Hilo: Hawaii – The Big Island
The second island to visit on the cruise was Hawaii – The Big Island where the township of Hilo is located. Hilo history in brief, is the largest settlement and census-designated place in Hawaii County, Hawaii, United States. The town overlooks Hilo Bay, at the base of two shield volcanoes; Mauna Loa, an active volcano and Mauna Kea, a dormant volcano and the site of some of the world’s most important ground-based astronomical observations. Much of the city is at some risk from lava flows from Mauna Loa. Also, Hilo is the home to the University of Hawaii and it is one of the world’s leading producers of macadamia nuts.
Though Hilo is best known for its annual Merrie Monarch Festival – a week-long Hawaiian cultural event and hula competition dedicated to King David Kalakaua, tourism is less noticeable here in Hilo but there was plenty to do. It has its share of some of the world’s most extravagant and spectacular natural beauty and attractions, including Rainbow Falls, Boiling Pots, Coconut Island and Queen Liliuokalani Park. All these fun excursions for the entire family friendly. Having the time on what I can do, I decided to take an all-day official off-shore excursion tour. Official tours on cruises are vitally important than doing a private tours. You’re insured and the cruise-ship will wait for you if there is a delay on the tour, while the private tours are not. Our tour guide was a local resident who has lived most of his entire life on the island. He has been operating his private tours for 20 years. With someone with that tourism background, I knew I was going to get what I wanted to see and experience. He was very informative and took us to places where private tourists coaches are inaccessible.
Hilo: Garden and Waterfall
Within a 10-minute drive from the cruise-terminal is the botanical gardens . Here was the chance to see this breathtaking view of the Rainbow Falls and unique plants which are native to the island. Been a keen gardener back home, to me this was the place where I would have love to spend most of my time exploring this pristine natural gardens.