5 Must-Do Activities on the Big Island

An incredible number of amazing must-do activities on the Big Island await you and your family on your next vacation in Hawaii.

If your vacation is infinite and your wallet bottomless, feel free to do them all. But if not, here’s some help for the rest of us who need to prioritize our time and hard-earned money.

We at Kailani Tours Hawaii have narrowed it down to our Top 5 must-do activities on the Big Island (and a few others). Mahalo!

What to do on Big Island

1. Must-do activities on the Big Island: go on a helicopter ride! 

As a past concierge and a guide, I have always heard guests talk about their experiences with Blue Hawaiian Helicopters. From Waikoloa, it’s the ultimate circle island 2-hour experience.

Expect to pay a lot, but if it’s still too expensive, their flights leaving Hilo will cut the trip and the price in half. Paradise Helicopters in Hilo does a “Doors-Off” Experience just in case you feel too safe inside the cockpit.

No joke, this is an unforgettable thrill ride and one of the must-do activities on the Big Island! Truly an okole squeezer! Soar above Kilauea Volcano

2. Visit the Volcano

The Big Island is the only island in the state with an active volcano and it has been putting on a show for over 3 decades! Our favorite tour company for Volcano trips is…surprise! Kailani Tours Hawaii! 

We pride ourselves on exceptional vehicles, service, and food!  It’s quite a long drive to Volcanoes National Park so let us do the driving and we’ll be sure to make it the best Volcano Experience possible! The Ultimate Hawaiian Adventure!

3. See the Mantas and enjoy one of the best activities on the Big Island 

Go see the mantas at night! The Big Island’s calm waters and abundant sea-life are a scene to behold.

One of the most unique and unforgettable experiences of your life will be swimming with mantas. These incredibly docile and curious creatures feed off the plankton at night and Big Island Divers’ dive masters will show you what they look like up close, but we love Sea Quest guides as well! Both companies are first-class. Pictures and videos online are amazing, but nothing comes close to the real thing. This can’t be real! Oh, it is!

4. Planning a trip to the Big Island? Swim with Dolphins! 

This was tough: mantas or dolphins. Both experiences are incredible and both are must-do activities on the Big Island.

Most dolphin tours start in the morning and they’ll mix in some additional snorkeling along the reef and add in whale watching on the way to snorkeling.

The best boat tour on the island is Alii Ocean Tours. Their guides and captains do an incredible job of putting you in the perfect spot every time! “Sharky” and the boys will provide Four Seasons level service on a boat that is the envy of all the other groups.  It’s all worth it! The best crew on the island – Alii Ocean Tours!

5. Visit Mauna Kea and experience the best stargazing on the planet

The highest mountain in all of Polynesia is Mauna Kea. Sitting nearly 14,000 ft. high above the Big Island is a place to view 360 degree sunsets and experience the best stargazing on the planet.

Plan ahead for a night when there’s no moon and spend the day at altitude with Mauna Kea Summit Adventures! Pioneers of Mauna Kea tours, their guides know the stars and mountain like no one else on the mountain. See where land meets sky on Mauna Kea. But call ahead because seating is very limited!