When you're on the big Island there are two cities that people often visit and set up their base camp on their Hawaiian Holiday. One of those cities is Hilo, and the other is Kailua-Kona, which rests snugly on the Kona Coast.
Kailua-Kona is only about a 15 minute drive from Kona International Airport. This Big Island hub is where Hawaiian royalty used to visit when they wanted some get away time. Today it is a town that has lots to see and do, including: rustic and fine dining, shopping, cultural tours/experiences, and a great night life, as well.
Some of the Popular Places to Stay in Kailua-Kona
If you've always wanted to be pampered in luxury then try out the Kona Quest House and Mini Spa. This is beautiful, Hawaiian-style home and studio lodging that is close to the beaches and the Kona Coffee Farms.
The Wyndham Kona Hawaiian Resort and Courtyard King Kamehmeha's Kona Beach Hotel are both great lodging choices as well. You get the best of resort and hotel living within the limits of Kailua-Kona making it easier to enjoy your time at night and during the day.
Incidentally, King Kamehameha I spent the last years of his life living in Kailua-Kona near where the Courtyard currently sits. He passed away there in 1819.
Now, on to the fun stuff!
There are lots of sports fishing opportunities in and around Kailua-Kona. Enjoy the day and fish it away going for mahi mahi, ahi, and marlin. Do some research and call the businesses that you are thinking about especially if you have kids. You'll want the boat to clean and the crew to be professional. The right crew can make your time on the water awesome.
It's a bit of a drive from Kailua-Kona, but if you're staying in the town then you should take the time to travel to the Mauna Kea summit. Hawaii is one of the only places in the world where you can snorkel in the morning and travel to snow-capped mountains in the afternoon. Take advantage of it!
There is just so much to do in Kailu-Kona!
You can spend half the day at one of gorgeous nearby beaches like Manini owal Beach. This is a gorgeous beach that is a little off the beaten path but well worth the effort. Bring a camera! Also note, the currents can be strong.
Or just stay in the Kailua-Kona limits and have a fresh seafood and local fare at one of the open-air restaurants while gazing at the water. Then after, spend the day walking your lunch off by visiting the store-fronts and doing some shopping.