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Kailua Kona is known as the sunny, outdoors capital of “The Big Island”, Hawaii. Once upon a time, this town was known as a sleepy fishing village, but due to its great weather and central location, Kailua Kona is now a lively city that draws in many tourists. Whether you’re one of the tourists, or you live in this town, you don’t need to leave your dog behind! Many activities in Kailua Kona welcome dogs, making it possible for you and your pooch to have the active, healthy lifestyle you both want!
To be transported back in time and learn about the native history of Hawaii, check out Kaloko Honokohau National Historical Park. Throughout this park, ruins of early fish ponds and petroglyphs still remain. You and your dog can enjoy hiking along some of the footpaths that were used by Hawaiians many years ago. The Ala Hele Ike Trail will bring you from the visitor center to the Honokohau Beach, where pristine white coral sands contrast with the black lava. Leashed dogs are welcome along the trails and beaches of this park, as long as they get picked up after and don’t disturb the wildlife.
While you’re in Kailua Kona, trying the world famous Kona Coffee is a must! Kona coffee is consistently rated one of the best gourmet coffees in the world, and grows along the slopes of the Hualalai and Mauna Loa volcanoes. So head over to Island Lava Java with your top dog, because they offer 100% Kona coffee, outside dog friendly tables with ocean views, and water bowls. With all of these fun activities you can do with your dog, Kailua Kona is a tropical puppy paradise!
If you simply want somewhere refreshing to bring you dog on your morning walk, Kailua Kona also has its share of smaller urban parks! In the Town Center, you can find the Hale Halawai Park. This oceanfront park is a great place to watch the sunset! Features include a rocky beach, a pavilion and restrooms. There are also nice grassy areas where your pooch can sniff, play and repeat. Leashed dogs are welcome in this park as long as they follow proper petiquette! When you and your doggo need a frosty treat, check out One Aloha Shave Ice Co located in the same neighborhood. They offer outdoor dog friendly seating, organic shave ice, and a cozy, festive atmosphere.
If you’re in the Honokohau neighborhood of Kailua Kona, you and your pupper are in for a treat! This neighborhood is proud home to the island’s only dog park, the Hawaii Island Humane Society Bark Park. This Bark Park offers a safe place for your dog to romp around in glorious off-leash freedom. The park has two fenced off sections, one for smaller breeds and one for our bigger pals. Features include water tubs, toys, drinking water, waste scoopers and shade. After working up an appetite, head over to Ultimate Burger, located in the same neighborhood. This restaurant offers burgers made with the finest local ingredients, and local craft beer. Call ahead to make sure you can get a spot at one of their two, outdoor dog friendly tables.
In the Aeo St / Lako St neighborhood of Kailua Kona, the Kamoa Point juts out into the ocean. Along this point you can find a park full of rugged Hawaii jungle, and a piece of Hawaii’s past. This is the Keolonahihi State Historical Park. This park was at one time home to a major religious complex for Native Hawaiians, with a temple dedicated to surfers. Although today the park is largely overgrown, there is a small shoreline path that leads to a beach of coral rubble and the debris of ancient Hawaiian buildings. Leashed dogs are welcome, but remember to not disturb any of the archeological remains.
In the neighborhood of Holualoa sits the third largest mountain on the island, Hualalai. To enjoy the unique ecosystems surrounding this mountain, you can take the iconic Kaloko Drive into the “Cloud Forest”. This drive is zigzags up the mountain, where you can have the otherworldly experience of trees draped in moss and fog. If you and your dog need to stretch your legs along the way, check out the Honuaula Forest Reserve, about halfway up. There are several trails heading into this massive reserve, but no trail markers. Perhaps bring a GPS, and be careful not to get lost in these maze-like pathways! Leashed dogs are allowed to explore the area along with you.
In the Keauhou / Kahaluu neighborhood of Kailua Kona, you can find the Kahaluu Beach Park. This small beach has generally calm water, and is world renowned for its snorkeling. You may get to see some interesting sea creatures as well, including turtles! Features also include restrooms and a pavillion where you can kick back in the shade. This beach is friendly to leashed dogs, so long as they are picked up after and well behaved. If you want to stay a while in this neighborhood, check in at the Kona Hawaii Guest House. This guest house is conveniently located close to Kahaluu Beach, and allows dogs in designated pet friendly rooms for no additional fee.
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