BIG ISLAND THE LIFE & STYLE OF HAWAIâ€˜I
BIG ISLAND TRAVELER
T R AV E L E R
FIND YOUR HAPPY PLACE
LIVING ON THE EDGE
VOLCANO IS OPEN FOR BUSINESS
WHAT WE LOVE NOW
LOCAL VIBE ISLAND STYLE FOOD + DRINK ENDLESS ADVENTURES THE BEST BEACHES WHAT WE LOVE NOW $6.99
From the Simple to the Extraordinary
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New Cultural Exhibits throughout the center in partnership with Bishop Museum Located in Waikoloa Beach Resort | Big Island | KingsShops.com | 808.886.8811
30 WELCOME TO HAWAI‘I Big Views, Big Island
67 DESIGNING A FUTURE Fashion-forward on the Big Island
38 KONA COAST From Kailua to Ka‘ū
78 WHAT WE LOVE NOW Trending culinary experiences
54 KOHALA COAST The Sunny South and Historic North
82 CULINARY Q&A Executive Chef Michael Quanan
97 EAST SIDE From Lush Tropics to Fiery Kīlauea Volcano
84 CHEERS TO SPRING Some tasty wines for the season
8 LOCAL VIBE This 'n that Hawai‘i style
86 HUGE GESTURES Decoding the language of the humpbacks
22 WHY DON'T YOU... Try these Big Island experiences
94 TIMELESS TI The incredible, versatile canoe plant
28 LOCAL RAVES & FAVES My Hawai‘i
98 LIVING ON THE EDGE Volcano is open for business
40 SPIRITUAL JOURNEY Over the rivers, and through the woods, deep into the valley we go
101 ROLLIN' IN THE DEEP When ocean adventure calls, proceed with caution
50 THE ORCHID ISLE The beauty is in the details
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OVER THE MOON, LEFT AT CLOUD NINE, JUST PAST SEVENTH HEAVEN, FIRST RIGHT IS...
KŪKI‘O GOLF AND BEACH CLUB The Big Island of Hawai‘i’s elite private residential community. kukio.com | 808.325.4040
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BIG ISLAND T R AV E L E R
THE LIFE & STYLE OF HAWAI‘I
PUBLISHER Kevin Geiger
EDITOR IN CHIEF Mun Sok Geiger
DINING | 70
Tiare Fountain Eric Franke Ekua Impraim Krystal Kakimoto Natalia Mastrascusa Brooke Rehmann Peter A. Thoene Capture Hawai‘i
COVER IMAGE Eric Franke
ADVENTURE | 90 EVENTS | 110
myhawaiitraveler.com www.traveler.media Traveler Media PO BOX 159 Kamuela, HI 96743 firstname.lastname@example.org Copyright©2019 Traveler Media
BEACHES | 104 4
Reproduction in whole or in part without permission from the publisher is prohibited. Traveler Media makes every effort to ensure the accuracy of the information supplied in this publication. However, due to unavoidable circumstance of change, whether from the forces of nature or manmade, the information is not guaranteed. Traveler Media is not responsible or liable in any way for any loss or damage incurred resulting from the information supplied in any and all forms of media or communications.
MADE IN THE USA BIG ISLAND TRAVELER
PHOTO COURTESY: (TOP LT) MAUNA KEA BEACH HOTEL; (TOP RT) HILDGUND JEWELERS; (MID LEFT) CAPTURE HAWAI'I / NATALIA MASTRASCUSA; (MID RIGHT) HAWAII VOLCANOES NATIONAL PARK
SHOP | 58
Four Seasons Resort HualÄ lai Reservations 808 325 8000
here’s something very mystical and magical about humpback whales. When I am lucky enough to see a humpback breach, I find myself in awe of the power the whales possess to launch their colossal frame so impressively out of the water. Of course, the enormous splash created when the whale forcibly hits the water is a remarkable sight in itself. I always wonder what the whales are trying to say when they spyhop, lobtail or continuously tail-slap. Are they doing it for fun or is it to impress a nearby love interest? Or are they just showing off their strong physique? Scientists are still trying to decode exactly what the different body language signifies as well as trying to understand the haunting songs the humpbacks sing. Part of what makes the whales so intriguing is the air of mystery they still hold for us (Huge Gestures, p. 86). Just as the humpback whales are massive and exude an alluring mana (spiritual energy), Waimanu Valley is an extraordinary place of surreal beauty and tranquility. With rippling ridges, cool streams and verdant flora, this remote, vast valley will leave you enchanted (Spiritual Journey, p. 40). It takes quite a bit of effort and planning to get to Waimanu, but the pay-off is more than worth it. And when water adventures beckon, be aware of the immense power the ocean holds. Swimming in Hawaiÿi is different than swimming elsewhere. I thought I was a pretty decent swimmer until I experienced a near drowning incident. I was with my family at Kua Bay when I got caught in a shorebreak. All my energy was spent duck diving to avoid getting pummeled by the neck-breaking wave. The waves seemed endless and I was running out of stamina. I didn’t think I could duck dive even one more time to safely get to shore. My husband saw that
I was in trouble, and he timed shoving me with the wave so I pretty much bodysurfed my way back onto the beach. Tumbled onto the beach would be a more accurate description. I almost lost my top along with my ego and grace, and discovered sand in my hair and ears for at least a week. After this terrifying experience, I no longer allow myself to get in the water unless the conditions are completely benign. Take the time to observe the conditions prior to entry, and know what to do if you find yourself in a dangerous situation (Rollin’ in the Deep, p. 101). Know your level of skill, heed the warning signs posted, and choose to swim at lifeguarded beaches. Being on the Big Island during winter is extra special with our visiting humpbacks and snowy peaks of Mauna Kea and Mauna Loa reminding us of the cold weather hitting the mainland. But instead of us putting on layers of clothes plus hats and boots, we are stripping down to our bathing suits and putting on masks and fins to explore the vibrant reefs full of colorful sea creatures. And instead of scraping ice off our car windows, we are happily spooning heavenly shave ice while looking out into a tropical paradise. The stark contrast makes you more appreciative of all the wonders, warmth, and beauty found here this time of year. Warmest aloha, Mun Sok Geiger email@example.com Editor in Chief BIG ISLAND TRAVELER
PHOTO COURTESY: ERIC FRANKE
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WORDS BROOKE REHMANN
In a rush? Ready to head out on your next adventure? Well, then you better hele on! Meaning “to go” or “to move,” hele (pronounced “heh-lay”) is the perfect expression for when you’re ready to get a move on. With add-ons, you can easily change the meaning. Want to tell someone to come? Then you would tell them to hele mai. Ready for that same person to exit stage right? Hele aku means to “go away.” Don’t be surprised to see this expression on signs, including at local gas stations, where the name is applied perfectly, or hear locals using the term when they’re ready to go cruising. So next time you’re ready to head out the door, tell everyone hele.
Ever stop at a roadside attraction, hike to a beautiful beach, or admire a beautiful vista, and notice a collection of stacked rocks? Perhaps you wondered if these rocks had been stacked for generations, a rare sign of ancient Hawaiian life still witnessed today? Alas, most of these stacked rocks, or ahu, are not exactly a facet of ancient Hawaiian culture, but the product of unwitting visitors acting in a less than pono, or righteous, way. For many in Hawai‘i, these stacked rocks are seen as a form of graffiti, and the removal of rocks from certain places in order to stack them could be tampering with ancient heiau (temples) that are not commonly marked. Hawaiians did build ahu, also known as rock cairns, for ceremonial purposes, as well as directional markings, but these ancient ahu were much more carefully built and often significant in size. Instead of being tempted to reconstruct the gorgeous natural beauty of your surroundings and leave your own individual mark, visitors should resist the temptation to stack rocks. 8
BIG ISLAND TRAVELER
Hawaii’s largest selection of handcrafted Hawaiian jewelry
I n s p i r e d , d e s i g n e d a n d c r e a t e d i n H aw a i ‘ i KO N A S Q UA R E | M AU N A L OA M AC A DA M I A N U T Q U E E N S ’ M A R K E T P L AC E | ROYA L KO N A C O F F E E | WA I KO L OA K I N G S ’ S H O P S F O R E V E R G UA R A N T E E D
K AUA ‘ I
M AU I
KO N A
M AU I D I V E R S . C O M
THE COWBOY WAY
Visions of cattle ranching with horse-riding cowboys in open prairies are probably not the first mental image you conjure up when you think of Hawai‘i. Yet, for many, the ranching lifestyle is synonymous with life here in the tropics. Paniolo (cowboys) have played an important role in Hawaiian history and culture since the mid-1800s. King Kamehameha I was gifted several heads of cattle and sheep by Captain George Vancouver in 1793, and because the King imposed the death penalty to anyone who killed the cattle, they were free to multiply and did so in remarkable numbers. By the time Kamehameha III took reign, the mass of wild cattle were wreaking mayhem throughout the countryside. So he sent a high chief off to California in 1832, which was still part of Mexico at the time, to round up a few cowboys needed to demonstrate and teach the skills necessary for Hawaiians to learn how to properly handle horses and cattle.
Hawaiian cowboys, just like the cowboys on the mainland, are direct descendants of the Mexican vaqueros (cowboys). Some etymology experts believe the word “paniolo” came from the Hawaiian pronunciation of español since there is no “s” sound in the Hawaiian language and all words must end in a vowel. The town of Waimea is especially known for its paniolo culture, being the home of Parker Ranch, Hawai‘i’s biggest ranch. Each Fourth of July, paniolo from across the island come to Waimea to show off their roping and riding skills to an enthusiastic crowd. The paniolo values that began so long ago continues today to encompass the same spirit of independence, freedom and ethics in the life of many paniolo working the open ranges here on our diverse island.
BIG ISLAND TRAVELER
N E W LU X U RY HOM E S I N
HAWAI‘I C A L L O R V I S I T US TO DAY
T H E BE S T PL AC E S TO C A L L
Home island of hawai‘i
KAMILO AT MAUNA LANI Single-Family & Paired Homes Golf Course & Mountain Views 3-4 Bedrooms, Up to 3.5 Baths From $900K's to $2M island of hawai‘i
HOLUA KAI AT KEAUHOU Single-Family Detached Homes Oceanfront Community 3-4 Bedrooms, Up to 3.5 Baths From $800K's to $2M island of k aua‘i
PILIMAI AT PO‘IPU Townhomes & Condominiums Ocean, Golf & Mountain Views 2-4 Bedrooms, Up to 3.5 Baths From $700K's to $900K's
The information provided herein is not intended to be and does not constitute an offer or solicitation to sell and shall not be used in any state where prohibited by law or where registration requirements have not been met. Equal Housing Opportunity. Model photography is for illustrative purposes only. All square footages are approximate. All renderings, floor plans and maps are artists’ conceptions. Seller reserves the right to modify or change fl oor plans, included features, specifi cations, fi nishes, pricing, incentives and availability without prior notice. © 2019 Brookfi eld Residential Hawaii.
Now that you’re strapped into your snorkeling gear and ready to head out into Hawaiÿi’s pristine coral reefs, keep an eye out for one of our island’s most common reef fish, the hïnälea lauwili, or saddle wrasse. With its long greenish blue body with bright orange vertical stripe near its head that looks like a saddle, the hïnälea lauwili looks the colorful part for our warm, tropical waters. Males tend to have a white stripe near their head, though, like other wrasses, the saddle wrasse is capable of sex reversals throughout their lifespans. Endemic to Hawai‘i, the saddle wrasse grows to about 10 inches in length. These opportunistic fish feed on a diet of crunchy invertebrates such as crustaceans, mollusks and urchins, as well as algae and fish eggs. Spawning season occurs in the spring and summer during low tide and new moon phases, when groups of fish dart up towards the surface, releasing a cloud of eggs and sperm before a quick descent back towards their reef homes below. Keep an eye out for them during the day, as this is their most active time, before they too need a break from a long active day in Hawai‘i and burrough into patches of sand during the night.
BIG ISLAND TRAVELER
NEW FLOCK Some birds in Hawaiÿi are indigenous and endemic to our islands, while some have stowed away in more recent years to make these beautiful islands their new homes. The African silverbill was only first spotted in Hawaiÿi in the 1970s, making them a newcomer here, likely an escaped caged pet or two. Only 4 ½ inches long with pale brown and light gray feathers with a blue-gray beak, these avian creatures formerly called the Sahara Desert their home. This means the drier parts of our island near water, like Keähole Point on the Kona side as well as various stops along Saddle Road and Waimea, are ideal places to catch a glimpse of these little birds. Males and females are very hard to distinguish from each other due to their similar appearances. The African silverbill feeds mostly on grass seeds, along with an occasional aphid. For those listening closely, small flocks sound similar to the tinkling of little bells, like a high-pitched repeating “tseep” sound. Be sure to keep an eye (and ear) out for these little songbirds on your travels.
BIG ISLAND TRAVELER
Kamuela Provision Company
We invite you to experience the Island of Hawaii’s premier destination for
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Legends of Hawaii Luau
PARADISE IN BLOOM One of the most iconic flowers of our beautiful tropical islands is bird of paradise. Not actually an avian species, these “birds” are more flora than fauna. With their spiky orange sepals, and striking blue petals, these horizontal flowers look like birds that have just taken off in flight and are perfect for tropical floral arrangements. Native to South Africa, bird of paradise love warm and sunny weather, making them the ideal plants to grow here in the tropics. These beautiful flowers are found surrounded by evergreen vertical leaves, resembling those of a banana plant, with the brightly colored flower rising up around clusters of leaves, creating a striking visual when several flowers are in bloom. Once cut, a bird of paradise, also known as crane ﬂower or crane lily, can last for up to two weeks, making them an ideal addition to any floral centerpiece. Looking to grow some yourself? Keep in mind that plants started from seed can take up to five years to flower, though small offsets will take less time. Not only are birds of paradise a popular landscape feature, the terms is also applied to snowbirds, our part-time residents who come to enjoy our beautiful balmy winters, encased in the warm glow of paradise, before flying back to their homes in higher latitudes for the summer.
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VOTED “BEST SNORKEL CRUISE ON THE ISLAND OF HAWAII” WEST HAWAII TODAY READER’S POLL
Award-Winning Snorkel Tours to Kealakekua Bay & Captain Cook Monument - Since 1971
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capture precious memories.
From weddings and engagements to birthdays, anniversaries and family portraits, it’s important to have beautiful photographs as keepsakes you can proudly display in your home or give as gifts to your loved ones. When you hire a professional, you get plenty of great options in the style of photography you prefer from traditional and candid to fine art and fashion. Capture your life—tell your story. Capture Hawaii (808) 209-1712 or CaptureHawaii.com.
learn to make your own lei. Not only is it fun to take a workshop with Haku by
Ki so you can create beautiful lei to give as gifts, but you can host your own private class for special events celebrating birthdays, baby showers or fun girls’ brunch or night in. Haku by Ki makes beautiful, one-of-a-kind lei if you prefer a professional to create your garland for an important occasion. Call (808) 987-4141 or visit HakusByKi.com.
cruise for giants.
PHOTO COURTESY: (TOP LEFT) CAPTURE HAWAII; (TOP RIGHT) HAKU BY KI
WHY DON'T YOU...
The best part about being in Hawaiÿi in the winter, besides escaping the winter blues and shoveling the snow off the drive, is seeing the majestic humpback whales as they frolic in our warm waters. If seeing them from the shore isn’t close enough for you, take a whale watching tour and you might even hear the hauntingly beautiful whale song. On the Kohala Coast, call Mauna Lani Sea Adventures (808) 885-7883. For Kona, call Body Glove (888) 980-7513.
BIG ISLAND TRAVELER
WHY DON'T YOU... get a better view. See the fiery lava vents and the dramatic changes in landscapes from the historic May 2018 eruption of Kïlauea Volcano as well as the many hidden gems on the Big Island that can only be seen from up above. Take flight and witness the breathtaking beauty of the Hämäkua coastline with plummeting cliffs, raging waterfalls and emerald valleys. Call Paradise Helicopters (808) 969-7392 or Sunshine Helicopters (808) 882-7362.
Have you ever considered making a sustainable life for yourself? Or do you want to learn what it means to live sustainably? Kuwili Lani is a first-of-its-kind, planned sustainable community in the small village of Laupahoehoe on the Hämäkua Coast. Known for its breathtaking ocean views, small-town feel and slower pace of day-to-day Hawai‘i life, Laupahoehoe is the idyllic location to create a neighborhood designed for a unique style of living on the island. Designed for energy and water conservation, wise use of natural resources, communal fresh food production and innovative green building practices, Kuwili Lani will offer simple, green living to its residents and future generations. To learn more about Kuwili Lani, visit kuwililani.com.
BIG ISLAND TRAVELER
NOW R E LEAS I NG P HAS E 2
I F YOU R I DEA OF HAWAI I IS TH E B EACH,
why would you live anywhere else? Let nothing come between you and the sea, sand and sky. Let nothing come between you and the legendary resort that created and has defined island luxury for generations. The Mauna Kea Resort. Here are the island’s most spectacular oceanfront residences — literally steps from your home to the soft sands and warm waters of what is considered to be Hawaii’s best beach. Construction is under way and reservations are being accepted. Please be in touch to schedule a visit with us at the beloved Mauna Kea Resort. Residences from $1.5 to $8 million.
For Hapuna Beach Residences, obtain the Developer’s Public Report for a Condominium required by Hawaii law and read it before signing a binding sales contract. No federal or state agency has judged the merits or value, if any, of these properties. This does not constitute an offer to sell or a solicitation of any offer to buy where prohibited by law.
MY HAWAI‘I NAME
GENERAL MANAGER AT KINGS' SHOPS
HOW LONG YOU HAVE LIVED IN HAWAI‘I
23 YEARS IN HAWAI‘I, 6 YEARS ON THE BIG ISLAND
Favorite beach: So many favorites! Kua Bay for simple beauty and a relaxing day in the sun. Häpuna for fun body surfing or boogie boarding with the kids and Puakö (Beach 69) for a great beach to stay all day (good shady spots). Favorite hike: Pololü Valley. It’s a relatively easy walk that the whole family can do. Once you reach the valley floor, the exploring is magical—beautiful beaches, rope swings, skipping rocks, lush landscaping… Favorite custom/tradition: Driving to Mauna Kea after a snowfall and bringing a truckload of snow home to Waikoloa for the kids to play in. Only on Hawaiÿi Island! Best. Holiday. Tradition. Ever. Favorite place to catch the sunrise: Any beach on the Kohala Coast. The most beautiful sunset I’ve ever seen was at Paniau Beach (Puakö).
Favorite place to take in the history: So many good places! The petroglyph tour at Kings’ Shops will always be one of my favorites. I’m very proud of the history right here in our backyard. Waipiÿo Valley is another incredible spot that is full of history and culture—truly a magical place to experience. Favorite discovery: Akatsuka Orchid Gardens. I am a complete orchid geek so this place is heaven. Every variety of orchids you can imagine. I could stay here all day!
my local faves
HIKING POLOLŪ 28
If you were a visitor, you would want to know…Hawaiÿi Island is the most diverse of all the islands. Beautiful beaches and waterfalls, culturally rich, and full of hidden treasures. Take your time to drive all the way around and see what this amazing island has to offer.
ROY'S WAIKOLOA BIG ISLAND TRAVELER
PHOTO COURTESY: (TOP) CAPTURE HAWAII / NATALIA MASTRASCUSA; (BOTTOM RIGHT) ROY'S WAIKOLOA
Favorite place for happy hour: Of course, Roy’s Waikoloa Bar & Grill and A-Bay’s Island Grill right here at Kings’ Shops! I can’t wait to add Foster’s Kitchen to my list of favorites when they open soon!
Queens’ MarketPlace DINING Bistro at the Cinemas Charley’s Thai Cuisine Daylight Mind Café & Restaurant Kuleana Rum Shack Romano’s Macaroni Grill Sansei Seafood, Steak & Sushi Bar ENTERTAINMENT Waikoloa Luxury Cinemas FASHION Blue Ginger Family Cookies Clothing Co. Crocs Kona Surf N’ Sandals Local Motion Mahina Malibu Shirts Olivia Clare Boutique PacSun Persimmon Quiksilver Reyn’s Volcom FOOD OUTLETS Aloha Bol Big Island Burritos Dairy Queen/Orange Julius Ippy’s Hawaiian BBQ Lemongrass Express Marble Slab Creamery® Paradise Pizza & Grill Starbucks Subway Sandwiches & Salads GROCERY Island Gourmet Markets JEWELRY & ART Genesis Galleries Island Pearls Lava Light Galleries SERVICES Aston Hotels & Resorts Fidelity National Title & Escrow of Hawaii Hawaii Life Real Estate Brokers Hearts & Stars Salon & Day Spa Hilton Grand Vacations Club Luxury Big Island by Harold Clarke Waikoloa Dental Clinic Windermere Real Estate/C & H Properties SPECIALTY & GIFTS Bike Works Beach ’n Sports Blue Wilderness Dive Adventures Claire’s Hawaiian Quilt Collection Hawaiian Ukulele & Guitar Lids Ocean Sports Pacific Nature SoHa Living Sunglass Hut
808-886-8822 | QueensMarketPlace.net Waikoloa Beach Resort | the Kohala Coast 20 miles north of Kona International Airport
HAWAIâ€˜I THE BIG ISLAND
BIG ISLAND TRAVELER
Indelible Hawaiian memories are made at the edge of the ocean as top dancers and musicians perform and Mauna Kea chefs put on their own dazzling show featuring imu-roasted kalua pig and the island’s most bountiful buffet.
