Things to Do in Kona

Things to Do in Kona

  • Kris Hazard
  • 04/4/24

Kailua-Kona is a picturesque town embracing the serene shores of Hawaii Island's west coast. This area, once a favored retreat for Hawaiian royalty, now opens its arms to those dreaming of making it their home. At the heart of Kona's allure is the historical Hulihee Palace, a window into the island's regal past. Steps away, the Mokuaikaua Church, the oldest Christian church in Hawaii, portrays historical reverence. The Kamakahonu National Historic Landmark brings history to life, once home to King Kamehameha I.

For ocean enthusiasts, the colorful coral reefs off Kamakahonu Beach offer a mesmerizing underwater escapade. Kailua Pier is a launchpad for oceanic adventures, from leisurely sunset cruises to thrilling deep-sea fishing expeditions. Whether you're seeking a home amidst nature's beauty or an adventure in a community rich with history and culture, Kailua-Kona is a treasure trove of experiences waiting to be discovered.

Local markets

Several farmer's markets are on the island, featuring vendors selling local produce and goods.

Kona Farmers Market

75-5767 Alii Dr, Kailua-Kona, HI 96740

The Kona Farmers Market is a vibrant showcase of the Big Island's rich agricultural heritage. With over 40 outdoor vendors, this bustling market is a treasure trove of locally grown produce, fragrant flowers, and exquisite handicrafts. It's where the community's spirit and the island's bounty converge. Visitors can meander through the stalls, discovering specialties like world-renowned Kona coffee, fresh tropical fruits, and unique artisanal products. 
The market offers a chance to savor the flavors of Hawaii and interact with local farmers and artisans, gaining insight into the island's culture and traditions. Whether you're seeking the freshest ingredients for your kitchen or a memorable souvenir, the Kona Farmers Market is an essential experience.

Kokua Kailua Village Stroll

75-5677 Ali’i Dr, Kailua-Kona, HI 96740

The Kokua Kailua Village Stroll occurs every 3rd Sunday from 1 p.m to 6 p.m in Historic Downtown Kailua Kona, Hawaii. This event, named after the Hawaiian word "Kokua," which means to help others, embodies the spirit of community and mutual support. Along Alii Drive, visitors can explore a variety of Hawaiian-made products, including carved Koa wood art, handmade soaps, and local foods. Live entertainment adds to the vibrant atmosphere, with local musicians performing among the vendors. During the holiday season, the event expands to include even more entertainment, concerts, and craft vendors, making it a must-visit in historic downtown Kona.

Keauhou Farmers Market

78-6831 Alii Dr, Kailua-Kona, HI 96740

Every Saturday from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m., the Keauhou Farmers Market unfolds at the Keauhou Shopping Center, offering a vibrant array of fresh food, art, crafts, and live music. Visitors can peruse locally raised produce, honey, flowers, Kona coffee, macadamia nuts, meat, eggs, handmade bread, jams, and more, all proudly grown and produced in Hawaii. As you stroll through our beautiful outdoor market, take delight in meeting the dedicated farmers and makers committed to bringing you the freshest food straight from their farms.

South Kona Farmers Market

82-6188 Mamalahoa Highway, Captain Cook, HI 96704

Every Sunday across the street from Shakaz Tacos, the Pure Kona Green Market unfolds at the Amy Greenwell Botanical Gardens in Captain Cook, Hawaii. With the guiding principle of "From the land - By our hand," this all-local farmers and artists market on the Big Island of Hawaii showcases a diverse array of vendors offering food representing the rich cultures and flavors of the Hawaiian islands, as well as locally grown produce and an exceptional selection of Big Island coffee. Visitors can also enjoy live local music while perusing the market's sustainable, natural offerings and partake in a delicious meal while immersing themselves in the vibrant community atmosphere.

Beaches and snorkeling

Inextricably linked in the popular imagination, beaches in Hawaii can promise relaxation or aquatic adventure.

Kahalu’u Beach

Ali‘i Dr, Kailua-Kona, HI 96740

Kahalu'u Beach in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii, is known for exceptional snorkeling in the Keauhou area. Its easy water access is ideal for all skill levels. The bay's calmness also makes it great for surfing lessons. However, visitors must practice responsible behavior. Avoiding coral damage is crucial, as is keeping a respectful distance from sea turtles to comply with laws protecting them. Visitors can fully enjoy Kahalu'u Beach's beauty while safeguarding its ecosystem by being mindful of the environment and marine life.

Magic Sands Beach

Ali'i Drive, Kailua-Kona, HI 96740

Magic Sands Beach in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii, offers a fantastic beach area with convenient access to oceanfront dining at Magics Grill. The sandy shoreline provides easy entry into the water, perfect for swimming and sunbathing. Its name, "Magic Sands," stems from the sand's tendency to vanish overnight, often due to significant swells. Visitors should take note of maintaining respect and cleanliness while enjoying the beach, ensuring it remains pristine for everyone to enjoy.

Ocean activities and outdoor adventures

Get in touch with the island’s roots through natural pursuits like manta ray diving and canoe paddling.

