On Labor Day (September 3) we embarked on a two-day circular driving tour of the Island of Hawaii. John and Dorothy were our tour guides.
We began our journey along the Southern Kona Coast (Rt. 11), leaving home around 9:45 am. Sixty miles from Kona is South Point, which is the southernmost point of all 50 states.
We arrived at South Point at 11:37 am. It had started to rain during our drive; however, the rain let up and the view improved by the time we arrived at South Point. At South Point we enjoyed the view of the sea cliffs and watched young people jump off a fishing platform into the ocean way below.
I didn’t capture a video of any jumping; however, an internet search on South Point cliff jumping yielded many videos from which to choose.
I chose this video.
This video shows lots of cliff jumping. In addition the video provides a geography lesson and a historical perspective.
You think that cliff jumping is crazy. Well, what about jumping into this blowhole?
Please feel free to mute the audio, if the music doesn’t appeal to you. I preferred this video to those that had wind noise in them.
Constant winds blowing at South Point have caused trees to blow over and grow that way.
We left South Point around 12:30 pm. We stopped in the town of Na`alehu at the Punalu`u Bake Shop. Na`alehu is the southernmost town in the 50 states. The Panalu`u Bakery is the southernmost bakery in the 50 states. The bakery is situated on a lush four-acre landscaped estate.
We ate the lunch that Dorothy packed for us and the Malasada donuts (Portuguese donuts) that Bob and I purchased at the bakery, while sitting in the pavilion.
Our next stop, after lunch, was also in Na`alehu.
Continuing east from Na`alehu on Highway 11 our last stop was at Punalu`u Beach Park, near the town of Pahala. Punalu`u Beach Park is known for its black sand beach and Hawaiian Green Sea Turtles that frequent this beach.
Behind Punalu`u Beach is a beautiful freshwater pool.
We were on our way again at 2:15 pm. From Panalu’u Beach Park we continued eastward on Highway 11, past the entrance to the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park and over the cracks in the highway. The park was closed due to earthquake damage and volcano eruptions from earlier this year.
We arrived in Hilo around 3:15 pm. Before going to our hotel, we stopped at Big Island Candies. Throughout the store there were coffee and delectable treat samples. The sample that I liked the best was Chocolate Covered Passion Fruit Brownies.
We checked into the Hilo Hawaiian Hotel, located on Banyan Drive. Our room had an ocean view, with a balcony. I will share pictures of the view in my next Hawaiian blog post.
We ate dinner at Cronies Bar & Grill. John, Bob and I ordered burgers and fries; Dorothy ordered soup.
We returned to the hotel a couple hours later. By 8:00 pm I had showered and was ready for bed. Dorothy said to meet her in the lobby at 7:15 am, as she had something planned for us. She wouldn’t tell us what was planned.