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Hiking Trails on the Big Island

Family Hikes

The Big Island has some great hikes for all levels and ages. Introduce your kids to nature and history on the Big Island. You can wander on beautiful coastal trails, hike up a cinder cone for a great view, or explore an old Hawaiian village. There are some great educational hikes at historic sites.

Diverse Landscapes

The Big Island features numerous climate zones – from arid to rainforest, tropical to sub-alpine – so you can explore very different ecosystems and terrain on your vacation. Here you can hike through the rainforest, arid grasslands and lava fields, and high up on Mauna Kea.


Adventure-seekers and more experienced hikers can find moderate and high-impact hiking trails on the Big Island. Hike a steep coastal valley trail, a cinder cone with sweeping views, or rugged trails over lava fields and dramatic sea cliffs. Find a secluded beach at the end of a coastal trail.


Leave No Trace

As with any family adventure we suggest planning ahead and being prepared. The diverse climates of The Big Island create the possibility of many types of weather at any given time, so think ahead! We suggest a light rain jacket, comfortable walking shoes, sun protection and staying well hydrated. We also hope that you will help keep Hawaii beautiful by leaving no trace, please be responsible for your waste, respectful of wildlife and considerate of others.


Coastline Hikes

Coastal Trail, Beaches & Freshwater Pools

This 7-mile coastal hike is great for exploring in smaller sections with kids. It is easily accessible from the Waikoloa Beach resort area by walking south of the Lava Lava Beach Club at Anaeho’omalu Bay (A-Bay) Beach. If you access the hike from the north end at A-Bay, you can walk south for as long as you are comfortable before turning around. The trail goes past small hidden beaches and remote anchialine pools (freshwater-brackish pools with unique ecosystems). If you go the whole 7 miles to Keawaiki Bay you have an option to hike back to A-Bay and the Lava Lava Beach Club via the Kings Highway Foot Trail, which connects to this trail further inland closer to Highway 19. Keep in mind the Kings Highway Foot Trail, being away from the sea breeze, can feel quite hot during midday. End your hike at the Lava Lava Beach Club for a cool drink and live entertainment.

Coastal trails, lava fields & the Blue Lagoon

This bay has relatively easy trails along the shore. Enjoy views of the coast, pebble beaches, and lava fields. It is suggested to wear comfortable close toed shoes, as the a’a lava rock some of the trail travels over can be quite rough. The hike starts with going down to the beach from the roundabout parking lot. From that central point you could either go either West or East along the trails. The bay is also a popular snorkeling spot and you’re likely to see several sea turtles in the bay along the coastline trail. Wainanali’i lagoon, also known as the Blue Lagoon, is located at the end of the Eastern trail. Visit this website for more information about hiking the trails at Kiholo Bay.

Coastal Trail & Green Sand Beach

This excursion is a 5 ½ mile round trip hike through arid, coastal dunes to a green sand beach. At the bottom of South Point Road you will park and walk toward the ocean, then take a left and follow any path parallel to the ocean until you find the 50,000 year old cinder cone, now home to Papakolea Beach, one of the few green sand beaches in the world. Make sure you bring your reef-safe sunscreen and some water, as the hike to the beach has very little shade. It is the green mineral called Olivine that makes the sand green.  We love the adventure of the hike and exploring the truly unique area. This beach is known to have a very strong current, and there are no services or lifeguards.  There are rough stairs and a path leading down to the beach, but care should be taken. It is also important to leave the sand at the beach for the next visitors to enjoy.