The Big Island, Hawaii

A Tropical Adventure

The Big Island, Hawaii

A Tropical Adventure

The Big Island, Hawaii

A Tropical Adventure

The Big Island, Hawaii

A Tropical Adventure

The Big Island, Hawaii

A Tropical Adventure

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Highlights

    • Custom start date and tour length, personal itineraries and service
    • Local expert guides who live in the area delivering superior insight
    • Classic white-sand beaches, palm trees and vibrant sunsets at Waikoloa
    • Quiet lanes and rugged cattle farms in the highlands around Waimea
    • Hawaii Volcanoes National Park and lava
    • A breadth of climates and terrain
    • An option to circumnavigate the entire island
    • Luxuriate in a tropical paradise in between your cycling days

Seasons

Year Round

Starting / Ending City

Kailua-Kona, HI

Tour Length

4 to 8 days

Trip Types

◊ Self-Guided
With our Self-Guided Hawaii bike tours an expert local guide takes care of your transfers, route briefing, luggage moves, and planned transfers. They are also available should you need mechanical assistance, help with a dinner reservation, or general questions. You have a GPS unit, maps, and a detailed guidebook to help you select your route, choose where you eat, and, generally, explore the area.

◊ Guided Group
Our Guided cycling tours allow your group to explore a destination with an expert local guide with a dedicated support vehicle. You will also have GPS units, maps and a detailed guidebook to help learn about both the major sights and the hidden gems. Your guide takes care of both you and all the logistics – from route advice to bottle washing.

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Private Hawaiian Bike Tours on the Big Island

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    Where do you want to stay?

    Budget

    Two Star Silverton Inn Suites

    Simple B&Bs and more modest hotels but all well-kept with en suite facilities

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    Classic

    Four Star accommodation

    Smaller hotels or luxurious B&Bs with very personal service often including wine tasting

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    Luxury

    Luxury accommodation

    Some of the nicest full-service hotels in the area. Typically include a pool and a good restaurant

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    Sample Itinerary

    Hawaii Cover Photo, beach photo

    Hawaii is famous for its sandy beaches and vibrant sunsets. However, our tours also help you discover a quieter and more authentic Hawaii: the coffee plantations of the Kona coast; Volcanoes National Park; laid-back, tropical Hilo; and the quiet lanes and cattle farms of the Waimea highlands. There are, of course, also classic Hawaiian beaches with palm trees and jaw-dropping sunsets. 

    Quite simply, this is a spectacular and stunningly-varied island to ride around. 

    TOUR LENGTH

    6 Days / 5 Nights

    ACCOMMODATION OPTIONS

    Classic  

    START & END

    Kailua-Kona

    SERVICE HIGHLIGHTS

    • Private transfer from Kona with bike set up and full route briefing at the start of your tour
    • Expert guides delivering superior service
    • Handpicked accommodations with breakfast
    • On-call roadside assistance
    • Luggage moved between lodgings and optional participant transfers along the routes
    • GPS app, maps, directions and guidebook
    • Private transfer back to Kona at the end of your tour

    OPTIONAL EXTRAS

    • Guided volcano tours
    • Kayaking and snorkeling
    • Customize your route

    BIKE AVAILABILITY

    DAY-BY-DAY FLOW

    Day 1: Kona to Captain Cook

    Day 2: Captain Cook to Volcano

    Day 3: Volcano Loop Day

    Day 4: Volcano to Hilo

    Day 5: Hilo to Waimea

    Day 6: Waimea to Kona

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    Day One - Kailua-Kona to Captain Cook

    You head south today, down the Kona Coast to the world-famous Kona coffee district.

    Intermediate riders first head inland from Kona – climbing up to Holualoa. This small settlement sits at 1,300 feet and is surrounded by coffee plantations. From here it is an easy cruise into Captain Cook.

    Leisure riders head south from Kona, hugging the coast and skirting around numerous bays before climbing up to the small enclave of Captain Cook.

    Challenge riders follow the Leisure route out of Kona but add on a loop down to The Place of Refuge National Park.

    Epic riders start with a detour up Kaloko Drive. Climbing 3,000 feet in just 7 miles, this is something of a local challenge. Riders then follow the Challenge route to Captain Cook.

