We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“A Beatutiful 40-Minute Drive”

Kohala Mountain Road
Ranked #3 of 17 things to do in Hawi
Certificate of Excellence
Hawi, Hawaii
Level 3 Contributor
11 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
“A Beatutiful 40-Minute Drive”
Reviewed November 25, 2013

The drive from Hawi to Waimea (or vice-versa, but Hawi to Waimea looks into some spectacular views of the volcanic mountains south of Waimea) is a beautiful, easy drive on a somewhat windy two lane paved road. The trip allows one to enjoy a changing panaromic vista of upcountry ranch lands overlooking huge views towards the ocean, Maui across the Alenuihaha Channel, the port of Kawaihae, the Kohala "Gold Coast" with its resorts and golf courses, the tony village of Kamuela, and a spectacular view of the Hualalai, Mauna Loa, and Mauna Kea volcanoes. In the winter, the taller mountains can be snow capped. The night time views from the convenient scenic pull out near the southern end of the route is beautiful with the lights from the resorts, Kamuela, and Waikoloa Village competing with the twinkling stars.

Note that the road is used by the locals to get from one part of the island to another and they are not in the mood to get stuck behind slow moving tourists (they drive a lot faster than the posted 35 mph), so if you're enjoying the view, be aware of other vehicles and be nice and pull off the road (at a safe spot as the shoulders are near non-existent). You'll usually get a nice wave...which is better than the other hand gesture you'll get by hogging the road too long.

Bicyclists: its a beautiful ride, but be VERY aware that there are sharp, blind curves, no shoulders in places, and some quickly moving vehicles. I would NOT suggest this road for you for simple safety reasons. If you want to be bone-headed about it, keep in mind that asserting your right to bike the road is really not worth the risk of ending up plastered across the grill of some rancher's big rig.


Visited November 2013
Thank Bill S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

119 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Japanese first
  • Portuguese first
  • Any
English first
Big Island,Hawaii
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“My favorite "road trip".”
Reviewed October 19, 2013

I've enjoyed driving this road thousands of times for over 40 years,,appreciate the State's improvements, but the beauty and charm are God's handiwork. Our family loves each trip to Waimea and our excellent world class Hawaii Preparatory Academy:watching the clouds and sky put on magnificent shows..the views of Mauna Kea, Mauna Loa and Hualalai, sunsets over the ocean,pastures with horses cows and sheep. Worth the trip to the Big Island..heading home we view the beautiful Kohala Mountains and majestic Haleakala across the sea on our neighbor island,Maui. Of course it's a magnificent way to get to our wonderful North Kohala and our very special Kohala Country Adventures Guesthouse. The other choice our coastline Hawaii gets us to the beaches and provides a playground for whales visiting in mid December-April. Come travel with us! Call for more info..see below.

Visited October 2013
1 Thank KohalaCntyAdventures
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Austin, Texas
Level 6 Contributor
90 reviews
34 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 145 helpful votes
“Just DO it!”
Reviewed October 15, 2013

You won't be disappointed. We drove from Waimea-northbound. The scenery changes you'll encounter on this 20 mile stretch of road is astounding. From emerald green (visions of Eire) valley pastureland to what can only be described by fellow flatlanders as "buttpuckering" drop-offs with the yin/yang of magnificent west-shore views/no guardrails.....

Your destination is probably the Pololu Valley Lookout---but your journey on this road is every bit as enjoyable!

Visited September 2013
1 Thank Cynoman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Portland, Oregon
Level 2 Contributor
8 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed September 6, 2013

So peaceful and "old Hawaii". Horseback riding, sunsets, beautiful pastures. Try to catch a sunrise or sunset.

Visited May 2013
Thank soleil4018
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Adelaide, Australia
Level 6 Contributor
100 reviews
42 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 63 helpful votes
“Watch your step”
Reviewed August 10, 2013

You can see the green flash!!! Allegedly travelling this road to or from Waimea when the sun sets you can see a solar phenomenon....a green flash. I plan to do it in the next week .
Otherwise the views of the Kohala coast are spectacular

Visited August 2013
1 Thank coro35
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers who viewed Kohala Mountain Road also viewed

Hawi, Island of Hawaii
Island of Hawaii, HI
Waimea, Island of Hawaii

Been to Kohala Mountain Road? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing