallytropical. ... Your posts and amazingly consistent dedication serve all of us trip planners tremendously. I thank you! This trip report is my way of showing my appreciation.

Aloha ... Mike

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1. Re: Big Island (Hawaii) 250 photo trip report

As usual. Terrific trip. I am going to grab a glass of vino, watch the sunset and go through them all more carefully. Glad you enjoyed your time. Thanks once again for your excellent pictures. I have you bookmarked!! I almost need a Mike folder.

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2. Re: Big Island (Hawaii) 250 photo trip report

Yay.........we've been waiting for your pictures!!!! Can't wait to see and read each and every caption.

San Antonio, Texas
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3. Re: Big Island (Hawaii) 250 photo trip report

I am in the process of reading the whole trip report. I am really enjoying it. I'll bet your a very good teacher.

Oahu, Hawaii
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for Oahu
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4. Re: Big Island (Hawaii) 250 photo trip report


Wow ! As always a great look and read

I know your coming to Oahu,

Cant wait !


Charlotte, North...
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5. Re: Big Island (Hawaii) 250 photo trip report

Oh Mike, thank you so much for alerting me to your report and pictures. Please do so whenever you go ANYWHERE! You don't miss a thing, do you?! I am so jealous! The Mokuaikuaua Church was the church I was married in 35 years ago and the church my daughter was married in last year. You should be working for National Geographic. ..... Very impressive!!!

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6. Re: Big Island (Hawaii) 250 photo trip report

Thank you for a fantastic trip report! Gorgeous pictures.

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7. Re: Big Island (Hawaii) 250 photo trip report

As usual, your photos and commentary are beautiful and informative. Thanks for posting!

You should consider publishing a book of your assorted travel adventures someday.

Island of Hawaii...
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for Hilo, Island of Hawaii
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8. Re: Big Island (Hawaii) 250 photo trip report


So far am nibbling and skipping around ...

Some of my favorites so far ...

loved 63, 131, 143-145, 160, 185, 192, 205, 242, 243, 250 ...

and the underwater photos were outstanding, mesmerizing.

Never would have thought of doing a story that way. I can't bear to take time to even caption photos ... but it's terrific! Photo plus narrative plus photography tips ... love it.

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9. Re: Big Island (Hawaii) 250 photo trip report

Absolutely SPECTACULAR collection of photographs.

Wonderful commentary that allows the viewer along for the ride....

The imagery presented provides the diverse depiction of what the BIg Island encompasses.

ON, Canada
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10. Re: Big Island (Hawaii) 250 photo trip report

thanks mjneenan ... I really like that format for a trip report ... the photos and commentary are excellent! Re the dilemma of Kailua Kona vs Kohala resort (which I was struggling with last week and you contributed helpful feedback based on your experience) ... we too stayed at Kuhio Shores during a Kauai trip and I had picked something similar in the way of a condo in Kailua Kona for our BI stay. It was good to hear that you felt that Kohala coast was a better choice, instead of Kailua Kona, for your BI stay, even though you too loved the experience of staying ocean front on Kauai and Maui.

Your trip report is going to be very helpful for our upcoming trip!!

Edited: 9:44 am, July 25, 2012