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Things to Do on the Big Island of Hawaii This Winter

Things to Do on the Big Island of Hawaii This Winter

December through February sees the coldest and wettest weather on the Big Island, but it’s still a pleasant time to visit. The winter weather makes for better surfing and waterfall chasing. It also brings the best chance of sighting whales, whale sharks, and hammerhead sharks. Here’s what to do on the Big Island in winter.

  • Join a whale watching tour and search for migrating humpback whales in the shallow waters.
  • Take advantage of the clearer skies over Kona and go stargazing on Mauna Kea.
  • Go chase waterfalls, which will be at their fullest in winter.
  • When there’s enough snow, go skiing or snowboarding on Mauna Kea.
  • Go ziplining over roaring rivers, waterfalls, or lush jungles.
  • Take advantage of the higher swells and go surfing.
  • Sample Kona coffee at its source on a plantation tour, and see coffee plants in bloom.
  • Look for hammerhead sharks and whale sharks while scuba diving.
  • Check out island museums and cultural attractions, such as Hulihee Palace and Kealakekua Bay State Historical Park.
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Free Cancellation:Get a full refund up to 24 hours in advance on most experiences.See Details

13 Tours and Activities

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Big Island in a Day: Volcanoes, Waterfalls, Sightseeing, History
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Big Island in a Day: Volcanoes, Waterfalls, Sightseeing, History

star-5
1823
The Big Island of Hawaii has a diverse ecosystem unlike anywhere else on the planet, and on this day-long nature tour, experience the beauty of its black-sand beaches, thundering waterfalls, and Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. If you’re lucky, find Hawaiian green sea turtles basking on the coast. Since the tour only requires a moderate amount of walking, it's an educational adventure for travelers of all ages, with snacks and refreshments included.
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  • 11 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$204.19
From
$204.19

Mauna Kea Summit and Stars Small-Group Adventure Tour
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Mauna Kea Summit and Stars Small-Group Adventure Tour

star-4.5
683
Experience big skies and incredible nighttime views on this Mauna Kea stargazing trip with a small group. Join no more than 28 guests for a warm pre-trip picnic, proceeded by a ride in a 4x4 luxury van to the summit of the Big Island's tallest peak. After admiring a sunset view, continue down to 9,000 feet (2,743 meters) for a stargazing session, complete with a telescope, hot chocolate, and dessert. The trip also includes a guide and a hooded parka to keep you warm.
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  • 8 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$246.07
From
$246.07

Kona Shore Excursion: Hawaiian Sea Turtles , Historic Kona & Coffee

Kona Shore Excursion: Hawaiian Sea Turtles , Historic Kona & Coffee

star-4.5
23
Spend a full day exploring Kona. See greens turtles, learn how Kona coffee is made, and visit archeological sights. Make the most of animated amount of time with a varied tour encapsulating Hawaii’s history, natural beauty, wildlife and culinary culture. Stop at white sand beaches, walk through lava tube, sample locally frozen coffee and hand made sweets, then choose from a variety activities depending your tastes. Opt to snorkel, go souvenir shipping, or relaxant local brewery, before returning the port.
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  • 5 to 6 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$139.00
From
$139.00

Small Group Waipio Valley and Waterfalls Adventure

Small Group Waipio Valley and Waterfalls Adventure

star-5
374
See three of the Big Island's most famous waterfalls in a single day on this guided tour. Travel along the Hamakua Coast to Akaka Falls, Hi’ilawe Falls, and Rainbow Falls, and swim at a private waterfall. Learn about the history and legends of the island from a guide. Lunch, snacks and hotel transport are included.
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  • 10 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$218.85
From
$218.85

Big Island Zipline Over KoleKole Falls

Big Island Zipline Over KoleKole Falls

star-5
262
The city of Hilo is surrounded by some of Hawaii’s most scenic wonders, and on this 7-line Hilo ziplining tour, you can literally soar past thundering falls as you zip through a tropical rainforest. Learn about traditional Hawaiian agriculture as you zip by Akaka Falls State Park, and once you’re comfortable sitting in the harness and feeling the exhilarating rush, prepare for the dramatic crossing that’s one of the longest zipines in Hawaii, and feel the rush of wind on your face as the forest opens up beneath you.
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  • 2 hours 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
From
$198.50
From
$198.50

9-Line Zipline Experience
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9-Line Zipline Experience

