We are going to Hawaii's Big Island for the first time in March. We'll be in Captain Cook for four nights and Hilo for two. We love kayaking, hiking, and hitting the beach - any suggestions for places that shouldn't be missed? Thank you!
while in Hilo area if you can you should check out the park it's beautiful nice trails to hike and you can even walk across the crater of one of the valcanoes. It's amazing. A kaka falls is also very nice its a small park but very beautiful as well.
You cannot miss the night snorkel with the manta rays near Kona. My wife and I flew from Maui to the Big Island just to enjoy this amazing experience. The manta rays were massive, but they glide effortlessly through the water. While we snorkeled at the top of the water, the manta rays would sweep up within inches to collect plankton. We went with Fair Wind (http://www.fair-wind.com/index.php/reservations/manta-night-snorkel-dive), and we had a great experience.
If you are a scuba diver, we saw several people diving below us, so that is also an option. However, since the manta rays feed near the surface, I would actually recommend snorkeling over diving.
If you like coffee, check out the Royal Kona Resort Visitor's Center and get some free samples!
I live on the Big Island and it is big so there's a lot of things to do. On the east side here are some highlights on my blog post
on the west side, here are some suggestions
you can also check out all my other posts of things worth seeing on the island.