Manta ray diving

Experience the thrill of manta ray diving in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii, where you can witness these majestic creatures up close in their natural habitat. Guided night dives take you to designated sites, where powerful lights attract plankton, drawing in the graceful mantas for an unforgettable spectacle. Snorkelers can also join in, floating on the surface as the mantas glide gracefully below. This mesmerizing experience offers a rare opportunity to observe these gentle giants in their nocturnal feeding behavior, creating memories that last a lifetime.

Outrigger canoe paddling

Outrigger canoe paddling is an excellent source of exercise and social activity on the island. They carry historical significance because Native Hawaiians used outrigger canoes for fishing and transport. There are several canoe clubs on the island, including Kai’Opua Canoe Club. Founded in 1929, Kai 'Opua Canoe Club welcomes paddlers of all ages and skill levels. From novices to world champions, diverse teams compete in single and double-hull races, most notably "The Queen Lili'uokalani," a prestigious long-distance race attracting international crews on Labor Day weekend.

Kona Cloud Forest Sanctuary

73-1865 Hao Street, Kailua-Kona, HI 96740

On the drier side of Hawaii Island, the Kona Cloud Forest Sanctuary portrays nature's resilience and human ingenuity. Since its inception in 1982, this sanctuary has evolved into an exceptional lush ecosystem, often shrouded in a mystical mist. It's an inspiring reforestation effort and a dynamic educational environment. Daily guided tours and wellness experiences allow visitors to immerse themselves in the unique cloud forest ecology.

At the Kona Cloud Forest Sanctuary, guests are treated to an array of offerings focused on education and well-being within a vibrant botanical haven. Here, visitors can enjoy eco-tours and sound bath meditations and engage in various workshops and retreats. The sanctuary has become a cherished destination for those seeking a deeper connection with nature and a comprehensive understanding of the cloud forest's wonders.

Luxurious nightlife

La Bourgogne French Restaurant

77-6400 Nalani St, Kailua-Kona, HI 96740

La Bourgogne French Restaurant in Kailua-Kona is a culinary oasis transporting diners to the European countryside. This intimate and creatively designed establishment offers an authentic French dining experience, complete with an atmosphere of refined charm. The restaurant's menu is a testament to culinary artistry, featuring exquisite dishes catering to the most discerning palates.

La Bourgogne has an extensive wine list, thoughtfully curated to complement the flavors of each dish. Whether for a romantic dinner, a special occasion, or to indulge in fine dining, this restaurant provides an ambiance of sophistication and warmth. It's an ideal destination for those looking to enjoy the finer aspects of Kona's diverse culinary landscape.

ULU Ocean Grill

72-100 Ka'upulehu Drive, Kailua-Kona, HI 96740

Located in the Four Seasons Resort about 20-30 minutes from Kailua, ULU Ocean Grill is an immersive experience that captures the essence of Hawaii's natural splendor. This award-winning restaurant is situated near the ocean's edge and offers an unforgettable setting beneath a starlit sky. The culinary journey at ULU is rooted in the philosophy of using local and sustainable ingredients. With over 160 local farms contributing, approximately 75% of the food served originates from the Island of Hawai'i.

The menu celebrates the Pacific Rim's flavors, featuring the freshest local seafood prepared with a fusion of techniques, such as oven-roasted, flame-grilled, and wok-fired. The result is a unique dining experience that blends Hawaii's distinct tastes with Pan-Asian culinary traditions.

Family fun

Kona Country Club

78-7000 Alii Dr, Kailua-Kona, HI 96740

In the picturesque Keauhou area, just six miles from downtown Kona, the Kona Country Club offers an unparalleled golfing experience on the Big Island of Hawaii. The club boasts breathtaking ocean views, top-notch facilities, and warm, friendly service, making it a must-visit destination for golf enthusiasts. The Kona Country Club is favored for its scenic beauty, consistent sunny skies, and gentle ocean breezes that enhance the golfing experience.

It is conveniently located near hotels and condos and features a well-stocked pro shop, a driving range off the grass, and dedicated areas for putting, chipping, and bunker practice. The short game practice area, designed for 80 yards and in, adds to the comprehensive facilities. Whether you're a seasoned golfer or just looking to enjoy a leisurely round in a stunning setting, the Kona Country Club is an exceptional choice.

Exploring the best of Kona

Kailua-Kona, on the Big Island of Hawaii, offers an array of activities that make it a captivating place to call home. From the historical allure of the Hulihee Palace and Mokuaikaua Church to the Kona Cloud Forest Sanctuary, there's no shortage of adventures. Culinary delights await at La Bourgogne French Restaurant and ULU Ocean Grill, while the Kona Farmers Market showcases local produce and crafts. For golf enthusiasts, the Kona Country Club provides an exceptional golfing experience amidst stunning ocean views.

Making Kailua-Kona your home

Kris Hazard, a Realtor® with 19 years of experience in Kailua-Kona real estate, offers her expertise and personalized approach to real estate. Understanding that each client's needs are unique, Kris is dedicated to ensuring a seamless and fulfilling home-buying or selling experience. Whether it's a vacation home, a first-time purchase, or a move-up solution, Kris's goal is to align her services with your aspirations, making your transition to Kona as magical as the island. Contact Kris Hazard and embrace the dream of living in Kailua-Kona.

Work With Kris

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