Hilo Tropical Wonders in Hilo, HI

Hawaii Forest & Trail73-5593 Olowalu Street #AKailua-Kona, HI 96740
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Overview

Offered by Hawaii Forest & Trail in Hilo, Hawaii, Hilo Tropical Wonders lets guests enjoy a unique outdoor experience exploring historic landmarks, scenic byways, and a family-owned tropical fruit farm during an interactive two-and-a-half-hour tour. Guests can also enjoy tasting tropical fruits and nuts near Rainbow Falls, traveling historic highways in Hilo, and more.

Good To Know

from Ashley, one of our Kailua-Kona Travel Experts
  • About a ½ mile of walking required during the tour.
  • Tour duration: approx. 3.5 hours.
  • Wear closed-toed shoes, long pants, and bring a light jacket.
  • Tour includes coffee and farm food tasting.

Description

from Hilo Chocolate and Waterfalls
Spend a great half day exploring sleepy Hilo Town. You can visit a local cacao farm, and go swimming under iconic 120-foot waterfalls. Discover Hilo beyond its historic, wooden storefronts as your local guide teaches you about the secrets of this town's rich heritage. 

Our first stop along the tour will be majestic Rainbow Falls. Soak in the view at this picturesque waterfall while your guide describes why this location is such a famous local landmark. From Rainbow Falls you will head up to a spectacular Cacao Farm to explore its 1,000 acres of tropical plants. On the farm, you will learn how cacao goes from "tree to bar" while sampling some delicious chocolate creations.

A 500-meter hike takes you to a breathtaking 120-foot waterfall, and it is all yours to explore. This waterfall is absolutely perfect for swimming. Whilst at this location, you will also have the opportunity to enjoy a delicious lunch, accompanied by breathtaking views. 

Highlights:
  • Learn the history of Hilo while being driven along the bay shore

  • View 2 different waterfalls

  • Exclusive access to a local cacao farm with chocolate samples

  • Enjoy a locally made lunch while taking in stunning views

  • Swim under a 120 foot private waterfall


Schedule: Departure daily from HFT Hilo Headquarters, Hilo Pier, Hilo International Airport, and select Hilo resorts. Duration: 3.5 hours.

Rated: Easy; short walks on easy terrain.

Included in tour: Chocolate tasting, lunch, beverages, use of day-packs, walking staffs, and rain-gear.

Menu: Sandwich or salad (turkey, ham, tuna, veggie, or mac nut chicken salad, chips, cookies, sodas, and juice drinks.

Group size: Tour limited to 12 people.

Restrictions: Guests on this tour should not be physically challenged or unable to walk on uneven or rocky terrain. All ages welcome.

What to bring & wear: Swimsuit, comfortable walking shoes, hat, sunscreen, and a light sweatshirt or jacket recommended.

