Active volcanoes, molten lava, towering sea cliffs, mega marine life, waterfalls and rainforest – the Island of Hawaii is a land of adventure. Follow the journey of Aussie photographer Craig Parry and Hawaii local, Jake Marote, as they explore nature at its most powerful on the inspiring Island of Hawaii.
Experience Craig Parry’s Aloha
Top 5 Experiences on the Island of Hawaii
Follow in Craig’s and Jake’s footsteps and discover nature at its most powerful and raw on the inspiring Island of Hawaii, the Big Island. Magnificent rainforests, vast desert plains, snow-capped peaks and active volcanoes are all on one remarkable island. You’ll find plenty of adventure on the Island of Hawaii.
Board a boat tour and feel the heat as you get up close to where the lava is currently flowing into the ocean from Kilauea Volcano. Watch the landscape change before your very eyes as the lava hits the ocean and cools to make a new coastline. Anytime during the day is an amazing time to view lava erupting into the ocean but the lava glow at dawn and dusk is when it is at its most breathtaking.
You can also explore Kilauea Volcano by touring Hawaii Volcanoes National Park and hiking the Crater Rim Trail that circles the summit of Kilauea. The trail winds through diverse panoramas, ancient lava tubes, steam vents, craters, desert and lush rainforest, all amongst rich plant and animal life. Another way to witness the power of Hawaii’s volcanoes is by helicopter – taking off from Hilo airport.
The Island of Hawaii and its clear blue waters are truly a snorkelling and scuba paradise. The warm waters of Hawaii are home to a variety of sea animals including turtles, dolphins, whales, manta rays and many species of tropical fish that can be easily discovered—if you know where to look.
The island’s east side has a handful of spots for snorkelers and scuba divers including Hilo’s Leleiwi Beach and Richardson Beach Park. But the Kona side is even more famous for its visibility and calm waters, protected from the winds by the massive slopes of Maunaloa. There are many places accessible from the beach but for serious snorkelling, take a boat charter or travel with a local guide, somebody who knows the best spots.
Another breathtaking ocean experience is snorkelling or diving with the manta rays at night off the Kona Coast. Manta rays have a wingspan of up to six metres and swimming within centimetres of these gentle giants is an incredibly inspiring and memorable experience.
Some of the Island of Hawaii’s most breathtaking and accessible waterfalls can be discovered on the north-eastern side of the island, along the Hilo and the Hamakua Coast. This is the greenest and most fertile part of the island, blessed with amazing tropical rainforests and botanical gardens. At Akaka Falls State Park you will find the 30 metre Kahuna Falls and the incredible 134 metre Akaka Falls. On the east side of the island you can go exploring on a Kohala Coast waterfall hiking tour.
The Island of Hawaii features some of the most picturesque and varied beach landscapes in the islands. Here you’ll find beautiful resort beaches, and white, black and green sand beaches with olivine crystals many of which are rugged, off-the-beaten-path and wild.
Three kilometres north of Hilo on the Hamakua Coast you’ll find this jungle garden by the ocean at Kolekole Beach Park, with a nearby stream lined with smooth lava rocks and a waterfall. Onekahakaha Beach Park – a favourite with locals – offers a small, shallow sand-bottomed ocean pool just east of Hilo Airport. It’s one the safest swimming areas along the Hilo coast, with tide pools and inlets.
Laalao Beach, also known as ‘Disappearing Sands’ and ‘Magic Sands’ located on Alii Drive just south of Historic Kailua Village in Kona is a popular pocket of sand great for splashing in the surf, body-surfing and body-boarding.
There is no better way to view the sheer scope and striking environmental contrasts on the Island of Hawaii than from above. Get lost amongst the hidden tropical valleys, cascading waterfalls, secluded beaches, mountain summits and of course, an unprecedented view of Kilauea’s lava flows over Hawaii Volcanoes National Park.
It’s easy to see why a helicopter tour is one of the most popular activities on the island. If you are a photography enthusiast the best time to go on a helicopter tour is early morning or late afternoon. A sunset helicopter flight is the perfect way to top off a day in paradise.
Experience your Aloha in Hawaii
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