‘Akaka Falls plunges down into a pool near Hilo, Hawaii.

‘Akaka Falls State Park on the Big Island

Everybody’s idea of a pristine Hawaiian valley is viewable at ‘Akaka Falls State Park, one of the most easily accessible forays into Hawai‘i’s beautiful interior. Many varieties of plants that would be in window pots anywhere else are giants here, almost trees.

An instructor preparing to zipline tandem with a young boy at Zip Isle on the Big Island of Hawaii.

Hamakua Coast Ziplines

Zipline rides are booming on the Big Island. While there’s lots of competition between companies on the Hamakua Coast for the best course, there’s only one certified provider. Constructed in partnership with certified engineers, this course guarantees the utmost safety for zipliners.

View of an interpretive sign at the edge of Kealakekua Bay.

Beaches in the Big Island’s Captain Cook Area

Beaches near Big Island’s Captain Cook Monument are all excellent for various water sports, including rental kayaking, and two have great amenities for a full day at the beach with a packed picnic lunch. All are fairly busy beaches, even the harder-to-reach ones, so plan ahead if you’re looking for solitude.

A brightly-lit stream seen through moss-covered trees.

Where to Eat from North Hilo to ‘Akaka Falls

Where to eat from North Hilo to ’Akaka Falls is very limited, so definitely plan accordingly. Both options are small and simple—a smoothie stand and a farmer’s market—but never disappointing for freshness or flavor, and there’s even a bit of shopping to be had.

A gourmet burger with a thick slice of melting cheese from Village Burger in Waimea.

Waimea Restaurants

Waimea is home to a great variety of foods from Hawaiian-style Mexican to burgers, local fare, and great comfort food, and one upscale restaurant worth the visit. Our authors give you all the info on the best, whether you’re looking for quick and easy, a few dollars saved, or a truly local experience.

The sun shines on a sea turtle resting on the sand of Makalawena beach.

The Best North Kona Beaches

Many of the best Kona beaches require some work to get to, and the walk over uneven lava can be difficult for some. There are equal amounts of beaches that don’t require any walking beyond from the parking lot to the sand, so feel free to out of the beaches that require more effort to get to.

Volcano Village offers several options for lodging near Volcanos National Park.

Staying in Volcano Village: Hostels and B&Bs

There are a great number of accommodations in and around Volcano Village. Most are bed-and-breakfasts, some are vacation homes where you take care of your own meals, and there is one hostel. These places run from budget and homey to luxurious and elegant, but most are moderate.