Is Kona on the East Side or on the Big Island? (2023)

Table of Contents

Is Kona on the East Side or on the Big Island?

The sunny Kona District

Kona District
Kona means "Leeward" in Hawaiian. In Ancient Hawaii each island had a "Kona" district. Kailua-Kona, Hawaii, sometimes called Kona Town. › wiki › Kona
stretches almost two-thirds of the entire West side of the island of Hawaiʻi—from just south of ʻAnaehoʻomalu Bay (Waikoloa Beach Resort) to Manukā Park (Kaʻū). Along this expansive area, you'll find everything from coffee farms to historic Hawaiian landmarks.

Is Kona the east or west of the Big Island?

Kona refers to the western side of the Big Island, including Kailua-Kona town. This side of the island is dry, with lava fields stretching as far as you can see in some places.

What side of the Big Island is Kona on?

The Kona district is located on the leeward side of the Big Island, which means that weather here is in general excellent: sunny and dry.

What are the two sides of the Big Island Hawaii?

Hawai'i residents often use shorthand to refer to these two sides of the Big Island – the Hilo side or the Kona side. For some, choosing their favorite side is simple. Most people have a preference for either tropical, verdant jungle and rain showers – or warm, dry, sunny days.

Is Kona on east or west coast?

In total, the Kona Coast stretches some 40 miles along the rugged west coast of the Big Island. Many historical sites, beautiful beaches (some well-hidden), pristine bays, and lava fields (with prominent petroglyphs) criss-cross and line the coast of this area.

Which side of the Big Island has the best weather?


The driest and sunniest area of the Island is found on the Kohala Coast. Home to the Kohala Resort Area, the sunny Kohala Coast gets an average of just 10 inches of rainfall per year, making it the most popular part of the Island for vacationers!

Is the Big Island and Kona the same?

The Big Island is pretty, well, big and is divided into six areas: Kona, Hilo, Kohala, Hamakua Coast, Kau, and the Puna district.

How long does it take to drive around Big Island Kona?

Driving around the island takes about six hours – and that's without stopping or running into any traffic. If you're looking to break up your trip a bit, try taking a self-guided tour like the one Action Tour Guide offers.

Which side of the Big Island has the best beaches?

If you're looking for beautiful, sandy beaches, and crystal clear waters, there is one area that truly stands out. The Kohala Coast on the northwest side of the Big Island has the best beaches. Kauna'oa and Hapuna Beach are two unbelievably beautiful beaches located on this side of the island.

Is it better to fly into Kona or Hilo?

Kona is the more popular town among tourists for one reason: Kona is how we image Hawaii to look like. It has hot weather with beautiful beaches. If you goal is to sit on the beach while staying at your luxury beach front resort for your entire Big Island vacation, then Kona is perfect for you.

What is the rich part of the Big Island of Hawaii?

The Kohanaiki club isn't a place that you can just show up and hang out in: It's a 450-acre patch of land on the Kona Coast of Hawai'i, the Big Island where the richest of the rich—literally billionaires, as they claim—come to live in what essentially amounts to a luxury commune.

Which is the rainy side of the Big Island?

The weather conditions can change drastically over the island in a matter of hours, but there is some consistency. The west side (Kona side) is called the 'dry side' of the island, and the east side (Hilo side) the 'wet side'.

Are Hilo and Kona on the same island?

So here's the lowdown on the Big Island: Generally, the island is divided into two sides: the Kona side and the Hilo side. There are airports in both towns (KOA for Kona and ITO for Hilo) but the majority of flights come in and out of Kona.

Why is Kona called the Big Island?

The Big Island of Hawaii is the third most popular Hawaiian island among visitors, hosting over 1.5 to 1.7 million travelers annually. Often called the "Big Island" to help distinguish it from the 1,500-mile long archipelago with which it shares its name, Hawaii, the Big Island has certainly earned its nickname.

Is Kona in the lava zone?

Kailua-Kona is located in Lava Zone 4, which includes all of Hualalai. Although Hualalai is not extinct, the frequency of eruptions is lower, much lower, than that for Kilauea or Mauna Loa.

What island is Kona Airport on?

