A wealth of local attractions —
including Hawaii Volcanoes National Park —
will help to make your stay unforgettable!
Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park: Main Section
This section of the park is located at mile marker 28.5, just less than 50 miles from Leilani Bed & Breakfast. It is the most famous attraction on the Big Island of Hawaii. With two active volcanoes, and lava periodically being produced since 1983, it is creating the newest “real estate” in the country.
Any active volcanic activity can be difficult for the visitor to see without a long hike or a fly-over adventure tour. There are, however, a lot of other wonderful features of this grand park which many visitors don’t take the time to explore as they breeze through the park. For travelers who want a vacation base, or for those circumnavigating the island, the Leilani Bed & Breakfast is situated conveniently for a multiple day visit to the park, if desired, and to these other attractions as well.
Established in 1916, the park displays the results of 70 million years of volcanic erruption, migration, and evolution. Those processes raised a bare land from the sea and wrapped it with a unique ecosystem, treasured by a distinct human culture.
The park encompasses 333,000 acres and ranges from sea level to the summit of the earth’s most massive volcano, Mauna Loa at 13,677 feet. Kilauea, the world’s most active volcano, offers scientists insights on the birth of the Hawaiian Islands and visitors views of dramatic volcanic landscapes. It is a must see for Leilani Bed and Breakfast guests during their stay on the Big Island of Hawaii. And the staff at Leilani can put you in the right direction if you prefer a land or air tour of the park.
For more information on the park, go to www.nps.gov/havo/home.htm.
Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park: Kahuku Section
This section has wonderful, new hiking trails to a fern forest and old caldera, among other interests! For up-to-date information on this section and a schedule of events, please visit the National Parks Web Site.
City of Refuge
Known locally as Pu’uhonua O Honaunau, this is a popular place for tourists because of its historical and archeological significance.
In ancient times, under the kapu system, commoners could escape penalty of violations (usually death by some means) if they could get themselves to this place before being captured. This is a very superficial description, so those interested should consult a good reference book.
It is a great spot for sunset picnics with lots of palm trees and barbecue facilities. Next to the park, at Two Steps, the snorkeling and scuba diving is said to be some of the best in the state when the conditions are good.
Manuka State Park
This park is just four miles north of Leilani Bed and Breakfast on route 11. It is a most unusual park in that it was once a privately owned botanical garden with over 150 species of trees. It is no longer maintained as such, but many of the trees in the lower section are still living. The park attracts more rainfall than the surrounding areas which makes it an attraction for birds which may not otherwise frequent this area. Birds more easily seen here, than at Leilani Bed & Breakfast, include the Hawaiian species of ‘amakihi, ‘elapaio and the ‘apapane. This is a delightful place to take an easy hike and to picnic as well. There is a 2-mile loop trail with markers at about 20 native Hawaiian plant species. For more information on Manuka State Park and birding in Hawaii, go to Birding Hawaii.
Whitington Beach Park
This is a truly picturesque section of the Big Island coastline. It is more of a park than a beach as the “beach” here is primarily rocks. But with reef walkers, the water is quite accessible and has a large protected tide pool . It is a favorite place for islanders to take the whole family for a day of swimming, fishing, and picnicking. During the week, you could have it all to your self. There is a WWII history behind the destruction of the old wharf at the south end of the park. The north end has a new extension with lots of Hawaiian fish ponds. This is a very relaxing place to kick back for a little while between ventures on your trip.