Experience the flavors of iconic Hawai‘i at the Mauna Kea.
Overlooking Kauna‘oa Bay, Manta pioneered Kohala Regional Cuisine, featuring locally sourced ingredients delivered daily.
With sweeping views of Kauna‘oa Bay, friends and families gather for mixologist-crafted cocktails and wine complemented by gastropub cuisine.
Casual dining in a beachside atmosphere, with fresh fish grilled just so, imaginative kabobs and island-fresh salads.
Timeless happens here. C A L L 8 0 8 - 8 8 2 - 5 8 1 0 F O R R E S E R VAT I O N S M AUNAKE ABE ACHHOTEL .COM
nthusiasts from beachgoers, snorkelers, divers, hikers, golfers, big-game fishers, stargazers and nature lovers all can satisfy their cravings for the best of the best all on one Big Island. The Island of Hawai‘i is home to world-class golf, beaches, diving and stargazing sites. Two of the most common adjectives to describe the Island of Adventure are contrast and diversity. You can ski the snow-capped Mauna Kea, trek across a desolate desert, and walk through a verdant tropical rainforest all in one day. Kïlauea, one of the planet’s most active and most visited volcanoes, brings both destruction and creation. Four out of the five main climate zones exist here from near desert to sub-arctic tundra. The Big Island is home to the world’s largest volcano—Mauna Loa, the most active volcano—Kïlauea, and according to the Guinness Book of Records, the tallest mountain— Mauna Kea when measured from its base on the ocean floor to its highest peak. 32
BIG ISLAND TRAVELER
8oz Filet Mignon with Spicy Garlic Cream Shrimp, Garlic Butter Green Beans
Surrounded by the historic King’s Trail featuring petroglyphs and lava fields, Roy’s Waikoloa offers an exclusive dining experience with exceptional food and outstanding service.
Dine with us and enjoy the bounty of Hawaii Island with the freshest local ingredients, the creative talents of our chefs and a grand view overlooking the Kings’ Course fairway and lake.
ROY'S AT THE KING'S SHOPS, WAIKOLOA | RESERVATIONS CALL (808) 886-4321 | ROYSHAWAII.COM
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On Our Family Farm
Here on the Big Island of Hawai'i, we believe in doing things slowly... That's why we slow-roast our macadamia nuts in small batches, and carefully hand pick our 100% Hamakua coffee.
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From our 'ohana to yours -- aloha!
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866-919-7414 | paradisecopters.com Departing from Kona, Hilo, Lāna‘i, Turtle Bay, and Kapolei (West O‘ahu) 34
The Island of Hawai‘i was born from five separate shield volcanoes, from oldest to youngest, Kohala (extinct), Mauna Kea (dormant), Hualälai (dormant), Mauna Loa (active, last erupted 1984) and Kïlauea (very active). Kïlauea means “spewing” or “much spreading” and it lives up to its name. The volcano has been erupting non-stop since January 3, 1983 and has added more than 543 acres of land. The youngest Hawaiian volcano is Lö‘ihi, an active submerged volcano that lies 3,200 feet below sea level, 18 miles southeast of Hawai‘i Island and has been erupting since 1996. With continued volcanic activity, it is believed that Lö‘ihi will eventually breach sea level and later attach at the surface onto Kïlauea. Presently, this event is predicted to happen about 100,000 years in the future. The Big Island has 266 miles of breathtaking coastline with some of the most beautiful, unique beaches found anywhere. You will find yourself enjoying the best of water recreation on sands from white to black, and gold to green. Hawai‘i Island has a landmass of approximately 4,028 square miles and represents 62 percent of the total land area of the Hawaiian Islands. Because it is nearly twice the size of all the other Hawaiian Islands combined, and to avoid confusion of the state’s name, Hawai‘i Island is often referred to as the Big Island. It is said that King Kamehameha the Great named the unified islands after his birthplace, the island of Hawai‘i. Not only is the land amazingly diverse, so are its residents. According to the 2000 U.S. Census Bureau, Hawai‘i County is the most ethnically diverse county in the United States with more than 28 percent of its residents claiming two or more races in their heritage. You will find the evidence of various influences from Asia to Europe most apparent in the delicious island cuisine. Blending favorite ingredients brought by multiple
ethnic immigrants, modern Hawaiian cuisine is truly a fusion of many favorites BIG ISLAND TRAVELER
The world famous spirit of Aloha is the central beauty that engulfs the island, welcoming visitors with warm smiles. from Polynesia, Japan, Korea, Portugal, China, Philippines and America. Try some local favorites such as plate lunch, loco moco, ‘ahi poke, galbi and, of course, kälua pig. Hawai‘i Island is also home for diversified agriculture worth over $300 million annually, including a beef industry that generates revenues of nearly $20 million, producing over five million pounds of beef annually on approximately 650,000 acres of grass. It’s probably difficult for some people to fathom that a magnificent tropical paradise is home for paniolo (cowboys), ranches and rodeos. Parker Ranch is one of the largest and oldest privately owned ranches in the United States and owns about 175,000 acres on the Big Island. Other agriculture includes macadamia nuts, papaya, avocados, tropical and temperate vegetables, Kona coffee, and flowers. Because of Hawai‘i Island’s reputation of growing copious beautiful orchids, it has earned the nickname “the Orchid Isle.” Science and technology have also found a place on the Big
Island. There are 13 telescopes including four of the biggest and most advanced on top of Mauna Kea, the world’s premier location for observing the sky with exceptionally clear images and clear nights for stargazing. The Natural Energy Lab of Hawai‘i (NELHA) operates an innovative ocean science and technology park where they are exploring the deep sea for discovery of natural organisms that can be used as drugs and cures for the improvement of human health. NELHA has already completed numerous groundbreaking projects creating major commercial development such as turning desalinated deep seawater into ultra-pure bottled drinking water. Along with the beauty of the land, rich traditions, history and culture are seen throughout the island. The world famous spirit of Aloha is the central beauty that engulfs the island welcoming visitors with warm smiles. So after you explore the very diverse, very awe-inspiring Big Island, take home and share the spirit of Aloha.
BIG ISLAND TRAVELER
Mofl0 2 &RS ™
deliver fresh air on every breath. Here’s how it works: Trading CO2 (exhale) for O2 (inhale) occurs in billions of alveoli cells in the bronchial tubes & lungs, but not in the 4-6 inches from the trachea to the mouth hole—the stretch known as dead-air space. A primitive snorkel triples dead-air space, so you rebreathe the same air, which is like wearing the same sox or not changing your skivvies. Burning lungs & a heavy heart affict the snorkeler breathing CO2. Would you rather sigh in an elevator or get 93% fresh air on every breath?
Mofl02™ FRESH-AIR SNORKEL K and the all new Mofl02RS ™—Rally Sport, for the Now comes
fuel effcient among us. More concise lungs need less volume in a snorkel. RS means less effort to clear, and it comes with a standard or small mouthpiece. With double-valve twin chambers, the
& Mofl02RS ™ clear easy as PHWEEGA! You will love no headaches & more umph in your glug. So GET DOWN & come up to
MoflO2 &RS ™
by the day, the week or for keeps
No snuks, leaks or pond scum in the gear wash.
Kailua-Kona on Alii Drive next to The Royal Kona Resort 329-0770 Kohala Coast/Waikoloa @ The Shops at Mauna Lani 885-9499 $9/week snorkel sets • 24 hr. Interisland Gear Return • All Islands 8-5 Every Day
Sunny Kailua-Kona is a busy seaside village consisting of many historic sites tucked among the open-air shops and oceanfront restaurants along the banyan-shaded Ali‘i Drive. Kailua was once established as the capital of the newly unified Kingdom of Hawai‘i by King Kamehameha I. Later the capital was moved to Lahaina then to Honolulu. Kona is home to the world-renowned Ironman Triathlon and big game fishing. Next to the active Kailua Pier with cruise ships, deep-sea fishing charters, sunset cruises and glass bottom tours, King Kamehameha I maintained his royal residence at Kamakahonu until his death in 1819. Ahu‘ena Heiau is a thatched shrine guarded by sacred wooden images restored by King Kamehameha the Great in 1812 to honor the god Lono. Significant history was made on the royal compounds when Liholiho, who became King Kamehameha II, dined with the women breaking one of the most rigorous kapu. This bold act brought on the abandonment of the ancient kapu system and opened the door to Christianity. Hawai‘i’s oldest Christian church was originally a thatch hut built in 1820 when the missionaries arrived aboard the Thaddeus traveling over 18,000 miles from Boston. Moku‘aikana Church was rebuilt in 1837 from an abandoned heiau made of lava and crushed coral. Across the street is Hulihe‘e Palace, which once served as a vacation residence for Hawaiian royalty. Today it houses a collection of beautiful furniture and rare collections. Traveling south on Ali‘i Drive, you will come upon some beautiful beaches to swim, snorkel and bask in the sunshine. Head up to Hölualoa, a quaint little town surrounded by lush tropical foliage, and visit the art galleries, antique stores and charming boutiques. Just south of Kailua lies Keauhou, the birthplace of King Kamehameha III and home to important historical sites. Kuamo’s Battle Burial Grounds dates back to 1819 where an estimated 300 Hawaiians were killed and Ku‘emanu 38
Heiau is an ancient surfing temple next to St. Peter’s Catholic Church. Kealakekua Bay, a marine reserve, offers outstanding snorkeling with a wide variety of colorful fish and spinner dolphins plaingy close to shore. Captain Cook’s Monument rises across the bay where he was killed in 1779. Pu‘uhonua O Hönaunau, Place of Refuge, with its heiau and wooden images of Native Hawaiian gods makes this sacred spot a must-see. Beautiful landscapes captivate you in south Kona with splendid coastlines that hug the highway and charming little towns giving you glimpses of what life was like in Old Hawai‘i. Cultivated on the slopes of Hualälai and Mauna Loa, the worldfamous Kona coffee with its deliciously rich flavor, thrives in their perfect climate. If you are seeking seclusion or tranquility, there is plenty just south of the Kona Coast in Kä Lae, the southernmost point of the U.S. This is where the first Polynesians were thought to have landed around 400 A.D. Be inspired as Mark Twain was by the raw beauty of the Ka‘ü district with its breathtaking views of the coastline and catch an unforgettable sunset on one of the unique, beautiful black or green sand beaches. Mark Twain wrote about his journey through Ka‘ü as, “Portions of that little journey bloomed with beauty. Occasionally we entered small basins walled in with low cliffs, carpeted with greenest grass, and studded with shrubs and small trees whose foliage shone with an emerald brilliancy. One species, called the mamona [mamani], with its bright color, its delicate locust leaf, so free from decay or blemish of any kind, and its graceful shape, chained the eye with a sort of fascination. The rich verdant hue of these fairy parks was relieved and varied by the splendid carmine tassels of the ‘ö‘hia tree. Nothing was lacking but the fairies themselves.” BIG ISLAND TRAVELER
OVER THE RIVERS, AND THROUGH THE WOODS, DEEP INTO THE VALLEY WE GO
WORDS PETER THOENE IMAGES ERIC FRANKE 40
BIG ISLAND TRAVELER
BIG ISLAND TRAVELER
awn broke. The eight of us groggily piled into our truck to make the 40 minute drive to Waipiÿo Valley, arguably the most famous valley on the Big Island. Upon arrival, the early morning view from the overlook, while stunningly gorgeous, foreshadowed the idea of an uneasy undertaking. In the distance, a near vertical valley wall loomed. A zigzag trail climbed the wall, resembling the letter “Z.” This Z-trail, with a quick 1,200-foot elevation gain, was the grueling start to our 9-mile hike—the Muliwai Trail to Waimanu Valley. The night before, our ragtag team assembled at my house, 1,500-feet above sea level, on the leeward slopes of Mauna Kea, on the fringe of Waimea Town. Our goal was to sleep in tents in Waimanu Valley, the very next evening. After dividing up the supplies, filling our water bladders, and zipping up our backpacks, we flopped down for a restless sleep. We silently prayed that the storm system forecasted for Hawaiÿi’s northeastern coast wasn’t going to be as bad as our weather apps predicted. The valleys of this remote coast aren’t things of this planet. They’re massive things. Alien things. Incomprehensible things. These valleys are impossible to behold with one glance. Improbable to capture with one photo—or even many photos as the mana (spiritual energy) is a huge part of the surreal beauty. In order to begin to absorb all of their corners and colors, their rippling ridges, splashing streams, and swirling waters, one must utilize all five senses. One must spin 360s— arms outstretched on the salt water’s edge—with eyes wide open, jaw agape, and a neck straining upward toward the sky. The vastness of these valleys is baffling. How can they be here? How can they exist?
The formation of Kohala Mountain’s northeastern valleys isn’t as magical as the valleys themselves seem. The simple combination of time, and the unrelenting persistence of elemental forces—specifically wind and water— carved out these monster valleys. Waterfalls, streams, and rainfall drilled and cut into the ground and dug out the valleys over millennia. The sheer cliffs at the water’s edge are the headwalls of a massive landslide called the Pololü slump. Basically, a chunk of Kohala Volcano slid into the sea over 350,000 years ago, leaving large cliffs behind in its wake. The landslide was about twelve miles wide and travelled 80 miles out to sea. What may be even more baffling than valley formation, is how humans themselves have left this perfect valley system relatively untouched. No bridges span the cliffsides. No subdivisions sprawl the spaces in between seven valleys. Discounting helicopter and boat, the only way into any interior valley is on foot. The trail from Waipiÿo to Waimanu is called the Muliwai, which translates to “river mouth” or “river delta.” Appropriate, seeing as that by the end of the trip, we crossed a river mouth four times. The first river mouth was at the bottom of Waipiÿo Valley. Due to the high surf, we opted to move more mauka (upland), and not cross the stream so close to the crashing water. Boots around our necks, backpacks strapped high, we forded the cold freshwater stream unscathed. After a quick yoga session, we started up the notorious Z-trail. We reached the top drenched in sweat. We couldn’t linger long under the shade of the massive Norfolk pines and ironwood trees. Mosquitoes were buzzing hungrily, around what I imagine to be a relatively rare human presence. The next leg of our journey wasn’t a flat trek across the plateau between Waipiÿo and Waimanu. We hiked about seven miles of a trail that included twelve gulches. Some gulches were as deep as 500 feet. That meant hiking a gentle slope down, crossing a stream, and hiking a gentle slope back up. Twelve times. All these gulches, in theory, could become valleys of their own someday. 44
BIG ISLAND TRAVELER
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n the beautiful Hamakua Coast of the Big Island, a new way of living awaits you—a place where sustainability, community and heritage come together to create exquisite country living. This place is called Kuwili Lani (“To Embrace the Heavens”).
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Between the gulches we stopped to snack, chug water, joke, catch our breath, and stretch. Our easygoing pace put us at the edge of Waimanu Valley about seven hours after we started the hike. The slippery scramble down the side of Waimanu was marked by a our first torrential downpour of rain, and delirious laughter. I forfeited my rain jacket for the last part of the hike, resigning, instead, to become a soggy mess. I kept the jacket stuffed in a dry bag deep in my backpack, next to a set of clean clothes for camp. The team waded across another muliwai, this time closer to the ocean, and set up camp at our designated site. We immediately took our water filtering devices and empty bottles to a spring farther up the valley on the opposite wall. While the walk was another 20 minutes or so, the lack of a heavy backpack made the unencumbered stroll feel immensely easier than the previous seven hours. The rest of our time in Waimanu was spent lounging, hiking around the valley, swimming, and staying steadily soaked by the intermittent rain. Once we accepted the dampness, our spirits couldn’t be extinguished. We were the Happy Valley Team. At least that’s what we called ourselves. As is typical, the hike back seemed much shorter than the hike in. Our packs were only slightly lighter, with our food mostly consumed. Six hours, nine miles, twelve gulches and two river mouths later we were back on the black sand beach of Waipiÿo. I couldn’t help but feel a bit superior to the other folks on the beach—the ones who drove down by truck for the day. Could they really appreciate the soft sand on their bare feet like I did, not having worked so hard for it? I didn’t think so. What I did know for a fact, was that our Happy Valley Team was the most appreciative group at the Big Island Brewhaus in Waimea that night, if not the muddiest. The two nights spent alone in the valley, munching on re-hydrated camp food and dry trail mix, made our cold beer and hot garlic fries seem like a royal banquet. Waimanu Valley is a magical place. If you’re lucky enough to go there, be aware of her power and beauty. Check the conditions before you go. Safety first always, and pack out what you pack in. Reserve your permits and heed any warnings posted on the DLNR website https://camping. ehawaii.gov/camping/all,details,31720.html. 46
BIG ISLAND TRAVELER
ly the luxurious Eco-Friendly
WhisperStar and experience the adventure of a lifetime. Depart from Hapuna Private Heliport, just minutes away from The Westin Hapuna, Mauna Kea Beach Hotel, Mauna Lani Bay Hotel and The Fairmont Orchid. WORDS PETER A. THOENE IMAGES ERIC FRANKE
WATCH THE VIDEO!
“ONE OF THE TOP-10 THINGS TO DO IN YOUR LIFETIME” THE TRAVEL CHANNEL
Photo: Devin Hume
BIG ISLAND TRAVELER
Surreal Kona Coast Snorkel Locations | Acclaimed Evening Manta Ray Adventures
FIRST-CLASS SNORKELING ADVENTURES
Information & Reservations 808.322.2788 | Current Specials at www.fair-wind.com
THE ORCHID ISLE The beauty is in the details
WORDS ROGER HARRIS 50
BIG ISLAND TRAVELER
he Big Island, also known as The Orchid Isle, is a flower lover’s paradise where tropical blooms of every imaginable size, shape and fragrance not only make up celebratory lei (floral garlands), but flourish wild on roadsides, grow from the crevices of rock walls, adorn shade trees and even appear as colorful blossoms gracing your dinner plate. Long entrenched as a part of Asian culture, the orchid’s cascading blossoms are thought by Feng Shui practitioners to represent chains of abundance, and that placing them within a room can promote spiritual growth, fertility and longevity of health. Native to Central and South America, Australia as well as Asia, orchids were prized collectibles taken home by European travelers in the 1700s. The Big Island began earning its nickname “The Orchid Isle” in the 1940s as growers found that the Hilo region’s balmy, moist climate is ideal for cultivating the delightful flowers. There, on the east or windward side of the island, orchids are raised in a simple, open structure called a shade house, a tent-like framework covered with fabric that provides adequate protection against harsh sunlight and damaging rains. To get your fill of the multitude of beautiful orchid species, you can take guided tours of Big Island nurseries, stroll through botanical gardens that are literally erupting in flowers, attend
an orchid show where tomorrowâ€™s floral star may debut, and shop at farmers markets for freshly-cut blooms. If you are an avid orchid enthusiast, a visit to the impressive Akatsuka Orchid Gardens in Hilo is an absolute must. There are over 26,000 known orchid species and more than 100,000 hybrids, yet five common types are predominant on the Big Island. The most popular is Dendrobium, often seen in purple and white lei, but available in a rainbow of colorful petals, which invite you to gaze into the flowerâ€™s often spectacularly painted center. Cattleya, known to some as the Queen of Orchids, are used to craft corsages, and vary widely from frilly and fragrant to showy and spectacular. Vanda is the elegant fairies of the forest, bedecked in flowing pastel party dresses or as sparkling stars in a variety of hues, while Cymbidium vary from clusters of quiet and unadorned cup-shaped showers of blooms to volcanic explosions of billowing, dotted, painted and striped petals. Phalaenopsis (resembling moths) will draw your eyes to a flame of color, from baby soft and almost impossibly delicate, to bold petals that steal your breath away. While the grower can give the best recommendations on the care of the specific orchids you may purchase, there are some general orchid cultivation tips you can follow at home. You may need to experiment to find which orchids grow best in your home and in your climate, when you can take them outdoors in the spring, and how to protect 52
them from pets (and toddlers)â€”indoors and out. As a general rule, most orchids need at least as much light during the growing season as is found under the shade of a large tree in direct sun, with absolutely no direct sun hitting the plant. It is very important that an orchid never sit in a tray filled with water, as they require good air circulation to raise water through their roots into the stems and leaves. A small fan can be used to simulate tropical breezes. As orchids are generally not heavy feeders, a slow release 10-10-10 fertilizer can be applied at weekly intervals during the active growth and flowering period, or at 25 percent strength at every watering. Salts should be leached from the plants every two weeks by a heavy watering. To enjoy orchids as cut flowers, harvest them when 75 percent of the spray is open with 4-6 buds left unopened. Dip clippers in a three to five percent hydrogen peroxide solution and soak the cut flowers in water or mist them if you are not able to immediately place them into a vase. So, whether your favorite Big Island orchids are clouds of neon pink that smell like heaven, tiger-striped chocolate that look good enough to eat, or one of the thousands of variations in between, these wondrous rainforest jewels can remind you of paradise while they promote fertility of body and mind and a healthy long life.