Ellison Onizuka Kona International Airport at Keahole is the primary airport on the Island of Hawaii. It serves transpacifc and interisland flights. KOA is located in West Hawaii at Keahole. The Big Island is known for its active volcanoes, orchids, golf courses and scenic coastline.

Which side of Big Island is warmer?

When the winds bring humid ocean air up against the mountains it provides lots of rain on the East side of the Island. The mountains then leave the west side of the Island sunny, dry and warm. It is said to be “eternal springtime” on the West side of the Island, with almost constant warm and sunny weather.

What is the rainiest month in Kona Hawaii?

Kona is the only region in the islands where summer rainfall exceeds winter rainfall. Our wettest month is September but this is no reason to avoid Kailua this month as in general (but by no means as a rule) it rains in the late afternoon or in the early evening.

What month is best for Big Island?

The best times to visit the Big Island of Hawaii, taking into consideration the weather, how crowded, or not, the island is, and demand for accommodations are the month(s) of April, May, August, September, and October. Some call these Hawaii Island's 'off-season periods' or the 'shoulder months.

Why is Kona so expensive?

Kona coffee is so expensive because it's one of the rarest types of coffee, which is available in a very small and limited location. Kona coffee beans are also hand-picked by farmers throughout the year. Due to the small land area where Kona beans are grown, they're only available in limited supply.

Why is Kona so special?

Kona coffee is a specialty coffee that differs from other varieties primarily because of its prime farming location and production processes. Kona coffee farms are only in one place in Hawaii called the Kona Coffee Belt, on Hualalai and Mauna Loa in the North and South districts.

Why is Kona famous?

One of Kona's most memorable experiences is going on a manta ray boat tour to scuba or snorkel with these gentle, graceful sea creatures. Kona is also famous for its deep-sea fishing, hosting the International Billfish Tournament (August) every year.

Is driving in Big Island difficult?

Narrow and winding roads is one of the biggest dangers of driving on the Big Island. Narrow and winding roads can actually be found throughout the state. These roads can be challenging to navigate, particularly for those who are not use to driving on roads with sharp turns and steep inclines.

How many days is enough in Big Island Hawaii?

Ideally, you should plan to spend at least a week on the Big Island to give you plenty of time to visit some of the major spots while also building time into your schedule to relax. Depending on the pace of your vacation and how much you want to see and do, you might want to consider adding more time (if possible!).

Do you need a car when visiting Kona?

The island is simply too large to affordably and conveniently navigate without one. You can pick up a rental car at either the Kona International Airport (KOA) or the Hilo International Airport (ITO), or if you want to let go of some serious cash, you could take a taxi from the terminal to your hotel.

What's the prettiest island in Hawaii?

Kauai is the winner

In our opinion, Kauai takes the throne as the prettiest Hawaiian island. It has a variety of views and terrain to see. Rocky coastlines, beautiful beaches, lush jungles, and mountains and valleys. There is so much to see and do.

Are there swimmable beaches in Kona?

Located on Kua Bay in Kona, Maniniʻōwali Beach is sometimes called “The Caribbean of Hawaiʻi,” thanks in part to its fine white-sand beaches that gently slope toward the crystal-clear water. The crescent-shaped beach is one of the best places for swimming when the water is calm, usually during the morning hours.

Is the Big Island as beautiful as Maui?

Maui or The Big Island: The Verdict

Both islands are beautiful and offer different experiences. Due to its smaller size, Maui's more accessible and easier to explore making it perfect for those who want to spend time on the beach and also be active snorkeling and hiking.

Is Hilo or Kona more rainy?

Hilo is the wettest city in America. The opposite of Kona, rain is more common in the morning than the afternoon. A clear and sunny Hilo morning is a rare treat. Puna is similar to Hilo and is very wet.

How far apart are Kona and Hilo?

If you could fly over a flat map it's about 56 miles (91 km) from downtown Kona to Downtown Hilo.

Is snorkeling better in Kona or Hilo?

The Kona (west) side of the Big Island definitely wins the prize for best snorkeling coast of the Big Island. The calm waters and many beaches offer snorkeling spots that are superior to those on the Hilo side. Our 3 favorite Big Island spots are on the Kona side, but there are many more.

