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Hilo: Best 8 Places You Must Visit In Hilo, Hawaii

Hilo, Hawaii is a tropical city with a lot to offer. From a lava cave tour to a Hawaiian sunrise, this city has everything for the outdoor adventurer.

Tourist Attractions And Visit In Hilo, Hawaii

If you’re planning to spend some time in Hawaii, you should visit the quaint city of Hilo. The island is home to the tallest mountain in the world, Mauna Kea, and is filled with wonderful things to do.

One of the most popular tourist attractions in Hilo is Rainbow Falls. It is located inside Wailuku River State Park. When the sun shines through the spray, the fall turns into a rainbow. This is a beautiful attraction to see early in the morning before the crowds arrive.

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Another one of the best things to do in Hilo is to take a lava cave tour. You’ll need a flashlight, a headlamp, and sturdy shoes to navigate this tour. Hilo’s zoo is free to enter, and is a great place to find exotic plants and animals.

There’s a butterfly house, amphibians section, reptile zone, playground, and picnic tables. Another unique experience in Hilo is a visit to the botanical park. The park is an interesting tribute to Japanese immigrants who worked in sugar plantations on the island.

Visit In Hilo
Image Credit : Facebook

Several historic buildings are located on Kamehameha Avenue. In addition, you’ll find several shops. A great thing to do in Hilo is to check out the farmers market. On Wednesdays, there is a market where you can purchase fresh fruit and vegetables.

There’s also a market on Saturdays, where you can buy local items. Another thing to do in Hilo is to visit the East Hawaii Cultural Center. It’s home to a range of events, including the Youth Arts Series, which features exhibits.

Located in the shadow of the island’s only national park, Hilo is home to numerous natural wonders. For a unique experience, visit the Boiling Pots, a collection of cooled lava rock pools.

Akaka Falls State Park #1

Akaka Falls is a waterfall on the Big Island of Hawaii. It’s a four-story tall waterfall and it’s located in a state park. The trail to the falls is about half a mile long, and it’s one of the best family hikes on the island.

The name ‘Akaka’ is derived from the Hawaiian word meaning ‘break’ or ‘crack’. The name is a reference to the lehua apane tree, which produces a branch that will split the sky and bring rain. It’s no surprise that Akaka Falls is one of the most popular waterfalls on the island.

It’s a beautiful place to visit and it’s easy to get to from the Kona coast. You can enjoy the scenery in the morning or the evening. Hikers can also enjoy the lush rainforest. If you’re looking for the best views of the falls, you can choose to hike along a paved path, which offers a view of Kahuna Falls.

Visit In Hilo
875 Akaka Falls Rd, Honomu, HI 96728, USA

Akaka Falls is one of the most beautiful waterfalls on the island. It’s situated in a green-lined gorge. There’s a botanical garden in the area, too. The best time to visit Akaka Falls is early in the morning or late at night.

The water is best illuminated by the sun. A trail leads to a lookout that offers a good view of the falls. The loop trail is about half a mile in length. At the end of the trail, you can take a short walk to Kahuna Falls, another popular waterfall.

Rainbow Falls #2

Rainbow Falls, also known as Wainuenue, is a spectacular 80-foot waterfall on the Wailuku River. The falls are located in the Wailuku River State Park. This park is home to a number of trails.

Rainbow Falls can be seen from the parking lot, and there is a short hike to the top. For the best view, climb the rocky staircase and look out over the falls. There is also a plunge pool at the bottom of the falls. Besides the main cascade, the waterfalls below offer a variety of smaller cascades.

Some of the cascades even have great photo ops. It’s a good idea to visit the Rainbow Falls early in the day. The park is less busy during this time and you should be able to enjoy the falls and the surrounding area without too many people.

967 Waianuenue Ave, Hilo, HI

However, the park is always open and visitors are free to explore at any time. During the rainy season, the falls can be tremendous. Among the many legends of the area, one is that the rainbows are created by a local moon goddess.

She lived in a cave behind the falls. You can also enjoy a number of picnic spots along the trail. Dogs are allowed on the trail. In fact, the trail is a bit slippery in some spots.

If you are a fan of hiking, the Rainbow Falls Trail is a good choice. The trail is a little over half a mile long. The first two-thirds of the mile is a steady climb through a boulder field.

Liliuokalani Gardens #3

Liliuokalani Gardens is one of the most scenic areas in Hilo. It’s a Japanese-style garden surrounded by the Pacific Ocean. This park features beautiful ponds, pagodas, and a traditional Japanese teahouse. The awe-inspiring landscape is a great place for a picnic. Besides, it is also a popular wedding site.

