FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
SIZZLIN’ JUNE NEWS FROM THE ISLAND OF HAWAII
EXPLORE THE OUTDOORS
National Parks, Sites and Trails
The island of Hawaii boasts five national parks, sites and trails, all rooted in Hawaiian history and culture.
- Ala Kahakai National Historic Trail: This 175-mile corridor traverses hundreds of early Hawaiian settlement sites and more than 200 ahupuaa (traditional land divisions). In ancient times, the Ala Kahakai circled the entire island. Today, visitors can access segments of the trail on the west and southeast coasts of the island. For more information, visit www.nps.gov/alka/index.htm.
- Hawaii Volcanoes National Park: This 330,000-acre park encompasses two of the world’s most active volcanoes, Kilauea and Maunaloa, hosting some of the most unique geological, biological and cultural landscapes in the world. Plan to spend a full day (or more) exploring the dramatic, vast and still growing park to fully appreciate its wonder. For more information, visit www.nps.gov/havo/index.htm.
- Kaloko-Honokohau National Historical Park: Visit the remnants of an early Hawaiian settlement at this 1,1-acre Kona coast site, as well as hike a portion of the Ala Kahakai National Historic Trail where you’ll see heiau (sacred temples), kii pohaku (petroglyphs) and explore four ahupuaa. For more information, visit www.nps.gov/kaho/index.htm.
- Puukohola Heiau National Historic Site: Walk in the footsteps of a king at this massive Kohala Coast heiau, the last and largest of its kind built in Hawaii. Its construction was ordered by future first monarch of the Kingdom of Hawaii, Kamehameha I, to appease war god Kukailimoku and realize a prophecy of him uniting the Hawaiian Islands under one rule. For more information, visit www.nps.gov/puhe/index.htm.
- Puuhonua O Honaunau National Historical Park: The Hawaiian name of this 182-acre oceanside park means “place of refuge at Honaunau.” In pre-contact Hawaii, it was an sanctuary providing full protection to fugitives breaking kapu (Hawaiian law) or fleeing death or harm. The park now preserves the site’s sanctuary area, palm grove of its royal compound, fishponds and remnants of an old fishing village. For more information, visit www.nps.gov/puho/index.htm.
State Parks and Hiking Trails
The island of Hawaii is home to several state parks that preserve the island’s unique cultural, historic and natural wonders. For more information, visit dlnr.hawaii.gov/dsp/parks/hawaii/.
- Akaka Falls State Park: Take in vistas of the park’s two beautiful cascading waterfalls, 100-foot Kahuna Falls and 442-foot Akaka Falls while trekking through a lush Hamakua Coast rainforest. For more information, visit www.dlnr.hawaii.gov/dsp/parks/hawaii/akaka-falls-state-park/.
- Hapuna Beach State Recreation Area: Long considered one of the island of Hawaii’s best beaches by residents, Hapuna Beach is a dreamy stretch of white sand on the Kohala coast. The array of ocean activities ready to impress beachgoers here includes swimming, snorkeling and bodysurfing. For more information, visit www.dlnr.hawaii.gov/dsp/parks/hawaii/hapuna-beach-state-recreation-area.
- Kealakekua Bay State Historical Park: This Kona Coast park marks one of the first locations in the Islands where extensive contact between Hawaiians and Westerners took place, notably with the 1779 arrival of British explorer Captain James Cook. Visiting the bay is recommended via licensed tour operators. For more information, visit www.dlnr.hawaii.gov/dsp/parks/hawaii/kealakekua-bay-state-historical-park/.
- Hulihee Palace: Once a summer vacation home for Hawaiian royalty, Hulihee Palace today serves as a musuem showcasing Victorian artifacts from the era of Hawaii monarchs King Kalakaua and Queen Kapiolani. Situated oceanside in Kailua-Kona, the historic structure features heirloom koa wood furniture, royal portraits, kapa (tree bark) works, feather works, Hawaiian quilts and monarchy artifacts. For more information, visit www.dlnr.hawaii.gov/dsp/parks/hawaii/hulihee-palace/.
Hawaii’s state government created the Na Ala Hele Trail and Access Program to preserve the Hawaiian Islands’ historic trails and ensure safe public access to these and other trails. The program’s interactive website shares information about approved trails, activities allowed on each, trail features, amenities, island weather forecasts, safety and hazard warnings, and trailhead directions. Visitors can customize their search for hikes matching their interests to find trails with waterfalls or streams, or even trails open to horseback riders. As noted on the Island of Hawaii Pono Pledge, visitors are encouraged to follow safety guidelines and be cognizant of “No Trespassing” signs. For more information visit, hawaiitrails.hawaii.gov/trails/#/.
Featured Fact: The island of Hawaii is home to more marine life conservation districts than any island in the main Hawaiian archipelago with four total – Kealakekua Bay, Lapakahi, Old Kona Airport and Waialea Bay. Their pristine waters are home to a diversity of marine life, including brilliantly colorful corals and schools of tropical fish. Visitors should remember to use reef-safe sunscreen and avoid stepping on or disrupting coral when snorkeling. For more information, visit, www.dlnr.hawaii.gov/dar/marine-managed-areas/hawaii-marine-life-conservation-districts/.