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412
See the Big Island from a different angle on this 9-line zipline adventure that takes you over tree tops, waterfalls, and rivers. With four dual lines, you can even race a friend. With views of the Pacific Ocean from every platform, it’s the most scenic zipline experience on the island.
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  • 2 hours 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
From
$209.42
From
$209.42

Whale Watch Excursion from the Big Island
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Whale Watch Excursion from the Big Island

star-4
71
Get up close with humpback whales near the Big Island of Hawaii on this guided, whale watching excursion. During Hawaii's whale season, the ocean is full of activity from humpback whales migrating from the Pacific Northwest to breed and nurse their young. Hear the whales with a hydrophone and learn about their behavior patterns from the certified naturalist guide. Snacks and light refreshments are provided.
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  • 2 hours 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
From
$105.95
From
$105.95

Whale Watching On The Big Island

Whale Watching On The Big Island

star-4.5
126
Hawaii’s Big Island is home to migrating pods of humpback whales, which often breach as they build up energy for their northward migration. This narrated tour brings you to some of the best viewing grounds via 24-person catamaran. You’re able to hear the whales singing through the provided hydrophones. The tour provider guarantees whale sightings or the next trip is free.
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  • 3 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$85.90
From
$85.90

Kohala Waterfalls Small Group Adventure Tour
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Kohala Waterfalls Small Group Adventure Tour

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154
Delve into Hawaii’s history and prepare to get wet on this full-day waterfall adventure tour of the Big Island’s Kohala coast. Begin with a drive up the Kona coastline past lava flows, and take in sweeping views from the old Kohala Mule Station lookout. Rumble through the rugged landscape in an off-road vehicle and hike along the tunnels and aqueducts of a historic sugar plantation. Admire the seven Kohala waterfalls and cool off with a dip under the final cascade. A picnic lunch and hotel transport are included.
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  • 8 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$204.19
From
$204.19

Kona Tour: Coffee Plantation, Kealakekua Bay, Kaloko-Honokohau Park, and Bee Farm

Kona Tour: Coffee Plantation, Kealakekua Bay, Kaloko-Honokohau Park, and Bee Farm

star-4.5
60
There’s much more to the Big Island of Hawaii than volcanoes, waterfalls and luaus, and on this informative tour of the South Kona region, you’ll learn the sacred history of this shoreline and sample the local honey and famous Kona coffee. With the help of a knowledgeable guide, you’ll visit petroglyphs, look for green sea turtles and visit sacred Hawaiian temples. Even better: you'll hear the legends, mythology and lore of ancient Hawaii through today. This tour is capped at 15 people, so you’re ensured a personalized experience.
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  • 7 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$145.55
From
$145.55

Majestic WATERFALLS

Majestic WATERFALLS

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5
Experience the Big Island’s lush Hamakua Coast on this half-day excursion. After a convenient hotel pickup, visit top destinations like Akaka Falls State Park, Rainbow Falls, and Richardson Beach Park. Capture memorable photos, watch for Hawiian Green Sea Turtles, and stop by Big Island Candies to satisfy your sweet tooth.
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  • 4 to 5 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$149.85
Price varies by group size
From
$149.85
Price varies by group size

Private Surf Lesson on the Big Island

Private Surf Lesson on the Big Island

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23
It’s widely believed that the sport of surfing was invented here in Hawaii, and the calm waters of Kahalu’u Bay are the perfect spot to learn. During this private Kona surf lesson, you’ll learn from an expert, local instructor how to paddle and balance on the board, and how to stand up, ride the wave, and paddle back out for more. This tour is perfect for novice surfers or those with little experience, and by the end of this 2-hour surf lesson in Kona, you’ll have the skills to ride the waves like Hawaiian surfers of old. 
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  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$183.25
From
$183.25

Small-Group Surf Lesson on the Big Island

Small-Group Surf Lesson on the Big Island

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63
You’ll never forget the thrill of standing up and riding your very first wave, and the entire experience is made even better when shared with family or friends. With the small-group surf lesson on the Big Island of Hawaii, allow an expert, local instructor to teach you the basics of surfing, from the proper method of paddling out to how to stand up on the wave. Here in the waters of Kahalu’u Bay, your instructor will be there right by your side with tips and helpful suggestions — and may even assist with a little push to get you up and riding. 
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  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$103.66
From
$103.66