On the lush windward slopes of Mauna Loa, the world’s most massive mountain, lie the districts of North and South Hilo. Hilo, the county seat and biggest town on the island of Hawaiʻi, is in South Hilo, which visitors may find confusing. The Hilo districts stretch up the Hāmākua Coast as far as Laupāhoehoe, encompassing a handful of tiny towns, today little more than plantation camps, as most business is conducted in “town.” You’ll enjoy the beautiful scenic drive along the coast, as it’s probably one of the loveliest in the islands. With plenty of waterfalls and lush greenery, you’ll love exploring the districts of North and South Hilo!
Hilo town itself has by far the most activities, as again, it is the biggest town on the island. Though there isn’t much “beach,” there is plenty of waterfront, and lots of it is swimmable. Hilo Bay is especially beautiful in the afternoon, when clouds gather on the slopes of the mountain above. Get in the water at Coconut Island, or one of the many beach parks (again, not with sand!) along the coast at Keaukaha. Hilo is a great city to explore by bike, especially the Bayfront area, so rent one and check it out! There are also a good handful of unique museums, exploring such diverse themes as astronomy and tsunamis. And of course, waterfalls: drive mauka (towards the mountain) along Waiānuenue (Rainbow Falls) drive to check those out.
Whether you choose a rental in Hilo town, or to the north along the coast, it’s likely to be quiet and peaceful in the evening, as long as you’re prepared for coqui frogs! Some love them, some hate them: but rest assured, these little tropical peepers are guaranteed to make you feel like you’re sleeping in the middle of a tropical rainforest. Because you are! Hilo is green for a reason; expect and prepare for rain if you stay here.
For a rainforest and waterfall vacation, coupled with the activities of one of Hawaiʻi’s best towns, choose one of our great rentals in the Hilo District!