BIG ISLAND TRAVELER
KOHALA Historic North & Sunny South Out of the first section of the Big Island to rise from the sea lies spectacular white sand beaches, world-renowned golf, luxurious resorts and spas, and a chic offering of restaurants and shops. Besides the plush effects, the weather also gives the Kohala District the nickname “the Gold Coast.” The sunniest destination on the island boasts both nationally-ranked beaches and some very secluded hidden gems. Add some swaying palm trees and incredible sunsets and you will call it paradise. The multiple hues of blue from the crystal clear water and green from the fairways are a dramatic contrast against the black lava fields that line the majestic coastline. Beautiful views of Mauna Kea and Maui are included along with major provocative history that unified the islands of Hawai‘i. The Pu‘ukoholä Heiau in Kawaihae is a significant historical site for the statehood of Hawai‘i. King Kamehameha built the heiau with strict guidelines to dedicate it to his family war god, to fulfill the prophecy of conquering all the islands. Kawaihae is an alluring harbor town with a handful of original shops and delectable restaurants favored by locals. It’s a great place to kick back and relax and watch the busy activities of the harbor. Fish with the locals or bask in the sunshine on a sandy beach next to the boat ramp. Travel north to Häwï and Kapa‘au. Once they were busy commercial centers during the operation of the Kohala Sugar plantation and served as large camps for many countries. Regional cuisines were shared among the workers and diversity was beautifully woven into the community. Take the time to explore the charming boutiques of Häwï to find treasures to take home with you. Be sure to come hungry and dine at the sushi restaurant, which serves creative, delectable delights with unique island flair you won’t find anywhere else. Visit the original King Kamehameha Statue commissioned by King David Kaläkaua as it stands proudly at the legendary birthplace of the Great King in Kapa‘au. The statue was intended for Honolulu, but was lost in a shipwreck off the coast of South America. Another statue was commissioned and the replica was sent to Honolulu. The original was salvaged and returned to its rightful place in Kapa‘au in 1912. A few miles past Kapa‘au, Pololü Valley Lookout offers stunning, breathtaking views of coastline and valley. The hike down is easy and you will be rewarded with a beautiful black sand beach. However, going up is a different story. Upcountry from Kawaihae, Waimea is a beautiful place still alive with its cowboy heritage that has breathtaking views of Kohala Mountain and Mauna Kea. Because it is set on higher elevation, a sweater may be needed to enjoy the surroundings. It is home to Parker Ranch, paniolo (cowboys) and rodeos and the quaint community has the feel of Colorado in springtime. Although the landscape has changed dramatically from its spectacular beginnings with prime resorts and trendy shops along the Kohala Coast, the tradition of aloha remains the true splendor of the land. 54
BIG ISLAND TRAVELER
3:13PM The moment the walls came down and bliss took over.
A luxury spa experience that blends the essence of Aloha with the relaxed, tropical spirit that is Hawaii. Rejuvanate with the soothing sounds of water, pleasant ocean breezes and a ﬂoral scent that ﬁlls the air. Welcome to Spa Without Walls.
FAIRMONT.COM/ORCHID-HAWAII/SPA | 808 887 7538 | SPA.ORCHID@FAIRMONT.COM
ISLAND GOLF HAPUNA GOLF COURSE
This Arnold Palmer/Ed Seay-designed 18-hole championship course is nestled into the dramatic natural contours of the land from the shoreline to about 700 feet above sea level. This beautiful course features spectacular vistas of the Kohala Coast and the Pacific, with snow-capped Mauna Kea volcano as a backdrop. Hapuna’s challenging play and environmental sensitivity make it one of Hawai‘i’s most unique golf courses. Tee times: (808) 880-3000.
The Hualälai Golf Course, the first Jack Nicklaus Signature Course on the Big Island is home of the PGA Champions Tour Mitsubishi Electric Championship every January. This carefully groomed course was designed with a sense of place. Special care was taken to preserve the historic King’s Trail located on the course, and other significant cultural sites at the resort. Residents and residential guests of Hualälai along with guests of the Four Seasons Resort Hualälai may enjoy this great facility, which includes a nine-acre driving range with 27,000 square foot short game practice area. For information, please call (808) 325-8480.
MAUNA KEA GOLF COURSE
For over 40 years, Mauna Kea Beach Hotel has been the most celebrated resort in Hawaii. And Mauna Kea Golf Course, carved out of ancient lava flows by Robert
Trent Jones, Sr., is consistently ranked among the top 10 in the world. This course which emulates the legend of Hawai‘i as a golfer’s paradise, boasts the famed 3rd hole, where surging blue inlet waves thunder against a rocky black shoreline for an experience you’ll remember forever. Without changing the essential character of his father’s design, Rees Jones completed a tee-to-green renovation in the fall of 2008. (808) 882-5400.
MAUNA LANI RESORT NORTH COURSE
The North Course, becoming known as the tournament course, is a bit more difficult than the South Course, displays a much different face of Hawai‘i Golf. Built on a lava bed, it is characterized by rolling terrain punctuated by kiawe forests. Trees often come into play on this course. Number 17, a par-3 tucked into a natural lava amphitheater, is another one of the resort’s signature holes and a favorite “I was here” photo spot. Public. 18 holes. 68-1310 Mauna Lani Dr. (808) 885-6655.
MAUNA LANI RESORT SOUTH COURSE
The South Course snakes through the stark, rugged a‘a lava of the prehistoric Kaniku lava flow. Besides great golf, the challenging course offers the player a panorama of mountain and ocean views. The South Course is home to No. 15, one of the most photographed overthe-water golf holes in the world. Public. 18 holes. 681310 Mauna Lani Dr. (808) 885-6655.
WAIKOLOA RESORT BEACH COURSE
Weaving its way through rolling lava beds, down to the surf, the Waikoloa Beach Course is simply breathtaking. Designed by Rober Trent Jones Jr., this par-70, 6,566 yard course offers strategically placed water features and immaculate greens that are well guarded by the course’s 74 white sand bunkers. The crowning glory of the Beach Course is the intimidating, par 5, 502 yard 12th hole. Playing along the Pacific Ocean, the 12th hole not only offers challenging golf, it is a great place to watch humpback whales and catch splendid views of the other Hawaiian Islands. Public. 18 holes. 600 Waikoloa Beach Dr. (808)886-7888.
WAIKOLOA RESORT KINGS’ COURSE
Waikoloa Kings’ Course is one of the most challenging and picturesque golf courses in Hawai‘i. This Tom Weiskopf and Jay Morrish design was named one of the top 100 on Golfweek’s 2005 “America’s Best Resort Courses” list. The Kings’ Course uniquely provides golfers the best of two worlds; golf on an island paradise offering uninterrupted views of snow-capped Mauna Kea, on a course that more closely resembles a layout along the coast of Scotland. The 7,064 yard links-style golf course is highlighted by six lakes, 83 sand traps, and wide undulating fairways. Kings’ offers a solid, strategic layout that requires a golfer to think his way around the course. Public. 18 holes. 600 Waikoloa Beach Dr. (808)886-7888.
Two ouTsTanding golf courses, one unforgettable experience.
Waikoloa Beach ResoRt - Beach & kings’ golf couRses Hawaii’s Best Golf Value WaikoloaGolf.com
Tee Times: 808.886.7888
600 Waikoloa Beach Drive
Waikoloa, Hawai’i 96738
BIG ISLAND TRAVELER
M AUNA KEA GOLF COURSE, HOLE 3
HAPUNA GOLF COURSE, HOLE 10
It’s hard to believe that before 1964 golf didn’t exist on the Island of Hawai‘i. With spectacular ocean views from every hole, both the Hapuna and Mauna Kea Golf Courses are sure to take your breath away. Try your hand at Mauna Kea, a course that helped define Hawai‘i as a golfer’s paradise or experience Hapuna’s unique Scottish links-style play. Both courses are highly awarded; the Mauna Kea has ranked among Golf Digest’s Top 100 since 1969. No matter which course you choose, you’re not likely to forget it. Master the unforgettable today by calling 808-882-5405 to set up a tee time.
M A U N A K E A G O L F. C O M M AUNA KEA GOLF COURSE, HOLE 11
ildgund’s at Dawkins Benny since 1873 is the oldest and only store that carried authentic Hawaiian Jewelry and Coat of Arms. Hildgund’s original Hawaiian jewelry, with dated document recorded December 10, 1911, is now on display in the Bishop Museum. After Hildgund’s retiring in 1995, her downtown Honolulu shop closed after 122 years of business. The store’s closure ended her production of Hawaiian Jewelry and
" YOU CAN BUY HAWAIIAN BRACELETS ALL ACROSS HAWAI‘I AND ONLINE, BUT NOT WITH THE QUALITY OF HILDGUND. EACH BRACELET IS ONE OF A KIND."
Coat of Arms. With 47 years of experience on the bench, Hildgund’s jeweler, and a third generation hand engraver from Hildgund Jewelry in the 1980's, along with her son Bruce Bucky, have teamed up to recreate Hildgund’s original Hawaiian jewelry once again. Hildgund welcomes the quality and workmanship of what Hildgund Hawaiian bracelets have been for all these years. The designs are exclusive to Hildgund Jewelry.
BIG ISLAND TRAVELER
ic h e pa c if t in y r v e n to
BIG ISLAND • New Location On Corner of Maiau Street & Kamanu Street Across from Costco • 808.329.6500 Hand Woven • Natural Fibers Silk • Wool • Hemp • Bamboo Silk Custom Design & Sizes Available Showroom Open Every Day 10am to 6pm Free Shipping & Local Delivery (with minimum purchase)
OAHU Na Lama Kukui • 808.524.7769 Ward Avenue • 808.596.7333
MAUI Kahului • 808.877.7200 myhawaiitraveler.com
BECOME BRILLIANT Hildgund boasts a wide array of precious and semiprecious colored gems, fine jade and pearls, plus an exceptional selection of internally flawless colored diamonds in the state. With one-of-a-kind pieces like the brilliant 3.03 Carat natural pink sapphire (left) and the 4.39 Carat fancy yellow diamond, internally flawless (below). Visit their Big Island locations at Four Seasons Resort HualÄ lai, Mauna Kea Beach Hotel, or Mauna Lani Bay Hotel & Bungalows. Call (800) 636-3306 or visit hildgund.com.
BIG ISLAND TRAVELER
PHOTO COURTESY: (BOTTOM) TIFFANY & CO.; (TOP) MAUI DIVERS
The Hawaiian Heritage Collection from Maui Divers features a coral branch design that reflects the company's origins. Shown above is a 14K gold necklace ($2695) in the coral branch design, this is complemented with black coral ring, also in 14K gold ($495). Available at Maui Divers Jewelry in the Kings' Shops at Waikoloa.
Tiffany T square bracelet in 18k rose gold with pavĂŠ diamonds ($11,500). TIFFANY CT60ÂŽ Dual Time 3-Hand 40 mm watch in stainless steel ($5650). Available at Tiffany & Co. in the Kings' Shops at Waikoloa Resort.
PIECES OF PARADISE
These Spessartite Bead Hoops from Nina Runsdorf are part of the gemstone group with an orange to red hue. Made of 18-karat rose gold, these designer hoop earrings feature orange beads totaling 61.70 carats, and orange sapphire melee. Show off these Nina Runsdorf earrings on your next island adventure ($15,000). Available at Seaside Luxe in Hualālai Resort, home of Four Seasons Resort Hualālai.
Featuring Hawaiian koa wood and resin in integral koa frames, the Honor Series by Timothy Allan Shafto elevates the appreciation of wood as art. His silver, bronze, and copper versions are shown here. To experience this and more works by Hawaii’s master artists, visit Tiffany’s Art Agency in Hawi, or shop TiffanysArtAgency.com.
Indich Collection showcases its own Gingko Fan design in its newest color way. Hand woven with Tibetan wool and silk accents. Indich specializes in Hawaiian, Pacific Rim, and Persian style rugs and has put its artistic imprint on Hawai‘i's finest homes and resorts. Available at Indich Collection at 73-5617 Maiau St. in Kona, just above Costco. Visit indichcollectionhawaii.net or call the showroom at (808) 329-6500.
BIG ISLAND TRAVELER
Picture a thousand words...
Weddings • Engagements • Lifestyle • Commercial • Editorial • Maternity • Real Estate • Newborn Food and Beverage • Events • Portraits • Family memories • Fashion • Matterport
ISLAND SHOPPING INDICH COLLECTION FINE ORIENTAL CARPETS & HAWAIIAN RUGS Indich Collection offers unique rug designs, flavored with the richness and casual elegance of the islands. Using the finest natural fibers and knowing that quality is too important to compromise, Indich Collection has created one of the most artful collections of handwoven rugs available anywhere. With the largest inventory in the Pacific and direct import Custom Design Program, you’ll find an unlimited choice of rug designs, sizes, colors and quality.. Visit our Kona Showroom…open everyday or by appointment! Add Aloha to your home. Indich Collection Showrooms: Kona Industrial Park (808) 3296500, on Oahu (808) 524-7769, on Maui (808) 877-7200 or visit hawaiianrugs.com. HILDGUND JEWELERS Founded in 1873, Hildgund is the ultimate in fine custom designs and handcrafted jewelry. Every piece unique by its elegance, every piece one of a kind. A wide selection of precious and semi-precious colored stones plus many varieties of fine jade. The almost unlimited choice of their diamond collection is only of the highest quality. Customers worldwide have returned to a Hildgund location time and again, convinced
that they have found one of the finest jewelry boutiques anywhere. On the Big Island we are located in the Four Seasons Resort Hualälai (808) 325-0606, Mauna Lani Bay Hotel & Bungalows (808) 885-6617 and Mauna Kea Beach Hotel (808) 882-1861. Visit hildgund. com for store locations on Maui and Oahu. KINGS’ SHOPS The Big Island’s most exciting collection of shopping, dining and services can be found at Kings’ Shops. Visitors and residents enjoy onestop shopping that includes everything from high-end boutiques and one-of-a-kind jewelry to art galleries and activity centers to designer wear and spectacular gifts. Also home to an array of dining options, from award-winning Pacific Rim cuisine to on-the-go snacks. Located in the Waikoloa Beach Resort. Open daily from 9:30am to 9:30pm. For more information, call (808) 886-8811 or kingsshops.com. AHUALOA FARMS Ahualoa Farms sits on the slopes of Mauna Kea Volcano and began harvesting and offering great tasting macadamia nuts and Hawaiian coffee in 2005, selling products locally at farmers markets and small stores. Today, Ahualoa Farms
A CUT ABOVE
products have become highly praised and sought after worldwide. From delicious hand-picked and roasted macadamia nuts, to perfectly roasted coffees, they have something for everyone. Visit the store in Honoka‘a town or shop online at ahualoafarms.com. PERSIMMON Before you go anywhere else to shop for the trendiest clothes or gifts made in Hawai‘i, you must go to Persimmon. Persimmon offers the latest in fashion with brands like Wildfox, Saint Grace, Sundry, Seven Jeans, Goddis, Ella Moss, Free People, Maui Mari Jewelry, Hard Tail, Michael Stars, Young Fabulous & Broke, and more. This charming boutique is a local favorite for its wide selection of great gifts including, candles, journals, paper products, jewelry, shoes and even must-have body care products. Persimmon receives new merchandise every two weeks to keep you dressed in the latest styles. Persimmon offers personalized service with a warm smile. Be envied. Shop Persimmon. You will be glad you did. Open daily. Located in the Queens’ MarketPlace in Waikoloa Resort. Call (808) 886-0303 or persimmonboutique.com.
For the man who has everything, William Henry designs creates a range of tools so perfectly conceived and executed that they transcend superlative function to become superlative art. The typical knife takes more than eight months from conception to completion. Shown here is the the Ali‘i, a Hildgund exclusive limited edition knife featuring Peridot and Koa wood. Available locally at Hildgund Jewelers, located within the Four Seasons Resort Hualālai, Mauna Kea Beach Hotel, Mauna Lani Bay Hotel & Bungalows.
BIG ISLAND TRAVELER
QUEENS’ MARKETPLACE In addition to shopping, enjoy Hawaiian cultural performances at the Coronation Pavilion, weekly cultural offerings with our kupuna, and movies under the stars every Friday. You’re meant to enjoy this tropical marketplace with pools of lily pads and open spaces between shops offering fashionable apparel, jewelry, art and fun gifts. Located at Waikoloa Beach Resort, open daily 9:30am – 9:30pm. Call (808) 886-8822 or visit QueensMarketPlace.net. SEASIDE LUXE The true definition of resort luxury can be found directly below the Four Seasons Resort Hualälai’s hotel lobby, inside Seaside Luxe Boutique. Here you will find the world’s most premier fashion lines including the precious gems of Irene Neuwirth, a well known visual artist and one of the leading jewelry designers in the U.S. Her unique pieces are inspired by nature and her free spirit. Open daily 8:00am – 7:00pm. For more information, please call (808) 3254765. THE SHOPS AT MAUNA LANI The Shops at Mauna Lani, located in the heart of the Kohala Coast, is the place for that special combination of brand name quality and unique local craftsmanship. From designer fashions to casual beachwear, and unique custom accessories, you can find something wonderful for everyone. There are eight great dining options, from quick and casual to fine dining. Don’t miss our complimentary cultural lessons at 5:30pm on Mondays and Thursdays, followed by our famous hula show. Join us for a uniquely Hawaiian experience, located in the Mauna Lani Resort, open daily from 10 AM to 9 PM. For more information, call (808) 8859501 or visit shopsatmaunalani.com. TIFFANY'S ART AGENCY GALLERY Join us as we dive deep into Hawai‘i’s contemporary art scene, unveiling hidden local talent creating masterful works of art. It’s a gallery full of joyful creative expression and connection with exclusive shows that change monthly, 2nd Saturday Collectors Receptions, and local style “talk story” events with the featured artists. Shop online at TiffanysArtAgency.com or in the gallery and discover your wonder and inspiration as you collect art and memories made in Hawai‘i. Located in Hawi next to Sushi Rock. Call (808) 747-5882 for more information. myhawaiitraveler.com
Tiffany’s A A rt
contemporary local art & home decor from Hawaii’s master artists 55-3435 Akoni Pule Hwy. #9 | Hawi, HI | next to Sushi Rock Get the FREE
Tiffany’s Art Agency App Place Art to Scale on Your Walls Shop TiffanysarTagency.com
Tiffany@TiffanysArtAgency.com | 808-747-5882 Top: Sunrise by Timothy Allan Shafto | Hawaiian koa wood, sand, & resin colorflow painting in integral koa frame | 48” h x 72” w Left: Uhu by Kristie Fujiyama Kosmides | Oil on canvas | 42” h x 42” w
BIG ISLAND TRAVELER
DESIGNING A FUTURE WORDS BROOKE REHMANN IMAGES TIARE FOUNTAIN
Celebrated throughout the Pacific Rim and beyond, Polynesian art and culture has enchanted all who come in contact with it. And for interested visitors or passionate locals, the 2nd Annual Hawaiÿi Kuauli Pacific & Asia Cultural Festival is the place to witness many facets of food, fashion, cultural expressions, keiki hula competition, as well as a variety of cultural workshops. An opening ceremony showcasing the protocols from across the Pacific and Asia will be featured, including groups from New Zealand/Aotearoa, Tahiti, Japan, as well as the Marquesas Islands. One can’t-miss event is the Wearable Arts Fashion Show taking place on Saturday, May 18th featuring Auntie Nita Pilago of Wahine Toa Designs, and three up and coming fashion designers under her mentorship. Ten years ago, Auntie Nita began her own fashion line, taking facets of her native culture and incorporating them into her designs. Though the company is a somewhat myhawaiitraveler.com
recent endeavor, Auntie Nita has been passionate about design from an early age. In sixth grade, she had to sew a piece for a school fashion show, and even though she made several errors, she was taught the value of fixing those mistakes herself, taking chances to see what worked and what didn’t. This hard work has paid off, as she is now one of the most beloved and ubiquitous local fashion designers across our islands. One of the great things about her clothing is that Auntie Nita designs for all shapes and sizes. She wants people to feel comfortable in their own skin, and her beautiful designs look great on a variety of body shapes. “That’s the hardest part,” she says. “I want to fit every body so each person feels beautiful, comfortable, and happy.” Look around the islands, and you’re sure to see people wearing her clothing—young and old, local and not, shapely or less so, and almost everyone in between. Her designs appeal 67
not just to women, but also men, and are appropriate for work, special occasions like weddings, or regular life. Her wearable art is more than just esoteric or intellectual. It is meant to be enjoyed in everyday life, to fill the wearer with aloha. She borrows inspiration from her trips abroad throughout the Polynesian Triangle, and weaves them into culturally rich patterns that tell a dramatic story. Even though each piece of art has its own mana‘o, or intention/ meaning, Auntie Nita prefers not to write it down, but rather wants the wearer to feel it. A huge part of her success is her family, and their influence is seen and felt throughout each piece. Her son Che, a tattoo artist, helps draw some of the designs that she uses, while her husband Angel and other son Kaleo also help with designs. When looking at her original color swatches, she talks about how each color was somehow influenced by a family member. There’s Mehana Sunrise for her granddaughter, and brown for her husband, her foundation. Her dad is represented by the green tea color, while her mom is honored with Gladys Gray. Even her fabric printer in Indonesia is considered part of her ÿohana (family), as they have been with her since the beginning. Wahine Toa Designs participates in several fashion shows a year, but this upcoming one should be something special. Models are all different ages, shapes and sizes, and throughout the process, she wants each model to feel comfortable and full of aloha. Big Island does not feature a lot of fashion shows, so this one is a great opportunity for local designers to show off their skills. “It will be fun. It’s a great community event to experience culture, dance, and hands-on crafts. The fashion show is on our own ÿäina (land), showing our own clothing, using our own models, and is just inclusive of the people in our own community.” When mentoring the new designers, Auntie Nita wants to teach them the basics and present their own unique creations. She reiterates that fashion isn’t just about clothing, but also includes jewelry, bags, and beyond. She discusses the importance of a strong education, and shares 68
how she could have avoided a lot of mistakes and saved a lot of time had she gone to school for fashion design. She also takes a different approach to marketing than some other companies might take. “My marketing is to go out in public and market myself—I only wear my own material.” At the time of printing, she doesn’t have a website (one is under construction and will be up and running before the festival), but uses Instagram to showcase her work to a broader audience. Somehow, it all works—our island residents are covered in her designs. Throughout all of this, Auntie Nita stays humble. She still designs from her home, where she also has her shop, with guests popping in whenever she’s around to open her doors. She also does her order processing from home too, with various workers helping to hang clothes, pack and unpack boxes, and provide feedback on her work. One of her main pieces of advice for these up-and-coming designers is to remind them that you can be a successful fashion designer without scaling up beyond your reach. Stay humble, keep working hard, stay within your means, and above all, create. Dream big, of course, but it’s not necessary to be overly accessible to a wide market. Despite the fact that Auntie’s clothing is not as easy as ordering something with the click of a button, her work stays in demand and features prominently in our islands. “We are starting with a whole new generation. We must connect the old ways with today, by teaching the core values of our islands.” What better way to see this evolution than in person, here and now, on our own island paradise home? The 2nd Annual Hawai‘i Kuauli Pacific & Asia Cultural Festival takes place Friday, May 17th thru Sunday, May 19th at the Courtyard by Marriott King Kamehameha’s Kona Beach Hotel in downtown Kailua-Kona. Tickets for the Wearable Arts Fashion Show are $15 in advance, or $20 at the door. The event starts at 11am and runs until 1pm on May 18th. For more information, visit www.hikuauli.com. To find Auntie Nita’s work, follow her on Instagram @wahinetoadesigns. BIG ISLAND TRAVELER
TASTE OF HAWAIâ€˜I
72 ISLAND DINING GUIDE 78 WHAT WE LOVE NOW 82 CULINARY Q&A
POHTO COURTESY; ROY'S WAIKOLOA BAR & GRILL
84 SPRING WINES
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Front row seats available
FOUR SEASONS RESORT HUALALAI Reservations (808) 325-8000 fourseasons.com/hualalai
AWARD-WINNING, ISLAND INSPIRED.
