This weekend up comes a little late, as I was late getting home last night from my trip to the Big Island.
What a trip it was! There was the perfect combination of exploring and relaxation. Just the right amount of sight seeing, to not make it overwhelming.
Our weekend started almost as soon as we landed on Friday morning in Hilo. Our first destination after picking up our rental car was to Coconut Island (
j/k we stopped for food first). I had seen it on Pinterest, and knew it was something we’d want to do. A little walking and exploring there, as well as at Queen Liliuokalani Gardens, before heading to our hotel for some pool time.
Following the pool, and of course lunch, we made our way back to the airport for a helicopter tour. This one was on the huge activities I was really looking to, since we didn’t have the chance to see lava on our last trip to the Big Island. The helicopter turned out to be possibly the best part of the trip! Apparently our tour got extra lucky, because we saw a good amount of lava.
We started our Saturday with smoothies from the Big Island Juice Co. I’m obsessed with dragon fruit (mostly for the color, since it doesn’t taste like much) so the obvious choice was to go with a smoothie containing some. How pretty is my drink?!
Just up the street from the smoothie place was our next stop, Rainbow Falls. We got pretty adventurous, and climbed right about to the edge of the water fall. It was such a neat experience, and one I didn’t get to do on our first Big Island trip, since we had kids in tow.
The adventures continued as we made our way to Volcano National Park. There, we checked out the lava tubes, steam vents, and the crater. Since sunset was still many hours away, we couldn’t quite see the glow from the crater, so we headed back to the hotel.
For dinner we tried a Japanese place with the bar. It was the only food establishment that served alcohol that we could find opened past 10, so it was the clear choice. I had some super tasty sushi, that I’ll be trying to recreate here at home. Following dinner and drinks (and a smashed glass bottle on the floor), we headed to a bar next door. Let me tell you.. We had so much fun drinking and people watching. Holy cow, the people you see in bars..
The next day was our last day on island, and quite possibly one of my favorite parts! We made the hour and a half trek to the black sand beach. At first, I wasn’t too excited about the beach, because the black sand beach on Maui was nothing special. Guys, this was legit black sand!
I think we spent about 2 hours there, and I spent most of those just playing with the sand. It was such a neat experience. Unfortunately, the weather wasn’t all that great. I was actually looking forward to roasting on the beach.
Our last stop before leaving the island was to head back to Coconut Island to jump off the platform. We chickened out of jumping from the high one, but we did get a mini jump in. Salty and soaking wet, everyone loaded back into the rental and to the airport.
I was sad for our vacation to end, but it was certainly a nice break while it lasted!