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Things To Do in Hilo
Things to do in Hilo
Top 10 To Do: 
  1. Akaka Falls State Park: This glorious state park features moderately challenging hiking trails to two falls, Akaka Falls and Kahuna Falls.
  2. Mauna Loa Macadamia Nut Factory: Visitors can tour the grounds, sample the products and stop by the Visitor Center. Prices are wholesale!
  3. Hilo Farmers Market: This market started in 1988 with just four farmers selling their produce, but now has a whopping 124 vendors selling farm and dairy products. It was named the Best Open Market in 1999 and 2000 by the Hawaii Tribune-Herald.
  4. East Hawaii Cultural Center: All that is artistic on the Eastern side of Hawaii, whether it be theatrical, musical or ethnic cultural, seems to have a home base at this downtown facility.
  5. Hilo Municipal Golf Course: Established in 1950, this public 18 hole golf course was designed by Willard Wilkenson and offers scenic views of Hilo Bay in a lush setting.
  6. Honoli'i Beach Park: This East Hawai'i surfing and bodyboarding spot is popular for its steady shorebreak—and by virtue of the fact that it is the only good surfing beach on the eastern coast.
  7. Subaru Telescope: For an experience extraordinaire, arrange for a visit to the Subaru Telescope site atop Hawaii's dormant volcano. For as many as 15 days a month, 30-minute tours are organized for those interested in increasing their knowledge of the fiery bowels of the earth.
  8. Mehana Brewing Company: Mehana Brewing Company is Hilo's only microbrewery. It produces five different ales and lagers, all inspired by tropical breezes and balmy beach days. Tours and tastings are available daily.
  9. Nautilus Dive Center: Learn to scuba dive in the clear warm waters of Hawaii with this professional dive center that takes you on trips to East Hawaii's unspoiled reefs where you'll see whales, dolphins, and turtles.
  10. Mauna Kea State Recreation Area: If you can get to Mauna Kea at night, you can enjoy some of the world's best stargazing. The place is located 35 miles inland of Hilo inside the Mauna Kea Forest Reserve, 6,500 feet above sea level.
Top 5 Things To See:
  1. Pacific Tsunami Museum: Dedicated to promoting public tsunami education, this museum contains exhibits on survivor stories, the history of tsunamis in the Pacific Basin, artifacts from the ocean bottom, an ocean science center, and exhibits that interpret the tsunami phenomena.
  2. Banyan Drive: Known for the giant Banyan trees that line the street, which were planted by visiting celebrities and each tree is marked with plaques where visitors will find such famous names as Amelia Earhart, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Cecil B. deMille, Louis Armstrong, Babe Ruth, Richard Nixon, and King George V.
  3. Nani Mau Gardens: These splendid gardens lie on 20 beautiful acres and include tropical flowers and trees, walking paths, pools, waterfalls, and native Hawaiian plants. A botanical museum is also on site, as well as two restaurants, an outdoor dining facility, and a gift shop.
  4. Lyman Museum & Mission House: This nationally accredited museum showcases the natural and cultural history of Hawaii and features collections such as artwork by artists of Hawaii, ancient art of China, and seashells and minerals from around the world.
  5. Wailoa Center: Many artists show their work here in this eclectic venue. Everything from Chinese silk paintings to monkeywood carvings is featured in the changing exhibits.
Best Time of Year to Visit:   The official rainy season is in the winter from November to March. Hilo, on the windward side, gets more than 180 inches of rain a year, making it the wettest city in the United States.
5 Things to Do With Kids:
  1. Panaewa Rainforest Zoo: This is the only natural tropical rainforest zoo in the U.S. It is a home to more than 80 species of animals! Also including a Petting Zoo, where you can get up close and personal with different creatures.
  2. Wailoa River State Recreation Area: A nicely maintained park in central Hilo, this place is great for family outings or group picnics.  People can choose to boat down the river or to stroll through the park and take in the scenery.
  3. Mokupapapa Discovery Center: It was built in 2003, to understand the culture, history, natural science and marine environment of the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands. A theatre, state of the art models and interactive displays, make the whole experience much more fun for kids and adults.
  4. Hilo Bay: Take the kids for some great snorkeling. 
  5. Richardson's Beach: Great swimming, snorkeling, kayaking, scuba diving with shoreline access. Good for kids and adults alike with lifeguard present during the days. Showers and picnic area border the beach.
5 Great Evening Entertainment Options:
  1. Captain Beans' Dinner Cruise: The Captain Beans' Sunset Sail is all about having a rollicking, rip-roaring good time. This fun cruise takes place aboard the Tamure, the largest double-hulled canoe in Hawaii, and provides the most interactive fun of any dinner cruise in the Islands.
  2. Palace Theatre: Built in 1925 as an American movie palace, this theatre is a fixture in the Hilo community and provides a wide range of art films, live theater productions, and concerts by both local and visiting musicians throughout the year.
  3. Big Island Luau: First comes the roasted pig. Accompanying this flavorful pit cooked pork are traditional Hawaiian foods including fresh island fish, beef, chicken, lomi lomi salmon, fruits, assortment of salads, all with an open bar. After the meal comes the luau show. All luaus shows perform traditional dancing and chanting. The show runs through sunset and is a wonderful way to remember Hawaii.
  4. Island Nature: Stroll along the beaches letting the crashing waves and the stars entertain you. 
  5. Kress Cinemas: This movie theater shows a wide array of critically acclaimed films and often screens selected art films.
5 Great Restaurants:
  1. Seaside Restaurant: The freshest fish, very warm people and a great view. If you want fresh fish cooked to perfection, this is the place.
  2. Hilo Homemade Ice Cream: Favorite flavors include standards like chocolate and vanilla, along with wickedly delicious concoctions like macadamia nut, Kona coffee, passion fruit, and banana-poha (gooseberry).
  3. Hilo Bay Cafe: An award winning restaurant where you can go basic or gourmet. 
  4. Ken's House of Pancakes: It is one of the only places that doesn't close down at 10pm with the rest of the city. Ken's is open 24 hours a day 7 days a week so whenever you need a fix, head on down there. They have a great menu that caters mostly to breakfast which is their trademark.
  5. Cafe Pesto: This romantic Italian restaurant is known for its inventive food.
See Also Links
  1. Wikipedia on Hilo
  2. Downtown Hilo Guide
  3. Hilo Trip Advise


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Creation date: Apr 8, 2007 12:17 pm     Last modified date: May 14, 2007 7:19 pm   Last visit date: Jul 16, 2018 2:32 pm     link & embed ?...
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