Big Island

Big Island—South Side

We left Kailua-Kona pretty early on our last day on the Big Island, determined to see as much as we could as we completed our circumnavigation by taking the southern route back to Hilo.

Our first side trip wasn't too successful in our primary mission of finding breakfast. But we got some great views of the coast and saw some interesting cultural sidelights in the little town of Miloli'i. No restaurants or bakeries, but a nice little beach:

Miloli'i Beach Kathy at Miloli'i Miloli'i Beach

We found it somewhat surprising that such an out of the way place needed such strict rules; maybe they've had some horseshoe-related accidents:

Henry liked this little church, and we were both amused by the somewhat out-of-date sign about the pigs (we later learned on O'ahu that feral pigs are a big problem on the islands):

Church in Miloli'i

Somewhat famished, we got back on highway 11, and headed for Na'alehu, where we knew we'd find food since it was in the AAA tourbook. What we didn't realize is that although we decided we hadn't enough time to drive down to South Point, the southernmost tip of the Big Island, we would still be seeing some geographical landmarks, like this restaurant where we finally had breakfast:

Southernmost restaurant

And just up the street, we had some scrumptious pastries at the southernmost bakery in the US. It also had a nice adjacent garden, where we took these pictures of palms and banyan:

Palm trees Banyan tree Palm with stress roots

Continuing on up highway 11, the coast was simply beautiful....

Southern coast Southern coast with tourist Southern coast

.... until we got to the loveliest spot on it, at least given what we had seen—Punalu'u Black Sand Beach. From there on to Hilo, the highway leaves the coastline, since Kilauea's many eruptions over the last century have made vehicular travel along there pretty impossible. It was just as well we weren't tempted to stop many more times, since we did have a plane to catch in Hilo!

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