My family will be visiting the Big Island in April of 2014. We are coming from a fairly eco-friendly part of the mainland, in the Pacific Northwest, and I would appreciate any tips and advice on how to visit and enjoy the island without causing unintentional damage to the inhabitants, fauna, and wildlife.
For instance, what brands of sunscreen are reef safe? I have rheumatoid arthritis and some of the medications I take will require a high SPF. Which are best? Where is it best to view whales and dolphins without interfering with their natural habitat? We have no desire to "swim" with either. Do the boat tours interfere with the dolphins resting in the bays? Are there places to rent (and more importantly charge) a zero emissions vehicle? Any reading that you would recommend first? I have a 15 year old enrolled in an advance human geography program back home that would like to learn about the Polynesian culture. How can we do that while avoiding some of the tourist trap type activities? I guess what we really want to know is...what activities should we avoid that might cause harm to the environment?
We will be staying in Kohala on the coast, but visiting VNP for 2 and half days. Flying into Hilo and out of Kona (hopefully). Not sure how to do this, but pretty sure I can figure it out. Any advice or recommended reading would be great. My husband lived on Oahu for about 10 years, so some the obvious stuff he will likely know, but this will be our first time on the BI.