Kailua Kona Vacation: The Complete Travel Guide & Things to do

About Kailua Kona Beach

Termed as ‘The Big Island’, Kailua Kona is situated on the west coast of Hawaii. The town’s shores run alongside the Kailua bay and up the Hualalai Volcano. Various white sand beaches are studded along these shores for you to visit. These beaches here have great reviews in terms of safety, and the weather is bright and sunny almost the entire year. Most of the top hotels, resorts, condos, bungalows, and home rentals near the beach promise a gorgeous view of the waters. Best local bars and restaurants are also beachside, making it easier for travelers to roam around and explore. The various adventurous things to do like surfing, parasailing, snorkeling, boating make trips to Kailua Kona even more exciting. 

Schedule your flights and take your vacation to Kailua Kona with our travel guide, providing you with all the beach guidelines, accommodations, places to go, top activities, restaurants, bars, shopping, and many more.

Kailua Kona Beach

Places to stay near Kailua Kona

Kailua Kona has excellent places to stay for tourists on romantic getaways and family staycations. From romantic resorts to long-term vacation rentals, the options are plentiful. Royal Kona Resort is one of the leading resorts in Kailua Kona. The Deluxe suites are well suited for honeymoons and offer balconies with mesmerizing views of the ocean. The resort boasts a private beach, a saltwater lagoon, an excellent bar, a pool, and a spa with couples massages. Royal Sea Cliff Kona and Four Seasons Resort are two other hotels with romantic vibes and will set you right in the mood. Moreover, these two accommodations are pet-friendly hotels that allow dogs, so your pets can enjoy the vacation with you. 

If you fall in love with Kailua Kona and plan to stay longer, we got a list of long-term vacation rentals or weekend home rentals under your budget. Alii Point- Luxury Villa is at the top of this list. It is perfect for prominent families and groups who planned for an extended vacation

Kona Bay Seaclusion offers a homely vibe, suitable for families, and Ocean View Estate has four bedrooms with a capacity of 10 people. The Courtyard by Marriot King Kamehameha‘s Kona Beach Hotel is the perfect location for weekend-long getaways. It is only 2.3 miles away from boating destinations and at walking distance from various tourist spots and eateries. From there you can visit many sites, try many restaurants, and experience the most of Kailua Kona within a weekend. 

Places to stay near Kailua Kona

Best Restaurants and Bars near Kailua Kona

Local restaurants and bars are aligned with the beach and spread all across the town of Kailua Kona. Kona Inn Restaurant is an oceanfront restaurant and bar that specializes in Hawaiian cuisine. Grilled fish, sirloin steak, and mah Tai’s are the customers’ top choices visiting Kona Inn. One more beachside popular local eatery is Papa Kona. With a reasonable budget, you can get the most delicious eggs benedict and avocado toast for brunch, fish tacos for lunch, and sesame seared ahi for dinner. A Whale of Crepes is also a reasonably priced and exceptional place to eat. It is a food cart and offers an open sitting area in Luhia St, well-known for selling crepes with both classic and unique fillings. The Krua Thai Cuisine restaurant in Kuakini Highway features a laid-back environment and serves first-class Thai cuisine. Locals love this place for making the best-fried rice, curries, and noodles.  

Nights in Kailua Kona can be exciting and boozy if you know the spots when you get out on the town. Near the Royal Kona Resort, at Don’s Mai Tai Bar, you can enjoy refreshing cocktails in open-air while listening to live music. Humpy’s Big Island Alehouse serves various draft brews along with fried seafood. The beachside bar is Ocean Sports also has seafood and happy hours. The crowd is always buzzing at Sam’s Hideaway. It is a local favorite spot in the town with a cheerful environment, great drinks, and karaoke.

  Bars near Kailua KonaRestaurants near Kailua Kona

Shopping near Kailua Kona

If you are vacationing in Kailua Kona, do not forget to buy souvenirs and coffee for back home. From Kailua Kona’s Mountain Thunder Coffee Plantain, you can purchase the most aromatic coffee beans. Drive-up a beautiful mountain to get a tour of their small coffee farm. Watch the production of your favorite drink and buy a small bag for back home. At Kona Farmer’s market, you will find fresh fruits, jewelry, and even clothing. Explore the entire market while drinking fresh coconut water from local vendors. You can also get natural soaps for your friends back home from Kona Natural Soap or get a relaxed experience of getting a henna tattoo from Kona Henna Studio. 


