The Hawaiian islands are a vacation mecca and the Hamakua Coast has more than its share of fantastic destinations, awesome scenery and activities to fill your days. The best advice we can offer anyone coming to vacation in Hawaii is to PLAN your activities and MAP out your days so you won’t spend all your time trapped in your rental car. They call it the BIG Island for a reason and it’s very easy to spread yourself so thin trying to do everything that you forget to relax and enjoy the true essence of Hawaii Island. So take a deep breath and remember to take time to just relax and enjoy the scenery.

Here are just a few of the local highlights in Hamakua

Kalopa Park          Historic Honokaa Town          Honokaa People’s Theater          Waipio Valley           Zip Lines

Beaches located an hour or less from Hamakua

Spencer Beach Park       A-Bay       Hapuna Beach      Waipio Beach        Here’s a link leading to all the island’s beaches

Still want more ideas? Visit 101 Things to do on The Big Island

For a less hectic and more ‘authentic’ Hawaiian experience (meaning you’ll interact with people who actually live here rather than other folks from the mainland) , check out some of the local Bed and Breakfast accommodations or Vacation Rental by Owner and when its time to eat, try ‘going local’ instead of sticking to the fast food and big name restaurant chains. Avoid ordering hamburgers and fries and try a local plate equivalent of ‘chop steak, rice and potato mac salad, a ‘loco moco’ or some delicious local fish (ahi and ono big favorites).

Lastly, as a kindness, please do not complain to your waiters and/or clerks and service people about the high prices of food and gas. Everything costs more on island than it does where you’re from because everything is shipped in. Bear in mind we locals pay those higher prices at the pumps and in the stores year round, not just during vacation, and most of the service folks are making less than minimum wage. Odds are they already know how expensive things are and are likely struggling to pay rent. So tip well and often, it will be much appreciated.