Your Best Day in Kohala

View of the coast of the Big Island near Polulu Valley and Hawi.
View from mile marker 28 near Hawi of the coast and Polulu Valley. Photo © mark52/123rf.

Take advantage of the great outdoors in Kohala, where most outdoor activities come with a nice dose of local heritage to engage your mind and your body. There’s also plenty to tempt your tastebuds when it comes to snacking and dining, but don’t forget that your best day in Kohala includes just stopping for a moment to appreciate the view.

  • Start your day on the Ala Kahakai National Historic Trail. Pick a point on the trail and go for a short walk, leaving plenty of time to stop at any number of beaches (especially the secret ones).
  • Stop to sample all sorts of flavors of macadamia nuts and brittle at the Hamakua Macadamia Nut Factory on your way north to Hawi.
  • Visit the galleries and shops in Hawi and eat lunch at one of the excellent restaurants in town.
  • Try an adventure like ziplining or “fluming the ditch” (kayaking down an old irrigation ditch from the plantation days).
  • Drive to the lookout at Polulu Valley to watch the sunset and witness one of the best views on the island.
  • Finish your day with dinner and dancing at the Blue Dragon Coastal Cuisine & Musiquarium in Kawaihae.

Rainy Day Alternative

Most people come to Kohala and never leave the beach, so there aren’t many daytime indoor activities in the area. Thus, if it’s raining in Kohala, take a peek to the south to Kona and then look mauka toward Waimea and see if you can spot any clouds in either direction—head to where there are no clouds. If it’s simply raining everywhere on the island, your best bet is to drive the 15 minutes to nearby Waimea or Kona to spend some time inside one of the museums or movie theaters.


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