Property at a Glance: Hale Queen Kalama
Hale Queen Kalama's two-bedroom condos are within a 5-minute walk of two picturesque beaches: Magic Sands and Kahaluu. Both beaches feature a gorgeous stretch of fine white sand interspersed with black lava rocks and a rough surf well-suited for boogie boarding and body surfing. The condos themselves—located one block inland—have a beachy feel to them; the rooms are adorned with ceramic-tile floors, wicker furniture, and palm tree motifs.
- Choice of two condos: Guests can stay in the Pikake or Tuberose condo. Both are part of a large triplex.
- In-unit features: full kitchens, cable TV, WiFi, and laundry
- Go swimming in the triplex's in-ground swimming pool, located in a tropical courtyard.
- Pick up groceries in the village of Kailua Kona, just 4 miles north.
Kailua Kona, Hawaii: White-Sand Beaches and Thriving Coffee Farms
A couple hundred years ago, the seaside village of Kailua Kona was a beach retreat for Hawaii's royal families. Expansive summer homes cropped up along the village's picturesque shoreline, taking full advantage of the white sands and clear turquoise waters (some homes are open to the public, including Hulihee Palace and Ahuena Heiau. This village—known as "Kona" to locals—is more accessible to the everyday visitor today.
Of its beautiful beaches along the west coast of Hawaii's Big Island, Manini'owali Beach is an especially popular spot, especially for sunbathing and boogie boarding. It's located within Kekaha Kai State Park, which boasts a scenic 4.5-mile hike along the coast.
One of Kona's most famous exports is its coffee. The beans are grown in rich volcanic soils along the western slopes of Mount Hualalai, and then picked by hand, dried in the sun, and roasted. Many coffee farms, such as the organic Blair Estate, offer tours and tastings throughout the year. Be sure to try a cup of peaberry; its small, round beans have a more concentrated flavor and are considered by many to be the best variety of Kona coffee.