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10 incredible things to do on the Big Island of Hawaii

As one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world, the Big Island of Hawaii has a wealth of activities to offer visitors. From snorkeling in crystal-clear waters to experience the rich history and culture of the islands, there is something for everyone. Here are the top 10 things to do on the Big Island of Hawaii, excluding hiking.
  1. Snorkeling in Kealakekua Bay – This beautiful bay is home to a stunning coral reef and an abundance of marine life, making it a favorite spot for snorkelers. The crystal-clear waters of the bay make it easy to spot colorful tropical fish, sea turtles, and other marine creatures. Visitors can either take a guided tour or rent their own equipment and explore on their own.
  2. Manta ray snorkeling in Kona – At night, manta rays gather in the warm waters off the Kona coast, creating a spectacular display that is not to be missed. Snorkelers can watch as these gentle giants glide gracefully through the water, feeding on plankton that is attracted by bright lights. This unforgettable experience is sure to be a highlight of any trip to the Big Island.
  3. Visit the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park – Witness the power and beauty of nature up close as you explore the park’s unique landscape, including the active Kilauea volcano. Visitors can take a scenic drive around the park, hike through the stunning wilderness, and even see lava flowing into the ocean. The park is also home to a variety of wildlife, including native birds and endangered species.
  4. Going on a whale-watching tour: During the winter months, humpback whales migrate to the warm waters surrounding the Big Island. Visitors can take a whale-watching tour to see these magnificent creatures breaching and playing in the ocean.
  5. Visit the Pu’uhonua o Honaunau National Historical Park – This sacred site was once a place of refuge for those who broke the law and offers a glimpse into the island’s rich cultural heritage. Visitors can explore the beautifully preserved buildings and learn about the ancient Hawaiian system of justice and law.
  6. Visit the Imiloa Astronomy Center – Learn about the science of astronomy and the rich history of Hawaiian astronomy at this fascinating museum. The center offers a variety of interactive exhibits, planetarium shows, and guided tours, all designed to give visitors a greater understanding of the universe and our place in it.
  7. Take a helicopter tour – Get a bird’s eye view of the island’s stunning landscape, including its beautiful beaches, waterfalls, and volcanoes. From high above, you can appreciate the sheer scale and beauty of the island, and gain a new perspective on its natural wonders. There are a number of helicopter tour operators on the island, offering a range of options to suit different budgets.
  8. Explore the coffee farms – The Big Island is home to some of the world’s best coffee, and visiting a coffee farm is a great way to learn about the process and sample some delicious brews. Visitors can take tours of the farms, learn about the history and culture of coffee production on the island, and of course, taste some of the world-class coffee.
  9. Relaxing on the beaches of the Kohala Coast: The Kohala Coast is home to some of the most beautiful beaches on the Big Island. Visitors can enjoy sunbathing, swimming, and snorkeling in crystal-clear waters. Located on the Kohala Coast, Hapuna Beach is one of the island’s most popular beaches. Its white sand beach stretches for half a mile, and it’s a great spot for swimming, boogie boarding, and snorkeling. Also located on the Kohala Coast, Kaunaoa Beach is known for its crystal-clear waters and soft, white sand. The beach is lined with palm trees, making it a picture-perfect spot for relaxing and soaking up the sun.
  10. Ziplining on the Big Island of Hawaii is a thrilling and adventurous way to explore the island’s lush forests and dramatic landscapes. One of the most popular zipline tours is located in the Akaka Falls State Park near Hilo. This tour takes you on a series of ziplines through the forest canopy, with views of towering trees, cascading waterfalls, and even the Pacific Ocean in the distance. Another popular zipline tour is located in the Kohala Mountains, near the town of Hawi. This tour takes you through a series of ziplines, suspension bridges, and aerial platforms, with views of the rugged coastline, lush valleys, and rolling hillsides.
No matter what your interests are, the Big Island of Hawaii has something to offer. From its stunning natural beauty to its rich cultural heritage, this island is truly a must-visit destination.