Old Kona Airport State Recreation Area, Kailua-Kona

Categories: Marinas, Nature & Parks
Inspirock Rating:
4/5 based on 220+ reviews on the web
Old Kona Airport State Recreation Area is a park built on the site of an old landing strip just North of Kailua, Hawaii County, Hawaii.HistoryDuring World War II, a small landing strip was cleared near the end of Kuakini Highway. In 1947, the state approved a small terminal to be built for tourist flights, which was dedicated in 1949. In 1950, of fencing was added to keep out cattle which would wander onto the site. The 1960s brought development of several larger hotels and resorts. Larger aircraft could not take off from the short runway. When the much larger Kona International Airport was built further North at Keahole Point in 1970, the old landing strip was used for drag racing before being turned into a park in 1976.FacilitiesThe facilities on the 103.7acre of the old airport are run by the County of Hawaii. These include baseball and soccer fields, the Kona Community Aquatic Center, and Kekuaokalani Gym, located at 75-5530 Kuakini Highway. A 217acre marine preserve was created off shore in 1992. A day use boat mooring is near the prominent "Shark Rock" toward the northwestern boundary. Water depth at the mooring is about. A reef shelf East of Shark rock creates a small surf break. Snorkelrs and Scuba divers usually enter the water at a protected cove at the Northwestern end of the beach. On Kukailimoku Point Southeast of the park sits a lighthouse to guide ships into Kailua Bay. North of the park is Papawai Bay (meaning "water layer" in the Hawaiian Language). The land there is owned by the Queen Liliuokalani Trust, which also leases some of its property to two large shopping centers, the Kona Commons which opened in 2008, and the Makalapua Center in 1994.
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  • There are quite a few things you can do here so difficult to know what to highlight. Parking is free and in plentiful supply, Kid's play area is good, access to the beach is available from here, and t...  read more »
  • We snorkeled the far end twice. The picnic facilities are good and rest rooms & showers ok. Many local folks to advise best snorkel sites. 
  • Although we have visited Kona several times we had never adventured over to the Old Kona Airport State Recreation Area. However since it was close to our condo this visit we gave it a try and were ver...  read more »
  • This was my favorite beach in Kona. There is so much room for play, lots of shells, and the sunset is beautiful. The ways are not too hard for the little kids and just a really family friendly place to visit.
  • Lots of parking and close to town, good facilities. The beach is okay, but there's a nice community garden with a long, flat walking path. It's the place to go for a good run or walk.
  • A great place to have lunch-dinner-breakfast. You bring your own food n find a picnic bench n cop a squat.
  • My ancestors lived here and grew food for King Kamehameha is one of the reasons this place is very special to me. Also I continue to connect to this place excerise, swim take my children here as well as do beach cleanup.
  • Pretty near area, can drive on teh old runway and have access to great beach and features like what appeared to be a botanical garden walkway. Looks to be a popular spot for running, and picnics.
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