Liliuokalani Gardens was created in 1907 after Queen Lili’uokalani made a donation of five acres of land. A group of local women and the Hilo Board of Trade then contributed to the construction of this garden.

The park is a popular destination for tourists and residents alike. You can find on-street parking and free access to the park. Also, the gardens are open 24 hours. The gardens were originally created to honor the Japanese immigrants who worked on the sugar plantations.

189 Lihiwai St #151, Hilo, HI 96720, USA

These early Japanese settlers were a huge influence on the Hawaiian culture. Liliuokalani’s Edo-style Japanese Gardens are a peaceful, tranquil setting. They feature ponds, pagodas, and stone lanterns.

Their serene atmosphere is a reminder of the many Japanese cultures that have influenced Hilo. The Liliuokalani Gardens are located in the Moku Oka neighborhood of Hilo. There are several paths around the gardens.

Some of the main attractions include a traditional Japanese teahouse, pagodas, and statues. Liliuokalani Gardens is a popular spot for a picnic or a quiet stroll.

For those who want to get a little more active, there are tennis courts and a swimming pool. You can get a stamp commemorating the garden and its cultural history. Check out the Friends of the Park Facebook page for more information.

Maunakea Visitor Information Station #4

The Maunakea Visitor Information Station (VIS) is a great way to get information and educate visitors about the area. However, it’s been closed in the past due to protests. It’s now open again. Hopefully, the decision will be a positive one for visitors.

When you arrive at the visitor station, you will be greeted by a park ranger who will ask you questions. They will also give you the necessary information for your trip. A VIS staff member will normally offer a star and constellation tour. You can then spend about 45 minutes acclimating to the altitude before descending.

If you’re planning to go to the summit, you’ll need a four wheel drive vehicle. The road to the summit is unpaved and steep. Using a 4WD Low Range will help reduce the chance of overheating and brake failure.

177 Makaala St, Hilo, HI 96720, USA

Although you can go to the summit, you should consider an escorted tour. You can choose from a variety of operators, many of which have experience and knowledgeable guides. Many of these companies also bring portable telescopes to the summit.

During the summer months, the weather can be unpredictable. This can cause some people to become altitude sick. To avoid becoming ill, you should start at the mid-level and slowly descend.

If you’re planning a trip to the summit, you should be aware that there are construction sites. Construction is permitted only during daylight hours. There are signs identifying these sites near the VIS.

Lyman Museum #5

Lyman Museum is a cultural and natural history museum in Hilo, Hawaii. It is a Smithsonian Affiliate and is accredited by the American Alliance of Museums. Visitors can enjoy the museum’s special collections of Hawaiian and Native Hawaiian art, gems, minerals, and shells.

The Lyman Museum is one of four museums in the state accredited by the American Alliance of Museums. They also have a gift shop. This museum has several special exhibits that teach visitors about the unique history of Hawaii. You can also learn about the island’s climate and wildlife.

Aside from the museum, there is a historic home next door that is available for guided tours. Tours are held daily. The house is registered as an historical site and is a unique display of the growth of Hilo in the nineteenth century.

276 Haili St, Hilo, HI 96720, USA

The docents that lead the tours explain the rich history of what it was like to live there. In addition to the historic house, the Lyman Museum building houses an outstanding collection of artifacts and archives.

Special exhibits change every year, allowing visitors to experience the rich culture of Hawaii. Admission is $10 for adults and $3 for students. Visits are free for children under the age of 12. To make a reservation for a tour, call (808) 974-6810.

Located at 276 Haili Street, the Lyman Museum and Mission House is one of the only museums in Hawaii that is registered as a historical site. As a result, it is eligible for both State and National Register of Historic Places.

Carlsmith Beach Park #6

Carlsmith Beach Park is a great spot to enjoy a day of sun and surf on the Big Island of Hawaii. This park features a large lawn area, picnic tables, and several lagoons. During high-tide, you can often see sea turtles in the waters.

The beach area is protected by natural rock walls and a coral reef, keeping the waves at a minimum. It is perfect for snorkeling and swimming. During the high-tide, there is a lifeguard on duty.

Another attraction in the area is the Rainbow Falls. While the waterfall is not as popular as the Hilo beach, you can still go here for some cool water fun. Another great feature is the fresh water that comes up from the bottom of the lagoons.

1815 Kalanianaole St, Hilo, HI 96720, USA

It is a natural cooling system that creates a chilly spot on the warm lagoon. You can also watch the green Hawaiian sea turtles that are found at this park. Carlsmith Beach Park is a great family-friendly location.

It is perfect for swimming, snorkeling, and picnicking. A lifeguard is on duty at weekends and holidays. Car owners can park in a gravel parking lot about 50 to 100 meters away. There are also free parking spaces on the street.

