Big Island – Day 5 – Part 1
Our last full day in Hawaii! And it was our day to pretty much do everything and see everything we wanted to see before we go home. On our list for the final day is Akaka Falls and Volcano Park. Akaka Falls is located just down the street from our apartment in Honomu (but not exactly walking distance) because it’s about 3.3 miles away. Hilo Sharks Cafe in Honomu is probably the closest thing in the area to Akaka Falls though.
The Akaka Falls State Park is pretty much another big garden with two waterfalls. Akaka Falls really is the main thing to see in their 65.4 acre park. It is either $5/car or $1/person if you walked there. There is someone at the park entrance watching and making sure you pay.
After paying your fees, you will be lead down a set of stairs to a fork in the road. Turn left to go directly to Akaka Falls or turn right to take the “Circle Route”. The “Circle Route” is a 0.4 mile hike through the Akaka Falls State Park and to Kahuna Falls before finally arriving at Akaka Falls. We took the “Circle Route”.
I read that the hike “requires some physical exertion” which I guess would be because of the few stairs you may need to take but overall it’s an easy little hike/walk on a paved path. It was raining when we arrived at Akaka Falls, and we were luckily relatively prepared with an umbrella, rain coat, etc.
It didn’t take long to reach Kahuna Falls. There is a little lookout from the Circle Route path. And from there you will see Kahuna Falls at an angle. You really don’t to see the whole waterfall because of the greenery around it.
I would recommend taking the Circle Route first because Kahuna Falls is not very interesting if you’ve already seen Akaka Falls. Kahuna looks very similar to Akaka Falls just that it is a 100 foot free falling waterfall compared to Akaka Falls which is a 400 foot waterfall.
The rain didn’t stop us from enjoying our little morning hike. Along the way, I saw quite a few interesting plants (some I remembered from the Hawaii Tropical Botanical Garden).
The rain made the hike a little more interesting.
And we finally approached Akaka Falls. Continue down the path and a flight of stairs that leads directly to the waterfall. We don’t get to stand at the base of the waterfall or anything, but our view from the platform gave us good view of the whole waterfall.
It’s 422 feet plunge is actually twice the height of the famous Niagara Falls. It’s just that the Niagara Falls is much wider and with much more water.
All the pictures that were taken on my cell phone were automatically uploaded to my Google+ account, the above image was edited automatically somehow. I like what they did.
422 feet almost seems like nothing compared to other “tallest” waterfalls. The tallest in Hawaii (near the Waipi’o Valley) is 2,600 feet. But this one much easier to access.
I personally really liked how the waterfall pretty much created its own stream-eroded gorge, pretty much framing the waterfall. And then looking down and seeing the the waterfall crash into the water below.
Above are more pictures of Akaka Falls. Have you heard of the Legend of Akaka Falls? I ended up spending a lot of time just reading the signage near the waterfall, and just enjoyed reading about all of the legends and stories in Hawaii.
Honomu, HI 96728