KOHALA COAST BEACH TREE The ocean side Beach Tree is an experience…a place to enjoy casual dining and linger longer, where the focus is on fresh, local, seasonal and handmade cuisine. The cuisine is Cal-Ital... Innovative Italian dishes infused with California flavors. Handcrafted cocktails incorporating fresh, local fruit as well as sangria and a selection of wines are also featured. At the center of the resort, it is a place to meet, connect with friends and family and celebrate lifestyle. With the combination of restaurant, lounge and bar, the experiences meet a variety of guests’ needs. The server and guest interaction promotes ‘ohana. Children’s (ages 5 – 12) menu is available. Serving lunch, dinner and drinks daily, with Hawaiian entertainment nightly from 6-8:30 p.m. Casual resort attire. Located at the Four Seasons Hualälai Resort. For reservations call (808) 325-8000 or fourseasons.com/hualalai. BIG ISLAND BURRITOS A contemporary fresh island Mexican grill featuring signature Island Style Burritos, Loaded Rice Bowls, Local Farm Salads, and Fresh Soft Tacos! We have multiple styles and flavors to choose from. Their menu features straight-forward and self-explanatory menu items and caters to foodies looking for big burritos. Located in the food court at Queens' MarketPlace in Waikoloa Beach Resort.
Brown’s Beach House. Hawai`i Island cuisine and balmy
BROWN’S BEACH HOUSE Big Island-inspired cutting edge cuisine takes center stage at The Fairmont Orchid’s Brown’s Beach House restaurant known for its expansive ocean views, incomparable cuisine and sophisticated service with Aloha. Innovative island-inspired cuisine is drawn from simple, pure flavors of locally grown produce using the diverse variety of fresh seafood from our island waters and the finest mainland meats. Open nightly for dinner beginning at 5:30 p.m. Located oceanside at the Fairmont Orchid. Call (808) 887-7368.
tropical breezes beckon. Unwind as the sun dips beneath the sea. Taste awardwinning favors featuring locally grown produce. Savor the best from the surf and the turf. Dinner served nightly from 5:30 to 8:30 pm. For reservations, call 808.887.7368 or visit fairmont.com/orchid-hawaii.
COPPER BAR After a multi-million dollar renovation, Mauna Kea Beach Hotel welcomes diners back to its iconic gathering place, the new Copper Bar. While the relaxed setting and magical sunsets remain, the bright new look and shared-plates culinary concept are shaking things up in a fun and inspired way. An elongated bar, a TV “lounge” area, an elevated communal dining table, multiple dining nooks, and open view planes accentuate the true centerpiece of Copper Bar—gorgeous panoramic views of Kauna‘oa Bay. Open daily 11am-11pm with complimentary valet parking. Located at the Mauna Kea Beach Hotel. BIG ISLAND TRAVELER
TASTE HAWAII CALLS RESTAURANT & LOUNGE Enjoy an elaborate daily breakfast buffet and a la carte menu. Salads, sandwiches and tropical drinks are available for lunch poolside or in the seated dining area. Dinner features Americanand Pacific Rim-style cuisine. Located at the Marriott Waikoloa Beach Resort. Call (808) 886-8111. THE HUALĀLAI GRILLE A classic American steakhouse with local flair. Set above the 18th green of the famed Hualälai Golf Course, Hualälai Grille evokes a contemporary club feel, with dark wood flooring and magnificent golf course and ocean views. Serving Prime steaks with hand crafted traditional sides, island fresh fish, local Hämäkua Mushrooms, and Macadamia Nut Toffee Ice Cream Pie are just a few of Chef James Ebrero’s signature dishes. The Bar offers an extensive cocktail menu including the “19th Hole” Absolute Ruby Red Vodka, fresh squeezed Kohala grapefruit and lime juices and agave nectar. In addition, Hualälai Grille’s extensive wine list includes both wines by the glass and bottle, along with a wide beer selection. Hualälai Grille is open for dinner Wednesday through Monday, with reservations available from 5:30 p.m. - 8:30 p.m. For information, please call (808) 325-8450 or (808) 325-8525. KAMUELA PROVISION COMPANY Captivating sunset ocean views are the perfect complement to enjoying our new menu. Experience our mouth-watering cuisine of the Big Island. World class service in a world class setting. Open nightly for dinner and cocktails. Reservations recommended. Located at the Hilton Waikoloa Village. Call (808) 886-1234 or HiltonWaikoloaVillage.com.. KONA TAP ROOM This new island-style beer pub offers 16 craft and domestic beers on tap, including Kona Brewing Company favorites and seasonal options, along with creative “Surftinis & Beertails” like the Paddleboard Mojito, which combines Longboard Island Lager with Bacardi, house-made specialty mix, and mint for a Hawaiian spin on the classic cocktail. A locallysourced, beer-inspired menu includes dishes like Keahole lobster mac n’ cheese, Kona poke, pulled short rib sliders topped with fried quail eggs, sweet and spicy chili-nori tater tots and Kalua pork paninis. Open daily from 11am to midnight with live entertainment from 8pm to 74
11pm (hours may change seasonally). Located at Hilton Waikoloa Village. Call (808) 886-1234 or HiltonWaikoloaVillage.com. MANTA & PAVILION WINE BAR Manta & Pavilion Wine Bar is pioneering Kohala Regional Cuisine, featuring ingredients grown and raised within a 15-mile radius especially for Mauna Kea Beach Hotel. Complementing the cuisine is a state-of-theart Enomatic wine system serving outstanding wines by the glass, many found nowhere else in the state. For the ultimate food and wine experience, join our monthly Wine Dinners. You’ll enjoy outstanding vintages paired with exquisite cuisine, and meet distinguished guests from the world of winemaking. Located at the Mauna Kea Beach Hotel. For reservations call (808) 882-5810. MERIDIA The Westin Hapuna Beach Resort’s new signature dining experience introduces an innovative menu inspired by the Mediterranean and infused with our island’s bounty. The fresh seasonal menu is complemented by al fresco seating, a charcuterie and crudo bar, and house made artisanal bread nook. With the use of the resort’s local herb garden and citrus, Meridia also highlights signature brand cocktails and mocktails, ensuring every handcrafted recipe is expertly mixed, shaken or stirred. Expand your culinary confides at Meridia, framed by sweeping ocean views accompanied by crafted cocktails, fine wines and attentive service. Located in The Westin Hapuna Beach Resort. NORIO’S SUSHI BAR & RESTAURANT Featuring authentic, traditional Japanese cuisine and stellar sushi. The sushi chefs bring a level of experience and quality to the Big Island normally associated with the better restaurants in Tokyo. The 15-seat custom sushi bar provides an ‘up close and personal’ culinary experience. The menu reflects a reverence for traditional Japanese delicacies, especially the exceptionally fresh seafood that he hand-selects daily. Open Thursday through Monday 5:30 p.m.-9:00 p.m. Located at the Fairmont Orchid. Call (808) 885-2000. NUMBER 3 Thirsty golfers seeking a mid-round oasis, will love the tasteful new look and tasty menus of our new golf clubhouse restaurant, “Number
3” - almost good enough to guarantee a lower score on the back nine. Share a gourmet pizza in a relaxed, casual atmosphere, along with a cold one from the tap, signature Mauna Kea cocktails or frosty fruit smoothie. Located at the Mauna Kea Golf Course. For reservations call (808) 882-5810. PUEO'S OSTERIA Pueo’s Osteria is an inviting, Italian-inspired restaurant that provides great food in a fun environment. Chef James Babian focuses on the finest Italian products paired with seafood, produce and meats from boutique farms (sourced locally whenever possible), including “farm-fresh” products from local farmers’ markets. Engaging service, approachable pricing, great flavors and food await at Pueo’s Osteria – Food, Wine & Fun … “where the night owls meet.” Happy hour daily from 4pm until 6pm, with dinner served nightly from 5:30pm, and a bar menu offered until midnight. Smart casual attire. Located in Waikoloa Highlands Shopping Center in Waikoloa Village. Call (808) 339-7566 for reservations or visit PueosOsteria.com. QUEENS’ MARKETPLACE ‘ONO FOOD COURT Food Network Star’s season eight finalist, Philip “Ippy” Aiona introduces “Ippy’s Hawaiian BBQ,” to the Queens’ Marketplace Food Court, presenting his special twist on the iconic Hawaiian plate lunch. Across the way, look for Lemongrass Express, serving Chef TK’s fresh Asian-fusion cuisine, locally sourced and full of flavor. Family favorites Hawaiian Fish N Chips, Dairy Queen/Orange Julius, Paradise Pizza & Grill and Subway Sandwiches and Salads make sure there is something for everyone in your ‘ohana! For more information, visit queensmarketplace.net. ROY'S WAIKOLOA Surrounded by the historic King’s Trail featuring petroglyphs and lava fields, Roy’s Waikoloa offers an exclusive dining experience with exceptional food and outstanding service. Located in the King’s Shops, Roy’s Waikoloa opened 17 years ago among luxury resorts, residences and boutique shops. Dine with us and enjoy the bounty of Hawai‘i Island with the freshest local ingredients, the creative talents of our chefs and a grand view overlooking the Kings’ Course fairway and lake. Call (808) 8864321 or visit royshawaii.com for reservations. BIG ISLAND TRAVELER
KEAUHOU SHOPPING CENTER 78-6831 Alii Drive, Kailua-Kona tropicstaphousekona.com 808-498-4507
WAIKOLOA BEACH RESORT 69-1022 Keana Place, Waikoloa Across from the Hilton Waikoloa tropicsalehouse.com 808-886-4287
Join us for local craft beers, fresh foods, and superb hospitality! Live sports on 12 big screen TVs.
Happy Hour 3-6 PM EVERYDAY
A contemporary , fresh island Mexican grill featuring signature islandstyle burritos, loaded rice bowls, local farm salads, and fresh soft tacos!
Try our new menu! WAIKOLOA BEACH RESORT Queens' MarketPlace - Food Court bigislandburritos.com 808-339-7993 |
Seafood Bar & Grill FRESH LOCAL FISH DAILY FRESH FISH BURGERS CLAMS STEAKS PIZZAS SALADS Daily 11am - 10pm 5-6:30 Early Bird FRESH FISH Dinner Kiawe Smoked Prime Rib ~ Tuesday Nights Best Kawaihae Restaurant Trip Advisor Best Happy Hour 3-6pm West Hawaii Today Best Seafood West Hawaii Today
808-880-9393 Air-Conditioned 61-3642 Kawaihae Road
KAHILU THEATRE a r t s • e nt e r t a i n m e nt • e d u c at io n
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SEAFOOD BAR & GRILL Savor the true flavors of Hawai‘i and visit Seafood Bar & Grill in the historic harbor town of Kawaihae on the Kohala Coast. Since 2002, we’ve been serving the freshest local seafood in a casual and fun atmosphere where you can sit comfortably, inside or out. Try one of our signature dishes like the Seafood Crusted Fresh Catch, Ginger Steamed Clams or our famous Fried Rice. We promise food that is both delectable and reasonably priced. You can also slide up to our beautiful 70-foot Mango wood bar and enjoy one of the island’s finest Happy Hours with well drinks, mai tais, import beers, drafts, margaritas, house wines, and more. Embracing the true “aloha spirit,” join us for a delicious dining experience you won’t forget. Call (808) 880-9393 or visit seafoodbargrill.com. STAVROS PATERAKIS, PRIVATE CHEF With 15 years of experience cooking in awardwinning restaurants on the West Coast and the Big Island, Stavros Paterakis now brings his culinary talents to the comforts of your home, vacation rental or outdoor setting to take you on a flavorful journey. From Hawaiian Regional to American classics to various ethnic cuisines, Stavros will create menus to cater to your personal tastes and needs using the freshest bounty of the Big Island. Whether it is an intimate dinner for two, family-style gathering or special event, Stavros will make it an unforgettable dining experience. References are available upon request. For bookings, call (808) 895-1654 or Squidlid@ aol.com. TROPICS ALE HOUSE Tropics Tap House & Ale House are “Fresh Kitchen” contemporary restaurants, craft beer bar and sports lounge concepts. The “Fresh Kitchen” movement has been inspired by a large consumer interest in local, sustainable, and in some cases, organic foods that are fused together to create amazing, fresh menu items. In addition to the food, the bar and beverage service is aimed towards craft beers that are unique and seasonal, craft cocktails (using only premium liquors and garnishes), and precisely selected wines that complement our fresh food. Tropics features a “Contemporary American Grill” menu with inspiration from the wonderful local ingredients on the island. We serve plates in smaller and larger portions, ranging between $7-$17, and daily specials that vary in portion and price. Come in for Happy Hour daily. Visit us in Waikoloa Beach BIG ISLAND TRAVELER
Resort, across from the Hilton Waikoloa, and in the Keauhou Shopping Center. Call (808) 886-4287 or visit tropicsalehouse.com for more information. ‘ULU OCEAN GRILL + SUSHI LOUNGE Showcasing a stylish blend of Hawaiian architecture and modern flair - a fun, lively, informal setting where guests are inspired, surprised and delighted by Hawai‘i’s natural beauty and the flavors of the Pacific. Casual, friendly and knowledgeable servers guide guests through a social dining experience, highlighting an innovative ocean-to-table menu with playful tableside presentation. Cuisine is prepared oven roasted, flame grilled and wok fired, and signature dishes include: Oven Roasted Whole Fish, Lobster Wonton Soup, Table-side Ahi Poke and Lilikoi Malasadas. The modern sushi lounge and 10-seat ocean view bar feature the Island’s freshest sushi, as well as craft cocktails, sake and Japanese beers. After-dinner drinks are enjoyed in a social setting around the fire pit on the beachside terrace. For reservations call (808) 325-8000.
KONA ISLAND BREEZE LŪ‘AU This award winning lü‘au is held on the historic grounds of King Kamehameha’s Kona Beach Hotel. Savor the delicious feast as you revel in the colorful costumes and dances from Polynesia. Highlights include the Royal Court arrival, imu (underground oven) ceremony, arts & crafts, and a spectacular Polynesian show with the Samoan fireknife dance finale. For reservations call (808) 326-4969 or visit islandbreezeluau.com. KEAUHOU-KONA HALEO LŪ‘AU Held under the starry skies and hala trees on the shores of Keauhou Bay, Haleo – the Voice of Life is Hawai‘i’s newest lü‘au. From the birth of Hawai‘i’s royalty to the surfing stories of He‘eia Bay, the dancers of Island Breeze take you on a colorful and entertaining journey through a special time in Hawai‘i’s history. Dine on a lavish buffet in a stunning oceanfront location where manta rays gather, whales breach, sunsets are stunning, and the sights and sounds of
Polynesia all combine to create a special evening in paradise. Monday evenings at Sheraton Keauhou Bay Resort & Spa. For reservations call (808) 326-4969 or visit haleoluau.com. RAYS ON THE BAY Situated on dramatic lava rocks iconic of the Kona Coast, Rays on the Bay features sustainable Big Island-inspired cuisine from farm to plate and hook to cook. Enjoy rich Island flavors like Kona Coffee, sea salt, lilikoi (passion fruit) and fresh fish, paired with volcanic wines and local spirits. Take in a crimson Keauhou sunset while you dine on coastal inspired entrees with gorgeous views of Keauhou Bay. After sunset, enjoy a beverage as you view Keauhou’s giant resident manta rays – gracefully swimming along the coast. Located at the Sheraton Kona Resort & Spa at Keauhou Bay. Dinner served nightly from 5:30 to 9:30 p.m., bar & patio open 5:30 to 11 p.m. Call (808) 930-4949.
~Best 18th restaurant in the country | Yelp Gallery ~Certiﬁcate Of Excellence 2016 | Trip Advisor ~2017 Hale ‘Aina Award | Honolulu Magazine
“Come as friends and leave as family” Open daily 5 - 9pm for dinner Early Owl happy hour daily 5 - 6pm Night Owl happy hour daily 9:30pm to midnight AIR-CONDITIONED Pueo’s Osteria is located within Waikoloa Village Highlands Center in Waikoloa Village Reservations are highly recommended. Call (808)-339-7566
WHAT WE LOVE NOW
WORDS BROOKE REHMANN
Those looking to take a global excursion without leaving the island should head to Noodle Club in Waimea. Chef Edwin Goto, of Village Burger fame, uses the motto “Think global, eat local,” to take guests on a culinary adventure with a variety of noodle dishes sure to please a variety of palates. Looking for a more traditional spin on local food? The Club Saimin with noodles, tender pieces of char siu, eggs, green onion and fish cake might be for you. Kick that dish up a notch by ordering the Won Ton Min, which adds delightful pockets of pork goodness to the same rich, meaty, shoyu (Japan-style soy sauce) broth. The Bowl of Seoul is noodles in a mildly spicy kimchee broth, tender braised short ribs, leeks, crunchy daikon radish, tangy kimchee, a 6.5-minute egg, and nori (strips of seaweed). Taking a trip a little further south to Vietnam, the Big Pho King Bone, topped with a massive beefy hunk of bone marrow, bean sprouts, and aromatic cilantro and Thai basil, almost transport you to the shores of Southeast Asia. All noodles are cooked to perfection, with just the right amount of chew, as they stick to the tasty broth, all of which are made fresh in-house daily. 78
The Noodle House offers delicious starters such as Bao Buns with either pork belly or roasted Hämäkua oyster mushrooms, KFC (Korean Fried Chicken), which are crispy wings in a flavorful secret sauce, Handmade Gyoza filled with pork and shrimp served with ponzu dipping sauce and Crispy Baby Back Ribs x 2, which are scrumptious ribs twice cooked and wok-tossed with ginger, garlic and scallions served with a green papaya salad—choosing just one or two is a tasty challenge. Don’t forget to end your meal with the creamy, light, and tart Yuzu Pudding Cake with a soft cream and Japanese citrus that could have warranted its own write-up it was so delectable. The Noodle Club in Waimea is a must-stop if you love Asian food! Bring your own wine or beer and make your own perfect pairing to enjoy in the delightful ambience. Noodle Club is located in the Parker Ranch Center in the heart of Waimea. They are open Sundays and Mondays from 10:30am to 5pm, and Tuesday thru Saturday from 10:30am to 8pm. Call (808) 885-8825, or visit NoodleClubWaimea.com for more information. BIG ISLAND TRAVELER
Sunny skies, dramatic landscapes, delicious food, enviable local produce… are we talking about Hawai‘i, or maybe the Italian countryside? Lucky for diners on the Big Island, Nui Italian at the Hilton Waikoloa Village, the best of both words collide in one tasty new restaurant. This authentic, family-friendly dining experience features an open wood-fired oven used to bake handcrafted Roman and Neapolitan style pizza. You might not have known there is a delicate, specific process to create Roman pizza known for its unique, sought-after bubbled texture that makes this type of pizza better than most. It all starts with the flour imported from Italy mixed with a specific temperature of water and yeast in a 4-hour process to make dough that is aged for 72 hours then baked at over 600 degrees—Nui is the only restaurant to use this technique on the island. Nui’s pizzas are truly special—and delicious! Sicily’s own Chef Gino Cipriano has lots of experience in Italian cuisine working in resorts from Venice, and Florence to Taormina and Rome and has added some of his favorite dishes to Nui’s tempting menu, including a variety of chef-inspired pizzas, such as the classic Margherita with San myhawaiitraveler.com
Marzano tomato sauce and creamy buffalo mozzarella, Spicy Sausage with housemade Italian sausage and Florentine Chicken & Mushroom with a creamy spinach parmesan sauce. Other highlights include rich Fettuccine Alfredo, Linguini Shrimp and Pappardelle Emiliana with a hearty pork ragù as well as Italian-inspired fish offering using locally caught fish. Diners can enjoy eating in the spacious open-air dining area, or al fresco in the garden area or take it to go. No Italian meal is complete without a strong wine list, along with house red and whites available in carafes of half and full liters. So, this isn’t Italy, but you can enjoy authentic Italian cuisine in a paradisal tropical setting—now, that is something to toast to. Salute! Nui Italian is located within the Hilton Waikoloa Village at 69-425 Waikoloa Beach Drive in the Waikoloa Resort area. Valet parking is free for dinner guests with validation. For more information, call (808) 886-1234 or visit HiltonWaikoloaVillage.com/nui.