Where do billionaires vacation in Hawaii?

The exclusivity and VIP vibe of Lanai is unlike any of the other Hawaiian Islands. Let's start with the fact that 98 percent of Lanai is privately owned by billionaire Larry Ellison, founder of Oracle.

Does anyone famous live on the Big Island?

While various celebrities visit the islands, there are also many celebrities who call Hawaii home, including Ben Stiller, Drew Barrymore, Julia Roberts, Bette Midler, Lance Armstrong, Bethany Hamilton, Clint Eastwood, and Steven Tyler, among others.

Who owns most of the Big Island?

The State of Hawaii owns land on every island, including 127.1 acres on Niihau and over 1 million acres on Hawaii Island (the Big Island).

What is the wettest month on the Big Island of Hawaii?

November and March are the wettest months, whereas during the summer months the amount of rain can decrease up to half the peak rate. Average monthly rainfall for the Big Island.

What is the coldest spot in the Big Island?

The summit of Mauna Kea lies on the rim of Pu'uwēkiu, and the coldest temperature ever measured in Hawaii has been recorded on the crater floor, where a temporary weather station was installed. Pu'uwēkiu Crater has a diameter of about 300 m.

What is the safest area on the Big Island?

East Honolulu

Along with being the absolute safest place to live in Hawaii, the city offers tourists numerous beaches and hiking trails to enjoy, together with all the fun that comes with visiting the tropical paradise.

Which is cheaper Hilo or Kona?

Hilo or Kona: Price

From food to gasoline, Hilo is the cheaper option for the cost of goods. Hilo is home to the main port on Hawai'i so all goods come into Hilo first.

Is the volcano on Hilo or Kona?

HVNP is located 30 miles southwest of Hilo and 96 miles southeast of Kona. It's open year-round, 24 hours a day. HVNP is home to Kilauea Volcano, the most continuously active volcano in the world, and the park offers the unique experience of walking on land that is younger than you are.

Where do most people live on the Big Island?

The Big Island has two major population centers: Kona and Hilo. Hilo makes up about a third of the island's population. It's also the Hawaiian islands' oldest city. Kona is the tourism center of the island with the majority of the island's accommodations.

Is there a volcano on Kona?

Located only 10 miles (15 km) from the coastal areas of the town of Kailua-Kona, the summit of Hualālai rises to 8,271 ft (2,521 m).

What do Hawaiians call Hawaii?

Oʻahu (The Gathering Place)

Why is Big Island so special?

The big Island contains 8 of 13 different climate zones in the world, each with unique ecosystems. These ecosystems range from tropical dry forest to subalpine grasslands, from snowy alpine deserts to brackish anchialine pools, and from subterranean lava tube systems with eyeless creatures to windswept coastal dunes.

Can you see Mauna Loa erupt from Kona?

You can see it from Kau." In order to see both the Kilauea and Mauna Loa eruptions at the same time, you'll have to go to Hawaii Volcanoes National Park (HVNP), atop Kilauea. The park is closest to Hilo, and it would be recommended to arrive at that airport if the park is part of the agenda.

How far is the active volcano from Kona?

Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park is located on the island of Hawai'i. From Kailua-Kona: 95 miles southeast on Highway 11 (2 to 2.5 hour drive), or 125 miles through Waimea and Hilo via highways 19 and 11 (2.5 to 3 hours). From Waikoloa: 90 miles southeast on Highway 200 (2 hour drive).

Can you take lava rocks from Kona?

Taking things from National Parks is against the law, so taking volcanic rocks from Hawaii's volcanoes is illegal. But apart from being illegal, legend has it that taking volcanic rocks from Hawaii is bad luck.

What airports fly nonstop to Kona?

There are a few routes to get to Kona from the mainland. Direct flights to Kona (Direct flights from Vancouver BC (YVR), Seattle (SEA), Portland (PDX) , San Francisco (SFO), Oakland (OAK), Los Angeles (LAX), San Diego (SAN), Salt Lake City (SLC), Phoenix (PHX), Anchorage (ANC) , and Denver (DEN).

Which side of plane to sit on flying into Kona?

