Top 5 sights on the Big Island

Two Steps Horizon Guest House Big Island Hawaii
Two Steps

1. Snorkel at Kealakekua Bay or Two Steps

Snorkel both or just one – both are fantastic. Kealakekua Bay is one of the best places to snorkel in Hawaii. An easy drive from Horizon Guest House then hike down to the Captain Cook monument and snorkel, or make a day of it on a commercial boat such as the Fair Wind snorkel cruise.

Just arrived and want to get in the water straight away? Two Steps is only minutes from Horizon Guest House. We have snorkels and masks on hand for you to use and you’ll be swimming with yellow tangs in no time.

Easy for beginners Two Steps is so-named because of the natural rock steps used to access the water.

Place of Refuge Big Island Horizon Guest House Kona
Place of Refuge

Tip: Don’t forget to visit Pu’uhonua O Honaunau National Historical Park (translated as Place of Refuge) on the left side of the bay.

2. Volcanoes National Park

Less than 1.5 hours away Hawaii Volcanoes National Park contains some of the most unique geological, biological, and cultural landscapes in the world, including the summits of two of the world’s most active volcanoes – Kilauea and Mauna Loa. 

Volcano Big Island Hawaii Horizon B&B

We recommend you make the visitor center your first stop on arrival to find out how active the volcanoes are and for the latest tips on the best vantage point. Whether it’s a crater rim drive or a serious hike there’s lots to see at the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park.

Make a day of it and have lunch at one of the restaurants in the village of Volcano. Don’t forget to check out the Volcano Art Center Gallery within the park for some amazing local artwork.

3. Mauna Kea

Mauna Kea Big lsland Hawaii Horizon Guest House Captain Cook

To really experience the wonder of Mauna Kea it’s best to time your visit at dusk to enjoy the amazing sunset and then, on a clear night, the starry night sky! You’ll need to stop at the Visitor Information Station at 9,200 ft. to not only check the status of the summit but most importantly to adjust to the change in altitude – in order to drive from sea level to the summit at 14,000 ft. in 2 hours it’s important to acclimatize.

Make sure you allow enough time to get there – check with Clem on the timing and how to work it in to your day out – the summit opens half an hour before sunrise and closes half an hour after sunset. A stop to stargaze at the Visitor Information Station on the way down is a must.

Tip: Don’t forget your jacket! It gets cold up there, so warm clothes are a important – we have jackets on hand if you need one.

4. Waipi’o Valley

They filmed the end of the movie Waterworld here and when you visit it’ll feel like stepping into another world. Meaning curved water in Hawaiian, Waipi’o Valley is a magical place which can be enjoyed from the scenic lookout. 

Waipi'o Valley Big Island Horizon Guest House

5. Hāpuna Beach

Hapuna Beach Big Island Hawaii Horizon Guest House

White sand beach, turquoise water – it’s the classic Hawaiian beach and it’s here on the Big Island. An easy drive north from Horizon Guest House Hāpuna beach is about half a mile long, often sun-drenched, and is shaded with trees and a picnic pavilion.

Tip: Arrive early to find a good park and a shaded spot on the beach.

5 ½. Circle the Big Island

So we cheated – just a little. It’s hard to squeeze the best into a top 5 and your trip to the Big Island wouldn’t be complete without a road trip around the island. Check with us on itinerary recommendations and how to make it work with your stay.

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