ONE STOP SHOP & DINE
Only slightly off the beaten path is the Päpaÿaloa Country Store & Café, situated along the dramatic Hilo- Hämäkua coastline. This historic building and store has been serving the community in various forms for over 100 years, back through the sugar plantation days, though the recent iteration opened in 2015. Half of the store is still a general store with everything from shampoo and sunscreen to liquor and ice cream, with a small counter for takeout plate lunch meals and baked goods. The other half is tucked behind the community’s modest post office, overlooking the blue Pacific as it serves as a sit-down restaurant, café, and music venue. The food, including the smoky BBQ Tri-tip Sandwich that uses local beef, is cooked to perfection, sliced thinly, and covered in slightly sweet and smoky Aunty Donna’s BBQ sauce, then sits on a bed of lightly dressed slaw on a soft bun. Other standouts include Fresh Fish Tacos, Fish & Chips. Chicken Katsu Plate and Poke Bowl served with your choice of raw or seared fresh fish, white or brown rice, and comes with avocado, furikake, cucumber, Asian coleslaw and spicy mayo—yum!
The café also serves up many local staples like Lau Lau and Loco Moco. Their indulgent garlic butter fries alone is definitely worth stopping in for. This charming eatery also serves good burgers and pizza for those craving something more mainstream and great live music, too. And for those with a sweet tooth, desserts are baked fresh daily, and include sticky buns à la mode, or smaller bites such as lip-puckering lilikoÿi (passion fruit) tarts or honey-dripping macadamia nut baklava—truly the perfect ending to any meal. Just be sure not to miss the country store, hidden on the makai (ocean) side of Highway 19. Päpaÿaloa Country Store & Café is located at 35-2032 Old Mämalahoa Hwy, near the community of Laupähoehoe along the Hilo-Hämäkua Coast. The store is open Monday thru Saturday from 7am to 8pm, with to-go orders until 7:30pm. The restaurant and bar is open from 10am to 7:30pm. They are closed on Sundays. Visit PapaaloaCountryStore.com for more information or call (808) 339-7614. BIG ISLAND TRAVELER
PHOTO COURTESY: CAPTURE HAWAI'I
Explore Beyond The Horizon The Westin Hapuna Beach Resort’s new signature dining experience introduces an innovative menu inspired by the Mediterranean and infused with our island’s bounty. Meridia’s fresh seasonal menu is complemented by al fresco seating, a charcuterie and crudo bar, and house-made artisanal bread nook. Expand your culinary confines at Meridia, framed by sweeping ocean views accompanied by crafted cocktails, fine wines and attentive service.
MERIDIA Open Daily: Dinner 5:30PM - 9:00PM
To make a reservation, call 808.880.1111 or visit westinhapunabeach.com/dining.
©2018 Marriott International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Preferred Guest, SPG, Westin and their logos are the trademarks
myhawaiitraveler.com of Marriott International, Inc., or its affiliates. For full terms and conditions, visit westinhapunabeach.com
CULINARY Q&A EXECUTIVE CHEF MICHAEL QUANAN WORDS BROOKE REHMANN
What inspired you to be a chef? My brother-in-law was working part time at a restaurant in town, and they didn’t have a dishwasher, so I came to help them. I was a sophomore in high school, and I saw how exciting it was, the rush on being on a hot line. After high school, I worked at the Mauna Kea Beach Hotel, worked with European chefs that were there since day one. I got to learn the old ways, the different styles that they passed on. I was the youngest person they had working in the kitchen at 17. I was a bad student, but I learned 82
so much from them—they were old school, so you either do what they ask, or there’s the door. You learn really quick. What are some of your earliest food memories? Why have they stayed with you all of this time? I come from a big family. Whenever we got ready for a family party, it was a 150 people minimum. So working with my uncles, my mom, my parents, and seeing how they prepared it back then, it was a great memory. We’d do kälua pig for Christmas every year, the traditional way; we still have an imu (underground oven) at my brother’s house that we still use. The camaraderie, the getting ready for the actual parties was always a big thing. That kind of carries over into what I do and manage now. I like to make sure all my guys are there, we’re all helping each other, we’re all having fun, and all getting the job done. I think if they’re having fun, it reflects in the food that comes out. BIG ISLAND TRAVELER
PHOTO COURTESY: SHERATON KONA RESORT & SPA
Growing up in the ahupua‘a (land division) of Keauhou, the traditional Hawaiian land division that extends from mountain to sea, Executive Chef Michael Quanan of the Sheraton Kona Resort & Spa at Keauhou Bay is eager to bring traditional flavors prepared in exciting new ways. Using his deep roots and strong relationships with local farmers, Chef Michael has reinvigorated the menu at Rays on the Bay, putting his creative spin on local favorites that appeal to all palates.
Who are your mentors? How have they influenced your food? My brother-in-law, James Ebreo. He’s the Executive Sous Chef at Four Seasons Resort Hualälai; he’s the one who got me into cooking. He was also working at Hapuna. So when I graduated and started working at Mauna Kea, one thing he said was, ‘Don’t make me look bad!’ Chef Peter Abarcar, Jr. is another one. Him and I been together since Höküliÿa. He’s the one who really fine-tuned my cooking style. I like to do a lot of what I grew up with, incorporate a lot of stuff from the ahupua‘a, and incorporate that into the menus. He pushed us—I hated wine, but when I was at Höküliÿa, he had us pair each dish with wines; and now I love wine— maybe too much! You grew up in this area—what is it like to be back here cooking along its shores? My great grandfather owned property here at Keauhou Bay. Growing up, my family used to come here every weekend, I learned to swim here, learned the history here. I’ve been coming here since I can’t even remember. My family is part of the ahupua‘a from The Sheraton to the church in Kahaluÿu. So we always had the ‘ulu (breadfruit), the canoe crops, what we still have available in this land. There’s not much proteins that come out of here, so I focus more on the vegetables. I work with the famers on Kamehameha School lands, and see what they can work for me—that’s sort of out of the ordinary. We’re fortunate here, the products we get here—the ‘ulu on the menu we get from this area. I even go out pick the ‘ulu from the tree out in front of the bay. What’s one ingredient we’d be surprised to find in your pantry/ refrigerator? That’s a hard one; there’s all kinds of stuff. Spam—every local house has Spam. What’s your favorite food guilty pleasure? Ice cream—but not just your normal ice cream. My normal go-to is cookies and cream, but I like trying exotic ice creams with exotic fruits like jackfruit, something you wouldn’t think would taste good as an ice cream, but does. We’ve been making our own ube (a purple yam from the Philippines) ice cream, guava ice cream, poi (cooked taro) ice cream; I want to try doing an ‘ulu ice cream. What’s an absolute can’t-miss dish that diners should try when they come eat at Rays on the Bay? I think the eland (antelope, grown on the island of Niÿihau) burger. I think it’s very unique—I don’t know of anyone else doing an eland burger. I think when you bite into it, and not knowing that it’s not beef, most people think it’s a turkey burger. And then they find out it’s an eland, and you go through the whole story of what it is and where it comes from—I think it’s pretty unique and a must-try. Eland is a lot leaner than ostrich, but when I add the bacon back into it, makes it more juicy inside, and the brie cheese melted on top just adds that creaminess to it. Rays on the Bay serves dinner nightly from 5:30pm to 9pm. It is located at 78-128 Ehukai Street in Kailua-Kona, at the Sheraton Kona Resort & Spa at Keauhou Bay. Reservations can be made by calling (808) 930-4949. myhawaiitraveler.com
CHEERS TO SPRING
WORDS KRYSTAL KAKIMOTO
Whenever the cold temperature subsides and spring has sprung, the season brings a rebirth of life and a time to enjoy the crisp weather and relaxed atmosphere. Whether enjoying an impromptu gathering with friends or sitting down to enjoy a meal al fresco, reaching for a wine that is light, refreshing, and interesting can elevate any meal into an elegant, yet simple, affair. When choosing a white wine to enjoy during transitional months, finding one that is laden with flavor yet not fatiguing to the palate or food pairings are two keys to success. One stellar style that wine professionals reach for is Muscadet made from the Melon de Bourgogne grape, which has found fame in the western end of Franceâ€™s Loire Valley. Since this grape can tolerate a later harvest than other grapes, the fruit is sometimes allowed to further ripen on the vine and develop more sugars
BIG ISLAND TRAVELER
and riper phenolic qualities that translates to slightly more tannins compared to other white wines. The 2017 Bedouet “Clos des Grands Primos” Muscadet-Sèvre et Maine Sur Lie ($15/bottle; princetoncorkscrew.com) epitomizes the capabilities of this grape with a wine that is bursting with flavors of grapefruits, salted apples, and melon offset with a textural softness imparted by the aging on lees (spent yeast cells). Muscadet, known as a wine craving for a pairing with items from the sea, does wonderfully with a selection of oysters, mussels, scallops, and shrimp sautéed with ginger, garlic, shallots, and tarragon. This flavorful dish would often be a difficult pairing but the big, robust flavors are delicately balanced by the round fruitiness of this wine while the tarragon is complemented by the green apples and crispness in this bottling. While rosé has become a tantamount spring wine, many wine enthusiasts are turning to Georgian orange wines for something off the beaten path that is the perfecting pairing when the months begin to warm up. While not made from oranges, as often thought, the wine gets its amber hue from the contact with the grape skins for a much longer period of time. This stunner from the country of Georgia is created from the Rkatsiteli grape, which is known to be one of the oldest grape varietals in the world heralded for its noticeable acidity and blend of spicy-floral notes on the palate. Our Wine’s 2010 Rkatsiteli ($19/bottle; klwines. com) exemplifies a stunning Georgian orange wine with an intense bouquet of uni (sea urchin), smoked ham, oolong tea, and hints of citrus complemented by the spiciness of this grape. What once began 30 years ago as a hobby by the winemaker has evolved into a masterfully crafted bottling of wine in which spontaneous fermentation is allowed to occur and completed with the inclusion of stems and seeds creating a wine with more grip. This texturally complex wine with many layered flavors grows on the palate and can withstand a bold pairing such as braised pork belly served alongside myhawaiitraveler.com
braised cabbage, apples, and topped with pickled mustard seeds. The braising of the pork will be heightened by the smoky, oolong flavors of this wine while the vegetal components of this wine will play comfortably with the cabbage and apple components of this dish. Though the pickled mustard seeds might throw some for a loop, this wine’s spicy qualities and hints of citrus will burst along side the pickled flavors creating a lively combination with each bite. For lovers of red wine, spring can be the perfect time to enjoy a glass of Beaujolais created from the Gamay grape. This thin-skinned, low tannin red grape results in a wine with high acidity and fruitier flavors like black plums and red cherries with hints of dried violets in the foreground. The ten Crus of the Beaujolais region in France express themselves with different renditions of the Gamay grape with the region of Brouilly being particularly fruity with hints of blueberries, raspberries, and currants being found in bottlings. The 2015 Les Frères Perroud “Amethyste” from Brouilly ($18/bottle; klwines.com) is a fuller bodied example of Beaujolais wine with slightly more tannins than wines from other Cru regions. This deep ruby wine emits a bouquet of ripe plums, dark cherries, and violets with a lengthy finish on the palate and sparkling minerality imparted by the pedigree of the vineyard. A stellar pairing with this brooding rendition of Beaujolais would be a panko-crusted veal cutlet topped with sorrel cream. The fuller body of this wine lends itself to a dish with a heavier cooking technique such as breading and pan-frying while the veal will mingle well with the fruity plums and raspberries of this wine. The tartness and herbaceous qualities of the sorrel cream will play with the hints of violets in the wine as the seamless texture balances the sharpness of the sauce. Whether sitting down to a formal meal or something more spontaneous, spring is the perfect time to reach for a glass of uncomplicated and transparent wines that are bursting with drinkability and an effortless style to complement the season of rejoice and rebirth. 85
DECODING THE LANGUAGE OF THE HUMPBACKS
WORDS ANDREW WALSH
BIG ISLAND TRAVELER
Boom! Splash! Boom! Splash! Boom, splash bellows
the humpback! If you listen carefully, you can hear it. Just sit at the water’s edge, with your feet in the sand and eyes on the horizon. It’s the sounds of a koholä (humpback whale) calling across the blue. They are said to be the greatest form of Kanaloa, the primordial deity for the ocean, sea creatures, and all growth on earth and in the sea. Listen for the pounding thumps, pulsing like the Hawaiian drumbeats of antiquity, calling us back to the waters from which the ancients came. Boom! Splash! Boom! Splash! Boom! Splash! Over and over, echoing across the waves of time and oceans. But these are not the rhythmic drumbeats of sea foraging canoes or mighty King Kamehameha as he sails to unite his Hawaiian kingdom. Nor is it the sound of modern steel ships cleaving the ocean, pounding up and down as blue waves and rusted iron collide. No, it’s an even more ancient vessel. The boomsplash is the powerful resonance of one of the strongest muscles in the animal kingdom—the humpback whale. The humpback rears its flukes (tail fins) high into the Hawaiian sky, up from the water’s depths and then smashes them down upon the waves for all who can hear, for all who are listening to its mighty tale of tails. A graceful display of forthright fury, over and over, the humpback will pound its massive flukes against the water’s surface until satisfied its message, its goal, its purpose is fulfilled. Scientists call it “lobtailing,” but what message or meaning it serves is known only to the whales. myhawaiitraveler.com
Boom! Splash! Boom! Splash! Boom! Splash! Could it be a simple call to any humpbacks in the area to say, “Here I am, here I go, here is where I came from?” Is it a signal to fight, or not fight, saying, “Hear the power I possess to any who would challenge my stature?” Most mammals during mating season tend to display a bit of showing-off especially when love is in the air. Could it be just plain fun? Maybe its a colossal itch that needs scratching and how better to itch a 30,000-lb. tail without a backscratcher? Surprisingly, little is known as to what these behaviors that humpbacks display truly mean, but we have a few ideas. In their cold feeding grounds off Alaska, lobtailing is often observed alongside a complex and clever method of fishing called “bubble-netting.” Humpbacks over-pressurize their 2,500-gallon lungs (in less than 2 seconds) and dive deep under schools of soon-to-be-eaten fish. Skillfully, the humpback travels in large concentric circles around the school releasing air from its blowhole. The streams of air create walls of bubble-nets that scare the fish into tighter and tighter circles. The less-agile hunter tightens the bubble rings until a critical mass of fish stands ripe for the taking. In a massive display of size and strength the humpback uses its immense pectoral and fluke fins to catapult up through the torrent of confused and confined fish. Opening its mouth wide and scooping up 2,000 gallons of water, the whale quickly slams the gates shut and then push-filters the water out through its 270-400 baleen plates (filament-type bristles) trapping the doomed prey.
So we might say lobtailing is part of a feeding behavior. Perhaps it serves to keep the scared school of fish from jumping out and over the bubble net. However, humpbacks also lobtail here in Hawaiÿi where they come to calf and mate, yet they do not eat. That’s right, over their 6-month journey, which includes one of the longest migration routes of any animal ever to have lived, 3,000 miles across the largest ocean on earth, humpback whales rely only on the energy stored in the 12 inches of blubber encapsulating their 90,000-lb. frames. Keeping in mind they swim continuously for 6-8 weeks each way, that is one long fast. If you aren’t impressed by humpbacks, you’re either a blue whale (which is much bigger) or not much impresses you! But what then does lobtailing mean if not a specialized feeding behavior? Studies of other whale species have shown it often plays a role in social dynamics within whale communities. We know that whales are complex, social creatures, capable of melodic vocal languages and even distinct cultures throughout the world. They regularly complete feats of navigation modern science can’t explain or replicate without complex technology, instrumentation, and a scientific understanding of celestial objects. So maybe when a whale slaps its tail on the water it has a good reason, as humpbacks are clearly capable of reasoning. And what better reasons do any of us have than sweet, irrational love! Energetically speaking, a tail slap is a bad idea if you haven’t eaten in four months. The tail weighs upwards of 30,000 lbs. It’s a workout for the humpback to raise itself upright out of the water and defy the laws or gravity, social conformity, and the dynamic energy-budgeting theory. But the heart wants what the heart wants. Sometimes we spend all our money on that perfect gift for that perfect someone. Sometimes we spend all our mental energy thinking and all our physical energy chasing, even though it exhausts us to the core. And sometimes we slap our tails on the water, despite how energetically expensive, or perhaps because how energetically expensive it is, to show the riches and power we can offer. And who can’t relate—it’s better to have loved and lost some blubber, than never to have loved at all. The whole reason humpbacks come to the nutrient-poor waters surrounding Hawaiÿi is the safe tropical haven these waters provide for birthing, calving, and mating. So it would seem to make some sense that these displays are a form of communication related to their domestic agenda. The tail slap is a visceral feeling reverberating through the water column, as any who have seen and 88
felt it intuitively understand. When a humpback lobtails, you stare in silent awe and maybe that’s the point. And yet this magnificent display is just one of many behaviors humpbacks employ regularly around each other. One of their most inquisitive behaviors is spyhopping. Humpbacks will lift just their massive heads out of the water and peak around. Bobbing upright in the water, they kick their flukes to hold themselves in position, giving the appearance of floating vertically. I’ve had many curious whales swim up and spyhop right next to me. Amazingly, they have looked me straight in the eye. Their large brown kidney shaped pupils darting up and down me. I naturally felt a social connection, to what appeared to be another sentient being just checking me out, processing, thinking, it naturally compelled me to say “Hey,” as if not doing so was somehow rude. It’s clear whales have a lot to say through vocal and body language. What they are saying remains less clear, but also less mysterious the more we study and the more we allow space for them to swim alongside us. There is no doubting the great powers they posses as gravity-defying aerial acrobats, masters of great ocean passages, and lobtailing maestros. Yet looking at a humpback, eye-to-eye, one can’t ignore the greater mana (spiritual power) that transcends science and species. In the presence of humpbacks, I’ve seen even the most seasoned scientists and the most intellectual researchers drop what they are doing and return, ever so briefly, to the wide-eyed kids that once gazed out and saw nothing but wonder in the world. I hope you experience the wonder and magic that can be heard and seen out on the ocean. And I hope it sparks that innate curiosity that whales and humans both possess. Years of scientific study tell me we need whales as much as whales need us. We both share a vital role and dependence on the movement of nutrients and resources flowing between our ecosystems and within our warm blood, without which neither of our cultures, communities, and lives can exist. Years of spending time listening, watching, and advocating for whales has taught me the magic of realizing we are perhaps not the only curious and, dare I say, conscious creatures that call this blue planet home. Boom! Splash! Boom! Splash! Boom! Splash! Like the beat of our hearts, it’s the pulse of a planet alive and well—it’s the sound of our future we must protect. We got here together borne of a shared past, how could it be that we could move forward apart? So listen to the whales, listen to yourself, and keep the beat going. BIG ISLAND TRAVELER
ADDITIONAL COMMON WHALE BEHAVIORS Pectoral slapping Whales will raise one or both of their large (up to 15-ft.) pectoral fins into the air and slap them down on the water repetitively, much like lobtailing. Evidence indicates that this is once again a form of communication between whales.
