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Hawaii’s Big Island

The largest island in the US offers plenty of swimming and hiking as well as some impressive volcanic scenery.

Made up of five towering volcanoes that rise high out of the Pacific Ocean, Hawaii Island is almost twice the size of all the other islands of the US state combined. Better known as Hawaii’s Big Island, here you’ll find stunning beaches and extraordinary scenery, as well as a rich history just waiting to be discovered.

Either of the island’s two major towns, Hilo and Kailua-Kona, make an ideal base from which to explore, as do its numerous other resorts. Whether you want to spend your visit swimming in the dazzling waters, hiking through the rainforest, or playing golf, there’s something for you.

Long ago, this island was where the Hawaiian royals resided, making it a great historical spot for visitors today. Here you’ll find archaeological sites like the Pu'uhonua o Hōnaunau National Historical Park and the Kaloko-Honokōhau National Historical Park where you can learn more about the old ways on this remarkable island.

For more modern adventures, head to Kohala Coast to enjoy some of the island’s best beaches, such as Mauna Kea Beach and the Hapuna Beach State Park. In the water, you’ll be in the company of turtles, dolphins and tropical fish.

To get around the island your best bet is to hire your own car, as public transport is only available in the bigger areas. You’ll find rental firms at Hawaii Island’s two international airports as well as from the Hilo and Kailua-Kona townships. This way, you’ll be able to explore all the big attractions across the island, even the secluded Pololū Valley Outlook and the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park.

Located over 3,200 kilometres from the coast of the US mainland, Hawaii benefits from a tropical climate which gives it as many as 300 days of sun each and every year. Rough winds and swells can occur in winter, making it great for surfers – but even then you’ll get to enjoy the warm temperatures. Visitors flock here between December and March so be sure to book in plenty of time if you want to stay then.


Guide to Exploring Hawaii Island


Top Hawaii Island Hotel & Accommodation Deals

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Sheraton Kona Resort & Spa at Keauhou Bay NZ$269
Reviewed on 13 Nov. 2019
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Sheraton Kona Resort & Spa at Keauhou Bay

Sheraton Kona Resort & Spa at Keauhou Bay

78-128 Ehukai St, Kailua-Kona, HI
     
    3.9 of 5
    4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

    Staff was very friendly and helpful!! The staff that did the valet parking were some of the sweetest, nicest guys!! My only complaint was when I booked my room, I booked a room with two beds. In September my mother had hip surgery, so I called the hotel to request a handicap accessible room, which ...

    Courtyard by Marriott King Kamehameha's Kona Beach Hotel NZ$302
    Reviewed on 11 Nov. 2019
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    Courtyard by Marriott King Kamehameha's Kona Beach Hotel

    Courtyard by Marriott King Kamehameha's Kona Beach Hotel

    75-5660 Palani Road, Kailua-Kona, HI
       
      4.2 of 5
      3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

      We really enjoyed the nice location on the beach of this hotel, the room was clean and the staff made it sure we had clean towels every day. The main lobby of the hotel smells really bad and damp, need to change the carpet. The staff was always very friendly and helpful. The pool was very small but ...

      Royal Kona Resort NZ$284
      Reviewed on 11 Nov. 2019
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      Royal Kona Resort

      Royal Kona Resort

      75-5852 Alii Dr, Kailua-Kona, HI
         
        3.8 of 5
        3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

        We liked everything about this property was walking distance to shopping excellent pool and the lagoon is wonderful will definitely be staying here again

        Hilton Waikoloa Village NZ$299
        Reviewed on 12 Nov. 2019
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        Hilton Waikoloa Village

        Hilton Waikoloa Village

        69-425 Waikoloa Beach Dr, Waikoloa, HI
           
          4.1 of 5
          4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

          It was a very relaxing atmosphere and everyone was friendly/helpful.

          Grand Naniloa Hotel Hilo - a Doubletree by Hilton NZ$257
          Reviewed on 13 Nov. 2019
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          Grand Naniloa Hotel Hilo - a Doubletree by Hilton

          Grand Naniloa Hotel Hilo - a Doubletree by Hilton

          93 Banyan Dr, Hilo, HI
             
            4.1 of 5
            3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

            The staff are very helpful and friendly. The building close to beach and great access to water for kids.

            Fairmont Orchid NZ$556
            Reviewed on 8 Nov. 2019
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            Fairmont Orchid

            Fairmont Orchid

            1 N Kaniku Drive Kohala, Kamuela, HI
               
              4.5 of 5
              4.5 out of 5.0 Stars

              Serenity, atmosphere, friendly staffs and everything else was nice. Also, swimming with turtle at the lagoon was unique experience.

              Kona Seaside Hotel NZ$248
              Reviewed on 13 Nov. 2019
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              Kona Seaside Hotel

              Kona Seaside Hotel

              75-5646 Palani Rd, Kailua-Kona, HI
                 
                4.0 of 5
                2.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                Central, accessible, close approximity, and convenient to Kailua-Kona sites, neighborhood, attractions, restaurants, and shops. It may be touristy and a more run-down/busy city area but for my first time on the Big island and traveling solo it was comforting to have everything near

                Uncle Billy's Kona Bay Hotel NZ$196
                Reviewed on 11 Nov. 2019
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                Uncle Billy's Kona Bay Hotel

                Uncle Billy's Kona Bay Hotel

                75-5739 Alii Dr, Kailua-Kona, HI
                   
                  3.2 of 5
                  2.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                  Cheap deal...good location Parking $10? Fast check-in

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                  Top 10 Things To Do In Hawaii Island

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