In the summer time, Hawaiian Homelands allows for the Hawaiian People to camp in the namesake beach park for Keaukaha. When you drive down Kalanianaole you suddenly see them, not tents but structures built of tarps and poles and pipes. During the week, there are not a lot of people, but as Thursday-Friday rolls around, the cars roll in.
If you continue on down Kalanianaole, you will come to a series of beach parks, the two most popular being Carlsmith, popularly known as Four Mile after the mile marker, and Richardson, about at the end of the road.
These are the swimming beaches of Hilo. Some are white sand, some salt and pepper sand. Many are quite rocky. They are among the most beautiful places you will ever see. Some are fairly deserted during the day, even in the middle of summer. The weather is dryer and clearer than Hilo generally. Rain is seldom and tends to be fleeting during the day. There are barbecues, and covered pavilions.
Richardson has a marine conservation area, with nice snorkeling.
The ocean here is spring fed by freshwater that also forms many ponds both at the beaches and nearby. The spring water is cold, and the ocean water warm. It makes a fun cocktail while you are swimming. Very pleasant on a hot day.
The Big Island is famous for the beaches on the west side, and these gorgeous places are like the shy sisters, rarely visited by those who do not live here.
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