Tripster Customer Reviews

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TripAdvisor Reviews
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Pioneer311474
"Stargazing adventure rocks!"
TripAdvisor user rating 5 out of 5
Reviewed January 22, 2020 NEW
Heraldo from Hawaii Forest and Trail was one of the most knowledgeable, friendly and approachable guides we have experienced in Hawaii. Brought us up to Mauna Kea, explained to us novices the various constellations with his steep astronomy knowledge, and shared tonnes of personal anecdotes of his 2 decades in Hawaii. Truly enjoyable!
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Katarzyna N
"Mauna Kea summit, AKA Brooklyn girl sees stars!"
TripAdvisor user rating 5 out of 5
Reviewed January 21, 2020 NEW
My husband & I were in Hawaii for 2 weeks on vacation. We did Summit & Stars on our last night - we were very lucky that the weather cleared before we had to fly home & that the road to Mauna Kea had recently re-opened after being closed for some months due to protests...Google it.) We had attended the Birding trip with Hawaii Forest & Trail the previous week & so already knew they are great! We could have driven up ourselves as our Jeep had 4WD, but we didn't want to risk getting stranded if we got altitude sickness...and we don't have our own telescope!  Our tour guide (Jeff) was very knowledgeable & passionate about the island of Hawaii, its volcanoes, and the stars. My husband loves space, so I knew he'd love this. To my surprised I LOVED it! I hail from Brooklyn where I've lived most of my life, I had never seen this many stars!!! You feel like you're on another planet. We drove up to the top of Mauna Kea to watch the sunset, then came down a little ways off the summit to see the stars through Jeff's telescope. We learned about the constellations & individual stars that were used for wayfinding, their Greek names & Polynesian names both. Hot chocolate and brownies were served at this point - DELICIOUS! There was snow at the summit! HF&T provides parkas & mittens, but you will definitely want long pants, warm socks, and closed-toe shoes. I wore leggings, & sweatpants that I picked up at Target in Kailua. The only suggestions for future improvements would be: -Set ground rules for the group in the beginning (for ex we had some issues with non-English speakers talking loudly to each other while Jeff was presenting the star show, which interfered with our enjoyment). -Let folks know what to expect hour in terms of schedule/bathroom breaks (the tour is 8 hours) -Make the dinner something simpler - the breakfast and lunch served on the Birding tour were AMAZING (and from what I understand prepared in-house at HF&T, but the dinner was catered by Lava Java). It reminded me of airplane food - traditional dinner food simply does not travel well! -At the summit, a "local" in an SUV complained that we were blocking his view of the sunset, and got a bit threatening with our guide. Jeff handled it as best he could, asking everyone at the summit (not just our group) to stay away from this individual's car; he didn't want any trouble. But I really could not believe that a local person would be so hostile, on an island known for the spirit of Aloha
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ayda3102
Tampa, Florida
"Great tour"
TripAdvisor user rating 5 out of 5
Reviewed January 21, 2020 NEW
Had an amazing time. Definitely recommend them for anyone looking for a great tour and guide. Rob was awesome
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tdgrice81
Las Vegas, Nevada
"Nervous and excited!"
TripAdvisor user rating 5 out of 5
Reviewed January 20, 2020 NEW
Mike was an excellent guide. He gave very helpful tips throughout the hike. He never made me feel badly or unable to complete the hike, even though I am a very inexperienced hiker. Beautiful waterfalls!!!
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36beverlyd
"Volcanos Unveiled Tour was amazing!"
TripAdvisor user rating 5 out of 5
Reviewed January 19, 2020 NEW
Despite the questionable weather, our tour guide Justin made this a memorable day. We learned a lot about the history of the island and the role the volcanos have played over the centuries. It’s hard not to be impressed with the sights, sounds and smells of Volcano National Park! The real adventure started however when we stopped on the way back at a private lava tube that was used by the previous owner for “raves”. It was a very unique opportunity to see it and something you don’t want to miss. Kudos to Justin for the great job he did keeping us both informed and amused!
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Hilo Chocolate and Waterfalls is located at Hawaii Forest & Trail73-5593 Olowalu Street #AKailua-Kona, HI 96740
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Frequently Asked Questions about Hilo Chocolate and Waterfalls

How much walking do we do?
Tour guides will stop a couple of times throughout the adventure for short walks of less than 200 yards.

Is there elevation gain?
Minimal elevation gains on the walks. Most trails are flat and level.

What should I bring?
You should bring a camera, comfortable walking shoes, a hat, sunscreen and a light jacket.

How long is this tour?
It is about 2.5 hours round trip

How many people does this tour take?
Tour is limited to a maximum of 12 guests.

What happens if it rains?
This tour operates rain or shine. Guides will bring raingear for everyone. They only cancel when the weather makes transportation or walking hazardous.

How do we get to Hawaii Forest and Trail Headquarters?
The headquarters is located on Highway 19 about three miles north of the town Kailua-Kona across from the Honokohau Harbor entrance on the 'mountain side' of the highway behind the Tesoro gas station.

What about tipping the guides?
In considering a gratuity for your guide, please consider the following: did you feel welcomed, was the tour operated safely, did the guide provide for your care and comfort, was the tour enjoyable, educational and engaging?