    NOTE: These routes and distances are for guests staying at the Ka’awa Loa Plantation. Mileage and routing will be a little different for guests staying at other accommodations – see the Accommodation section.

    Your route hugs the coast; skirting around numerous bays and inlets before climbing up to coffee country

    RIDE OPTIONS

    Leisure
    15 miles with 1,650 feet of climbing

    Intermediate
    15 miles with 1,900 feet

    Challenge
    25 miles with 3,000 feet

    Epic
    60 miles with 7,500 feet

     

    OVERNIGHT TOWN

    Captain Cook

    Captain Cook is a cluster of B&BS, low-key restaurants, and cafés. The town’s boundaries lie between 800- and 2,000-feet, which makes it an ideal area for growing coffee as well as having stunning ocean views.

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    Day Two - Captain Cook to Volcano

    The jewel in today’s ride is the stunningly beautiful-and-deserted Cane Haul Road. This quiet back road takes you through woodland, sugar-cane fields, and meadows. You also get great views of cinder cones and the ocean.

    Today’s Intermediate ride starts with a van transfer the Kahuku Unit – a little-known part of the Volcanoes National Park set among lush grasslands. From here you ride to the tiny village of Naalehu an unassuming town with a great Hawaiian bakery. You then ride the length of Cane Haul Road – an almost deserted road across open grasslands with stunning ocean views. The ride ends at the old sugar-town of Pahala from where you take a van transfer to the town of Volcano.

    Leisure riders transfer to Naalehu where they join the Intermediate ride.

    Challenge riders follow the Intermediate route but at Pahala continue on the highway all the way to the town of Volcano.

    Epic riders following the Challenge route but add on a scenic in-and-out ride down to South Point – the most southerly point in the United States.

    The stunningly beautiful Cane Haul Rd takes you through woodland, sugar-cane fields, and meadows

     

    RIDE OPTIONS

    Leisure
    15 miles with 2,000 feet of climbing

    Intermediate
    25 miles with 2,100 feet

    Challenge
    50 miles with 4,600 feet

    Epic
    65 miles with 6,000 feet

     

    OVERNIGHT TOWN

    Volcano

    The village of Volcano is a small cluster of houses, restaurants and stores in a rainforest just outside Volcanoes National Park. Being uphill from the calderas, however, it is unaffected by lava flows. The rain makes for very lush vegetation but the elevation (3,700 ft) means that temperatures are relatively cool.

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    Day Three - Volcano Loops

    Today you visit Volcanoes National Park – one of the must-visit sites in Hawaii. The park encompasses two active volcanoes: Kīlauea, the world’s most active volcano, and Mauna Loa, one of the world’s largest volcanoes. The park has dramatic landscapes as well as rare flora and fauna.

    The Intermediate loop does a circuit of the park that includes the Kilauea Visitor Center, steam vents, lava tubes and part of the famous Chain of Craters Road that goes from lush forest to lava desert in just a few miles.

    The Leisure ride includes most of sights of the Intermediate ride but does not go down the Chain of Craters Road.

    Challenge riders follow the Chain of Craters Road all the way down to the ocean, where the road has been terminated by recent lava flows. The climb back up rises over 4,000 feet and has expansive views.

    Epic riders first complete the Challenge ride and then add on 10-mile climb up a small, single-track lane to the Mauna Loa Lookout.

    The world-famous Volcanoes National Park has dramatic volcanic landscapes as well as rare flora and fauna

     

    RIDE OPTIONS

    Leisure
    15 miles with 800 feet of climbing

    Intermediate
    30 miles with 2,200 feet

    Challenge
    50 miles with 4,500 feet

    Epic
    70 miles with 7,400 feet

    OVERNIGHT TOWN

    Volcano

    The village of Volcano is a small cluster of houses, restaurants and stores in a rainforest just outside Volcanoes National Park. Being uphill from the calderas, however, it is unaffected by lava flows. The rain makes for very lush vegetation but the elevation (3,700 ft) means that temperatures are relatively cool.

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    Day Four - Volcano to Hilo

    Today you ride from the rainforests of Volcano at over 3,500 feet down to steamy, laid-back Hilo on the east coast of the Island.

