If you are looking for a gorgeous place to take photos, go for a safe swim, a relatively easy hike and an experience you will remember FOREVER, consider discovering Kiholo Bay and Wainanali’i Pond located about 30 minutes north of Kona on the Kohala Coast.
My husband and I have explored the area a few times and we went back to take a video to show you what it looks like. Many of you may never get out there to do this, so watching the video is a nice arm chair experience, too!
Here is a little history of the area:
As you will see in the video, there are two ancient fishponds which are interconnected spring-fed pools and host abundant native species of fish, along with opae (shrimp) and hapawai (mollusk). The ponds have historical connections to Hawaiian moolelo (stories). Extending outward from one of them is a 200-foot stone auwai (ditch) that connects the ponds to the ocean. During high tides, sea turtles utilize the waterway to enter and exit the brackish water. (You can see this channel quickly in the video)
Kiholo Bay was an important source of food, thus it was favored among Hawaiian chiefs, including King Kamehameha, for its fish supply and protective location. Kamehameha oversaw the construction of a large fishpond separate from the others, which was later destroyed in 1859 by a volcanic eruption from Mauna Loa nearly 30 miles away.
If you go:
1. Bring sturdy shoes. If you decide to hike to the bay from the Kiholo camping area (where there are outhouses and parking areas in the camp ground AND in the day use area) you will be walking along sand, but also on stones. You also will need to walk across the lava to get into the pond/lagoon.
2. Bring PLENTY of water. Even if you get out there early, its gets hot out there and there is no place to get water. Plan on a 30 minute hike in and out.
3. Take only photos, leave with only memories..and your trash. This is one of the few pristine places left in Hawaii-Let’s keep it that way.
4. As I always say, PLEASE do not wear chemical sunscreen into the ocean. Rash guards and mineral sunscreen and limit your time in the sun and water.