Our favorite was attending the LDS temple in Kona. Beautiful and small, it was a real highlight to attend a morning session.
We spent alot of time walking around, too.
Camelions are fairly common on the islands. This big dude was outside a shop - and very entertaining. The clerk fed him for us, and it was a highlight.
We almost had the chance this trip to 'hunt' camelions on Oahu - there is a local valley to go to at night, and spot them. It didn't work out for this trip, but is on for the next one!
Downtown Kona was nice for an hour or so... but 2 big cruiseships were in, and the tourists out in force. After a week of living local, it was weird.
There is a great Thai resteraunt downtown, and that made up for the crowds. Beautiful waterfront for the area. It is worth visiting - especially if the big ships aren't in.
Locals know the best suffing spots.
And they are fun to watch...
Local fruit -n- flower markets were also fun. Alot of flowers we'd never seen or heard of before.
Dazzling arrays of plants and fruit. Locals really know how to live good.
The park service has several very cool museums and sites on the Big Island, too. The historical site at Spencer Beach was great - alot to see, and a tour around the area that we highly recommend.
The guidebook also had great stories, history, and details for these areas - asking around will open up new things to see!
Here is the Heiau by Spencer Beach. One of them.
Locals still use the site, and are friendly with alot of interesting information and stories, too.
They also pointed out the village remains below the Heiau on the beach.
It is cool visiting these places - the people here lived the life.
About 9 miles north along the highway was another historic site - an old fishing village. A great walking tour and very informative.
Several of the old huts were rebuilt.
The water was full of colorful fish - you could see them dancing in the bay.
Whales jumping frequently, too.
The white coral on the black lava was a nice touch to the blue sky.
South a ways from Spencer Beach is a Petroglyph park. Turn in at the Mauna Lau Resort, and take the first right turn.
Look for signs - it is easy to find.
This park was full of old 'glyphs left by who-knows-whom over many years. It is a bit of a hike, but very worth it.
Also, be sure to keep your eyes on the lava for yellow crystals - I think it is called Olivettia or something like that.
When you look for it, you can find them all over.
Along the trail to the main petroglyph site, we found some BIG caves. This big one had some 'glyphs inside, too.
We didn't spend much time inside, but will look more closely (with a flashlight) next time...
Here was the main site. Alot of 'glyphs... but no Rosetta Stone.
Later in the day, heading south from Kona we stopped at this popular Bay to see the Captain Cook Monument. We didn't have enough time for kayaking, and that was the only way to get to the monument.
Oh well, at least there is snorkelling. Fabulous snorkelling. Excellent water clarity and alot of fish. Not much to see along the cliff-side and beach, but over by all the rocks and kayak launch it was great.
A big (6' long) morey eel came at me, and it was freaky. He didn't see me until it was within 8 feet, and then it coilled up and menaced. Finally it beat a hasty retreat. They are ugly and fast, but fortunately they are wimps. Good thing I had on my yellow swimsuit...
Alot of lava tubes along the cliffs to see, too. Be ware of graves in the cliffs, though - kind of spooky. There is alot of country and water to explore. Best part is that there aren't snakes or really much to worry about - some spiders but that is all. A great island and fun adventure.