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There's so much to learn about this tropical paradise we call Hawai'i. Start your journey today by reading more about what makes this place so special.

Big Island Trivia

Posted in: Big Island 2021, Culture & History

Hawai‘i Island is better known as the “Big Island” in honor of its relative size. It’s also because Hawai‘i Island shares its name with the entire state, which can be very confusing to those less familiar with the islands. Hawai‘i Island is in fact one of the most unique land masses on the planet. Consider:   -While it is the largest of the Hawaiian Islands, it is also the youngest, with estimates ranging from 400,000-800,000 years. (Kauai, the oldest island, by contrast, is estimated to be five million years old!)   ... Read More

Polynesian Luau's Under the Stars: Oahi Entertainment

Posted in: Big Island 2021, Things to Do

Laniakea-An Umekes Luau features a traditional Polynesian Revue focusing on our cousins across the sea. 'Oahi takes you on a journey starting right here in Hawaii, then traveling across the Pacific ocean to the place of our ancestor's origin, Tahiti. There the story of Pele, the Goddess of fire and lava, begins. Throughout the night, you will be greeted by our cousins from Aotearoa, New Zealand, and of course Samoa, with the siva afi, or fireknife performance. The spectacular show is accompanied by Big Island's Best Seafood and Poke by ... Read More

Hawaii Trivia: Test Your Knowledge!

Posted in: Big Island 2021, Culture & History, Environment

Hawai‘i is such a fascinating place with tons of facts and tidbits to glean. How well do you think you know the islands? We put together some trivia questions so you can put your knowledge to the test, and maybe even impress your friends and family with your HIIQ (Hawai‘i Intelligence Quotient). The answers are down below—no cheating!.  Got your thinking caps secured? Okay, then. Get ready, get set... GO!   1.  The Hawaiian islands are the projecting tops of one of the largest mountain ranges in the world. How ... Read More

Kailani Tours’ Chris Paterson Talks Lava Tubes, Steam Vents and Waterfalls

Posted in: Big Island 2021, People, Things to Do

Some businesses are started when someone sees a void in the market. Such was the case with Kailani Tours’ Chris Paterson.  “ I had worked as a Mauna Kea tour guide, and then as a concierge at a five-star resort,” says Paterson. “I had trouble recommending tour companies to our guests. Most were large bus operators who sold on price rather than service. I saw an opportunity to create a five-star resort tour experience.”  Kailani Tours was borne out of Paterson’s mission to “become the best, most personalized tour company ... Read More

Ocean Adventure Kona Style: Diving In With Owner Alika McGuire

Posted in: Big Island 2021

“Our job is to help people have fun.” For Kona Style Snorkel and Sail Owner Alika McGuire, that’s really what the boat tour business boils down to.  “It’s what I continuously preach to my team,” he says, “because everyone works very hard behind the scenes. Our customers don’t see the background work. They just experience the boat ride. I remind my team members to look at their job through the lens of our guests. The guests are probably thinking, ’man, these people have great jobs.’ And you know what? They ... Read More

Tee it High, Let it Fly: Golfing on the Big Island

Posted in: Big Island 2021, Things to Do

If you’re a golfer, then you pretty much HAVE to golf while you’re here. If you totally get that, then you need to read on because we’re going to give you three great golf options on the Kona side that welcome visiting slicers, hackers and golf pros with friendly rates and aloha service. Makani Golf Club Makani is the Hawaiian word for “wind.” But when you first take in the 150 acres off Māmalohoa Highway near the turnoff from Saddle Road, you could be excused for thinking it means “spectacular ... Read More

15 Hilarious Questions Hawai‘i’s Tourists Really Ask

Posted in: Big Island 2021, Culture & History, Environment

Repeat after me: There’s no such thing as a stupid question.  While some questions may give us pause, the only way we ever learn anything is by asking, right? Those who work in the visitor industry get pelted with questions of all sorts. They’re thrilled that people want to learn so much about their surroundings and the activities they’re taking part in, but some questions can and do make us here in Hawai‘i chuckle. It’s certainly no different than when a Hawai‘i resident visits the U.S. mainland or another country ... Read More