    The Intermediate ride follows a direct route from Volcano to Hilo. The first few miles are on the highway but you are descending and soon complete this section of the ride. In the small hamlet of Mountain View, you leave the highway and travel on small, little-traveled roads through verdant countryside all the way to Hilo.

    The Leisure ride starts with a van transfer to Mountain View where it joins the intermediate route into Hilo.

    The Challenge ride starts with a loop of the Volcanoes National Park before following he Intermediate route into Hilo.

    The Epic ride starts with a deeper incursion into the Volcanoes National Park – to Hilina Pali Overlook – before following the Intermediate route into Hilo.

    Travel on small, little-traveled roads that pass through verdant countryside all the way to Hilo

    RIDE OPTIONS

    Leisure
    15 miles 37o feet of climbing

    Intermediate
    30 miles with 400 feet

    Challenge
    45 miles with 1,100 feet

    Epic
    60 miles with 2,300 feet

    OVERNIGHT TOWN

    Hilo

    The relaxed, lush, charming city of Hilo seems trapped in a 1950s time-warp – and therein lies its charm. Despite being ignored by most tourists, the town has good museums and vibrant markets. It is also the fourth wettest city in the USA but showers are typically short and most of the rain falls at night.

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    Day Five - Hilo to Waimea

    Today you head north from steamy Hilo up to the cooler ranch lands around Waimea.

    The Intermediate ride starts with a van transfer to Laupahoehoe. This small town has a train museum and fine views down to the Ocean. You then ride north on the highway, parallel to the Ocean, to Honoka’a. From Honoka’a, you ride west along the Old Mamalahoa Highway. This little-traveled road climbs through tropical woodland – in places the trees completely cover the road creating a verdant, magical tunnel. Soon, you emerge into open ranch-land, with fine views up to Mauna Kea. It is then an easy cruise into the cowboy town of Waimea.

    Leisure riders start with a van transfer to Honoka’a where they join the Intermediate ride.

    Challenge riders start out on the Intermediate route and add in an in-and-out ride from Honoka’a to the Waipio Overlook with its iconic views down to the Waipio Valley.

    Epic riders start in Hilo from where they ride along the coast to Laupahoehoe to join the Challenge route.

    Ride a little-traveled road as it climbs through tropical woodlands before emerging onto open grassland with views of Mauna Kea

    RIDE OPTIONS

    Leisure

    15 miles with 2,000 feet of climbing

    Intermediate

    35 miles with 3,700 feet

    Challenge

    50 miles with 4,800 feet

    Epic

    80 miles with 6,700 feet

    OVERNIGHT TOWN

    Waimea

    Waimea is surrounded by the Parker Ranch – the largest privately owned cattle ranch in the US – and paniolo (cowboy) culture dominates the town. There are thriving art galleries, gourmet restaurants and homely cafes. The climate is surprisingly cool – sometimes more reminiscent of Ireland than the Aloha State.

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    Day Six - Waimea to Kailua-Kona

    Today you leave highland Hawaii and descend to the coast and the white-sand beaches of classic Hawaii. As you ride, the high grasslands give way to lava fields down at sea level.

    Intermediate riders head south from town across open grassland before enjoying a 10-mile descent down to the Ocean at Waikoloa Beach. From here, you continue down the coast – across lava fields – all the way to Kailua-Kona.

    Leisure riders start out on the Intermediate route but their ride ends when they reach the resorts at Waikoloa Beach.

    Challenge riders head north from Waimea, climbing over the shoulder of Kohala Mountain to the small artists community of Hawi. On the descent into Hawi, you can see the island of Maui in the distance. From Hawi, you parallel the coast down to Waikoloa Beach where you join the Intermediate route for the ride into Kona. Hawi to Kona is also the return leg of the Ironman Triathlon.

    Whichever route you choose, your guide will meet you, at the end of your ride for your end-of-tour transfer.

    Leave highland Hawaii and descend to the white-sand beaches of classic Hawaii

    RIDE OPTIONS

    Leisure

    25 miles with 500 feet of climbing

    Intermediate

    55 miles with 1,500 feet

    Challenge

    75 miles with 3,600 feet

    OVERNIGHT TOWN

    None

    As this is the last day of your tour, there is no overnight accommodation unless explicitly requested on booking.

