Kohala Suites by Hilton Grand Vacations
Kohala Suites by Hilton Grand Vacations is on the big island of Hawaii and just up the road from my last resort. Not to make you jealous because I want you to come to Hawaii and see this all for yourself, but I love staying at several resorts in one long vacation. It is great as a writer but even better as a guest. You get to see the best that each location has to offer.
Video by Jackson Jetsetting
Day One Travel & Arrival at Kohala Suites by Hilton Grand Vacations
For almost all of you reading this, your journey will mean landing in the late afternoon or early evenings from a long flight. Myself this AM just meant check out from one Hilton location to another. I had just stayed at Hilton Grand Vacations Club Kings’ Land Waikoloa. It also is an amazing location. You can read my blog about that location and those days as well.
For the accommodations, they feel similar as the Hilton brand really works that great level at all their resorts. The main difference on the face of things is that this resort does not have the 3 bedroom suites available. But they do have very nice large 2-bedroom suites here. The suites here are over 1,100 sq ft so they feel a little larger than the club king’s 2-bedroom suites.
This Hilton location also offers free parking and free WIFI, which is nice savings that adds up during your trip.
Check in was a breeze here, and the staff were so warm and friendly. I felt a bit like I was in one of those 80s made for TV movies set in Hawaii. No smiling lady meeting me with a lei to go around my neck, but aside from that, it was very nice. (Didn’t it seem like that happened during every TV movie or show when someone got off the plane in Hawaii? P.S. You can arrange for that these days for a fee, but my guess is you will be tired from your flight and not that into it). Guys, if this is your honeymoon I would have it done by the resort you are staying at or a car service, and then use the car service or resort transportation to get you to your resort. It is just a fun way to do that and spoil your gal.
- Cable TV
- Coffee Maker
- Ice Maker
Then the resort itself offers all of these options.
- Free WiFi
- Outdoor Pools
- Business Center
- On Site Restaurants
- Fitness Center
- Concierge Services
Since I was transferring to this resort from the other location with the golf courses, I arranged a round of golf with some fellow travelers thanks to the golf pro on site. I found a foursome that needed another player.
There are two courses, Waikoloa Beach Course, and the King’s Course. The beach course is just that at times on the beach, and the King’s course is a bit inland. The thing about playing golf on any island is the wind. Now with the big island there is less inland because it is such a large island. I, however, wanted the views you find on the beach course.
Designed by Robert Trent Jones Jr, the Waikoloa Beach Course is the shorter of our two greens. Winding along historic lava flows, the course borders the scenic Kohala Coast. That is the wording on the website and the views here are amazing on the Kohala coast.
The golf is likely no better here than most places you have been. Yet, the scenery on the course is heart pounding lovely.
Day Two Big Island Adventures
There are few things more impressive than viewing a live Volcano up close and personal. The parks here are open 24 hours a day, and every day of the year.
From their website:
Eruption Viewing Tips
The park is experiencing very high visitation. Expect unplanned temporary closures of popular parking lots and roads when they become full. Avoid arriving between 4 p.m. and 8 p.m. and come at an unconventional time, like 4 a.m., or after 8 p.m.
Park landscapes are sacred places for many people. Please be respectful and allow others to practice their culture privately.
Maintain social distance of 6 feet from others and wear a mask to reduce the spread of COVID-19. If you are sick, visit another day.
Volcanic eruptions can be hazardous and change at any time. Stay on marked trails and overlooks, and avoid earth cracks and cliff edges. Do not enter closed areas.
Hazardous volcanic gas can be a danger to everyone, especially people with heart or respiratory problems, infants, young children, and pregnant women. Check the air quality before and during your visit.
Slow down and drive safely. Expect long waits for parking spaces at popular vantage points like Uēkahuna (formerly the Jaggar Museum) and Devastation Trail parking lot.
Check the weather. At 4,000 feet above sea level, the summit of Kīlauea can be raining and cold at any time. Bring a rain jacket; wear long pants and closed-toe shoes. Bring a flashlight if visiting at night. Weather conditions such as fog and rain may obscure views.
More than just an eruption
While Kīlauea is one of the most active volcanoes in the world, known for many celebrated past eruptions, it is also a sacred landscape filled with wahi pana (legendary places) such as Uēkahuna, Puʻuloa, Kaʻauea, and others. Your visit can be more meaningful by learning about some of the deep connections with Native Hawaiian culture. Explore this website to learn about the Hawaiian volcano deity Pele and the many moʻolelo (stories) associated with these incredible lava landscapes.
One thing to remember is that you likely want to see the lava at nighttime. You also may want to come with a guide and tour group. Just to see as much as you can on your visit, and the guides do try to make things easier and safe.
Day Three More Island Adventures
This is on the most expensive options list. But if you have money to burn and want a world class experience, this is one for your list.
There are many helicopter tour providers on the big island. For this trip I chose Blue Hawaii Helicopter Tours mostly based on the name and then the write up on their website. Hey, I am a simple guy. Sometimes names grab my attention, and I loved the watching the movie Blue Hawaii even watching it as a classic movie in the 80s.
You can take off on this tour from the nearby airport. From the website, you can read their own simple description.
Witness the stunning Kohala coast of Big Island’s North Shore, where the towering sea cliffs of Waipi’o Valley open into the dramatically deep and meandering valleys of the Kohala Mountains. On this helicopter ride, you’ll experience beautiful waterfalls cascade thousands of feet into the rainforest below, where remnants of ancient Hawaiian settlements are still visible. This scenic adventure is one you won’t soon forget!
To explain this trip to you, look at the photos online and view the related video.
Now if the helicopter tour is out of your price range, there are tons to do on the big island for free or next to nothing. Spend the day visiting the local beaches (some of the best in the world), or the amazing botanical gardens.
The nearest botanical gardens are PUA MAU BOTANICAL GARDENS (WAIMEA/KOHALA). This is a great location and not far from the resort. If you want to spend an entire day in botanical gardens, head to Hilo and the windward side of the island.
All of these locations are in that area.
The best vacation of your life will probably be in Hawaii. Just make sure you book your accommodations with TZort.