KONA - HOTEL ZONES
Kailua-Kona town is a quaint historic seaside town, the crown jewel of the Big Island and the center of the Kona coast. Located on the leeward (west side) of the island, 9 miles south of Kona International Airport, also the main cruise port where the ships dock. Nestled in the foothills of Hualalai, an active volcano the town is sheltered from the Pacific trade winds; the beaches here are some of the best with sparkling turquoise waters and soft sand. Ali`i Drive is Kona`s oceanfront downtown street featuring shopping, dining, and galleries. Historical sites such as Hulihee Palace, Mokuaikaua Church, and the Ahena Heiautemple can be found in Kona. Kailua Pier is a great location to watch one of Hawaii`s spectacular sunsets and is the starting point for the Ironman World Championships held here in October. There are plenty of activities in Kona, snorkeling, golfing, luau`s, national parks and night diving with manta rays.
South of Kailua-Kona is Keauhou, a historic area in the Kona district, bordered by Kahaluu Bay in the north and the famous Kona coffee country of Holualoa on Mount Hualalai. The resort area is a popular destination on the Big Island and includes the Sheraton Kona Resort and Spa, set on 23 acres, featuring a shopping center, golf courses, condos and single family residences. The beaches and ocean here are known for some of the best snorkeling, swimming, scuba diving, boating, and fishing. Hawaiian royalty vacationed here and now the area has restored heiau (temples), ancient fishponds and several historical sites. At night manta rays feed on plankton near the shore and it is easy to spot the rays in the shallow waters.
Waikoloa Village is located on the west side of the Big Island, home to Waikoloa Beach and ultra modern full service resorts. The area features petroglyphs that are believed to represent the heavens.