    Captain Cook:

    Ka’awa Loa Plantation
    This charming guesthouse is also a start-up coffee farm. The 5-acre estate is nestled in tropical surroundings at 1,200 feet – just below the town of Captain Cook. Owner-managers Greg and Michael are gracious hosts and make a great breakfast. The building is a classic Hawaiian plantation home.

    Volcano:

    Kilauea Lodge
    Set in tropical gardens, this relaxed lodge has a mix of rooms and cottages. The property was originally a summer camp – now renovated to be a comfortable B&B. The lodge has a hot tub and a nice restaurant. The property is a mile from the entrance to Volcanoes National Park.

    Hilo:

    Hilo Hawaiian Hotel
    The Hilo Hawaiian is a modern hotel that sits in parkland just outside of Hilo. The hotel is modern with spacious rooms. The hotel is convenient, clean and comfortable rather than charming though the location – right on the Bay – is nice. The property is 1½ miles from the center of Hilo but there are dining options nearby.

    Waimea:

    Kamuela Inn

    The Kamuela inn is right in the center of town and an easy walk to shops and restaurants. Rooms are simple, cozy and nicely finished with new bathrooms. The inn has been recently renovated and significantly upgraded. Overall, the inn is an unpretentious, clean and comfortable place to relax with great views of the Mauna Kea volcano.

    Volcano – Upgrade:

    Volcano House
    This hotel – on the very rim of the Kilauea Caldera – is all about location. It is the only hotel in the Volcanoes National Park and the views are spectacular. The hotel was completely renovated in 2013 though the rooms and bathrooms are still relatively modest. The property is two miles from the village but there is a restaurant in the hotel.

    Captain Cook – Upgrade:

    Horizon Guest House
    The Horizon Guest House is an elegant inn situated at 1,100 feet on the slopes of Mauna Loa. The inn is set on 40 acres of sloping pasture lands with spectacular views of the Pacific Ocean. The property includes an Infinity Edge swimming pool and Jacuzzi. Your host, Clem, is extremely welcoming and well informed.

    Hawaii Classic Hotel Features

    ACCOMMODATION NOTES

    Properties in the Classic category are typically smaller hotels or luxurious B&Bs with very personal service sometimes including wine tasting or evening hors d’oeuvres.

    Tips & Notes
    Properties in the Classic category are typically smaller hotels or luxurious B&Bs with very personal service sometimes including wine tasting or evening hors d’oeuvres. See page 2 for prices of tours in this category. Please note that you can also mixand- match accommodation in different categories in different towns. Please contact us for the price of these

    BIKE CHOICES

    Hybrids bikes, a cross between a mountain bike and a road bike

    Hybrids bikes are a cross between a mountain bike and a road bike. They have a relaxed riding position and are great for beginners and intermediate riders. A typical model is the Trek 7.3 FX with Shimano components and high-pressure road tires for better cycling efficiency than your typical hybrid.

    Road bikes, a racing style bike with drop handlebars

    Our road bikes are a racing style bike with drop handlebars. The road bikes are faster bikes than the hybrids with less upright riding position. A typical model is the Émonda ALR 5 with aluminum frame, carbon forks, and Shimano 105 components. (NOTE: Some of the smaller roads in Puglia can be a little rough making a hybrid bikes a better choice for some riders.)

    eBikes, designed to give you a little extra assistance when climbing hills

    Our eBikes are designed to give you a little extra assistance when climbing hills. The ride position is very similar to our hybrids. We typically rent Scott E-Sub equipped with a 250W E-drive Bosch motor. If one rider in a couple is stronger than the other, an eBike can be a great choice for the less-strong rider.

    Your Own Bike, if you have a favorite bike, we can help you get it to your destination as well as set it up once it is there

    If you have a favorite bike, we can help you get it to your destination as well as set it up once it is there. Please ask about options for bike shipping and assembly.

    group of cyclists

    OPTIONAL EXTRAS

    Receiving & Assembly
    per bike charge to receive bike from shipper, assemble the bike and repack it and deliver it to a shipper at the end of the tour.

    Bike Boxes 
    a per box charge for the extra logistics needed to handle bike boxes during a tour. Note: this fee can be avoided if you leave your box with your start/end hotel.

    Tandem Bike 
    a per bike fee for the extra logistics to handle a tandem bike that is brought by a guest.

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