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Akaka Falls State Park, Hilo

4.5
#1 of 93 in Parks in Island of Hawaii
Waterfall State Park
Experience lush vegetation and towering waterfalls at Akaka Falls State Park. Set out on the paved footpath just off the parking lot for a loop through the park. On this easy, 0.6 km (0.4 mi) walk, you can see tropical plants and stop at viewpoints for two waterfalls, Kahūnā and Akaka. At Akaka Falls, watch water plummet 129 m (422 ft) into a stream-eroded gorge. Consider bringing some bug spray to ward off mosquitos. Make Akaka Falls State Park part of your personalized Hilo itinerary using our Hilo holiday planner.
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Where to stay in Hilo

A convenient starting point for any exploration of the eastern portion of the Island of Hawaii, Hilo features many air-conditioned hostels, ideally priced for backpackers and other travelers not intending to spend a great deal of time indoors. For additional amenities and more privacy, book a room at a private bed and breakfast or small hotel near the town's best beaches. To stay closer to the hub of tourist action, consider a mid-range inn located in one of the old buildings in Hilo's historic downtown area.
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4.6
  • This was a pleasant, easy side trip out of Hilo. Fairly easy walk for us (mid-60s, fair health). Could be a bit challenging for someone older/in poor health.  more »
  • I was not accustomed to paying for parking at an Hawaiian State Park. Well worth it! Bit of a hike. Up and down. The falls are beautiful. Several views available and I took a lot of photos. Glad I had...  more »
  • My wife and I were married and lived in Hawaii many years ago. We've returned many times and always visit Akaka Falls when on the big island. This past May, we returned with two other couples and look...  more »
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  • The waterfall is nice enough but you're not going to get anywhere near it. There is a loop trail but it was shut down during our visit. There are some signs posted along the trail (paved by the way) that will give you some facts about the area and some surrounding points of interest. Parking is available in limited amount with a car charge of $5. Or you can park outside the lot and get a $1 charge per head.
  • What an amazing view. Parking is easy and costs $5 cash or card. The walk to the falls viewing area is beautiful, paved, and the path crosses a couple smaller waterfalls on the way to the big one. There is a staircase to navigate but it wasn't a huge amount of climbing. Anyone that can handle climbing a couple of floors will be fine. There are clean bathrooms in the parking area but no soap or hand dryers.
  • We were hoping to have a picnic lunch here and hike out to the waterfall. You pay to park your car in the parking lot and there are a couple picnic tables near the parking lot. We ate lunch at one of the picnic tables and then went down to do the "hike". It's basically a small circle loop that is a fenced in path to the waterfall and back. Half of the circle loop was closed because it looked like a large palm tree had fallen on it. The portion of the circle loop we did was shaded and you pass some other pretty waterfalls on the way to the main falls. The waterfall is beautiful and I am glad we came to saw it. Although the "hike" there and back took maybe 10 to 15 minutes. It was a pretty quick stop for the long drive out. I would recommend planning your day with some other waterfall stops to make the drive worth it. Make sure to hit the bakery in the small town outside of the falls! They have some amazing preserves and breads!
  • Akaka Falls is about 4 miles in from Hwy 19 (Old Mamalahoa Hwy). Good facilities, but limited parking. It is about 1/2 mile hike to the falls. If you do not want to hike, you can see the falls in the distance from the parking lot.
  • Lovely place thought it is small. 30 minutes should be adequate. $ 1/person for entry. $5 for the park parking and no fees for outside parking.