Top 10 Things to Do in Big Island, Hawaii

Hawaii is always a good spot, year-round. Whether it’s fall, summer, winter, or spring, Hawaii is a place you can visit all year round and have a blast. If you summer is coming to an end or your winter has just begun, or whatever your weather is, you’ll want to spend you next vacation in a warm sunny location like the Big Island, Hawaii! 

The island provides a variety of settings that allow you relax or have fun in different environments, and there is no shortage of areas where you can get a great view of the surroundings. Here are the top 10 things to do in the Big Island so that you make the most out of your stay when visiting Hawaii. 

1. Waipio Valley

It’s hard to come by a spot on the island that doesn’t treat you with a beautiful view of the ocean, with a prime example being Waipio Valley. Trails are situated throughout the area so that you can get a good hike when the sun is out, and, the hills and mountains are high enough to provide a great challenge for those who need a little more than just a flat hike.

Waipio Valley - Things to Do in Big Island, Hawaii

The cliffs stand 2,000 feet above the ground, and you can go for a walk along the cliffs by the ocean, with the chance of spotting aquatic life if you have a pair of binoculars with you. Tours are available via hiking or by horseback if you want a more unique experience, and of course, the famed and unique black sand beaches make for a nice spot for a break.

2. Kealakekua Bay

If you enjoy snorkeling and exploring what the world has to offer under the sea, then you may want to save an afternoon for a visit to Kealakekua Bay. This area is more remote compared to the other popular water spots on the island. This bay allows you to enjoy your peace and quiet by yourself or with friends and family.

Kealakekua Bay - Things to Do in Big Island, Hawaii
Credits: Wikimedia Commons

Creatures easily found at the bay include fish, sea turtles and Hawaiian Spinner dolphin, a bit of a calmer wildlife that the ocean has to offer. This spot also comes with a picnic area for your lunch and dinner, or even breakfast if you wish, and the water fountains add to the scenery no matter the time of day.

3. Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park

Visiting a volcano is a must if you visit Hawaii and stopping by Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park will give you a better understanding of these natural wonders. The tour guides at the park provide you safety tips on how to approach areas lava fields and areas.

Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park - Things to Do in Big Island, Hawaii
Credits: National Park Services

The mountain of Kilauea stands at 4,000 feet tall with several trails for a good hike and also has a great view of hills and rocks along the way. We advise starting your visit in the morning so that you can explore as much of the park as possible before it gets too hot. Get ready to add views of the hills and wildlife to your photo collection.

4. Akaka Falls State Park

While you’ll want to enjoy the sun as much as possible when you’re in Hawaii, it also helps to find a place to get some shade and check out the natural area. In this case, you’ll want to stop by Akaka Falls State Park, which is known for the Kahuna Falls and Akaka Falls, a place that shows off the beauty of the island.

Akaka Falls State Park - Things to Do in Big Island, Hawaii
Credits: Wikimedia Commons

The hikes at this park relatively easy. The park is also among the smaller ones in Hawaii which means that you can see a lot in a short amount of time, enjoy a view, and cool off by the falls without doing too much. 

5. Hulihee Palace

There are opportunities for you to take a break from the wildlife of Hawaii and learn more about the history of the area’s civilization. One of these opportunities comes in the form of the Hulihee Palace which was created for the royal family of Hawaii as a summer home and is situated right on the oceanfront.

Hulihee Palace - Things to Do in Big Island, Hawaii
Credits: Wikimedia Commons

The palace is full of artwork, antiques, and other artifacts that date back to the 1800s. It is one of the three royal palace residences that still exists in the United States. Make sure to plan your vacation during the third Sunday of the month since the palace is open to guests and even hosts Hawaiian dances and music performances. 

6. Sunset Luau

You would want to save a night out for a visit to Sunset Luau at Waikoloa Beach for an amazing night out. The buffet served here is mostly local cuisines if you’re in the mood for authentic Hawaiian foods; the usual unveiling of the kalua pig which is commonly done around here as well will be a unique way to spend your dinner. 

Sunset Luau - Things to Do in Big Island, Hawaii

The Polynesian songs and dances of the Luau will make your meal even more enjoyable, and the sun setting in the background allows you to relax in a beautiful area. The open bar ensures that you have a good night out with adult friends while the beach nearby is a nice touch for families that want to spend an evening at the beach. 

7. Star Gaze Hawaii

Laying in the sand or grass and looking up at the stars at night is a pleasant way to spend the end of the day and Hawaii is home to a special place that actually allows you to get a better view of the sky- Star Gaze Hawaii. Star Gaze Hawaii provides instruments that lets you search for stars better than your regular old binoculars.

Star Gaze - Things to Do in Big Island, Hawaii

It’s a great place to go to if you’re traveling with family especially kids. Nothing as good as finding those special stars all the way in Hawaii! Plus, you do get a great view of the ocean from this spot. The facility has guides who are always available to work you through the process and are more than eager to give you astronomy classes as needed. 

8. Kaunaoa Beach

While some beaches in Hawaii are best served for relaxing and doing nothing else, some others offer you multiple things to do. Kaunaoa Beach is one of such beaches. It’s best for surfing since it has a variety of waves for seasoned as well as rookie surfers. The beach is also great for paddle boarding and other calm water activities since it does have calmer waters in certain parts. 

Kaunaoa Beach - Things to Do in Big Island, Hawaii
Credits: Wikimedia Commons

You can also go snorkeling if you want to see what aquatic life The Big Island has to offer, or you can spend some time playing beach volleyball with friends while drying off and still having fun. And if you get hungry, you can walk over to the Mauna Kea Resort just around for some great food. 

9. Skyline Eco-Adventures

The trails and beaches are not the only locations throughout the island that allow you to get close to nature. Skyline Eco-Adventures provides seven zip line courses deep in the forest designed for people who are new to ziplining as well as those who are experts zip liners. 

Skyline Eco-Adventures- Things to Do in Big Island, Hawaii
Credits: Skyline Eco-Adventures, Facebook

The forest in the area is lush and so you are guaranteed beautiful sites as you go ziplining through the trees and hills. And even more special, you’ll see the KoleKole waterfall which stands at 250 feet tall during your zipline activity. However, make sure to visit when the sky is clear and the sun is shining so you get the best and safest ziplining experience.

10. Paradise Helicopters

Hawaii provides more chances to get spectacular views of the island, its volcanoes, its peaks, and its valleys. That’s where the tours of Paradise Helicopters come in! They take you on a guided tour of the island so you can check out the island and every natural wonder it has to offer from many feet up in the sky.

Paradise Helicopters- Things to Do in Big Island, Hawaii
Credits: Paradise Helicopters

During this tour that can be as short as half-an-hour, you’ll be able to spot several volcanoes, waterfall, waters, green lush forests, and many other natural wonders from the air. 

We hope you seek out some of these off-the-beaten path activities next time you visit the Big Island so you leave and return with great memories! 

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