Paradise on a budget!
I love the Big Island and especially Kona; fell in love with it 40 years ago on my honeymoon. The Big Island has, surprisingly, not changed too much over all those years. Although, like everywhere else, there has been some development. None-the-less, it is still a little piece of heaven and I try to get back at least once a year.
I dive and for many years dove with Dive Maki, but unfortunately the original family owned business was bought out by a mainlander who drove it into the ground. I have tried Jacks and they are good but I would also highly recommend Big Island Divers (same dive sites for less).
I personally like to rent condos and have tried a variety of properties over the years. I have stayed at Kona Magic Sands a couple of times before and always liked the location. There aren’t a lot of beaches in Kona and this property is right next door to one of the nicest ones. Note: nice night dive with super easy access from the beach.
The complex, in general, is nice with the usual amenities; however, the quality of the units varies from one to the next (if you are not too picky you can get some good deals). There are probably 2 or 3 dozen units total but only 8 of them have outside balconies (they call them lanais in Hawaii). The top 4 are opened and nice but the lower 4 are covered and a little dark for my tastes.
This year I splurged and rented one of them (Unit 303). It is on the top, 3rd, floor so you have a large open lanai and you’re practically standing over the ocean. Sitting out on the lanai you can watch dolphins and turtles at almost any time. The constant surf provides a pleasant backdrop and you can see an amazing amount of reef fish just by looking down into the water, we call it porch diving.
There is large table and umbrella for al fresco dining, a lounge chair and some other seating out there so it is all very comfortable.
The unit inside is very nice, everything looks new. It is kind of laid out like a large hotel suite, very roomy. My wife really really liked the place (she has not always appreciated some of my previous choices).
There is a big screen TV, which I never turned on, but I did use the WiFi all the time which was pretty fast (looks like a cable modem)
The kitchen appliances, like everything else, looked new and we seemed to find everything we needed. We brought our Costco card and packed the fridge, so we pretty much ate in, or packed lunches to go most of the time. The farmers market is on Wednesdays and great place to get local food cheap. BTW the fish at Costco is really good but I think the best fish can be bought at Safeway which is near the local Walmart.
The money we save eating in let us try some of the very nice restaurants on the island, although my taste tends towards joints for the locals we did hit one of the multi start resort restaurants north of the airport, I forget the name now - the meal was forgettable too. My advice is save the money and go to the Big Island Grill! And to be honest the Mahi-Mahi dinner at Denny’s ain’t too bad.
There is a restaurant on the property, although I didn't try it this trip. Tried it years ago and it was okay but it looks like it is under new management now. Something to try next year.
There was a washer/dryer in the unit which as divers came is real handy; because after a dive
almost everything comes back wet.
We rented thru VRBO and communication with the owner was quick and easy. My wife wants to re-rent the same unit next year which is fine by me - now I just have to find some cheap flights.
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- Also Known As:
- Kona Magic Sands Hotel Kailua-Kona
- Kona Magic Sands Hawaii/Kailua-Kona