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One day to the Volcano National Park + nearby?

Chicago, IL
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One day to the Volcano National Park + nearby?

Hello,

I am planning my first vacation in Big Island (arriving from Oahu at the beginning of November for 7 nights). I was wondering if I can base my self near Magic Sand Beach Park (or East Coast) and explore the island from there. I know Volcano Park and that area is about 2 hours and half but, can it be seen in a day or do I have to spend at least a night there? My worries are that there is not much to do near the volcano area for more than a day. Should I expect rain in October in this part of the island?

I am travelling with my husband and my 5 years old daughter so I cannot get close to the volcano (or hike there).

Thank you for the advice!

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4 replies to this topic
Big Island, Hawaii
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1. Re: One day to the Volcano National Park + nearby?

The best way to approach the island is to fly into one side and out the other and spend 1-2 nights on the east side and the rest of the time on the west side. If you already have flights booked into and out of KOA and you can't change them then what many people do is double book an overnight in the middle of their stay, as east side lodgings are quite reasonably priced.

I would not spend any time near "Magic Sands Beach Park" (more propertly known as La'aloa). It is a dangerous beach, often has no sand if there are any kind of swells, has an active drug trade and lots of sketchy characters, and isn't where you want to hang out with a 5 year old in particular. If you want to stay near a decent beach, you need to be on the Kohala Coast. Waikoloa Beach, the Mauna Lani, or Mauna Kea, not in Kailua Kona.

Volcano is a rainforest and Hilo is one of the rainiest towns in the U.S., so you should always expect and prepare for rain over there.

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Magic Sands
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Chicago, IL
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2. Re: One day to the Volcano National Park + nearby?

Thanks for your advice. We decided to stay at Waikoloa Village, one of the place you mentioned. It looks quiet and safe. We will use it as a base to explore the island.

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Waikoloa
Waikoloa
Island of Hawaii, HI
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3. Re: One day to the Volcano National Park + nearby?

I expect you mean Waikoloa Beach? I didn't recommend Waikoloa Village (and don't, in general).

As I mentioned, you should not use that area as a base to visit the east side. Overnight in Hilo or Volcano one night.

Edited: 14 September 2017, 06:07
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Waikoloa
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Island of Hawaii, HI
Hilo
Hilo
Island of Hawaii, HI
Hawaii
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4. Re: One day to the Volcano National Park + nearby?

Just FYI, Shea did not recommend Waikoloa Village and I doubt she would. Not for a safety problem, but there's nothing for a child to do there. Shea recommended Waikoloa Beach Resort, near the coast, about seven miles away from Waikoloa Village, which is mostly a residential bedroom community for resort workers and resident retirees, and construction trade workers.

Are you in a condo? House rentals in the Village are illegal, but quite a few posters here have gotten hooked by them recently.

It can rain any time of year on the east side of the island (Volcano, Hilo, Puna, Hamakua Coast). October is variable so no way to say it will rain much during your small window. You wouldn't generally need to worry about a winter storm, too early. Actually, this is still going to be hurricane season, but it's been very uneventful here in the Pacific this year. Knock on wood.

You can make various day trips from from this base, but honestly, your child probably won't love a lot of time on winding roads. I hope you have a lot of beach time planned, which is what almost all visiting kids far prefer to touring the island.

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