TOURS AND ACTIVITIES
Kohala Coast resort Fairmont Orchid is offering guests complimentary guided hikes of the Puako Petroglyph Archaeological Preserve twice a week. The largest petroglyph field on the island of Hawaii at 233 acres, the preserve contains more than 3,000 lava rock carvings – some dating as far back as 1200 A.D. – etched by early Hawaiians. The carvings are believed to be records of both everyday activities and significant events in the lives of area residents centuries ago. For more information, visit www.fairmont.com/orchid-hawaii.
Mauna Lani Golf’s Wikiwiki Golf Course is for Kohala Coast golfers looking to play a quick round in about an hour. The Hawaiian word wikiwiki means “fast.” And with just nine holes, this short course was designed with convenience in mind, allowing golfers to play a quick round at their leisure. The Wikiwiki Golf Course is open for group use and also offers customized lessons at the Mauna Lani Golf Academy for all levels of golfer. For more information, visit www.maunalanigolf.com.
Umauma Falls Zipline and Rappel Experience recently introduced horseback riding to its outdoor adventures at Umauma Falls. Guests on the new tour, offered in partnership with Wailea Horseback Adventures, will explore area pastures and waterfalls accessible only on horseback. Participants are also invited to swim at a private waterfall and combine their horseback tours with 9-line zipline and ATV experiences. The Umauma Experience is open daily from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., with horseback tours offered twice a day. The horseback adventure is open to all rider levels, including first timers. For more information, call (808) 539-3409 or visit www.umaumaexperience.com.
Guided bicycle tour operator Bike Volcano recently introduced a new bike tour combining time at Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, Akaka Falls State Park and Punaluu Black Sand Beach all in one day. Visitors can now add on Bike Volcano’s new roundtrip transportation service from Waikoloa and Kailua-Kona on the island’s west side to Volcano Village on its east side for a full-day five-hour bike adventure or a half-day three-hour summit special bike tour of Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. Advanced reservations are required. For more information, call (808) 934-9199 or visit www.bikevolcano.com.
Mauna Lani Golf’s junior golf special welcomes families for a round of golf together. Accompanied by a paying adult, children ages 15 years and under are invited to enjoy free golf after 3 p.m., complimentary Callaway rental clubs all day, and complimentary instruction. For more information, visit www.maunalanigolf.com.
Fairmont Orchid is offering guests an opportunity to learn a hula performance with the resort’s new summer Hula Lea Wale workshop. Participants are offered lessons in hand movement and steps, as well as the historic significance of hula, led by resort Director of Hawaiian Culture Kaiulani Blankenfeld. Classes are offered Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays, from June 14 through September 1. Cost per workshop is $50 per person, or $75 per family. For more information, visit www.fairmont.com/orchid-hawaii/pdf/orc-familysummeractivities-may-2019/.
KapohoKine Adventures has partnered with Polaris Adventures to launch a new ATV/zipline combo tour operating the newest models of the Polaris ATVs (all-terrain vehicles) and UTVs (utility task vehicles). The off-road vehicle tour features 6 miles of trails weaving landscapes marked by waterfalls, muddy hills and verdant fields. The added 8-mile zipline course offers nearly 2 miles of tropical river gorges and dual lines allowing side-by-side ziplining. For more information, call (808) 964-1000 or visit www.kapohokine.com.
Got time for a round of nine with the family? Waikoloa Beach Resort Golf invites families with junior golfers to try out its King’s Course after 3:30 p.m. Junior golfers ages 6-17 years old can golf for $25 and accompanying adults for $50. Rental clubs for junior golfers are complimentary; adult rental club fees are $25. The greens fee includes a shared cart, bottled water and unlimited use of practice facilities. For more information, call (808) 886-7888 or visit www.waikoloabeachgolf.com.
Join Mauna Lani Golf just before twilight for its Sunset Golf Cart Tour on the South Course. The tour includes stops at scenic locations on the course – such as the No. 7 hole – and ends at sunset at Mauna Lani Golf’s over-the-ocean No. 15 hole. The tour is $45 and includes a cart for two. For more information, call (808) 885-6655 or visit www.maunalanigolf.com.
Waikoloa Beach Resort will host its annual Fourth of July Extravaganza at the Waikoloa Bowl, inviting guests to enjoy live entertainment from Lucky Tongue and the Johnny Shot Band beginning at 5 p.m. The evening ends with the resort’s Independence Day fireworks show at 8 p.m. Guests are welcome to bring their own picnic blankets and beach chairs. For more information, visit www.waikoloabeachresort.com/index.php/things-to-do/event-detail/1068/4th-of-july-spectacular-free.
The 60th, annual Hawaiian International Billfish Tournament, set for July 29 through August 2, welcomes anglers from around the world to the waters off of Kailua-Kona to compete in the venerable sport fishing contest. Tournament teams partner with island of Hawaii-based charter boats for five days of game fishing, racking up points based on species caught and the weight of their catch. For more information, call (808) 836-1723 or visit www.hibtfishing.com.