Breaching Breaching is one of the most exciting behaviors that humpbacks regularly display. Most or all of the body is propelled up and out of the water until gravity pulls the massive whale back to the surface in an enormous whale-sized splash. It is thought that this behavior serves to communicate, attract other whales, or warn off other mating whales. There are many distinct variations of breaching as well (chin, spinning head, tail breach). Blow Whales clear their blowhole of water and mucous each time they surface. It appears as a tall spout of vaporized air. Unlike humans, whales need to think to breathe, so at times of rest they alternate shutting down each side of their brains for a half sleep, half conscious state. This allows them to continuously breathe and remain alert while simultaneously sleeping. Fluke Dive An arch of the back and raising of the flukes high in the air resulting in a dive. Generally whales stay underwater for some time after a fluke dive. Logging Logging is when a whale lies horizontally at or just below the surface without swimming in what appears to be a resting state. Singing/Vocalization Even above the water it is possible to hear whales sing. Of course below the water is where the real action is. Whales songs are a series of sounds repeated over time in specific patterns known as “phrases.” These phrases are also repeated over and over to form a “theme.” Each song is composed of several themes that get repeated sequentially. Songs last anywhere from five minutes to half an hour. Whales will often repeat their song over many hours. The songs in Hawaiÿi come only from male whales either escorting females, swimming alone, or most commonly suspended companionless in the “singing position.” Pacific humpbacks, regardless of where they migrate to (Central America, Asia, or Hawaiÿi), all sing the same constantly evolving melodic language. myhawaiitraveler.com
PHOTO COURTESY: UMAUMA EXPERIENCE
ADVENTURE ISLE With most of the thirteen climate zones, the Big Island is considered by many as a minicontinent. Where else in the world can you snow-ski in the morning and sunbathe on nationally-ranked beaches in the afternoon? Hawaiâ€˜i Island boasts world-renowned golf, spas, dive and snorkel sites, the best hiking and camping, the worldâ€™s most active volcano, the clearest night skies for stargazing, and endless activities in which to experience it all. 90
BIG ISLAND TRAVELER
AIR TOURS PARADISE HELICOPTERS
Explore paradise on the Hawai‘i helicopter adventure of a lifetime. Paradise Helicopters are the experts in offering an exciting, well-planned, and safe helicopter experience. See breathtaking waterfalls, active volcanoes, panoramic coastlines and wondrous mountain ranges on one of the best heli tours Hawai‘i has to offer. See nature in its most beautiful form. Experience it all from the comfort of our helicopters and the Big Island will reveal itself to you in a way never imagined. So ride along as our experienced guides show you the wonders of the islands, and happily answer any question you might have along the way. Visit paradisecopters.com or call (808) 969-7392.
Explore Our Kona ABOVE AND BELOW THE OCEAN
Experience the adventure of a lifetime. The Intensity of the volcanic landscape and hidden tropical valleys will surely take your breath away. Sunshine proudly celebrates over 25 years of operation with an excellent safety record. Recipient of the Helicopters Association International “Platinum Program of Safety” award and a member of (T.O.P.S.) Tour Operators Program of Safety. Depart from our exclusive Hapuna Heliport or Hilo airport. Call (808) 882-1223 or visit sunshinehelicopters.com.
EXPLORE HAWAII FOREST & TRAIL
Awarded 2006 Ecotour Operator of the Year, Hawaii Forest & Trail has over eight different Nature Adventure Tours which showcase the Big Island’s scenic diversity. Our Nature Adventure Tours feature the best tour locales, great customer service, relaxed easy walks and hikes led by professionally-trained Interpretive Guides. We’ll share with you the volcanoes, waterfalls, valleys, rainforests and summits, in addition to the life and legends of Hawaii. Frommer’s Guide to Hawai‘i says “... May very well be the highlight of your vacation.” For reservations, call (800) 464-1993 or online at hawaiiforest.com.
MAUNA KEA SUMMIT ADVENTURES
Mauna Kea Summit Adventures is the Original Sunset & Stargazing Tour. The ancient Hawaiians thought of the top of Mauna Kea as heaven, or at least where the Gods and Goddesses lived. As the pioneer guide service on Mauna Kea, we have over 35 years experience. Our professional guides are passionate, educational and fun. Beautiful, dramatic photo opportunities abound. Experience treasures of the night sky through our telescope. We provide a delicious hot supper served mid-mountain, hot drinks, arctic style parkas with hoods and convenient pick-up points in Kailua-Kona, Waikoloa & Hwy 190 and Hwy 200 junction. (808) 332-2366 or online at maunakea.com. myhawaiitraveler.com
Pair your underwater submarine adventure with a Body Glove Whale Watch Cruise for amazing experiences above and below the ocean. Experience more of Kona! Whale watch season runs from 12/1/18 - 3/31/19.
atlantisadventures.com | ( 8 0 8 ) 3 2 7-1 4 4 1 | #atlantishawaii EX PLOR E OU R KON A
UMAUMA FALLS ZIPLINE AND RAPPEL EXPERIENCE
Create an unforgettable memory with your family and friends while on the Big Island of Hawaii. Breathtaking views of the Pacific Ocean, beautiful waterfalls and lush rainforest of the Hamakua Coast await you. Zip on 9 thrilling ziplines designed for both beginners and experts, including our 2,060 ft. dual zipline and amazing 200 ft. suspension bridge. Swim & Kayak in the Umauma River or combine them for a Zip & Dip adventure you will never forget! Be sure to stop and enjoy our Visitors Center and Tropical Garden Walk and Umauma Falls viewing area. You will be talking about your Umauma Experience for years to come! Located on the beautiful Hamakua Coast in Hakalau at 31-313 Old Mamalahoa Hwy. Call (808) 930-9477 or visit umaumaexperience.com.
SNORKEL, SAIL & SUB ATLANTIS SUBMARINES
An unforgettable 45-minute journey aboard an Atlantis 48-passenger submarine, as featured in National Geographic television specials, where guests explore a 25-acre natural coral reef and its marine inhabitants. Allow Atlantis Submarines to show you the other 96% of Kona you can't see any other way. Treat yourself to Kona's most beautiful and captivating scenery, habitats, and isolated treasures. You'll descend 100 feet into another version of paradise -- one hidden even from the people of Hawaii for centuries. Atlantis Kona offers a journey aboard a 48-passenger submarine. Guests will discover an 18,000-year-old, 25-acre fringing coral reef, which boasts a vibrant ecosystem of coral formations and tropical fish. Tours provide narration in Japanese via headsets. For reservations call (808) 327-1441. 91
ADVENTURE BODY GLOVE CRUISES
All of our cruises are complimented by the first-class amenities on board our state-of-the-art, 65-foot catamaran. The Kanoa II is an award winning, multimillion dollar vessel designed with quality and comfort in mind. Our guests enjoy plenty of shade, cushioned seating, flat screen televisions, a full sound system for live entertainment, and our full service premium bar. The Kanoa II is equipped with three restrooms, two fresh water showers, a 20-foot water slide, a 15-foot high dive platform, two large double swim platforms, and floatation toys for everyone. Call (888) 253-0397 or visit bodyglovehawaii.com.
FAIR WIND CRUISES
Located in Keauhou-Kona on the Big Island of Hawai‘i, Fair Wind Cruises has been offering snorkel excursions since 1971. We offer two vessels with two very unique snorkel experiences. Our snorkel destination on Fair Wind II, historic Kealakekua Bay, is without question one of the most relaxing areas for snorkeling - maintaining clear visibility and very calm waters throughout the day. Our newest vessel, Hula Kai, has been designed and built to accommodate guests who seek the very best in luxury, comfort, and technology. Our Hula Kai cruise offers the advanced snorkeler a
way to explore some of Kona’s most unique and less traveled snorkel destinations along the spectacular Kona Coast shoreline. Call (808) 345-6213 or visit fairwind.com.
MAUNA LANI SEA ADVENTURES
Whatever your pleasure “Winona” offers regularly scheduled cruises and exclusive charters. Our Polynesian sailing catamaran has spacious deck and seating areas for sunning or just relaxing. Join us on our dive boats for a scuba diving adventure at one of our 30 dive sites, and experience the under world of tropical fish, beautiful coral reefs, caves, and arches. If diving is not your pleasure, try our snorkel sail on “Winona” where you can relax under the sun and enjoy great snorkeling along the Kohala coast. Maybe relaxing and watching a sunset Hawaiian style is more your pace. Then come sail with us along the Kohala coastline and take in the views of the island from afar and watch the sunset while you enjoy cocktails and püpü (appetizer). If you join us from December to April, you can watch the majestic humpback whales during their annual migration to the warm Hawaiian waters. Located at Mauna Lani Resort. Call (808) 885-7883 or visit maunalaniseaadventures.com.
Mauna Lani Sea Adventures
Book your adventure today!
Come and experience the best Whale Watching, Snorkeling, Sunsets and Scuba Diving along the Kohala Coast!
68-1400 Mauna Lani Drive Kohala Coast, HI 96743 maunalaniseaadventures.com
Scuba • Snorkel Sail • Sunset Sail • Whale Watch • Beach Activities
Snorkel Bob Brand masks for every shape & size-The SEAMO BETTA & LI’L MO BETTA are Rx receptive in a minute. The MoflO2 & MoflO2RS snorkels with double valve twin chambers clear easy and deliver freshair on every breath. Sumo Mask & Bigfoot fins (15-17) for the mongo among you. Boogie boards, beach chairs & 24-HOUR INTERISLAND GEAR RETURN. Book 2 seats on most activities and get a FREE Boogie for the week (Reg. $29). Located in Kona off Ali’i Drive behind Huggo’s (808) 329-0770 or at The Shops at Mauna Lani on the Kohala Coast (808) 885-9499. All Islands 8-5 every day. Online at snorkelbob.com.
ZIPLINE KOHALA ZIPLINE
Join us on a Big Island zipline tour like no other. The Kohala Zipline Kohala Canopy Tour traverses a forested, stream-rich land on the northern tip of the Big Island of Hawai‘i, an area known since ancient times as Halawa. With soaring platforms built into majestic trees, accentuated by arching suspension bridges and progressively longer zip lines, our course promises the best of Hawaii zipline adventure tours, serene and thrilling at once. Whether you are a zipline enthusiast or a first-time outdoor adventure seeker, you’ll find in the Kohala Canopy Tour an unforgettable experience. Call (808) 331-3620 or visit kohalazipline.com.
ATTRACTIONS KONA-KOHALA AHU‘ENA HEIAU
A thatched shrine built and restored on an artificial island in Kamakahonu (Eye of the Turtle) is guarded by wooden images (ki‘i). King Kamehameha I settled here in 1812 and maintained his royal residence until his death in 1819. King Kamehameha dedicated Ahu‘ena Heiau, a temple of prosperity, to Lono, god of fertility. Significant history was made on the royal compounds when Liholiho, who became King Kamehameha II dined with the great queens Keopuolani and Ka‘ahumanu breaking one of the most rigorous kapu. This bold act brought on the abandonment of the ancient kapu system and opened the door to Christianity. Located near Kailua Pier 75-5660 Palani Rd. Free. Call (808) 329-2911.
Two-story Victorian estate made of lava, koa wood and coral mortar was commissioned by Hawai‘i’s second governor John Adams Kuakini and built in 1838. The palace served as a vacation residence for Hawaiian monarchs until 1914. King Kaläkaua used the mansion in the 1880s as his summer palace. Today it houses a collection of royal Hawaiian relics, beautiful furniture and rare collections. Located 75-5718 Ali‘i Drive. Open weekdays 9-4, weekends 10-4. Admission is $5. Call (808) 329-1877 or visithuliheepalace.org.
PU‘UHONUA O HŌNAUNAU
Also known as Place of Refuge, this national historical 92
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park served as a safe haven in times of war and was also a place of cleansing for kapu breakers. Wooden images of Hawaiian native gods (ki‘i), temples and heiau on the sacred grounds of the beautiful and serene beachfront sanctuary make this a must-see historical park. Because ancient Hawaiians believed that if the spirit was not fed then it would drift away, kähuna and others left food offerings in the temple. Today with the revival of Hawaiian customs, you may see offerings of food on the tower (lele) at Hale O Keawe. Picnic tables, fascinating tidepools, sandy sunbathing area and a popular snorkel spot, Two-step, are also nearby. Four miles south of Kealakekua Bay on Rte 160. Open daily 7am to sunset. Admission is $3-$5. Call (808) 328-2288.
LAPAKAHI STATE HISTORICAL PARK
Travel back in time and walk the self-guided tour through the ruins of an ancient fishing village. Displays show early Hawaiian life of fishing, salt gathering, legends games and shelter. Located off Route 270. Open daily 8-4. Free. (808) 882-6207.
PUAKŌ PETROGLYPHS FIELD
View hundreds of ancient Hawaiian art form with warriors, surfers, outriggers and numerous themes. Nearby is Malama Petroglyph Trail. Located off the trail of Mauna Lani Resort off North Kaniku Dr.
Built by King Kamehameha to honor his family war god, Kü and to fulfill the prophecy of uniting the Hawaiian Islands. Located off Hwy 270 in Kawaihae. Open daily 7:30-4. Free. Call (808) 882-7218.
EAST HAWAI‘I ‘AKAKA FALLS STATE PARK
Includes ‘Akaka Falls, a 442-ft. waterfall that flows spectacularly over a deep gorge into a pool. Kahüna Falls is visible from the loop trail through the park. Located four miles inland north of Hilo, off Hwy 19. Open daily 7-7. Free. (808) 974-6200. myhawaiitraveler.com
Celebrities planted banyan trees along this drive beginning in 1933 when hotels were just being built. Famous people include Babe Ruth, Cecil B. DeMille, President Nixon, President Roosevelt and King George V. Located on Banyan Drive in Hilo.
HAWAI‘I VOLCANOES NATIONAL PARK
It is best to see the spectacular show of red-hot lava flowing into the sea close to sunset off Chain of Craters Road. Also, you can drive the 11-mile Crater Rim Drive past lava fields, steaming craters and forests. Walk through Thurston Lava Tube, a natural tunnel formed when the top and sides of a lava flow hardened and the lava inside drained away. Bring water, flashlight and a sweater. Stop by the visitor’s center for more information and safety. Call (808) 985-6000.
accounts from the tsunami survivors. Located at 130 Kamehameha Ave, Hilo. Open Mon-Sat 9-4. Call (808)935-0926.
PANA‘EWA RAINFOREST ZOO
This is the only natural tropical rainforest zoo in the U.S. This 12-acre zoo is home to more than 80 animal species including Namaste’, a white Bengal Tiger. You are invited to picnic in the shade of over 100 varieties of Palm and stroll with Peacocks in the extensive collection of Orchids, Clumping Bamboos and Tropical Rhododendrons. Petting Zoo is open every Saturday 1:30-2:30 p.m. Tiger feeding is 3:30 daily. Open daily 9-4 p.m. except Christmas and New Year’s Day. Free. Located on Mamaki St. off Hwy 11. Call (808)9599233.
HILO FARMERS MARKET
The best time to catch a rainbow in the mist of these falls is morning. The falls plummet into Wailuku River gorge. Check out Boiling Pots created by the powerful water over ancient lava beds. Located off Route 200, up Waiänuenue Ave.
MOKUPAPAPA: DISCOVERY CENTER
Valley of the Kings can also be considered earth’s Garden of Eden with breathtaking vistas bounded by 2,000 feet cliffs, spectacular Hi‘ilawe Falls plummets 1,200 feet from Kohala Mountain to the bottom of the valley, fruit trees, taro fields, streams and a crescent black sand beach popular with surfers. The steep and narrow road down the valley requires a four-wheel drive. The one-mile hike can be difficult especially on the climb back to civilization. Commercial transportation permits are limited to four outfits to maintain the pristine environment of one of the state’s most isolated places. Tours are unavailable on Sundays. Waipi‘o Valley Lookout offers breathtaking views without breaking a sweat. Located off Hwy 240 ~8 miles northwest of Honoka‘a.
One of the state’s best farmers markets with more than 120 vendors selling flowers, fresh produce and baked goods. Located on the corner of Kamehameha Ave. and Mamo St. Open Wed. and Sat. from Sunrise to 4 p.m. This is an educational center on the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands Coral Reef Ecosystem Reserve, the largest conservation area in the United States. Funded by NOAA, the center has numerous interactive displays, a 2,500-gallon saltwater aquarium and vibrant pictures and video footage of the wildlife in the reserve. Located at 308 Kamehameha Ave. in Downtown Hilo. Open to the public Tuesday-Saturday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., closed on all Federal Holidays. Free Admission! Call (808)933-8195 or visit hawaiireef.gov.noaa/center.
PACIFIC TSUNAMI MUSEUM
Learn about the destructive tsunamis and the details of the 1946 and 1960 that devastated Hilo through photographs, interactive displays and personal
The incredible, versatile canoe plant WORDS RINA MAE JABILONA
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Hawaiian ti party? Though no such occasion exists, ti (kï in Hawaiian) is celebrated for its rich significance in Hawaiian culture. Just as tea is deeply entrenched in the British way of life, ti is a prominent feature of Hawaiian culture. The British indulge in the warm drink at every possible occasion, and a “cuppa” (cup of tea) is said to solve all problems. Likewise, the Hawaiian ti is used in many, if not all, aspects of Hawaiian living from health and home goods to protection and blessings. Ti grows in a multitude of hues and hybrid color creations, but the green ti introduced to Hawaiÿi by early Polynesian settlers as an important canoe plant is perhaps the most common and grows abundantly on the Big Island. The ti’s stalk supports a tightly spiraled cluster of oval, blade-shaped leaves, which served a variety of uses in ancient Hawaiian culture. Ti was a symbol of high rank and divine power. Believed to bring good fortune and ward off evil and negative energies, ancient Hawaiians wore fresh leaves around the neck, waist, and ankles. Leaves were hung around dwellings; and to this day, ti is planted around homes for good luck. Take a drive in any neighborhood and you’ll find countless properties bordered with ti. For hula performances, ti leaves were interlaced at the stem, forming a skirt that swirled around the dancer. As the dancer swayed, the leaves would gracefully follow the movement of the hips. Overlapping interlaced layers of ti leaves served as capes providing protection from island rain. Ti was also the fiber of choice for crafting sandals, which made walking on reefs and volcanic rocks a lot more comfortable. The midribs of the leaves were even braided into hats. It is easy to see why the malleable yet sturdy leaves were used in many pieces of ancient Hawaiian garb. Even inside the home, ti served practical uses. Leaves were used as plates, cups, and food wrapping. Laulau, a local staple traditionally consisting of fatty pork, beef or salted butterfish, and sweet potato, is wrapped in layers of taro leaves and kept intact by a ti leaf packet. During the many hours of cooking, the ti leaf helps retain the steam, keeping the food moist. When it comes time to eat laulau, the ti leaf is carefully removed, revealing a juicy and succulent meal. Interestingly, in the old days, the ti plant was also used as sleds for sliding down slopes. The rider would sit on top of the ti leaf bundle and hold on to the stalk placed between their legs to ride down a steep hill. Ti was also woven into ropes, used as brooms, and served as whistles. Ti leaf strips were used as fishing lure on hukilau (seine) nets, and larger leaves were even used in the construction of homes. It’s easy to understand how important the versatile ti was for its many uses in daily life and why the Polynesians wisely chose to bring it along as one of their canoe plants. Though the leaves were the most useful part of the plant, the roots were also critical to ancient Hawaiian culture. During times of abundance and famine, the fibrous roots were baked for two to three days inside the imu (underground oven), caramelizing into a sweet, starchy treat. And let’s not forget the liquor. Roots were brewed into a potent brandy called ÿökolehao (literally iron bottom),
heat, and as the beloved foliage of choice for many lei artists, ti is used extensively as the foundational core for lei intertwined with other blooms and flowers. The next time you receive a lei, examine its construction closely—perhaps there’s a hidden ti leaf you might not have noticed immediately interweaved in the beautiful garland. Today, ti on the island is grown in a wide variety of colors, from reds and purples, along with variegated hues which may be used in lei-making, but the classic ti leaf lei is a simple yet elegant braid of green ti leaves. You’ll have no trouble finding a lei stand with this classic design. Local lei artist Kiley “Ki” Kelson, owner of Hakus by Ki, believes that ti has stood the test of time. She shares, “Many of our endemic plants have become endangered and/or extinct over the years, and yet here we are still using ti to cook and create with. Ti is so common yet so special to all Hawaiians and Hawaiian practitioners.” The Big Island is currently experiencing rapid ÿöhiÿa death caused by a fungal disease killing hundreds of thousands of native ÿöhiÿa trees. Maile, a native twining shrub, has been observed to be diminishing. Both ÿöhiÿa and maile play significant roles in Hawaiian culture and are used in many lei creations. For many lei artists like Kiley, ti serves as a beautiful and sustainable substitute for these fading plants. As an influence in Hawaiian spirituality, healing, and daily life, ti is remarkably ingrained in ancient and present Hawaiian culture. As you travel around the island, it’s easy to be distracted by the dramatic flora and vibrant blooms our island is adorned with, but keep an eye out for this humble, yet culturally significant plant—a timeless treasure hiding in plain sight. BIG ISLAND TRAVELER
PHOTO COURTESY: RINA MAE JABOLINA
which was enjoyed by kings and commoners alike. Ironically, indulgence in ÿökolehao was one of the causes of famine when time was consumed with those pleasures. In addition, the root was also used for hair oil, keeping strands together in windy environments. Legends reveal the great reliance Hawaiians placed on ti for spiritual and physical protection. According to one legend, a man-eating shark once inhabited Waipiÿo Stream. Before a man would attempt to swim across, he would throw a ti stalk into the water. If the stalk immediately disappeared, the shark was present. If the stalk kept afloat, it meant the shark was not there, and the stream was safe to swim in. Believed to have healing properties, ti also had many medicinal uses in ancient Hawaiÿi. To suppress a fever or relieve a headache, cool damp leaves were wrapped around the forehead and temples. Concocted with other plants, ti also aided in asthma. A drink boiled from the leaves was used to calm nerves and relax muscles. Leaves wrapped around hot stones were used to soothe sore muscles. Imagine hot stones covered in soft ti leaves placed on you after a strenuous workout. Fortunately, this therapy is still practiced today, and many spas on the island continue to use ti in other body treatments. The uses of ti in cultural practices by ancient Hawaiians have stood the test of time as many traditions utilizing ti continues to this day. Leaves are used in religious ceremonies, particularly opening ceremonies to bless new buildings and projects. A kahuna, Hawaiian priest, will often dip a frayed leaf into salt water and sprinkle an area, person or object as a blessing. Leaves are still used as protective wrapping for foods cooked by
FROM MAJESTIC WAIPI‘O VALLEY TO FIERY KĪLAUEA
escend in time to historic Hilo and spend the day exploring the beautiful lush gardens, historical museums, tranquil waterfalls, original shops, galleries and restaurants. This charming coastal city by the bay known for its friendliness and diversity of residents receives nearly 130 inches of rain annually making it one of the wettest cities on the planet. Combine all the rain with some sunshine and rich volcanic soil and you have the makings of a tropical wonderland. In the distant past, Hilo Bay was used as a trading hub for ships of commerce including whaling ships and sugar transportation for early Hawaiians. Today the port is used for a different kind of commerce, tourism. Many visitors aboard the cruise ships come to explore the many attractions in or nearby this resilient little town that has survived two destructive tsunamis in 1946 and 1960. Learn what it was like to endure the deadly storms by visiting the Pacific Tsunami Museum and listen to the stories from the remarkable survivors. Famous for growing exceptional orchids and other tropical vegetation, Hilo has several botanical gardens to marvel at nature’s beauty.
