June 7, 2011

Hawaii - Exploring the Island

The next day we set out to explore the island.  Armed with our rental car, and guide book we were on our way.  We first had a wonderful "hawaiian style" breakfast at a cute cafe along the way, and then our first stop was the Alkala Falls State Park, where we took in the beautiful views of the waterfalls, and the lush tropical greenery.


Then we made our way down to Hilo, where we visited Coconut Island, and took in the local farmers markets, and shops.  It was so crazy to see lava that had flowed hundreds of years earlier still so present.  From there we travelled to the Volcano National Park.  A lot of the park was closed off for safety due to activity, and again so crazy to think that there are active volcanoes still flowing underground, and above on this island.  We walked through the lava tube, which was cool and a little freaky at the same time (it was pitch black at the end!)


After that we headed north to the infamous Waipi'o Valley.  This valley is one of the most sacred on the island, and almost impossible to reach.  There is a 25% grade hill that leads down into the valley.  Only a few homes have access to phone, and electricity, and the rest live off the land.  This is also where famed King Kamehameha was hidden after he was born because others feared he would become a great leader. Guess they were right to be scared!!


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