Kailua-Kona Travel Guide
Tribes: Who likes this place?
What the scores mean:
These scores tell you how well-liked a place is in each Tribe. Gogobot Tribes are groups who share a certain travel style, like Family Travelers or History Buffs.
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- 98%Green Travelers
- 85%Family Travelers
- 61%Local Culture
- 61%Adventure Travelers
- 56%Luxury Travelers
- 56%Outdoor Enthusiasts
Member Reviews (41)Write a review
- Kailua-KonaMember ofLocal CultureBudget TravelersFoodies+ 6Dec 28, 2013
The hot, dry, desert side of the Big Island. If you are looking for sun tanning and white sand beaches on the Big Island you have come to the right place! Our beaches on the other side are volcanic rock and sand. Apparently Hawaii is the only place in the US where coffee is grown and Kona is famous for its coffee. You won't have any trouble finding cafes to sample the island blends walking around the streets of downtown Kailua.Recommended for:
- Kailua-KonaMember ofLocal CultureOutdoor EnthusiastsBudget Travelers+ 2Jan 04, 2013
This town does what a town is supposed to do, with an airport, supermarkets, marina, lodging, restaurants, and bars. Over all though, it is not really that charming a place. The place is a very large town, when it should be a very small city.
I have been there a few times but don't have a favorite hotel, bar, or restaurant, it's all just ok.
- Kailua-KonaCommunity ManagerAmbassadorMember ofLocal CultureFoodiesBackpackers+ 4Jan 01, 2013
Touristy and small, it's a nice place but pales in comparison to Hilo. You definitely need a car if you plan on moving about, unless you really want to spend all your time in the little stretch of road that is Kona.
The true magic is in the Kona coffee plantations, the coast covered by volcanic rock and, yes, Costco (it's the only one on the island). Kona Brewing Company is also a favorite of mine.
- Kailua-KonaMember ofLocal CultureOutdoor EnthusiastsFoodiesBackpackersOct 23, 2012
Every time I set foot on the Big Island I am reminded why, if given the chance, I would move to Hawai'i in a heartbeat. For obvious reasons, many people feel this way – the sun, the endless stretches of beach, the island time – but as a relatively frequent visitor to Kona, my brain has grown increasingly used to the idea that part of me does, in fact, live here. With every visit, it's like coming home to a place I have never lived. Even over the years, as the town grows and becomes more of a tourist hub, I am forever grateful to Kona (and the Big Island in general) for maintaining its quiet, laid-back, and welcoming atmosphere, a perfect place to sit by the ocean and allow time to pass by. With any luck, it will resist the pull of major tourism and stay that way.
- Kailua-KonaSep 27, 2012
I ABSOLUTELY LOVED IT! THE PEOPLE WERE SO LOVELY! THE SITES WERE LOVELY! THE KING KAMEHA MEHA HOTEL WAS THE BEST! LOVE THE PLACE AND THE BEACH!! *****YOU MUST EAT AT QUINS BY THE SEA , THE ALL YOU CAN EAT BUFFETT AT KING KAMEHA' MEHA' MARRIOTTS ON FRIDAY& SAT. NIGHTS THE BEST BY FAR. DO NOT MISS THIS YOU WILL BE VERY SORRY.*WE ATE THERE 3 TIMES!
- Kailua-KonaMember ofOutdoor EnthusiastsBudget TravelersBusiness Travelers+ 4Sep 22, 2012
The dry, quiet side of the island, sometimes shrouded in vog. Not much of anything to do in town, but some awesome beaches to explore right outside of town. This is where a lot of the highend resorts are like the four seasons, and where the multi-millionaires build 30 million dollar vacation estates.
- Kailua-KonaMember ofLocal CultureOutdoor EnthusiastsBudget Travelers+ 11Jul 05, 2012
The Hawaiian Visitors Bureau has a profile of the typical type of visitors to each island from many years of surveys. For the Big Island, it is usually someone a bit older, who likes nature, and a relaxed vacation atmosphere. Kailua-Kona is the central receiving point for these visitors, and has deep sea fishing, whale watching, tours to the Volcanoes and other such popular adventures.
The accomdations in Kailua-Kona are not nearly as nice, in general, to what you might expect to find in Waikiki, Maui, or other islands. The resorts and hotels were old, although some newer properties have gone up. There are many vacation rentals available. The major chain hotels are up the coast in Waikoloa, like the Hilton.
Kailua-KOna is where you fly-in to the Big Island, and the island has such marvelous diverse environments, from black sand beaches, to volcanoes, to sandy beaches, to large ranch land pastures, to deserts with cactus, to rain forests. This is only your starting point to discover these island riches.
- Kailua-KonaFirst to ReviewJul 05, 2012
The Green Sand Beach is super nice! If you happen to rent a jeep for your rental car than you can drive to the green sand beach other than that you are stuck walking for a very long time to this beach! It took us at least 1-2 hours one way. We are fast walkers but the terrain of the place is not straight or smooth.
It's well worth it because it's not busy and the place is pretty and you can see a sea turtle while snorkling if you are lucky! I would highly bring lunch and drinks because it's a long walk back!
It's a little tricky getting down to the beach pnce you are there. I would just go down from the sand wall on the left pictured here.
- Kailua-KonaJul 04, 2012
You should definitely take a helicopter tour over the island. you will take off from the 'desert' side of the island and see everything from rain forests to active volcanoes. Depending on the helicopter company running the tour, they will land in a few spots and let you walk around in areas that would otherwise be totally inaccessible by road or foot. we used Paradise Helicopters and had a great experience. i am very jealous - you guys will have a blast!
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