Carlsmith Beach Park is open from 7 am to 8 pm. During the high-tide, it can get a little crowded. However, you’ll find plenty of shaded areas and a grassy lawn to relax on. If you want to get out of the heat, there are showers and restrooms. Several large lagoons make it a great spot to swim, too.

The Pacific Tsunami Museum #7

The Pacific Tsunami Museum is located on the east shore of the Big Island. It opened in 1988, showcasing the history of Hilo’s tsunamis. The museum is dedicated to educating the public about the threat of tsunamis.

There are hands-on exhibits that explain the science of the phenomenon. And the museum has a huge archive of tsunami survivor narratives. They’re transcribed into archives and used in educational programs and events.

Aside from the tsunami narratives, the museum also has a large collection of artifacts from Hilo’s two most recent tsunamis. These include the Laupahoehoe Quilt and Mural, as well as the Energy of Moving Water.

130 Kamehameha Ave, Hilo, HI 96720, United States

Another special feature of the museum is the video interviews of survivors. Visitors can watch short videos that accompany stories on the walls. This includes footage from the 1946 and 1960 tsunamis.

There are a variety of other exhibits that cover early tsunamis in Hilo, as well as earthquakes and whaling. For the more adventurous, there is a video film theater with historical tsunami videos. You can even “create” your own tsunami.

In addition to the videos and exhibits, there are also a number of books, mugs, and other tsunami-related items for sale at the Tsunami Store. Seniors get a discount. Children under five years old are free.

As the museum continues to grow, it is adding new exhibits to its already extensive collection. Recent additions include information on the Indian Ocean tsunami of 2004.

Panaewa Rainforest Zoo and Gardens #8

Pana’ewa Rainforest Zoo and Gardens is the only tropical zoo in the United States. Located on the Big Island, the zoo boasts over a hundred species of palms and bamboos. The zoo is also home to 80 different animal species.

Visitors can visit the petting zoo or the butterfly garden at the zoo. Children can explore a large playground area with climbing walls and hang bars. There are also picnic tables and soft flooring. You can also buy souvenirs at the gift shop.

The zoo is also home to a rare white Bengal tiger named Namaste. Visitors can also see other animals like tiger, toucans, anteaters, pythons, macaws and peacocks.

800 Stainback Hwy, Hilo, HI 96720, USA

The zoo is located down a palm tree lined road. It is free to visit. Donations are accepted. In addition to the zoo, visitors can also visit the Botanical Garden. The botanical garden features a water garden, a huge orchid collection, and many other plants and flowers.

Visitors can also take in the sights and sounds of the forest at the Panaewa Forest Reserve. This 12-acre park features hundreds of rare tropical plants. The reserve is located in the south of Hilo.

The zoo is free to visit, and donations are welcome. Guests can also support the Friends of the Panaewa Zoo. Pat Engelhard is the president of the organization. The zoo also offers outreach activities. Visitors can participate in the tiger feedings, and can take in the scenic beauty of the rainforest.

FAQs about Hilo, Hawaii

What is special about Hilo?

Hilo is a city located on the island of Hawaii, and is often referred to as the Big Island. Hilo is special for a variety of reasons, from its stunning natural beauty to its vibrant culture. The city itself is located on the Hilo Bay, which is lined with palm trees and is home to a number of beaches, making it a great spot for swimming, surfing, and enjoying the sunshine. Hilo is also home to a number of cultural attractions, including the Lyman Museum, Imiloa Astronomy Center, and the Pacific Tsunami Museum. The city also boasts a variety of unique shops and restaurants, as well as a bustling farmer’s market.

What are the 3 sections of Hilo?

Hilo is a city located on the island of Hawaii. It is the largest city on the island, with a population of 43,263 as of 2019. Hilo is divided into three distinct sections: Waiakea, Downtown Hilo, and South Hilo. Waiakea is a residential area located on the west side of the city, while Downtown Hilo is the city’s main commercial and governmental center. South Hilo is mainly residential, but it is also home to the University of Hawaii at Hilo, the Lyman Museum, and the Imiloa Astronomy Center. Each of these three sections has its own unique features, from shopping and dining to educational and cultural attractions.

What kind of people live in Hilo Hawaii?

Hilo, Hawaii is home to a diverse population of people from all walks of life. From native Hawaiian families to students and professionals from all around the world, the city has something for everyone. Hilo is known for its beautiful natural surroundings, vibrant culture, and friendly locals. Whether you’re looking for a quiet place to relax, an adventure, or a chance to experience something new, Hilo has something for you. The city is also a great place to start a business or career due to its strong economy and abundance of job opportunities. So if you’re looking for a place to call home, consider Hilo, Hawaii.

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