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Akaka falls excursion or rent a car?

NJ
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115 posts
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Akaka falls excursion or rent a car?

Hello. We will be on Pride of America cruise that stops in Hilo and Kona for one day each. They are offering excursion in Hilo to see the volcano park and Akaka falls plus another stop. I do not like that this is an all day excursion, plus we just came back from Yellowstone, so I am not sure I need to see more volcanoes. But I do want to see the falls. Would you recommend renting a car and driving to the falls ourself? If so, where can we rent a car? Also, are there any other stops you would recommend? As always, thank you in advance.

Big Island, Hawaii
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1. Re: Akaka falls excursion or rent a car?

Yes, it's easy to rent a car and drive up to Akaka Falls. The botanical gardens are very nice too on the way, as is Laupahoehoe Point, Onomea Bay scenic drive, and the Waipio Valley overlook. Allow about four hours with stops, then another minimum hour and a half drive back from the Waipio Valley overlook with no stops.

East Coast
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2. Re: Akaka falls excursion or rent a car?

If it's just the falls no problem. They cut the vegetation so now you can see it from the parking lot.

It is only a 2 minute walk through very lush vegetation and bamboo now but do go to Kahuna falls on the same trail since you pay for parking too.

The Hawaii Tropical Botanical is so worth it too. $15.

Edited: 3:34 pm, July 11, 2012
Island of Hawaii...
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3. Re: Akaka falls excursion or rent a car?

Enterprise is just a few steps from the dock. The others are at the airport, also close by.

Denver, Colorado
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4. Re: Akaka falls excursion or rent a car?

Well the upper part of Volcanos will be even more barren and just as sulfur smelling; and trying to do both directions will be a long day trip.

A rental car would be super easy w/ short stops at Rainbow Falls and Boiling Pots, then a longer stop at Hawaiin Tropical Botanical Gardens and Ommea Bay scenic bypass road, maybe What's Shakin for fresh fruit smoothei, then a side trip up the hill to Akaka Falls via Honomu town (scenic loop hike maybe 20 minutes), then side trip down to Laupahoehoe Point a def. must and maybe as far north as Honokaa town for late lunch and a look at Waipio Valley overlook. Leave at least 2 hours drive back time to account for traffic delays or road construction, etc.

A walk along Hilo water front shops might be nice and over to Japanese Gardens and Coconut Island if you have time before heading back to car rental place.

Its a good idea BTW when making stops and loosing site of the car to take all valuables such as i-pods, cameras, etc. w/ you in a day pack.

Edited: 7:11 pm, July 11, 2012
NJ
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5. Re: Akaka falls excursion or rent a car?

Thanks for the information! I was trying to find Ommea or Onomea Bay scenic road, but could not find it. Is it by any chance same as Old Mamalahoa Hwy? If not, can you please point me in the right direction? Thanks!!

Island of Hawaii...
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6. Re: Akaka falls excursion or rent a car?

Hi MePlan,

To answer your last question, Onomea Bay scenic route is indeed the Old Mamalahoa Hwy, the 4 mile stretch of it that includes the botanical gardens.

Old mamalahoa has other stretches, but this is the one plainly marked with large blue signs saying 4 mile scenic route, at both ends.

It runs from the north end of Papaikou by the school to Pepeekeo.

NJ
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7. Re: Akaka falls excursion or rent a car?

Thank you!!

Burr Ridge, Illinois
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8. Re: Akaka falls excursion or rent a car?

I've never been a tour kind of person so I suggest a car rental. There is much to see at your own pace in paradise! Well, don't be late for your ship, however!

9. Re: Akaka falls excursion or rent a car?

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