* Akaka Falls Rd * Off Hwy 19, Honomu, HI 96728 *
My first day on the Big Island, my friend Kawika took me to these amazing sheer pits of 'awe' known as 'Akaka Falls. A 442 foot tall waterfall descending down into a deep gorge as part of the Kolekole Stream. Located within 'Akaka Falls State Park just 11 miles north of Hilo at the end of Highway 220. Because the waterfall plunges down into a very rocky and scenic gorge, the local Hawaiians named it 'Akaka which means "A rent, split, chink, separation; to crack, split, scale". The folklore surrounding these falls involve Pôhaku a Pele that, when struck by a branch of lehua ʻâpane, will call the sky to darken and rain to fall (Pukui, Elbert, & Mookini, 1974). You can also see Kahûnâ Falls along this trail. The trail is a self-guided .4 mile hike through dense tropical vegatation leading to these two natural wonders of Hawaii. Lots of Hawaii's botanica dot and dress up the trail as tropical flowers, vines, and trees. Kahuna Falls is the lesser of the two, plummeting 400 feet. The Park itself has a nice parking lot, rest rooms, and often will find locals selling arts and crafts. On my visit on August 6, 2009; there was an amazing artist painting local scenery. Rating: 5 stars out of 5. Must visit location on the Big Island.
Travel up past the Hilo Medical Center on a narrow two laned windy road and you're here, Boiling Pots. Boiling Pots is extremely beaufitul and dangerous. The reason they call it that is because of its shape and it looks as if it is boiling. It's a terrace of water pools that leads down to Rainbow Falls, a popular tourist stop off. We frequently get many Japanese tourist and in the right light, they appear frightened at the signs posted all over "DANGER". Many have died carelessly by swimming here and getting sucked under the rock bowls.
'Rainbow Falls' is a spectacular place. I don't think any of my photos really captured the real 'FEEL' of this incredible waterfall. It is something that has to be seen, for real ;-) If you have been here, then you will know what I mean, if not, then you really should come, and see for yourself. ;-) It is not far from 'Hilo'....