Ten Things that Make Hawai'i the Most Unique State in the Country

Posted in: Big Island 2021, Culture & History, Environment, Things to Do

By Kent Coules, Publisher ʻIolani Palace Hawaiʻi has the only royal palaces on American soil. ʻIolani Palace, in Honolulu, is the site of the 1893 overthrow of Queen Liliʻuokalani. Those familiar with Hawaii’s history can argue persuasively that Hawaiʻi is NOT legally United States territory, but that’s a story for another time.   Weather Honolulu is the only major U.S. city where the average high temperature is in the 80’s—TWELVE MONTHS A YEAR!   Caffeine Junkies Rejoice Hawaiʻi is the only state that grows coffee commercially. Hawaiʻi’s rich, volcanic soil ... Read More

Big Island on a Budget: Inexpensive Family-Friendly Activities

Posted in: Big Island 2021, Environment, Food & Drink, Things to Do

It’s no secret that a trip to Hawaiʻi can seriously rack up the bill. After all, it pays to spend time in paradise! From dining decisions to pricey attractions, an island vacation can bring up some serious questions about the best way to spend your savings. This Week Hawaii is making it easy for you to experience paradise on a budget. Read on for popular things to do on the Big Island for not a lot of cash. Sample Kona Coffee on a farm tour – The Big Island is known ... Read More

Big Island Real Estate Market: Byron Matthews Helps Visitors Find Paradise One Home at a Time

Posted in: Big Island 2021, People

Byron Matthews has been a Realtor on the Big Island for 13 years, and has never seen a market like this one. “Prices have risen 10-20% just in the last quarter on the East side of the island,” he says. “My listings are snapped up as soon as they go on the market.” I ask Matthews why. “I think it has a lot to do with Covid. More than half my buyers are coming from off the island right now. Many are coming from Oahu, as well as Washington, Oregon ... Read More

Which Hawaiian Islands Have Active Volcanoes

Posted in: Big Island 2021, Environment

Volcanoes… The terrifying force of nature that has been the center of several historical events and box-office hits. Making a model-volcano is practically a rite of passage for young children in school. How cool would it be to see one in person? Hawaii is made of volcanoes. Literally. The islands were formed by volcanic eruptions and several are still active today. They expand the island, reshape the landscape, and are an integral part of Hawaiian culture and tourism. While not every volcano in Hawaii is still active, you can still ... Read More

Top 5 things to do on Hawai'i with Kids

Posted in: Big Island 2021, Things to Do

Journey into a land of sand, sun, and adventure when you visit Hawai'i. Bringing your kids to the Big Island is an opportunity for them to see a different side of the world and step into a paradise beyond their wildest imagination. We’ve rounded up our top five things to do on Hawai'i with your kids! Keep reading to learn about some must-see places and activities for your family's tropical escape. Hit The Hawaiian Beaches Have you ever seen pitch-black sand? With all the volcanic activity on the Big Island ... Read More

Big Island Dolphin Watch

Posted in: Big Island 2021, Environment, Things to Do

Along with whales, dolphins could be called the ‘brainiacs’ of the marine world. Intelligent in ways that are different from humans, studies indicate dolphins are playful, quick learners and demonstrate empathy, grief and joy. Anytime you’re out in Hawai‘i’s waters, be on the lookout for our resident marine life that includes whales (in addition to seasonal Humpback whales), the endangered Green Sea turtle and Hawaiian monk seal, as well as pods of dolphins. According to the non-profit Hawai‘i Wildlife Fund that engages the community in research, education and conservation projects, ... Read More

Unique Big Island Tours

Posted in: Big Island 2021, Environment, Food & Drink, Shopping, Things to Do

From busy bees to octopus, and growing vanilla to the intricacies of coffee farming, Hawai‘i Island offers many opportunities to have fun while learning about its homegrown industries.   Catch the buzz at Big Island Bees Learn what all the buzz is about at Big Island Bees. Started by Garnett and Whendi Puett in 2004 after Garnett’s stepfather initially brought the family bee business to Hawai‘i in approximately 1971, the couple has continued the family tradition as fourth-generation beekeepers. Did you know that true honey is good for your health? ... Read More

Destination: Hilo!