Wander through Lili‘uokalani Gardens, a 30acre, Japanese-style garden with pagodas, fishfilled ponds, half-moon bridges and a ceremonial teahouse. Designed to honor Hawai‘i’s first Japanese immigrants, it also offers a picturesque panoramic view of Hilo Bay. Take a stroll down Banyan Drive near the Hilo International Airport where celebrities including Babe Ruth, President Roosevelt and King George V all planted banyan tree saplings beginning in 1933. They have grown into a wonderful canopy providing welcoming shade on a sunny afternoon. Make time on either Wednesday or Saturday to visit Hilo Farmers Market featuring a wide variety of tropical flowers and delectable fruits and vegetables from over 200 vendors from all over the island. North of Hilo is the Hämäkua District surrounded by views of dramatic elevated coastlines, a stunning emerald jungle, flowing streams and waterfalls cascading down the sides of Mauna Kea. Take the time to visit the quaint towns of Honoka‘a and Laupahoehoe, former plantation towns, where traditional Hawaiian arts and history come alive. A few miles north of Honoka‘a is Waipi‘o Valley, with plummeting
waterfalls intersecting the explosion of lush tropical foliage on dramatic cliffs, it will make your top ten list of one of the most beautiful sights. The Puna District, south of Hilo, is a land of contrast and the fastest growing district on the island. Open lava fields and lush rainforests where numerous farmers grow everything from tropical plants, macadamia nuts and exotic fruits. Spend a day exploring the wonders of heated tidepools, natural springs, lava tubes, caves, black sand beaches and parks. Thirty minutes west of Hilo is home to Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park with two active volcanoes and Pele, the fiery volcano goddess. Kïlauea, the world’s most active and most visited volcano, is best visited around sunset. Over half of the 330,000-acre park is designated wilderness and provides unique hiking and camping opportunities. Stop by the visitor center for eruption updates and the all important safety information. Wear comfortable shoes, bring a sweater, flashlight and plenty of water and be prepared to experience one of the most spectacular natural wonders of the world. 97
LIVING ON THE EDGE
With the historic eruption of Kīlauea in the rearview, Volcano is open for business and residents would love to share their aloha with you WORDS BROOKE REHMANN
PHOTO COURTESY: (THIS PAGE/OPPOSITE ALL) HAWAII VOLCANOES NATIONAL PARK
his story is too long to tell in limited words. There will be stories left out, edited for space and clarity, but not for lack of worthiness. The stories shared here are only a fraction of those that are worth sharing, and reflect the limits of time and space. To those who shared their stories with me, it was an honor to hear them and share them below. But it’s more than just the individual stories, it’s also the story about community, coming together in uncertain times, and navigating the future—together. It was the eruption heard around the world. In May of 2018, I was traveling abroad, and no matter where I was, whether it was Portugal, Paris or St. Petersburg, stunned and worried faces greeted me each time I said I lived in Hawaiÿi. I reassured all of my new friends that my house was fine. Sadly, though, not every resident on the Big Island could say the same thing. Such a devastating eruption affected not only those in the path of the destruction, but also those whose livelihoods depended on the steady reliability of the world’s most active volcano. I have spoken with a few people who live on the rim of Kïlauea, who shared their stories of life during and after the historic eruption of 2018. Our first story involves me, but focuses on a couple who have made a commitment to the honoring of the land and dedicated to showing outsiders how special it is. After I returned from my long trip, I was on a mission to visit the volcano during the eruption. Even though the park was closed, emails and social message posts were imploring visitors to come back, that these communities were still open for business. One weekend, my husband and I took up this call, heading over to a little bed and breakfast, perched incredibly close to the boundaries of the national park, but undeterred by any potential threats. That’s when we met Kathleen and Peter Golden, proprietors of Volcano Rainforest Retreat Bed & Breakfast. Their hospitality was warm, their accommodations charming and relaxing, and we spent a comfortable evening listening to the soft drops of rain throughout the night. Oh, we were warned that there
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would be a big earthquake at some point in the evening, but not to worry. Sure enough, while enjoying our dinner at the Kilauea Lodge, a large jolt suddenly shook the earth. Even though we had been expecting it, it was still surprising. Yet, as I looked around the room, few people took notice or even stopped what they were doing. Even the few aftershocks created no more surprise or notice—this was simply life, going with the flow and enjoying the ride. To live here, one must be committed to this uncertainty. Kathleen is passionate about her forest home, and feels a keen responsibility to share it with others. “Those of us who live here are meant to be stewards and caretakers. This place is not just meant for a few people to enjoy but for the whole world to enjoy.” When the eruption started, business took a nosedive. As the eruption has eased, business is slowly picking up, but things are never certain. She talks about how alive the land is, the power of the earth, and the humility one must feel to live in such an “alive” home. She hopes that visitors who come will take away a similar feeling of stewardship, reverence and respect for the land. “That’s our vision—to help people to connect to this living forest and the geological activity of the land, and to remember the health of the planet for future generations.” Through Kathleen, I was introduced to Ira Ono, owner of Café Ono, Volcano Garden Arts, and President of the newly formed Experience Volcano, a group of artists and entrepreneurs who came together during the eruption with a goal to share their home with others. “I have been here for 30 years and we realized we had to do something. I knew everyone casually, but this brought us together in a really wonderful way.” He shares how the drop in visitors affected so many, as the entire economy is dependent on tourists visiting the National Park. “This experience made our love for this place deeper. We survived. We learned a lot, and we’d like to share it with others.” After Ira spoke to Kathleen recently, she reminded me of something Ira said, “People who could choose to live anywhere on earth choose to live here.” myhawaiitraveler.com
I was also introduced to Kathy Tripp and her daughter Julene TrippVillaruz of Volcano’s Lava Rock Café, Kilauea General Store and Kilauea Kreations, all of which are family-owned and operated for over 30 years. They also spoke of how the community rallied around each other, and how their restaurant became a local hangout for those who needed a place to discuss the unfolding uncertainty. “It was an adventure,” Kathy says. “We were glued to the TV, glued to our phones. So much happened everyday, but it was also so worrying…But, we had to answer lots of serious questions. Life continues to go forward, and if life keeps going on, how do we keep our life going on?” Fortunately, the outside community came to support the residents of Volcano, and their mission to share the Aloha Spirit with outsiders remain. “This is our home and we want you to feel like home,” Julene says. “If we can share that feeling with locals and visitors, it’s a really beautiful feeling.” Lastly, I spoke with Hawaiÿi Volcanoes National Park Ranger Jessica Ferracane about the park, as well as her own personal experience of living through the eruption. She mentioned that some parts of the park may never be repaired to the pre-eruption status, areas such as Crater Rim Drive past the Jaggar Museum, or even the museum itself. With two of the world’s most active volcanoes in its backyard, the park and its rangers must be flexible in terms of how it operates, making each trip potentially unique. This is how the park has operated for the 102 years it has been in operation—roads have been paved and disappeared, viewing areas fall into the craters themselves or get wiped out by lava. To live and work on the edge of a volcano is never certain, but always an adventure. For her, though, the experience itself was scary and unclear—with the park closed for 134 days, she speaks of her excitement to get back to work, repair what can be fixed, and share the magic of Kïlauea with others. She feels, though, that Pele, the Hawaiian goddess of fire, has a message for us all, that we fall apart without her. At the popular Jaggar Museum overlook of Halemaÿumaÿu, the revered home of Pele, there was much 99
Kïlauea’s activity is unpredictable. At the time of print, the eruption has taken a pause, though it is uncertain how long that will last. Hawaiÿi Volcanoes National Park has reopened after a lengthy closure during the eruption, though some services, trails, and areas of the park are still closed. The park offers ranger talks at the visitor center discussing this most recent eruption, as well as give information about what services are available. To find the most current information, visit www.nps.gov/havo/. Experience Volcano is a collection of dining, accommodations, artists, activities and more, and represents the coming together of the community during the uncertain times of the eruption. For more information about the community, visit their website, www.experiencevolcano.com. Kathleen and Peter Golden, who were instrumental in coordinating this story, run Volcano Rainforest Retreat Bed and Breakfast, an oasis in the middle of the jungle. Visit their website at volcanoretreat.com for more information and availability. Ira Ono is the owner of Café Ono and Volcano Garden Arts. To learn more about the restaurant and gallery, visit www.cafeono.net or www. volcanogardenarts.com. Kathy Tripp and Julene Tripp-Villaruz are part of the family that owns and runs Volcano’s Lava Rock Cafe, Kilauea General Store, and Kilauea Kreations. For more information about their menu or services, visit www. lavarocks.com. 100
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PHOTO COURTESY: (BOTTOM IMAGE OF KATHLEEN AND PETER GOLDEN) BROOKE REHMANN; (OTHERS) HAWAII VOLCANOES NATIONAL PARK
commotion and rarely any reverence. “There was no respect—and that responsibility actually falls to the park itself to establish a quiet, respectful place to commune with Hawaiian culture and the deity. I have to think she was sick of it, and took her leave of us for a while. I hope by the time she comes back we’ll figure out how to balance the demand to view lava with instilling the cultural significance, and quiet viewing opportunities,” she says. These are the stories of some of the residents of Volcano, but what story would the volcano itself tell? All we have to do to find out is read the lines of the earth, the different strata and layers piled on top of each other. Listen to the rumblings, or lack there of. Watch the growth or deflation, almost as if the earth, or Pele, is breathing in deep, shallow breaths. Watch the wildlife, the flora and fauna, to see how they respond to each new level of activity, their retreat and their return. The koaÿekea, or white-tailed tropicbirds, for instance, have been flying in and out of the crater making nests after all of this new “renovation” in the park. Kïlauea is a volcano that will continue to grow well beyond our lifetimes, and many lifetimes beyond that. What story will Pele want us to absorb? Visit Volcano, though, and you’ll find that everyone has a story to share. The man working the coffee cart, the park ranger greeting visitors, or the waitress serving you dinner—ask around, and you’ll start hearing the various accounts of life during the eruption. Those of us who witnessed the eruption from afar have much to learn about the lives of those who saw it up close and personally. Come to Volcano to see the beauty of the natural landscape, to admire with awe Pele’s work, and to hear the stories of admiration for this wild and wonderful corner of the world. Come.
IN THE DEEP When ocean adventure calls, proceed with caution WORDS ANDREW WALSH
Help! It’s the type of scream you hope not to hear as a dive instructor, but at some point, you will. The most horrible is the bloodcurdling “Help!” that is the unmistakable sound of a person in a fight for their life. The desperate cry in a person’s voice when they begin to drown, panic, or think their loved one has done the same is a sound no one forgets. It causes you to immediately jump into action, to remember all the training you did years ago, and the rescues you aided with since then. But mostly, it activates the innate human response we all have, the recognition of an ancient fear and the indomitable will to live. Somehow, it’s so ingrained in us to not drown, to survive, that we react much the same to another person drowning, almost as if it were ourselves. But hasty reactions and panic in the victim or the rescuer is generally what kills people. The role of the dive instructor is always to keep things calm, appear under control, and to plan. So that, through my own training and the training I share with students, we know what we are getting into and how to react to most challenges. Calmness and training: Is your regulator leaking? No problem, don’t worry, I will take care of that, remember what we practiced. Mask fell off at 80-ft., it’s OK, remember to breath like we practiced and slowly ascend, or better yet have mine, as I’ve practiced no mask breathing countless times. Are you too buoyant? I’ve got that; take some of the extra weight I always bring. Are you drowning? We’ve got that, too, remember I taught you to swim parallel or below the current. People generally drown before they get into the water. Sounds strange, but much like an airplane accident, the steps needed to avoid disaster can be tracked back to decisions and actions that were not taken hours, days, and even weeks, months, and years before a tragedy. The point to remember is that safety in the ocean begins before you actually dive in. Whether you are a swimmer, snorkeler, diver, or fisher—it doesn’t matter. Learn to stay calm and react to the situation through training and slowly stepping up your experience. Sadly, there will always be unavoidable tragedies in the ocean, as there are in life. But so many of the drownings that occur around the Hawaiian Islands 102
could very well have been avoided with some simple information and caution before stepping into a beautiful and alluring, but challenging and unforgiving, ocean environment. And the proof is in the numbers. Dying from drowning in the State of Hawaiÿi is a serious threat to visitors and locals. Hawaiÿi visitors drown at 13 times the national average. Of course, we are surrounded by the Pacific so that might make sense. But consider that visitors drown at 10 times the rate of locals, and what does that tell you? That having knowledge and experience in the ocean significantly reduces your chance of death in the ocean. Of all the leading causes of fatal injury in Hawaiÿi for locals, drowning accounts for just around 5%. But if you are a visitor to the islands, drowning accounts for almost 50% of fatalities. It is the leading cause of death for non-residents according to the Dept. of Health. For non-residents, snorkeling accounts for the largest number of drownings by far, followed by swimming. You can add all the data from boat accidents, falling in, fishing, free diving, scuba, surfing, and unknown shenanigans, and all those combined doesn’t come close to the amount of deaths from snorkeling. So how do we not drown? We learn to swim in the ocean in Hawaiÿi. And for those who might think, “Well, I know how to swim”—we need to retrain their concept of “knowing” how to swim. The first challenge is to dismantle the idea that once we know how to swim, then we know how to swim anywhere there is water. It doesn’t matter if you have been swimming since you were two, or if you still hold the fastest swimming record at your old high school. We need to think of learning to swim in different environments as no different than how we originally thought of learning to swim before we knew how to swim. Just because you know how to keep your body afloat and moving in water, doesn’t mean you know how to do that in an ocean, or a fastmoving river, or off an island with strong ocean currents and changing riptides. If we start to look at the ocean, even if we can swim, as a place that we will drown if we jump in without first learning local ocean swimming, then the chances of drowning go down significantly. Ok, so what do we need to know? One of the primary threats to BIG ISLAND TRAVELER
swimmers and snorkelers are the currents and tides. Particularly riptides. These are areas where a deeper channel in the seabed causes water that comes in from a wave or current to then get sucked into this channel on the way out. A weak shore break next to a more powerful shore break can also cause a rip current, as well as human-made formations such as jetties or piers. Sometimes it is possible to see a rip as a line of churning, choppy water moving quickly out to sea within the shore break, but often they are undetectable. They can be a few feet wide to hundreds of feet wide and can travel anywhere form 1-2 feet per second to 5-feet per second (stronger than the fastest swimmer). If you fight a rip current, you will lose. The urge to fight will be strong as the rip will be sucking you away from the precious safety of land and out into 3,000 miles of Pacific fury. Yes, that is when you will start to panic or at least make bad decisions. Trust me, I have been there. But most rip currents don’t go beyond the wave breaks that caused them (although some can go very far). If you can compose yourself armed with this knowledge, the tactic is to start swimming parallel to the shore until you are no longer in the rip. Generally, by the time you have swum half the length of an Olympicsize pool, you should be out of the rip current. Then, just head to shore diagonally away from the current. If you can’t beat the rip, let it take you. You are better off conserving energy and floating once the rip pops you out than exhausted and panicked in its teeth. What about other currents and waves? Yes, in Hawaiÿi we have some fantastic currents for seasoned swimmers. Don’t swim in an area that you don’t know or without someone who knows it. There are plenty of currents that move around the many geologic and biologic (corals) formations surrounding the islands. As for waves, oh brother, watch out. Some waves are small and fun, but sets can change and turn big and nasty. Find out what the conditions are like and not if, but how, they can change. If you don’t know how to duck dive, learn—don’t go out in Hawaiian waters without practicing somewhere safe first. A big set of waves will drown you quicker than a rip, without this skill and knowledge. Find out how the underwater contours affect the intensity of the waves. If it’s hard coral or a sudden elevation change, you can be slammed into the bottom and snapped in two. I experienced this firsthand at Häpuna Beach many years ago when a huge set came in out of nowhere. It bent my back so hard, I felt a crack and to this day I have no idea how my vertebrae didn’t snap. I later found out that injuries like this are common at that beach, but I neglected to check beforehand, thinking in all my water experience I knew better than the shifting nature of the mighty ocean. Hopefully, the time we all spend in the incredible myhawaiitraveler.com
waters surrounding these remote islands will fill us with the awe, mana (spiritual power), and fulfillment that they naturally imbue. It is a tragic loss to all of the water community whenever anyone, regardless of their experience or ability, leaps into these shores to participate in the wonder and joy we all know, only to never return to their loved ones. These are our fellow ocean-loving brothers and sisters, and they wanted to experience the same wonder and deep gratitude that we have cultivated in these waters. What is even more tragic is to know that they could potentially have avoided such a fate, with a little planning and knowledge. It’s my great hope that you are able to connect to the larger water community and immerse yourself in the fascinating ecosystems, critical food webs, and magical dance of diverse and unusual marine life that I have come to know and appreciate. Just be safe, and know before you go. Some basic rules to help keep you safe in the water •If in doubt, don’t go out. •Find out from the locals or the lifeguard what the conditions are and if and where it is safe to swim. •Swim where there is a lifeguard. Learn the area. •The Division of Aquatic Resources (DAR) and Hawaiÿi Beach Safety put up signs to warn of potential dangers. Learn what they mean and heed them. If you see a posting at a beach saying it’s not safe to go in the water, there is a really good reason.
•Always swim with a buddy. But, wait and watch the water conditions before entering. •If you don’t know what a riptide is or how to get yourself out of one, do not swim in Hawaiian waters until you do. •Once you think you know an area, learn even more. Ask lifeguards, locals and concierge for more information. In scuba we learn through repetition of knowledge and training. Learn something, and then learn it again, and again, and again. Visualize what you would do if caught in a difficult situation like a rip current. So, when your mind surges with adrenaline-fueled panic, you might just have enough knowledge and calmness to save yourself. •The coastline around the Big Island can be incredibly dangerous. Don’t get complacent near the water’s edge— rocks are slippery, and waves can knock you into waters and sweep you out to sea. •Just because you see locals out in the water, doesn’t mean it’s safe for you to go out. Many locals are seasoned waterman and have been swimming in the ocean most of their life and have knowledge about the area. •PDMOs. Keep a look out for them. That is, potentially dangerous marine organisms. Whether it is jellyfish, hard corals, or even sharks, know where to go and what warnings have been issued for these kinds of threats. It doesn’t take much to incapacitate you enough from being able to make it back to shore. •Remember that no place, no experience, no picture is worth risking your life or the life of others.
BIG ISLAND TRAVELER
KOHALA ‘ANAEHO‘OMALU BEACH (A-BAY)
A-Bay is a lovely, crescent beach with salt-and-pepper sand ideal for sail boarding, windsurfing, swimming and catching a perfect sunset. Palm trees separate the Pacific from the ancient fishponds and petroglyph fields. The water is usually calm so it makes a good family beach. You can walk south on a path upon entrance of the beach to find more private white sand beaches. Equipment rental, restrooms and showers are available. Located off Waikoloa Beach Dr across from the Kings’ Shops. Follow signs to beach.