Devotees of the classic tropical mai tai cocktail are expected to congregate in Kailua-Kona on August 17 for the 11th annual Don the Beachcomber Mai Tai Festival at Royal Kona Resort. Fest attendees get to celebrate and imbibe the legendary cocktail while catching and cheering on more than 20 of the world's top bartenders as they battle for the title of World’s Best Mai Tai and an accompanying $10,000 cash prize. For more information, visit www.donsmaitaifest.com.
The Queen Liliuokalani Canoe Race is the world’s largest long-distance outrigger canoe race, annually welcoming thousands of international paddlers to the Kona district for five days of competition. The event’s 18-mile signature race, set for August 31, follows a historically and culturally significant course between historic Kailua-Kona village’s Kamakahonu National Historic Landmark – once the site of King Kamehameha the Great’s residential compound – and Honaunau Bay alongside Puuhonua O Honaunau National Historical Park. Related events include a historic walking tour, cultural fair and torch-light parade. For more information, visit www.qlcanoerace.com.
The Hawaii Island Festival 30 Days of Aloha annually celebrates Hawaiian culture and traditions with a month of activities and events featuring music, dance and more. Signature events scheduled throughout the month of August include the Clyde “Kindy” Sproat Falsetto and Storytelling Competition, the Waimea Paniolo Parade, Waimea Hoolaulea and a poke-recipe contest. For more information, visit www.hawaiiIslandfestival.org.
The four-day sci-fi, pop culture, anime, comic book and gaming convention HawaiiCon is set to welcome fans September 26-29 at the Sheraton Kona Resort and Spa at Keauhou Bay. The family-friendly festival features panel discussions, interactive workshops, movie screenings, costume contests, robotics demonstrations, hula instruction, live entertainment, local food, and art and tech vendors. Invited celebrity guests for convention panels include stars of science fiction TV series and movies, comic book artists and world-renowned scientists, educators, authors and cultural leaders. For more information, visit www.hawaiicon.com.
Taste of the Hawaiian Range is a daylong festival celebrating the island of Hawaii’s hardworking farmers, ranchers and chefs. Events and activities at the September 7 fest’s Daytime Agriculture Festival and Farm Fair include ag-focused educational exhibits, cooking demonstrations and food vendors. The fest’s evening culinary Taste Gala showcases an array of dishes created by island chefs and culinary students utilizing as much island of Hawaii-grown-and-raised ingredients as possible. Daytime festival events are free to the public. Tickets for the evening gala go on sale July 1. For more information, visit www.tasteofthehawaiianrange.com.
As part of Hilton Waikoloa Village’s commitment to reduce its environmental impact, the resort recently announced the conversion of its canal boats to fully-electric propulsion systems upgraded with new features. Operating on full electric power and zero carbon emissions, the canal boats will welcome guests with improved air and water quality, and nearly-silent motors, as they navigate the resort’s tropical surroundings. The boats have also been newly equipped with LED lights to illuminate the waterway at night, cabin floor lighting, and an improved marine-grade sound system. For more information, visit www.hiltonwaikoloavillage.com.
In support of the Kona Pride Festival, set for September 14, the Fairmont Orchid is offering a special Kona Pride package, which includes 30 percent off the resort’s daily room rate, two welcome Rainbow Flow cocktails, and daily breakfast for two. Fairmont Orchid will donate $10 to Kona Pride Festival for each night of a guest’s stay on the package. The Kona Pride package is valid for resort stays between September 1 and December 20. For more information, visit www.fairmont.com/orchid-hawaii/special-offers/hotel-offers/promotions/kona-pride-package/.
Bike Volcano is offering a special combo package encompassing a full-day bike adventure in Hawaii Volcanoes National Park and luxury-room accommodations at the Hilo Beach House Inn. Each room at the inn features original carved artwork and furniture from Bali, air conditioning and a private screened lanai (patio). For more information, call (808) 934-9199 or visit www.bikevolcano.com.
Merriman’s Hawaii has partnered with ride service Lyft to offer diners 20 percent off all rides to-and-from Merriman’s Waimea restaurant. Restaurant guests can use the code “Merrimans” on the Lyft app to receive the discount. New riders to Lyft also receive $2 off their first 10 rides. For more information, visit www.merrimanshawaii.com.
About the Island of Hawaii Visitors Bureau
The Island of Hawaii Visitors Bureau is an Island Chapter of the Hawaii Visitors and Convention Bureau (HVCB). HVCB is contracted by the Hawaii Tourism Authority (HTA) for marketing management services in the continental U.S. The Island of Hawaii Visitors Bureau also supports HTA’s international marketing partners in Canada, China, Europe, Japan, Korea, Oceania, Southeast Asia and Taiwan. The state of Hawaii’s tourism agency, HTA was established in 1998 to ensure a successful visitor industry well into the future. Its mission is to strategically manage Hawaii tourism in a sustainable manner consistent with the state of Hawaii’s economic goals, cultural values, preservation of natural resources, community desires and visitor industry needs. For more information about the island of Hawaii, visit www.gohawaii.com/Island-of-Hawaii.