Posted in: Big Island 2021, Culture & History, Environment, Shopping

Quaint Hilo hangs onto its small town charm as a residential hub of shops, restaurants and services, not yet willing to turn itself over to development. We like it that way, and so do the many visitors who slow down to enjoy its treasures. Quaint, downtown Hilo [Image by Robbyn Peck / Hilo Downtown Improvement Assoc] Park and poke around—don’t miss the colorful Hilo Farmers Market at Kamehameha Avenue and Mamo Street. Hilo is also home base for edible island favorites such as Big Island Candies and Mauna Loa Macadamia ... Read More

Beach Bound on the Big Island

Posted in: Big Island 2021, Culture & History, Environment, Shopping, Things to Do

Native Hawaiian cultural sites and modern-day beachgoers mingle at Kahalu‘u Beach Park in Keauhou. Once owned by the Bishop Estate, Kahalu‘u Beach Park was deeded to the County of Hawai‘i in 1966 and became a permanent public fixture for the enjoyment of the local community. Once home to Native Hawaiian people, both commoners and chiefs, prior to Western contact, the area still contains remnants of those days. House sites, heiau (temples) and petroglyphs are visible at or near Kahalu‘u Bay. Tiny St. Peter’s Catholic Church also stands along the shore, ... Read More

Adrenaline Rush—Big Island Style!

Posted in: Big Island 2021, Things to Do

Rapid heart rate. Sweating. Heightened senses. Rapid breathing. Decreased ability to feel pain. Increased strength and performance. Dilated pupils. Feeling jittery or nervous. These are all symptoms of an adrenaline rush. If you want to break up the vacation with a heart-pounding adventure, consider these activities:   Experience a thrill ride along the coast with Captain Zodiac Captain Zodiac will take you to explore some of Hawai‘i’s most amazing sights along the Kona Coast. The destination is Kealakekua Bay which boasts some of the best snorkeling in the state of ... Read More

Flumin' Kohala—Exploring the Kohala Ditch

Posted in: Big Island 2021, Things to Do

The Kohala Ditch has been called a masterpiece by some of those who, over its 110 years of existence, have explored the route from its headwaters in the high forests of the Kohala Mountains to its terminus over 20 miles away in the lowland sugar cane fields near Hawi. Hand drilled and blasted over a century ago out of solid rock deep in the canyons of Kohala, “The Ditch” brought water and prosperity to the people of Kohala. Hundreds of brave men risked their lives, and many perished, in its ... Read More

Highlights Along Kona's Ali‘i Drive

Posted in: Big Island 2021, Food & Drink, Shopping, Things to Do

Ali‘i Drive in historic Kailua-Kona offers visitors a coastal walk perfect by day and in the evening hours. As you can see, there’s lots to do along this stretch! A view of the seawall along Ali‘i Drive SHOP: If you’re a runner or have one on your gift list, look no further than Big Island Running Company, the only running store on the island. The store is located just a short jog from the finish line of the world-renowned Ironman Triathlon. I ask Melissa Braswell, owner of the store since ... Read More

One-of-a-Kind Souvenirs on the Big Island

Posted in: Big Island 2021, Shopping

Unique isle souvenirs come in many forms—jewelry, paintings, Hawaiian quilts, quality tees, Koa wood pieces, comfortable and casual apparel, and much more. You’ll find them most everywhere you go while exploring our Big Island shopping spots. Of course, you’ll want to share mementos with family and friends, but be sure to pick up something special for yourself to remember our island paradise! “Colorful, whimsical and sometimes a little off-kilter” is how artist Cindy Coats describes her artwork. “Color is as important to me and to each painting as the subject ... Read More

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