The Perfect Duration For Exploring Big Island Hawaii

how many days to travel big island haiwaii

The Big Island Hawaii is a sprawling paradise, filled with diverse landscapes, vibrant culture, and endless adventures. From stunning volcanic mountains to breathtaking waterfalls, there is no shortage of natural wonders to explore. But with so much to see and do, it can be overwhelming to plan the perfect duration for your visit. Should you stay for a week, or maybe even two? In this article, we will delve into the ideal amount of time to spend on the Big Island Hawaii, ensuring that you make the most of your trip and create unforgettable memories. So grab your sunscreen and get ready to embark on a tropical adventure of a lifetime!

Characteristics Values of days to travel big island haiwaii
Size 10,432 square kilometers
Population Approximately 200,000 people
Climate Tropical, with moderate temperatures
Geography Volcanoes, lava fields, mountains, beaches
Attractions Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, Hilo, Kona
Activities Hiking, snorkeling, surfing, sightseeing
Accommodation options Resorts, hotels, vacation rentals
Transportation Rental cars, taxis, buses
Food and Drink Fresh seafood, local produce, tropical drinks
Language English, Hawaiian


Introduction to the Big Island of Hawaii

The Big Island of Hawaii, also known as the island of Hawaii, is the largest and most diverse of the Hawaiian islands. With its stunning natural landscapes, rich culture and history, and unique attractions, it offers travelers an unforgettable experience.

Located in the central Pacific, the Big Island is known for its active volcanoes, lush rainforests, cascading waterfalls, and pristine beaches. The island is home to two of the world's most famous volcanoes, Kilauea and Mauna Loa, which provide visitors with a rare opportunity to witness the power and beauty of volcanic activity.

One of the highlights of visiting the Big Island is exploring the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. This expansive park covers over 300,000 acres and offers various hiking trails, scenic drives, and visitor centers to learn about the geology and history of the area. You can witness the mesmerizing lava flows, hike through lush rainforests, and admire the unique flora and fauna.

Apart from the volcanoes, the Big Island also offers incredible opportunities for outdoor activities. You can go snorkeling or scuba diving in the clear waters, surf the world-class waves on the island's west coast, or explore the colorful coral reefs. The island's beaches are known for their beauty and diversity, ranging from green sand and black sand beaches to golden sandy shores.

The Big Island is also a cultural and historical destination. You can visit ancient Hawaiian temples, called heiaus, and learn about the island's rich Polynesian heritage. The island's coffee farms offer tours and tastings, giving you a chance to savor some of the finest coffee produced in the United States.

In terms of accommodation, the Big Island offers a wide range of options, from luxury resorts to cozy bed and breakfasts. The towns of Kailua-Kona and Hilo are the main centers of activity on the island, offering a variety of dining, shopping, and nightlife options.

To fully experience the Big Island, it is recommended to spend at least a week on the island. This will allow you to explore the main attractions, engage in outdoor activities, and immerse yourself in the unique culture and beauty of the island. However, if you have limited time, it is still possible to have a fulfilling visit by focusing on specific areas or activities that interest you the most.

Whether you are an adventure seeker, nature lover, history buff, or simply looking to relax on stunning beaches, the Big Island of Hawaii has something to offer for everyone. Its diverse landscapes and unique attractions make it a truly unforgettable destination. So, plan your trip to the Big Island and get ready for an experience of a lifetime.


The Big Island of Hawaii is an incredibly diverse and beautiful destination, offering a wide variety of attractions and activities for visitors to enjoy. From spectacular natural landscapes to vibrant cultural experiences, there is something for everyone on this enchanting island. If you want to get the most out of your trip to the Big Island, it is important to plan your itinerary carefully. Here is a recommended itinerary for exploring the Big Island, designed to help you make the most of your time on this tropical paradise.

Day 1: Arrive in Kona

Start your adventure by arriving at the Kona International Airport. After settling into your accommodation, take some time to explore the charming town of Kailua-Kona. Stroll along Ali'i Drive and admire the historic buildings, quaint shops, and ocean views. Don't forget to try some Kona coffee, known for its rich flavor.

