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Kona Coast, Hawaii Travel Guide, touring the Kona Coast, visiting the Kona Coast - Indian Chief Travel
UNITED STATES  |  Big Island, Hawaii Travel Guide
Monday, June 17, 2024
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Kona Coast

Kona Coast

The Kona Coast comprises the central portion of the west coast of the Big Island, from Kiholo Bay south to Kailua-Kona, Captain Cook and the Kipahoehoe Natural Area Reserve, stretching some 50 miles. This is one of the premier resort areas of the island, dry, sunny, and with good, sandy beaches. It has, together with the Kohala Coast just to the north, the majority of the island’s hotels, restaurants, shops and other visitor facilities, and one of the island’s only two commercial airports, the Keahole Airport.

Kailua-Kona

Kailua-Kona is the Kona Coast’s principal town, situated at the foot of Mt Hualalai (elev. 8,271 feet), on the slopes of which world-famous Kona coffee is grown. The town was once home to Hawaii’s first great monarch, King Kamehameha, who lived here from 1812 until his death in 1819. The town itself has all the trappings and amenities of a tourist haunt that you could ask for: hotels, restaurants, souvenir shops and shopping centers. Among the visitor attractions here are the colorful Kailua Pier, King Kamehameha’s Kona Beach Hotel and Kamakahonu Beach, all fronting on Kailua Bay at the north end of Alii Drive, plus Hulihee Palace (now a museum), Mokuaikaua and St Michael’s churches, and the Holua Slide. There are also several beach parks here.

Captain Cook

Captain Cook is the other main town on the Kona Coast, situated 19 miles south of Kailua-Kona on a steep slope of Mauna Loa, at an elevation of 1,200 feet. The town is named for the British explorer, Captain James Cook, who landed here in January of 1779 and was subsequently killed by the natives a month later upon his return to the site. Chief attractions here and in the vicinity are the Captain Cook Monument, Manago Hotel, the Royal Kona Coffee Mill and Museum, the Kealakekua Bay Marine Life District and preserve, historic St Benedict’s “painted” church, Kona Historical Museum, a handful of beach parks, and the sacred Pu’uhonua O Honaunau National Historical Park where you can visit historic relics.

North of Kailua-Kona

Also, north of Kailua-Kona, there are several good beach parks along a 25-mile stretch of coastline, as well as the Kona Village Resort and the Keahole Airport (Kailua- Kona’s nearest airport), where you can visit the Ellison S. Onizuka Space Center. The space center houses a variety of space exhibits and is named for Hawaii’s first astronaut who died in the 1986 Challenger space shuttle tragedy.

Last updated December 25, 2010
Posted in   United States  |  Big Island
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