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Heather
Texas

Heather from Texas asked

Ideas for family vacation to The Big Island

Taking a family vacation for a week to the island of Hawaii at the end of July with my husband and boys, ages 9 & 11. Would love recommendations on activities, tours, restaurants, etc. Thanks!!

The Big Island (Hawaii)

5 Answers
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answered by
Jon from Kalispell

If you are on the Hilo side and you have kids, it would be sinful not to take them to see the waterfall just up the hill a mile or so in Hilo.  It's not the waterfall that amazed me so much as walking beneath the giant canopy of the largest Banyon Trees you have ever seen in your life!


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answered by
Paul from Nevada City

To give better advice than can be easily found in most guide books and local tourist web sites, I would need to know your length of stay, where you are staying (and for how long, if staying in several places), and how much physical challenge and adventure you are seeking.  

Many first-time visitors are surprised how big the island is and how long it takes to get places on day trips. For example, if you are staying in Kona or Kohala, it's challenging to get over to Hawaii Volcanoes National Park or Hilo and do a whole lot in one day before heading back.

You might want to narrow down your Trippy question to focus on specific areas of the Big Island.


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Mentioned in this answer:

VIEW DETAILED MAP
  1. Kona (island)
  2. Kohala (attraction)
  3. Hawaii Volcanoes National Park (park)
  4. Hilo (city)
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answered by
Michael from Honolulu

TOURIST THING
- Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. Don't forget to stop at Kīlauea Volcano and if you have time take a trip to the Thurston Lava Tube (Nahuku)http://www.nps.gov/havo/index.htm
- Puʻuhonua o Hōnaunau National Historical Parkhttp://www.nps.gov/puho/index.htm
- Greenwell Store Museum http://www.konahistorical.org/index.php/tours/the-h.n.-greenwell-store/
- Portuguese Stone Oven Baking http://www.konahistorical.org/index.php/tours/portuguese-stone-oven-baking/

KID FRIENDLY
- Astronaut Ellison S Onizuka Space Center

EVENTS
- Bon Dances. This site explains it better than i can. http://www.hawaii-vacation-fun.com/bon-dance.html Check out this list for ones that will be taking place while you are here. http://thehawaiiherald.com/2015/05/bon-dance-and-obon-service-schedule-2015/

PLACES TO EAT KONA SIDE
- Manago Hotel. Love their pork chops but you might want to try the local fish. http://www.managohotel.com/rest.html If they are open check out Kona Chips next door. http://www.konachips.net/
- Tex Drive-In. Huge malasadas (huge Portuguese donuts covered with sugar). http://www.texdriveinhawaii.com/

PLACES TO EAT HILO SIDE
- Cafe 100. They are known for their loco moco (bed of rice, then hamburger patty, then egg, and then covered with gravy) which a local staple. http://www.cafe100.com/
- Nori's Saimin and Snacks. They are known for saimin which are our local version of ramen. http://www.norishilo.com/
- Two Ladies Kitchen. This is one of the things that locals from other islands always bring home when returning from trips. http://www.yelp.com/biz/two-ladies-kitchen-hilo
- Ken's House of Pancakes. Macadamia Nut Pancakes, don't forget to try the different syrups. http://www.kenshouseofpancakes.com/Menu.html

SUGGESTIONS
- If you plan to drive a lot maybe pick up a cooler & drinks (just load up on ice at your hotel) from Longs Drugs (they are actually owned by CVS) so that your kids have something to drink after sight seeing at certain spots like the volcano since it has been somewhat humid.


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Heather
Wonderful!!! Thank you so much!!
 
 
 
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answered by
Fawnda from Arkansas

I think they will love Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park! If they are swimmers Hapuna Beach in Kohala is nice and for snorkeling Kahaluu Beach Park in Kona will be fun. We saw lots of fish there and one friendly sea turtle


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Mentioned in this answer:

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VIEW DETAILED MAP
  1. Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park (attraction)
  2. Hapuna Beach (attraction)
  3. Kahaluu Beach Park (attraction)
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answered first by
Michael from Honolulu

Aloha, 

What part of the island do you plan to be in? HiloKona, or both during your stay? Only ask because the island is so big that way I know how to better suggest things for your stay. If you do plan to go from one side to the other I suggest checking out attractions and food spots (there are so many I would suggest splitting stuff so you don't get full on one thing) along the way so that you can get out and stretch your legs instead of just heading from point A to B. Also a side note to consider is that in some spots there is only one road so you might want to avoid traveling between certain times because of the traffic congestion.


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Heather
Thanks so much for the insight! We're staying on the Kohala Coast at the Waikoloa Village.
 
 
 

Mentioned in this answer:

map
VIEW DETAILED MAP
  1. Hilo (city)
  2. Kona (island)
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