Day 2: Experience the Volcanoes National Park

Head east to the Volcanoes National Park. Spend the day exploring the vast lava landscapes, hiking through volcanic craters, and visiting the Thurston Lava Tube. Make sure to check the park's website for any closures or safety advisories before you go.

Day 3: Discover the Waterfalls of Hilo

Drive north to Hilo, the lush and rainy side of the island. Explore the stunning Akaka Falls State Park, where you can take a short hike to see the 442-foot waterfall. Don't miss Rainbow Falls, known for its beautiful rainbow formations on sunny days.

Day 4: Explore the Hamakua Coast

Continue your exploration of the Big Island's natural beauty by driving along the scenic Hamakua Coast. Stop at Waipio Valley Lookout, where you can admire the dramatic cliffs and black sand beach below. If you're feeling adventurous, take a hike or horseback ride into the valley.

Day 5: Visit the Kohala Coast

Head to the sun-drenched Kohala Coast, known for its beautiful beaches and luxury resorts. Take a snorkel tour or simply relax on the golden sands. Don't miss the historic town of Hawi, where you can shop for unique souvenirs and enjoy delicious local cuisine.

Day 6: Go on a Manta Ray Night Dive

One of the most memorable experiences on the Big Island is swimming with manta rays. Join a guided night dive or snorkel tour to witness these graceful creatures feeding on plankton. This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity not to be missed.

Day 7: Relax in South Kona

Spend your last day on the Big Island relaxing in South Kona. Visit Pu'uhonua o Honaunau National Historical Park, a place of refuge and ancient Hawaiian culture. Take a dip in the crystal-clear waters of the Kealakekua Bay or simply unwind on the beach.

Day 8: Departure

Sadly, it's time to say goodbye to the Big Island. Depart from Kona International Airport, taking with you cherished memories of your wonderful Hawaiian adventure.

Remember, this is just a suggested itinerary, and you can adjust it to fit your preferences and the amount of time you have available. Whether you have a week or more to explore the Big Island, this itinerary will help you make the most of your trip and create lifelong memories.


Best Time of Year to Visit and Travel Duration

The Big Island of Hawaii is an incredible destination with diverse landscapes, stunning beaches, and unique attractions. When planning your trip, it is important to consider the best time of year to visit and how many days to allocate for your travel duration. In this blog post, we will explore these two factors to help you make the most of your trip.

The Big Island of Hawaii enjoys a warm and tropical climate throughout the year, making it a popular destination for travelers. However, there are certain times of the year that offer more favorable conditions for exploring the island. The best time to visit the Big Island is during the months of April to May and September to October. During these months, the weather is generally pleasant, with fewer crowds and lower prices compared to the peak tourist season.

If you are looking to avoid the crowds and enjoy the best weather, these shoulder seasons are ideal. The temperature during this time ranges from the mid-70s to low 80s Fahrenheit, with little rainfall. This means you can spend more time exploring the island's stunning beaches, hiking trails, and attractions without the worry of unpredictable weather.

Now, let's talk about how many days you should allocate for your trip to the Big Island. The duration of your visit will depend on several factors, including your interests, budget, and the activities you want to experience. Ideally, you should spend at least 5-7 days on the island to fully appreciate its beauty and explore its many attractions.

During this time, you can visit the famous Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, where you can witness the power of the active Kilauea volcano and marvel at the unique landscapes it has created. You can also spend a day or two exploring the stunning beaches along the Kona Coast, such as Hapuna Beach or Kahaluu Beach Park, where you can snorkel and swim in crystal-clear waters.

If you are interested in history and culture, make sure to visit the Pu'uhonua o Honaunau National Historical Park, a sacred site that offers a glimpse into ancient Hawaiian life. Additionally, you can take a scenic drive along the Hamakua Coast and visit the awe-inspiring Waipio Valley.

