Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Waiki‘i Music Festival Returns to Big Island

After a long hiatus, the popular weekend-long Waiki‘i Music Festival returns to Waiki‘i Ranch on June 16 and 17, featuring a host of acclaimed Hawaiian music artists including Grammy Award-winning Cyril Pahinui, Amy Hanaiali‘i, John Cruz, Paula Fuga, Makana and Willie K.

A "unique celebration of paniolo, Hawaiian and country music," the event also features country music star Ricky Scaggs and the Kentucky Thunder.

Located off the Saddle Road near Waimea, Waiki‘i Ranch showcases rolling green pastureland and majestic views of Mauna Kea in the enclave of an upscale subdivision. First held in 1990, the festival has always attracted thousands of attendees, before being halted by the homeowner's association in 2005 due to new home building and parking controversies. When Waiki‘i Ranch resident Tim Bostock decided to revive the event, the homeowners came back on board.

Tickets cost $40 per adult and $15 per child per day, if purchased prior to June 1. After June 1, tickets cost $50 per adult and $20 per child, with children under 6 free. Two-day passes are also available only through June 1. You can purchase tickets by phone at 808-885-6868 or in person at Kahili Theatre in Waimea.

Our Kona Hawai‘i bed and breakfast offers a relaxing retreat on 30 lush acres. Holualoa Inn make a great home base for exploring the Island's sites, including making a day trip to the Waiki‘i Music Festival. If you're interested in seeing some of Hawai‘i's best performers assembled in one place, you won't want to miss the Waiki‘i Music Festival!

Innkeeper Holualoa Inn

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Free Things to Do in Kona

Whether attending a Polynesian luau, riding a helicopter to the Volcano or booking a snorkel cruise,  activities during a typical Hawai‘i vacation can really add up. Fortunately, if you plan ahead, you can find plenty of things to do in Kona that are free, or almost free.

Instead of paying for a night dive out of Honokohau Harbor, head to the Sheraton Keauhou Bay Resort on any given evening to see the manta rays in action. The Manta Viewing Area is located adjacent to the Manta Ray Bar & Grill, and features large spotlights that shine directly on the water below, affording excellent views of the mantas as they swim below the lanai each night, feeding on the plankton.

For other marine life encounters, you might have more luck spotting spinner dolphins on your own than by booking an expensive cruise. Dolphins frequent areas like Kealakekua Bay and "Two Steps" at Honaunau, just down the road, where you can easily get in the water and possibly swim near pods of dolphins. To see the green sea turtles, take a short trek to Ke‘ei Beach, which is also near Kealakekua Bay.

To soak up some Hawaiian culture, Historic Kailua Village offers several landmarks that are free to visitors. Ahu‘ena Heiau, located near the pier, is a centuries-old sacred site where King Kamehameha I conducted his affairs of government after uniting the Hawaiian Islands in the early 1800s. There's also Mokuaikaua Church, the oldest Christian church in the state of Hawai‘i, and Hulihe‘e Palace directly across the street, which offers tours for a nominal fee.

Farther up the highway in Kealakekua, Kona Historical Society is a wonderful destination for visitors that includes a general store museum, coffee tours and a Portuguese stone oven, where old-fashioned bread baking takes place every Thursday morning. And speaking of coffee tours, there are plenty of coffee farm throughout the Kona Coffee Belt that offer free tours and tastings.

Here at Holualoa Inn, we look forward to helping you make the most of your Kona Hawai‘i vacation. Our Big Island bed and breakfast is perfectly situated for proximity to all the best that Kona has to offer.

Innkeeper Holualoa Inn

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

National Parks of Hawai‘i Island

If you're planning a vacation to Hawai‘i's Big Island, make sure the beautiful National Parks are part of your itinerary. There are four national parks on the island, and each one is unique.

Home of the fire goddess Pele, Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park is a must-see destination on the southeast side of the island. Encompassing the volcano of Kilauea and portions of the Mauna Loa, the park is open year-round, 24/7. Plan your trip so that you'll still be in the park at dusk and witness the orange glow of Halemau‘uma‘a Crater as the lava lake brews close to the surface. Other sites include the steam vents, sulfur banks, Thurston Lava Tube, Kilauea Iki Trail and plenty of breathtaking natural scenery.

Pu‘uhonua O Honaunau National Historical Park
Closer to Kailua-Kona, Pu‘uhonua O Honaunau National Historical Park is considered sacred ground in Hawaiian culture. For centuries, this beautiful sanctuary served as a place of refuge for warriors, kapu breakers and other seeking to escape death or punishment. The park includes the reconstructed ancient temple known as Hale O Keawe, as well as royal fish ponds, coconut groves, self-guided trails and incredible marine life such as green sea turtles, spinner dolphins and humpback whales offshore.

Pu‘ukohola Heiau
Another park in Kona, Kaloko-Honokohau National Historical Park is located just a few mile south of the airport. The site of an ancient Hawaiian settlement, the park features enormous fishponds created by seawalls built of lava rock. Visitors can hike, fish, swim, picnic and snorkel here. Farther to the north in Kawaihae past the Mauna Kea Beach Hotel, Pu‘ukohola Heiau National Historic Site showcases the the great temple built by Kamehameha the Great prior to his unification of the Hawaiian Islands.

Centrally located, Holualoa Inn offers our guests great proximity to the best sites on the islands. Our akamai (knowledgeable) innkeepers are happy to provide you with all the insider tips and travel information to help you make the most of your romantic vacation in Hawai‘i Island.

Innkeeper Holualoa Inn