Usually the left side (seat A) on the flight into Kona. Most mainland flights fly around the northwest side of the island, so that'll give you the best views.

Is Pearl Harbor on Kona?

The Kona Hawaii visitors can also explore Pearl Harbor with daily tours departing Kona Airport to Oahu, where Pearl Harbor is located.

What towns are on the west side of the Big Island?

You will find towns such as Hawi, Kapaau, Kohala Estates, and Kohala Ranch. These are small communities, each having its specialties and uniqueness.

Is Hilo on the windward side of the Big Island?

The windward/east side of the island (Hilo) receives by far the most rain. As you can see on the map below, Hilo gets between 10 and 40 times as much rain as the driest parts of the Big Island.

Is Hilo on the east or west side of Hawaii?

Hilo is on the eastern and windward side of the island. It is classified by the U.S. Census Bureau as a census-designated place (CDP), and has a total area of 58.3 square miles (151.0 km2), 53.4 square miles (138.3 km2) of which is land and 4.9 square miles (12.7 km2) of which (8.4%) is water.

What is the main town of the Big Island?

Hilo. Located on the east coast (the wet side), Hilo is the capital and largest city on the Big Island. Most enter via Hilo International Airport (ITO).

What side of the Big Island is tropical?

The east side of the Big Island is covered in green, lush, tropical rainforest. This is made possible by the large amount of rain that falls here, averaging around 140 inches of rain per year! This area is home to many of the Islands' waterfalls, and has interesting terrain, shaped by the rains and winds.

Where do most people live on Big Island Hawaii?

The Big Island has two major population centers: Kona and Hilo. Hilo makes up about a third of the island's population. It's also the Hawaiian islands' oldest city. Kona is the tourism center of the island with the majority of the island's accommodations.

Which side is better Hilo or Kona?

Kona offers better weather, the best beaches and snorkeling, newer resorts, more vacation rentals, and more nightlife compared to Hilo Town. Hilo is worth a visit but may not be worth staying for more than a night.

Is Kona on the leeward side of the Big Island?

Kona means 'Leeward' side. You may have heard of the terms leeward and windward to describe different sides of islands. Leeward is the side of the island that faces away from the incoming winds. On the Big Island, Kona is separated into two districts, north and south.

What is the nice part of the Big Island?

Waikoloa lies on the border of our “Kona” and “Waimea” districts and is also known as the resort area of the Big Island. Waikoloa is a beautiful part of the Big Island, with great (dry and warm) weather, stunning beaches and breathtaking snorkeling spots.

Where is clearest water on Big Island?

Located on Kua Bay in Kona, Maniniʻōwali Beach is sometimes called “The Caribbean of Hawaiʻi,” thanks in part to its fine white-sand beaches that gently slope toward the crystal-clear water. The crescent-shaped beach is one of the best places for swimming when the water is calm, usually during the morning hours.

What is the difference between Hilo and Kona?

What Are the Main Differences Between Hilo and Kona? Kona feels more like a touristy suburban town, while Hilo has the vibe of an antique small town. Hilo is older and more tropical looking with all the plant life, and Kona is newer and less tropical.

Do you need more time in Hilo or Kona?

Generally speaking, most tourists who are visiting Hawaii for a tropical paradise vacation experience will want to spend a little more time on the Kona side than the Hilo side.

What is Kona known for?

One of Kona's most memorable experiences is going on a manta ray boat tour to scuba or snorkel with these gentle, graceful sea creatures. Kona is also famous for its deep-sea fishing, hosting the International Billfish Tournament (August) every year.

You might also like
Popular posts
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Msgr. Refugio Daniel

Last Updated: 06/04/2023

Views: 5686

Rating: 4.3 / 5 (54 voted)

Reviews: 93% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Msgr. Refugio Daniel

Birthday: 1999-09-15

Address: 8416 Beatty Center, Derekfort, VA 72092-0500

Phone: +6838967160603

Job: Mining Executive

Hobby: Woodworking, Knitting, Fishing, Coffee roasting, Kayaking, Horseback riding, Kite flying

Introduction: My name is Msgr. Refugio Daniel, I am a fine, precious, encouraging, calm, glamorous, vivacious, friendly person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.