Big Island – Hawaii

The island of Hawaii or more normally called The Big Island is the youngest of islands in the state of Hawaii’s chain of islands, and it is also the largest.  It is home to some of the biggest landmarks in the world such as Kilauea, the most active volcanoes in the world; Maunaloa, the most massive mountain in the world; and Maunakea, the tallest sea mountain in the world.

Some people originate the name Hawaii to Hawaiiola, the person who first discovered the islands.  Others say the name came from Hawaikiki, which is where Polynesians believed a person would go in the afterlife.  King Kamehame called this island his home while he was uniting all of the islands, and this is why the state name is now also Hawaii.

There are two main residential areas on The Big Island.  One of those areas is Hilo.  It is the only major city on the island’s windward coast, and it also happens to be the wettest city in the entire United States with an average rainfall of 128 inches.  This provides the area with a lush green tropical environment.  Although the area does sit along the coast most of the beachside is made up of either shops or open space.  Most residents prefer to live further inland because of past tsunamis.

The other residential area is Kailua-Kona.  This is located on the other side of the island and is also much drier and more tourism focused.  This area is also a prime area for real estate on the island.  In most of the later Hawaiian history, the states royalty lived in Kailua-Kona.

Captain Cook is the last of “big towns” on the western side of the island.  It is where the main attractions are located on this part of the island.  People come here to go sailing, fishing, scuba diving, snorkeling, and just plain sightseeing.  There are also a few cozy B&Bs that can be found in the area.

An even smaller town on the island is Hakalau.  It is mainly home to a few small farms.  Locals visit the area to surf and fish.  The Hakalau National Forest is nearby and is home to many endangered species.

Hawi, which was once a sugar plantation, is now the largest town on the island’s north shore.  It has bounced back from the ending of sugar production and is now opening its doors as a tourist community.  There are several shops, art galleries, and restaurants.

Holualoa is situated above Kailua-Kona.  It is known for being a small coffee producing village.  There are several art galleries in the area as well as coffee shops from people who grow their own coffee beans.

Honaunau is a small community known for its local national park.  This park was once the location of a refugee to protect lawbreakers until King Kamehameha II ended traditional religious practices in 1961.

The largest town on the Hamakua Coast is Honoka’a.  The last sugar plantation in the area closed up shop in 1994 so the locals in the area still hang onto their rich history.  Local and foreign entrepreneurs have increased economy in the area by investing in ranching, farming, and tourism.  The Art Deco Honoka’a People’s Theatre is located here and is where the Hamakua musical festival takes place each year.

Big Island real estate is home to varied local areas.  Even though it is the largest island in Hawaii, it also has the least population density.  There are two large areas but the rest of the island is scattered into smaller towns and villages.  This is a great place to escape to for a more relaxed island home.