Today started early … very very early for a family who were still adjusting to the time difference but fun waits for no man and for most of my family today was going to be fun. The problem was ‘fun’ was located on the other side of the island hence the early start.
Today we were zip trekking but first we had to get there. You can’t really survive the big island without a car … mainly because it’s so big and everything you want to do seems to be away from the big cities. Our 2 hour drive took up through the suburbs and into the mountains in the center of the island. The landscape changed multiple times from barren volcanic fields to lush tropical rainforest.
The zip trekking itself was off the beaten track, located in a small side street off the highway the organization was awesome with iPads to fill out details, plenty of guides to help you with the set up and all the safety gear to set your mind at ease. Our zipping would include 7 different zips and these were located around a plantation growing different native fruits. A large van drives you up the mountain through a private plantation and there we are … at our first zip.
Now I have done this in the past in Canada and to be honest I was absolutely terrified. I hate heights and the thought of not being in control so even the idea of doing this is enough to make my stomach start doing somersaults. This zip did none of that. At about 100 meters in length and with me almost able to touch the floor it was actually a bit of fun.
The second and third were slightly longer but equally close to the ground and my confidence started to build – not only could I do this, I thought, but I actually found myself enjoying this. My darling husband on the other hand found the whole thing totally boring, there was nothing extreme in what we were doing and even with big running jumps off the ledge I could see he was yawning half way through.
Five and six started to get higher and were much longer, there was even a small canyon in one where the drop was quite extensive and yet still I was confident. Then it all went down hill for me and much more exciting for hubby. Number six was long … it started off for the first hundred meters close to the ground before it all fell away and we were soaring through a tropical valley, a river slowly meandering through the Forrest down below. We were going fast but you still had time to take it all in.
The last one however was mind numbingly terrifying. First you climb 70 stairs to the top of a platform before you are supposed to soar across a very large very deep valley before it dropped away again into an even deeper drop over a large waterfall. I personally felt frightened, but I still did it and it was beautiful. My family thought it was absolutely breathtaking and loved the last two runs.
After that we drove into Hilo for lunch. We accidentally wandered into a pot festival before finding a small hotdog place downtown for lunch. Now Mum and dad had the Mac and cheese “hotdog” Mum thinking that Mac was short for Macdonald… don’t ask me how she got that association but the ended up with Mac and cheese on a hot dog! Go figure!
We decided to take a different route back to Kona over a different mountain range but this is where things got a bit tricky, the cloud came in while we were on the top and pretty soon visibility was non existent, we were driving by the lines on the side of the road, cloud so thick we couldn’t even see cars passing us in the other direction. It certainly livened up our 2 hour drive home i can tell you.
Finally a local dinner at “the rock bar” this place was rocking, packed full of people … although we were the youngest the food was amazing, the drinks fast and quite good actually and the band was rocking. The only downfall for us was that Ben and I were probably the youngest in the place but for people watching it was intense, we had two woman dressed as reindeer, a Casanova in a white shirt, tanned skin and slicked back hair buying drinks for all the pretty girls and so so so much more! Great end to a very busy day!
How do I do it? We used skyline eco adventures, which was about $160 per person
How we lunches? Try Smokey dogs located in the old part of downtown
How we ended? Huggo’s “on the rocks” was our dinner of choice and the food was really good. Hot tip – arrive while the sun is still up and watch it set with a drink in your hand!