Best time to visit Kailua Kona

Kailua Kona is most crowded from December through March. Around these months, local tourist sites are the busiest, bookings are hard to make, and accommodations are the priciest. The best duration is from September to November when the accommodation rates fall, and beaches are more secluded. However, it is not the best time if you plan to ride the waves. 


Weather Kailua Kona

Kailua Kona has constant warm and dry weather throughout the year, perfect for getting a sharp tan line. As the temperature fluctuates within the range of 85-70 degrees, we suggest you get accommodations with adjustable air conditioning. The airflow within the town of Kailua-Kona is relatively stagnant, so air condition is highly recommended for accommodations within the city.  


Top Things To Do and Activities and Attractions in Kona


Kailua Kona has many bike trails for you to bike around and explore the town leisurely. There is an ample number of bike rental companies that will answer your queries and suggest the top trails and sites, or join a bike tour group to survey the town with other tourists.


Spend a night under the glimmering sky and watch the golden sunrise by camping on the camp stations of Kailua Bay. The top three campgrounds are the Hapuna Beach State Park, Kalopa State Recreation Area, Koholo State Park Reserve. Camping can be a pocket-friendly substitute for staying in beachfront hotels and resorts. It is also a great idea when you are on a short trip, on a budget, or are just looking for thrills.



The town has numerous golf parks along the shores for tourists and local golf enthusiasts. Amidst many, Kohanaiki Private Golf Community is a top-class golf club with an infinity pool and a massive golfing zone. The Bowling section, pool tables, and drinks are available for you to have extra fun. Kona Country Club and Makalei Golf Club are two of the most famous golf clubs with sizeable golf grounds, palm trees, and ocean views. There is a copious number of golf stores nearby the golf clubs as well, in case you forgot to pack your gears.

Scuba Diving

The Big Island is world-famous for scuba diving. Drive down to the Kua Bay dive site in the northern part of the town. Head down the treacherous rocks to dive into the clear blue waters. Explore the vibrant reefs, canyons, marine plants, and varieties of fishes. Nudibranch cavern and Casa Caves are two other diving regions favored by tourists and locals.



Snorkeling in The Big Island is a fascinating experience. Among the many snorkeling sites, Kahalulu Beach ParkKealakekua Bay, and Magic Sands Beach Park capture the top three spots. While snorkeling in these regions, you will get to swim with manta rays, dolphins, and even sharks. Watch colorful fishes swim across coral reefs. If you are visiting in season, you might spot a humpback whale. Snorkel with Companies like Coral Reef Snorkel Adventures, Sea Quest Hawaii, and Kona Ocean Adventures if you have children or do not have the correct snorkeling gears. If you plan to snorkel on your own, it is always a good idea to ask lifeguards about the rip currents. 

Swimming with Dolphins

Take your family on a unique swimming excursion to swim with wild and free dolphins in their habitat. With only $139 for adults and $129 for children, Dolphin Discovery and Adventure will take you and your family on a 4-hour program to swim and interact with Hawaiian Spinner Dolphins, a breed of intelligent mammals. Experienced instructors and staff will be present to ensure safety.


Mauna Kea Summit is one of the most adventurous areas to visit in Kailua Kona. A 2-hour drive will take you 14000 feet above sea level into the clouds and witness a magnificent sunrise or sunset. Travelers under 13, pregnant, or with poor health conditions should consult doctors before visiting this location. The visiting hours are from 1-2 hours before dawn and 1-2 hours after dusk. 


Kaloko-Honokohau National Historical Park is where you can get in touch with the rich Hawaiian history and culture. There you will see different kinds of Hawaiian plants, a historical Kaloko freshwater fish pond, and learn about the history of saving and preserving a wahi pana (a vital piece of landmark)

Maniniowali Beach or Kua Bay is a picturesque white sandy beach. You can lay down under the sun on the clean and pristine beach and spot turtles occasionally or enjoy boogie boarding, snorkeling, and swimming in the clean waters. The time spent on this serene beach will be relaxing and soothing regardless of the activities.

If you and your family want to explore marine life, tour the aquatic farm and seahorse aquarium Ocean Rider Inc. This tour will increase ocean awareness and help you learn about uncommon aquatic creatures and plants. Kids will have a great time watching adorable seahorses running around.

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