Vacation Experiences


Kona, Big Island of Hawaii, Jan 12/Feb10, 2013


I've lost count of the number of visits Eleanor and I have made to the Kona Coast on the Big Island of Hawaii. I've spared the class by not reporting on all of them since even our family tires of sunset photographs, but 2013 may be our last visit for reasons that I'll explain at the end.



We rented unit #311 in Hale Kona Kai in the village of Kailua-Kona for the third time.

As you might expect, you'll move very quickly if the sirens warn of an incoming tsunami. Fortunately, higher ground is nearby


Carnival's Pride of America still visits every Wednesday as part of a 7-day circle of the Hawaiian Islands


Eleanor walked a section of the Thurston lava tube in Volcano National Park

Lava at 2200F once flowed through here on its way to the sea.


400-Ft Akaka Falls on the windward (Hilo) side of the Big Island


If you're interested in flowers, Hawaii is a great spot!


Every sunset is different and many are spectacular.

 As part of our wind down from a visit to Kona, we ask the question "Do we reserve again for next year?" The answer this year was "No".

There are a number of reasons. We've been "doing" Kona for more than a decade. Although we did a couple of things this year that we had not done before, we've developed a "been there, done that" point of view. We reached much the same conclusion after our last cruise.Kona has changed. The number of visitors has gown significantly this year and the increase has caused a poor traffic situation to become bad, with slow crawls to the many "All Way Stop" signs. The VOG (volcanic smog) that has been present for 3 or 4 years was much worse this year because of a change in the wind pattern. The NE trade winds did not prevail. The result was reduced visibility and a residue of volcanic ash on your rented car each morning. Even Kona coffee isn't what it once was thanks first to drought and now to a cherry boring beetle. Our favourite Bayview Coffee Farm didn't even answer the phone. 100% Kona coffee prices have not adjusted, however; they remain about $35/pound.