Our Island experts have compiled six itineraries to help you make the best out of your time on the Big Island. If you are unsure how to divide your time on the Big Island, or just want someone else to make the tough decisions during your vacation, you will love this section!
We describe itineraries for a 1, 2, 3, 5, and 7-day visit, as well as an itinerary specifically crafted for cruise ship passengers. If you want to get a good taste of all the islands treasures, we recommend to spend at least a night in the following three places: Kailua Kona on the west side of the island, Hilo on the east side, and Volcano Village in between the other two, on top of the Kilauea Volcano (more on that below).
Activities that your itinerary should include
If you really want to enjoy even a fraction of what the Big Island has to offer, you should plan on staying at least 7 days. However, we understand that reality often does not allow such a lengthy stay in Hawaii. If you are visiting multiple Hawaiian islands during your visit and have a little bit of time on the Big Island, the one place that you should not miss is the Hawaii volcanoes National Park on the Kilauea Volcano. Other attractions unique to the Big Island are Green Sand Beach and the Telescopes on top of Mauna Kea.
Resources for planning your vacation to Hawaii
The generic answer to this question is of course: “That depends on your wishes”. Are you a first-time visitor, back for seconds, a die-hard Big Island fan, or even a resident?
The following 4 points will help you find the content on the lovebigisland website that is most relevant to your specific situation:
- We wrote a complete step-by-step overview for planning your trip to Hawaii to help you plan your vacation like a pro.
- If this is the first time that you think about spending time on the Big Island, both our 7 day itinerary or our highlights for the Big Island where we list our favorite activities, beaches, and culinary activities are a good place to start.
- If you already have a rough schedule in mind you can fill that in using our city guides or activity summary.
- If you are a Big Island return visitor or Kama’aina (long-term resident, literally “Child of the island” in Hawaiian) and/or are just looking for specific information on the Big Island, our Hawaii Search will help you on your way.
The itineraries described in this section highlight the most special features of the Island of Hawai’i and are meant as suggestions. We highly recommend you to tailor them to your own taste. Take more time for activities that are close to your heart and leave out those activities that are not as good a fit to your personal circumstances.