Have been thinking I'd spend a few days in Kona and driving around the big island to see the volcanoes. Will also spend some time in Waikiki to check out Diamond Head and Pearl Harbour. Is it worth trying to squeeze in trip to Maui in the middle?
Hawaii is amazing! You will love it. It is worth the day trip to Pearl Harbour. Very touching and very moving. You can do a whole island tour for the day which can start in the early morning and take you right around the whole island. You will see chainman’s hat, break neck beach, lookouts, famous people’s houses, pearl harbour, macadamia nut farms, pineapple farms and lots more.
We also did Diamond Head which was amazing. The view is something you don't see every day. Also a good idea is to do a sunset cruise which includes dinner; you get to watch the sun set looking over Waikiki beach.
We walked back to the centre of Waikiki from Diamond Head which was good as we got to see the local's places and local shops. It was a nice down hill walk back in to the centre.
Enjoy Hawaii we are going to go back for sure soon! almost 10 years ago
The big waves are in December so you may not see any waves when you are there. If there's no surf, the botanical gardens near Waimea Bay have lots of exotic stuff.
Snorkelling at Hanauma Bay is great for seeing to tropical fish of all sizes. This bay is what's left of an old volcano.
A couple of day in Maui is always good. If you do go there, try the drive from Kahului to Hana, the road is awesome and has fantastic views. Keep in mind that there's no point stopping at every waterfall to take photos...there seem to be hundreds of them, and you may get waterfalled-out.
Oh and if the season is right, you MUST go on a whale-watching cruise. The Hawaiian Islands appear to be the breeding grounds for some species and you can see them from the beasches.
A day trip to the volcanoes on 'the big island' is an interesting experience that should not be missed if you are that close. If you elect to walk to the actual flowing lava though, take good hiking shoes, lots of water and a hat. almost 10 years ago
I visited a few years ago for Christmas. If you with any children I would recommend the Polynesian Cultural Center. Everyone, specially my daughter, had a great time visiting the various "locations" and doing the activities (making fire for instance).
As a previous commentor also suggested, snorkeling in Hanauma Bay was fantastic! We even saw sea turtles. Here and while kayaking in the ocean.
One word of caution though, we rented a vehicle and drove all over the island. During a short "photo opportunity", we pulled off the road to a semi-busy scenic stop and my wife's purse was never to be seen again. We immediately started calling the credit card companies to find out that there were already charges to it. Just be careful at those scenic pull-outs. almost 10 years ago