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KOA to Kehena

Seattle
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KOA to Kehena

I want to take a leisurely drive getting to Kehena. I will have about 6 hours. Do I take hiway 270/250 through Hawi, or hiway 190 through Waimea? I am not seeing any coastal roads from Hawi. Is 6 hours enough time to stop and see Akaka falls and have lunch in Hilo, while driving leisurely? Or.....what road would you take :-)

Island of Hawaii...
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1. Re: KOA to Kehena

Well, to start with, KOA to Kehena is far enough without taking roads that donʻt go the right direction. 270/250 is a long enough loop with several good stops that it should not be part of a cross island drive, particularly not one that ends at Kehena.

Arenʻt you spending the night on the west side first? What is your real starting point?

Take Hwy 19 from Waimea to Hilo and Hwy 11 from Hilo to Keaʻau, then Hwy 130 to Pahoa. From there either the loop to Kapoho and down the coast, or Hwy 130 on to Kalapana and then curve around the coast on 137 to Kehena. As for which road to get to Waimea, that depends on your starting point. Waikoloa Road to the upper highway, and Kawaihae Road are the likely two choices.

You will want to drive the Red Road, but I would check in and unload first, besides it is better driving on the ocean side IMO.

The drive is almost 4 hours without stopping at all, going the speed limit.

Note: it is not acceptable to island drivers to drive at a "leisurely" speed across island. There are only three roads and people need to get where they are going. There will be truckers all over you if you drive slow. You should drive the speed limit at all times, because our limits are quite low, and any lower is turtling and causes road rage.

If you want to be leisurely, make stops. You said "driving leisurely" so I was not sure if you referred to driving style or to stopping a lot.

6 hours is just enough time to do those two things (not going via Hawi).

Edited: 11 June 2013, 06:17
Seattle
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2. Re: KOA to Kehena

Thank you KK. by leisurely, I do mean stopping occasionally to get out and stretch my legs. I understand the whole driving slow thing. My starting point is Marriott Courtyard, and I planned to leave after the parade on Saturday. I now see hiway 19 on google maps. I was using MSN maps, and they dont seem to be as good, and it looked like 19 ended. I will skip Hawi then, unless I can get an earlier start. I leave tomorrow, and am sooooo excited to experience Hawaii for the first time.

Edited: 11 June 2013, 06:28
Island of Hawaii...
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3. Re: KOA to Kehena

It will be great!

Sorry about the no-turtling lecture, thanks for being gracious.

From the Marriot, you can take either road to Waimea. Kawaihae Road can be faster as it is a little shorter, but if you get behind a loaded semi truck you will be creeping up the hill. The upper highway has some nice views of the ocean and Kohala Mountain, so maybe take Waikoloa Road, first and only traffic signal north after you get on the highway, by the helicopter tour place.

Seattle
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4. Re: KOA to Kehena

That sounds good (Waikoloa Road). I will probably be going out along the coast earlier in the week, so that will take care of my curiousity for that area.

Island of Hawaii...
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5. Re: KOA to Kehena

Yes ... I hope you get up to North Kohala. Lots of people up there into yoga. It should feel sympatico.

Some possible stops for you:

Waipiʻo Lookout

Quck spin through Honokaʻa on your way back to highway (town is below the highway, which bypasses it).

Laupahoehoe Point

Akaka Falls

Onomea Scenic Route, turn left at Blue Scenic Route sign at Pepeʻekeo and drive 4 mile loop.

Hilo: Liliuʻokalani Gardens. Moku Ola, a place Hawaiians journeyed to for healing. (Coconut Island.)

Malama Market outside Pahoa, for any shopping you need, or Island Naturals in Pahoa Village.

While at Kehena

Kehena Beach

Wai Opae Tidepools at Kapoho

Kalapana and Kaimu Beach (just look).

VNP

Lava Tree Monument if you have a buddy. I would not go alone; it could be creepy (creepy people sometimes cruise the place). But it is cool, just not for a solo female visitor.

PS. If you are able, Makuʻu Marketplace on Sunday.

The Farmerʻs Market at SPACE, not sure what day it is, but virtually next door in Kalapana Seaview.

Edited: 11 June 2013, 09:01
6. Re: KOA to Kehena

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