Hilo, curving gracefully around the rim of Hilo Bay, is nestled on the slopes of three volcanoes. It houses the island’s government officials and nearly 41,000 residents.
One of the wettest towns in the United States, Hilo boasts a rainfall average of about 128 inches a year. The rain creates gushing waterfalls and waters a myriad of exotic flowers.
Tourism is less noticeable here than on the Kona side of the island, but there’s plenty to do. Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park is a short drive from Hilo. The scenic Hamakua Coast is close by, as well. The Pacific Tsunami Museum and the Lyman Museum are located in town, along with the Palace Theater and Big Island Candies. Mauna Loa Macadamia Nut’s visitor center and Hawai‘i Tropical Botanical Garden are short drives out of town.
‘Imiloa Astronomy Center, a famous farmers market and the annual Merrie Monarch Festival are major visitor attractions.
• Lyman Museum (808) 935-5021