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Kona Top 10

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State Hwy 160, Hōnaunau, HI 96726, USA
Catch a glimpse of what Hawaii looked like before European contact. An unmissable destination for culture buffs, this sacred area stretches along the lava flats of the Big Island's western coast. Behind a massive wall stands an ancient pu'uhonua...
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Settled more than a thousand years ago, this cove grew into a thriving community and religious center anchored around Hikiau Heiau, a temple atop a platform of stacked lava rocks. In 1779, British explorer Captain James Cook arrived here during...

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The ire of Mount Kilauea reforges the world before visitors' eyes. Nicknamed "the World's Only Drive-In Volcano," it’s produced serious lava every day since 1983 with no signs of stopping. Pele—the fire goddess who lives here,...
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78-128 Ehukai St, Kailua-Kona, HI 96740, USA
The ancient Hawaiians revered mantas as ʻaumakua (family or personal gods). With up to 25-foot wingspans, these majestic sea creatures feed on some of the sea's smallest organisms: zooplankton. Strap on a snorkel to watch them dine at night, doing...
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81-6581 Mamalahoa Hwy, Kealakekua, HI 96750, USA

Kona's high elevation, frequent cloud cover and rich volcanic soil produce some of the world's finest java. Hundreds of coffee growers populate the Big Island, including Greenwell Farms (free tours continuously from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30...

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Kaahumanu Pl, Kailua-Kona, HI 96740, USA

This temple served Kamehameha the Great when he returned to the Big Island to rule. The center of political power during the king's golden years, it's one of Hawaii's most significant sites. The beloved ruler died there in 1819—and months...

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Holoholokai Beach Park Rd, Waimea, HI 96743, USA

From November until early May, immense humpback whales visit the Big Island's western coastline. These dark-gray giants can reach 18 meters (59 feet) and 36,000 kilograms (40 tons), but that doesn't deter them from spectacular aerial displays of...

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Hawaiians once lived in harmony with the land: farming, fishing, and harvesting fruit. Today, the state imports 80 to 90 percent of its food. Visit Kaloko-Honokōhau to catch a glimpse of the Big Island's ancient agricultural traditions, which...
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Holualoa Beach Rd, Kailua-Kona, HI 96740, USA

This mountain village—high in Kona coffee country on the slope of Hualalai volcano—has become an art enclave. Its brightly painted, tin-roofed plantation shacks center around the two-lane Mamalahoa Highway. Browse galleries...

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75-5669 Ali'i Dr, Kailua-Kona, HI 96740, USA
A great introduction to the ocean floor for non-divers, this 48-passenger submersible dips down to 100 feet off the Big Island. It explores 25 acres of vibrant coral gardens that have bloomed on ancient lava formations. Highlights include two...