In conclusion, the best time to visit the Big Island of Hawaii is during the months of April to May and September to October. During these months, you can enjoy pleasant weather and avoid the crowds. As for the duration of your trip, it is recommended to spend at least 5-7 days on the island to fully experience its beauty and explore its many attractions. However, if you have more time and budget, you can extend your stay and delve even deeper into the island's wonders. Happy travels!


Must-See Attractions and Activities on the Big Island

The Big Island of Hawaii is a vast and diverse island with so many must-see attractions and activities that it can be overwhelming to plan your visit. To help you make the most of your time on the island, here are some must-see attractions and activities that you should include in your itinerary.

  • Volcanoes National Park: One of the most popular attractions on the Big Island, Volcanoes National Park is home to Kilauea, one of the most active volcanoes in the world. Take a drive along the Chain of Craters Road to witness the dramatic landscapes and hike the Kilauea Iki Trail for an up-close view of the volcano's power. Don't forget to visit the Jaggar Museum to learn more about the history and geology of the area.
  • Mauna Kea: Rising over 13,000 feet above sea level, Mauna Kea is the tallest mountain in Hawaii. It is home to world-class observatories and offers stunning views of the surrounding landscape. Take a guided tour to the summit for a chance to stargaze and learn about the astronomical significance of the mountain.
  • Snorkeling in Kealakekua Bay: Kealakekua Bay is a pristine marine sanctuary filled with colorful coral reefs and abundant underwater life. Rent snorkeling gear and spend a day exploring the crystal-clear waters. Keep an eye out for dolphins and sea turtles, which are often spotted in the area.
  • Akaka Falls State Park: Located on the northeastern side of the island, Akaka Falls State Park is home to two stunning waterfalls – Akaka Falls and Kahuna Falls. Take a short hike through a lush rainforest to reach the lookout points for breathtaking views of these majestic waterfalls.
  • Hapuna Beach State Recreation Area: With its golden sand and crystal-clear waters, Hapuna Beach is often ranked as one of the best beaches in the world. Spend a day relaxing on the beach, swimming in the turquoise waters, or snorkeling among the vibrant coral reefs.
  • Rainbow Falls: Just outside of Hilo, Rainbow Falls is a beautiful waterfall surrounded by lush vegetation. The falls get their name from the rainbows that can often be seen in the mist. Visit early in the morning to catch the best light and avoid crowds.
  • Waipio Valley: Known as the "Valley of Kings," Waipio Valley is a stunning and secluded valley on the northeastern coast of the island. Take a guided ATV tour or hike down to the valley floor to experience its natural beauty and discover scenic views, taro fields, and a black sand beach.
  • Coffee Plantations: The Big Island is famous for its coffee, and a visit to one of the many coffee plantations is a must for all java lovers. Take a tour of a plantation to learn about the coffee-making process and sample some of the island's finest brews.

With so much to see and do on the Big Island of Hawaii, it's recommended to plan at least a week for your trip. This will give you enough time to explore the main attractions, engage in outdoor activities, and soak in the island's natural beauty. However, if you have less time, it's still possible to see several highlights in just a few days. Just prioritize the attractions that interest you the most and make the most of your time on this incredible island paradise.

Frequently asked questions

It is recommended to plan at least 7-10 days to fully explore and experience all that the Big Island has to offer. This will allow you to visit all the major attractions, explore the beautiful beaches, and participate in various activities such as hiking, snorkeling, and exploring the Volcanoes National Park.

While it is possible to visit some of the highlights of the Big Island in a few days, it is not recommended if you want to truly immerse yourself in the island's beauty and culture. The Big Island is the largest of the Hawaiian islands and offers a wide range of experiences and attractions. Spending a longer period of time will allow you to fully explore and appreciate all that the island has to offer.

Some must-visit attractions on the Big Island include the active volcano at Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, the stunning beaches of Hapuna Beach and Mauna Kea Beach, the scenic Waipio Valley, the historic town of Kailua-Kona, and the stunning waterfalls of the lush Hamakua Coast. These are just a few of the many incredible attractions on the Big Island that are definitely worth a visit.

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