HĀPUNA BEACH STATE RECREATION AREA
Splendid large white sand beach with clear turquoise water is great for swimming, snorkeling and body boarding. See Maui’s Haleakalä across the big blue Pacific. It’s crowded on the weekends and shade is scarce so plan accordingly. Be careful of the strong rip currents. Lifeguard, picnic areas, snack stand, restrooms and showers are available. Located off Hwy 19 adjacent to Häpuna Beach Prince Hotel with plenty of parking spaces. myhawaiitraveler.com
A nationally-ranked beautiful, white sand crescent beach fringed with palms and naupäka is a great place for swimming and snorkeling due to the gradually sloping sandy bottom, except during heavy winter surf. Get there early since public parking passes are limited. Lifeguard, restrooms and showers are available. Located through the entry gate to Mauna Kea Beach Resort off Hwy 19.
Beautiful scenic white sand beach, with clear, calm water and resting sea turtles. There are fantastic tidepools and a breakwater in front of the hotel making it a great place to swim. Restrooms and showers are available. Located through the gate to the Four Seasons Resort Hualälai off Hwy 19.
KĒŌKEA BEACH PARK
Swim with extreme caution since this charming secluded rocky beach park with its cliff-rimmed cove and green lawn lined with palm trees is often plagued by high wind and high surf. Spearfishing and fishing are excellent, but swimming can be hazardous. Camping, picnic areas, restrooms and showers are
available. Located off Hwy 270, near Pololü overlook about 6 miles past Häwï. Follow the sign onto the curvy road ~1 mile; past the cemetery.
MĀHUKONA BEACH PARK
Former shipping port for the sugar industry is now littered with underwater debris making this quiet beach park a great snorkeling site. The once useful machineries now lying at the bottom of the sea can easily be seen through the clear water. Swimming can be dangerous due to the heavy surf and no sandy beach for entrance (there’s a ladder off the old dock). Camping, restrooms and showers are available. Located off Hwy 270 north of Koai‘e Cove State Underwater Park between mile markers #14 and #15.
SPENCER BEACH PARK
Nice sandy white beach is great for swimming, snorkeling and picnics year-round. It is popular with families due to the reef-protected, gently sloping sandy bottom. Volleyball and basketball courts, camping, restrooms, and showers are available. Located off Hwy 270, ~ 1 mile uphill of Kawaihae Harbor within walking distance of Pu‘ukoholä Heiau. 105
SAND + SURF
HIT THE BEACH
WAIALEA BAY OR “69” BEACH
Named for the utility pole marker, this is a lovely white sand beach with crystal clear blue water great for swimming and snorkeling due to its sandy bottom and gradual drop off. Snorkeling is great around the rocky outcropping inside the bay, but the best snorkeling is in the southern portion where depths range from 10 to 30 feet. Mostly the water is super clear, but periodic freshwater invasion by an intermittent stream reduces surface visibility. Exercise caution during the winter months due to high surf. Restrooms and showers are available. Located off Hwy 19 ~5 miles south of Kawaihae, south of Häpuna Beach. Turn onto Puako Beach Dr., next take first right onto Old Puakö Road and park between pole #71 and #72.
NORTH KONA KEKAHA KAI STATE PARK
A 1,642 acre coastal state park with some of the best beaches on the island. Mahai‘ula Beach is an exquisite white sand beach great for swimming and snorkeling in the well-protected bay. About a 30-minute walk north of Mahai‘ula Beach is Makalawena Beach, one of the most stunning beaches on the island, with silky white sand and beautiful crystal clear turquoise water with sand dunes and trees as a backdrop and shoreline made up of intricate coves. Located ~2 miles north of Kona International Airport off Hwy 19 between mile marker #90 and #91, take rough 1 ½ mile road to beach.
KUA BAY BEACH PARK
Gorgeous, pristine white sand beach great for swimming is part of the Kekaha Kai State Park. Restrooms are available. Located off Hwy 19 across West Hawai‘i Veteran’s Cemetery ~5 miles north of the Kona Airport.
Long, narrow strand of white sand beaches north of the harbor with several protected pools bordered by a lagoon is excellent for swimming and snorkeling. Ai‘opio Beach is a sandy beach with crystal clear water and green sea turtles north of the harbor with protected swimming areas and ‘Alula Beach is a small white sandy crescent beach south of the harbor offering good snorkeling and offshore scuba diving. Kaloko Beach has great snorkeling with sea arches. The beaches are part of the Kaloko-Honoköhau National Park located off Hwy 19. Take turn onto Hohoköhau Small Boat Harbor or visit the park headquarters between mile marker #96 and #97.
OLD KONA AIRPORT PARK
The beach has a sandy inlet with tide pools. Snorkeling and diving are good. Be careful of sharp coral and lava rock when entering the water. Picnic area, tennis courts, jogging path, restrooms and showers are available. Located at the north end of Kuakini Rd off Hwy 19.
WĀWĀLOI BEACH PARK
Fascinating collection of tide pools and sandy beach is a great spot for kids and for exploring nearby secluded beaches. The beach is protected by a natural lava 106
barrier for enjoyable swimming. Pine Trees, a popular surf spot, is nearby; swimming is not recommended. Picnic tables, grills, restrooms and showers are available. Located off Hwy 19 north of Kona Airport close to mile marker #94; follow signs for Natural Energy Lab.
SOUTH KONA HO‘OKENA BEACH PARK
Grey sand beach good for swimming, snorkeling and bodysurfing. Water shoes are recommended for this beach. Picnic areas, restrooms and camping are available. Located off Hwy 11 past 101 mile marker near Place of Refuge; follow signs.
KAHALU‘U BEACH PARK
Salt and pepper beach fringed with palms is most popular for swimming, snorkeling and fishing. This dark sandy beach is one of the best spots for snorkeling on the island with an abundance and variety of colorful reef fish and sea life. Beware of high surf and rip currents. Picnic area, restrooms and showers are available. Located on Ali‘i Dr. next to mile marker #5.
The name means “eye of the turtle”. The beach is a sliver of white sand that is popular with families for swimming, snorkeling and kayaking. Located next to King Kamehameha’s Kona Beach Hotel adjacent to busy Kailua Pier on Ali‘i Dr.
MILOLI‘I BEACH PARK
Tidepools and patches of beach with protecting reefs make for great swimming and snorkeling. Near an ancient fishing village destroyed by lava flow in 1927 alive with old traditions. Picnic areas, restrooms and camping are available. Located off Hwy 11 ~33 miles south of Kailua near mile marker #88.
NĀPŌ‘OPO‘O BEACH PARK
Located in Kealakekua Bay Marine reserve where spinner dolphins swim close to shore, spectacular for snorkeling, diving and boat tours in the clear, calm pristine bay. Colorful reef fish are plentiful in the welldeveloped reef. Black rocky beach with a steep incline makes ocean access risky, however there is a short pier at the left side of the parking lot. Across the bay, a 27foot white obelisk represents where Captain Cook was killed in 1779. Located off Hwy 11; exit Kealakekua Bay just south of milemarker 111. Beach is at the end of Näpö‘opo‘o Rd., turn right at the end of the road.
LA‘ALOA BEACH PARK
a.k.a. Magic Sands, White Sands or Disappearing Sands because the beach disappears during high surf months and returns in the spring. Gets crowded with body and board surfers. One of the best surfing spots is just north at Banyans. Restrooms and showers are available. Located on Ali‘i Dr. ~ 4 ½ miles south of Kailua.
BIG ISLAND TRAVELER
SAND + SURF REEDS BAY PARK
Banyan-lined cove offers excellent swimming in calm waters, but freshwater spring from the bottom keeps the water cold, a.k.a. the Ice Pond. Picnic areas, restrooms, showers, and camping are available. Located at the end of Banyan Drive.
PUNA-KA‘Ū KEHENA BEACH PARK
Lovely black sand beach with coconut and ironwood trees offers shade and nice backdrop. Swimming can be rough because of the strong rip currents, but it’s a great place to watch dolphins and turtles. The secluded location of the beach also draws nude sunbathers. Located off Hwy 137 about 5 miles south of MacKenzie State Recreation Area, park by other cars and take the well-worn path to beach.
GREEN SAND (PAPAKŌLEA) BEACH
Green crystals sparkle like jewels in the sun next to a magnificent turquoise sea in this unusual, most beautiful crescent beach formed during an early eruption of Mauna Loa. Swimming can be dangerous and there are no facilities, but once you kick off your tennis shoes and have a refreshing soak, you will appreciate the awesomeness of nature’s gift. Take Hwy 11 to South Point Rd in Ka‘ü and go south 12 miles. From here, continue NE on the dirt road to the boat launch and hike the final two miles to this majestic beach.
MACKENZIE STATE RECREATION AREA
HĀMĀKUA KOLEKOLE BEACH PARK
Fabulous place to picnic, fish and explore the underthe-bridge park with abundant tropical foliage and waterfalls. The Kolekole stream is fed from ‘Akaka Falls and flows into the ocean. Do not attempt to swim at the mouth of the river or enter the ocean at this spot because the rough, strong currents and rocky bottom makes it dangerous. Restrooms, showers and picnic areas are available. Located off Hwy 19 about 12 miles NW of Hilo between ‘Akaka and Umauma Falls.
LAUPĀHOEHOE POINT BEACH PARK
Swimming, snorkeling and surfing can be good, but heavy surf makes it dangerous at times. Site of the 1946 tidal wave offers good fishing and beautiful park. Picnic areas, camping, restrooms, showers and electricity are available. Located ~1 mile off Hwy 19 down a well-marked twisting road.
HILO COCONUT ISLAND BEACH PARK
Local family favorite for swimming, fishing, picnicking and tide pools. Shallow pools with sandy bottoms make this beach keiki (kid) friendly. Nice shade provided by coconut and ironwood trees. Located next to the Hilo Hawaiian Hotel on Banyan Drive, cross the footbridge.
JAMES KEALOHA BEACH PARK
Good snorkeling, swimming, surfing, spearfishing and throw-netting. Best to swim and snorkel on the east myhawaiitraveler.com
side of the beach since it’s more protected than the west side, which can be rough with strong currents during high surf. Picnic areas, restrooms and showers are available. Located off Hwy 19, ~3 miles east of Hilo.
HONOLI‘I BEACH PARK
Sandy beach is popular local spot for surfing and boogie boarding on the eastern coast. Strong surf makes swimming difficult. Restrooms and showers are available. Located off Hwy 19 at Alae Point.
LELEIWI BEACH PARK
Scenic park with series of inlets, coves and tide pools. It’s a good place to scuba dive. Located off Kalaniana‘ole Ave. along the water ~4 miles east of Hilo.
ONEKAHAKAHA BEACH PARK
Good family beach with a protected, white sand beach and tidepools. Picnic pavilions, restrooms and showers are available. Located off Kalaniana‘ole Ave. along the water ~3 miles east of Hilo.
RICHARDSON OCEAN PARK
Black sand beach fringed with coconut palms and ironwood trees. Lava outcroppings give swimmers somewhat protection and makes for good snorkeling. Restrooms and showers are available. Located off Kalaniana‘ole Ave. along the water ~5 miles east of Hilo.
Beautiful 13-acre coastal park located in a breezy, cool ironwood grove along a rocky coastline. Small sea arches and lava tube openings are visible along the coastline cliffs. Swimming is not recommended due to the sea cliff that borders the park, but good shore fishing exists. Beware of occasionals high waves that break on the ledges. Picnic tables, camping and restrooms are available. Located off Hwy 137, 9 miles NE of Kaimü.
PUNALU‘U BLACK SAND BEACH PARK
Palm trees line this inviting lagoon where green sea turtles rest on the black sand, good swimming beach and easily accessible. Near the boat ramp at the northern end of the beach lie the ruins of a heiau and a flat sacrificial stone. Restrooms and camping are available. Nearby is Ninole Cove, a small beach with a grassy area and lagoon good for swimming. Located on Hwy 11, 27 miles south of Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park.
WHITTINGTON BEACH PARK
Picturesque scenic park rich with vibrant colors and history. Not much of a beach, but a great place to take photographs and explore the stunning views of the park and the wharf built in 1883 to move sugar, then destroyed by the 1946 tsunami. Swimming is not recommended in the ocean due to strong currents, high surf and rocky shoreline. Fishing is popular with the locals on the weekends. Picnic area, restrooms, electricity and camping are available. Located off Hwy 11 across from the abandoned sugar mill. 107
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ISLAND EVENTS ONGOING FREE TUESDAY TROT: 5K FUN RUN & WALK
(Tuesdays) - Each Tuesday throughout the year anyone can join Historic Kailua Village’s Tuesday Trot 5K Fun Run and Walk. Big Island Running Company coordinates noncompetitive free weekly fun runs, which begins at their Aliÿi Drive store location at 5pm, turn around at Makaeo Pavilion (Old Airport), and return to the point of origin. Visitors, residents, children, anyone and everyone are invited to join the community camaraderie and help promote active, healthy lifestyles. Contact Melissa (808) 327-9333. KINGS’ SHOPS FARMERS MARKET
(Wednesdays) - In close proximity to many of the Kohala Coast resorts, this boutiquestyle farmers market is convenient for the communities on the western coast of the island. Located throughout the Kings’ Shops in the Waikoloa Beach Resort, purchase fresh and affordable produce in a tropical setting. Sample fresh and dried fruits from Hawaiian Rainbow Farms, or purchase some of their handcrafted Hula Hands natural soap. Palani French Bakers features classic and crusty French baguettes, brioche, artisanal breads and fresh pastries. It’s the perfect breakfast option that pairs excellently with the flavors of Honomu Jams & Jellies; try their organic goods made with all natural ingredients from over 100 varieties of fruit and vegetables. Once you’ve enjoyed all the market has to offer, take advantage of great dining and shopping at the various restaurants and retailers from trendy boutiques to luxury brands at the Kings’ Shops premier shopping center. Farmers Market is open from 8:30am to 2:30pm. PORTUGUESE STONE OVEN BREAD BREAKING
(Thursdays) - Take part in this historical recreation—making, and then baking traditional sweet bread in a wood-fired oven called a forno, the type used by Portuguese immigrants 110
who came to Hawai‘i in the 1800s. This is a unique, tasty, and hands-on experience! Free. The baking event is from 10am-1pm; around 12:30pm to 1pm is when the first batch of beautiful brown bread comes out of the oven. The loaves ($8) are first come, first served, and sold straight out of the oven until sold out. Kona Historical Society (808) 323-3222. TWILIGHT AT KALAHUIPUA‘A
(Saturdays, closest to full moon) - Each month when the full moon rises, Mauna Lani hosts an enchanted evening of storytelling and entertainment on the lawn of the resort’s oceanfront Eva Parker Woods Cottage. Join Mauna Lani’s Cultural Historian, Danny Kaniela Akaka, as he leads guests in sharing stories, songs and dance. The event perpetuates the traditional folk art of storytelling and provides a chance to experience the true Aloha Spirit. The oceanfront location is the piko (spiritual center) of the resort’s ancient Hawaiian fishponds, making it the perfect venue under the full moon. Twilight dates are subject to change. 5:30pm. Free. Please contact Mauna Lani Concierge at (808) 881-7911 to confirm date. KOKUA KAILUA
(Monthly) - One Sunday each month from 1pm to 6pm, oceanfront Aliÿi Drive along scenic Kailua Bay in Historic Kailua Village becomes a festive pedestrian-only walkway and marketplace. Enjoy free music, artists, and friendly merchants for great shopping and delicious dining. At 4pm, there is free Hawaiian entertainment on the lawn at Huliheÿe Palace honoring Hawaiian royalty. Bring your own mat or chair and they will be checked for free while you stroll Aliÿi Drive. Shop, dine, and buy local! Call (808) 9369202 or visit HistoricKailuaVillage.com. SANCTUARY OCEAN COUNT
(Jan. 26, Feb. 23, Mar. 30) - Please join the Hawaiian Islands Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary Foundation to count whales! The community project
involves counting the number of whales that can be seen around the islands and recording their behavior. Not only has this proven to be a fun volunteer activity for residents and visitors, but it also helps to provide important population and distribution information on humpback whales in Hawai‘i. If you are interested in participating in the annual Sanctuary Ocean Count Project or want to learn more about volunteering and to register, get details at SanctuaryOceanCount.org. JANUARY WAIMEA OCEAN FILM FESTIVAL
(Jan. 1-9) – Guests will surely enjoy awardwinning films, breakfast talks, Q&A filmmaker sessions, art and exhibits focused on an understanding of the ocean. The event will be held at various Waimea and Kohala Coast venues including Mauna Kea Beach Hotel, The Fairmont Orchid and Four Seasons Resort Hualälai. For more information and events schedule, please visit WaimeaOceanFilm.org or call (808) 8546095. MITSUBISHI ELECTRIC CHAMPIONSHIP AT HUALÄLAI
(Jan. 17-19) – The PGA TOUR Champions tournament is a competition among all official event champions of the past season and features many golf legends. The golf competition is held on the beautiful Hualälai Golf Course, designed by Jack Nicklaus, while tournament guests enjoy the renowned Four Seasons Resort Hualälai at Historic Kaÿüpülehu. Visit HualalaiResort.com. FEBRUARY WAIMEA CHERRY BLOSSOM HERITAGE FESTIVAL
(Feb. 2) - This popular festival held in the community of Waimea in its 26th year celebrates Japanese traditions and culture and includes cherry blossom viewing, music, mochi pounding, tea ceremonies, demonstrations, exhibits, crafts, entertainment, ethnic foods, bonsai, origami, a farmers market and visiting performers and artisans from Japan. Various BIG ISLAND TRAVELER
highlights throughout the town, 9am to 3pm. Look for pink banners identifying multiple sites sprawling throughout the town. For additional information, contact (808) 9618706.
PHOTO COURTESY: MOKIF
MARCH 24TH ANNUAL KONA BREWERS FESTIVAL
(Mar. 9) – The Kona Brewers Festival indulges craft beer aficionados with 72 selections of ales and lagers served up with a wide variety of island-style cuisine from 36 Hawaiÿi chefs. Breweries from Hawaiÿi and the mainland US will each offer two types of craft brews, offering something for beer adventurers and connoisseurs alike. Top chefs from some of the Big Island’s favorite restaurants will offer their best food pairings, ranging from fresh fish and smoked meats to tropical sweets against a backdrop of passing paddleboards and canoes at the historic Kamakahonu Bay Beach. Live music and entertainment include the annual, must-see Trash Fashion Show, a myhawaiitraveler.com
performance that highlights creative fashions made entirely from recycled material. Cost is $85 for general admission and includes a commemorative event mug, 10 four-ounce brew tasting coupons, unlimited samplings of gourmet cuisine and an afternoon of entertainment, from 3pm to 7pm. Limited Connoisseur’s Lounge Tickets are $185. Held at Courtyard King Kamehameha’s Kona Beach Hotel. For more info and tickets, visit KonaBrewersFestival.com. LAVAMAN WAIKOLOA TRIATHLON
(Mar. 31) – The Annual Lavaman Triathlon Festival features an Olympic distance 10K-run, 40K-bike and 1.5K-swim open to individuals and relay teams of all ages and abilities, awards party and beach barbeque. Host hotel is Hilton Waikoloa Village, and events are held throughout Waikoloa Beach Resort on the Kohala Coast. For registration or more info, visit LavaManTriathlon.com. Volunteers are always needed, and spectators are welcome. Call (808) 329-9718.
APRIL THE MERRIE MONARCH FESTIVAL
(April 25-27) - This is the premier cultural event in the Hawaiian Islands. Held each year in Hilo, the Kanakaÿole Stadium. Hälau (hula schools) come from all the islands as well as some from the continental United States. This unusual competition is about sharing and aloha, a feature of Hawaiian cultural values. Ticket requests must be mailed in. Call (808) 935-9168 or visit MerrieMonarch. com for more information, ticket request form, and complete schedule. Festival honors King Kaläkaua, and his contributions to the Hawaiian people. It includes crafts, food, cultural demonstrations, a parade, art exhibits, live music and features three nights of hula competition in the Edith All events are subject to change. Check out www.myhawaiitraveler.com for updates and more events.
Karen Ferrara, MBA Big Island Luxury Specialist Realtor | RS-72752 808.883.0094 Karen.Ferrara@ElitePacific.com www.karen-ferrara.com
â€œI have bought and sold many homes all over the country. Karen was masterful, courteous and on point at all times. I highly recommend her services.â€? -Diana T.
Karen will give you the competitive edge on the buy or sell side with a strong business-minded approach, nearly $100M in Real Estate Sales and 120+ transactions. Karen is a consummate professional and provides intelligent analytics, strong negotiation skills, excellent communication, and delivers exceptional Five-Star, Five-Diamond service to every client, every time.
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4 BR/5 BA | 4,426 Sq Ft
Do you crave unforgettable experiences? Does pursuit of Earth’s natural wonders and their stories capture your imagination? Extending to all corners of Hawaii Island, our fully outfitted, small group tours reach untouched destinations and inspire deep personal connection with the land. With Hawaii Forest & Trail and Kohala Zipline, don’t just plan a vacation, prepare for an adventure.
Volcano • Waterfall Zipline • Maunakea Summit • Farm Birdwatching • Private & Custom
Book Your Adventure! 808.331.3635 808.331.3620
° hawaii-forest.com ° kohalazipline.com
BIG ISLAND THE LIFE & STYLE OF HAWAIâ€˜I
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LOCAL VIBE ISLAND STYLE FOOD + DRINK ENDLESS ADVENTURES THE BEST BEACHES WHAT WE LOVE NOW $6.99