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“Beautiful Drive Along Hamakua Coast”
Review of Mamalahoa Highway

Mamalahoa Highway
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$173.77*
and up
Hawaii Big Island Circle Small Group Tour...
Ranked #26 of 83 things to do in Kailua-Kona
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: This highway goes from Kailua-Kona to Hilo on Hawaii's "Big Island."
Reviewed July 9, 2014

Arriving in Waimea from Kona, there is a hill that literally changes to brilliant green as you move from the dry to wet side of the Island. Once you pass through Waimea (which is actually chilly at night), you drive along the Hamakua coast with cattle in lush green pastures and tall Eucalyptus trees on both sides of the road. You can stop for a meal at Honokaa with endless views of the Ocean. After this, there are not a lot of places to eat or take a bathroom break on the way to Hilo. The views are the best on the island on this drive, which continues on through Laupahoehoe. There is a small park with waves crashing on the rocks. The memorial here honors the lives of the students and teachers who died in the tsunami of 1946. As you drive on in to Hilo, there are 3 or 4 gorges that are breathtaking--but only passengers can really absorb the view since the driver has to really watch the road here. As you arrive in Hilo, if it is late in the evening, the chirping of the coqui frogs pierces the air. Coconut Island and Hilo are just ahead.

3  Thank Barbara B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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"belt road"
in 6 reviews
"beautiful drive"
in 7 reviews
"the big island"
in 27 reviews
"hamakua coast"
in 3 reviews
"south point"
in 3 reviews
"take your time"
in 4 reviews
"southernmost tip"
in 2 reviews
"narrow winding road"
in 2 reviews
"queen kaahumanu"
in 2 reviews
"black sands beach"
in 2 reviews
"the entire island"
in 3 reviews
"macadamia nuts"
in 2 reviews
"lava fields"
in 2 reviews
"captain cook"
in 3 reviews
"volcano national park"
in 2 reviews
"waimea"
in 13 reviews
"route"
in 9 reviews
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75 - 79 of 113 reviews

Reviewed July 6, 2014

Drove this sceanic highway after 3 wonderful days exploring Volcano Nat'l Park and surrounding areas. Lots to see along the way! Don't miss this road trip!

Thank flzdmpm03
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 21, 2014

This highway provides you with a drastic change in scenery from beaches, mountains, forests, lava flows and rocks fo brown and black, and volcanoes. The temperature changes as well as the scenery and the elevation so it is a fun ride. There are many small cafes, restaurants and shops to stop on the way so you can take rest stops.

Thank T-MoneyGeorgia
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 17, 2014 via mobile

When visiting family i drove this highway every day. I was amazed by some of the views and the road was in great shape. I did not know that the road would be at such a high elevation being my first time. Make sure you scout the best places for a real bathroom or you will have to brave a port a potty.

2  Thank 307MikeS
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed April 29, 2014

My husband and I rented a Red Mustang Convertible and circled the Big Island of Hawaii during our vacation in April 2014. Taking the state route 19 to our hotel, the Fairmont Orchid up in Mauna Lani is literally hot in temperature. Not much view here unless you like "clinkers". We are not as not as excited as some people are with lava rocks. It's too desolate for us. However, taking this same route all the way north and east towards Hilo was a beautiful drive. You just have to be careful of the wind gust that could blow hard as you reach the northernmost part of the Big Island.

State route 11 is the best part of this Highway. We took this road all the way from Kailua-Kona to Hilo and the best views and green vegetation are found on this side of the island. We also took highway 19 as an alternative and the nearest route to go back to the airport after we circled the whole island.

The roads are in excellent condition and very good for reaching my dream: driving a Red Mustang Convertible!!!

3  Thank MimieW
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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