The long drive, we left our south Pahoa location and drove the southern part of the island and headed to south Kona.
We went up through the Volcano area very early to begin by hitting the Volcano farmer's market - very cool - a must do. The folks there are super friendly, the offerings are some things you can't find at lower elevations, like raspberries. We bought a huge bag of raw macadamia nuts and have been munching all week. They also served a very yummo breakfast and pastries. One pastry we bought was so good it was this light flaky roll or puff pastry rolled around one of those small sweet finger bananas with a carmel sauce - did I already say soooo yummy?
We left to search for Kona coffee, drove down through the HOVE district, wow what a difference, so dry and arid, tons of lava, desolate looking. We planned to stop and visit South Point which is the most southern part of the United States, but it was such a long drive that the extra 12 miles to it made it seem just not interesting enough to do it.
Our impression of the Kona side, beautiful! Yet, CROWDED, and tons of traffic. Lots of color, many, many flowers and that's about it. We tried to search for coffee, but we were there on Sunday so many places were closed - darn it. We didn't get any and figured it would happen later in the trip. We did however stop at another little farmer's market and bought a really cool hand turned wooden spatula made out of Kiawe wood which is like an island mesquite used in numerous applications, it's a hard beautiful wood. We spoke extensively with the artist and felt quite attached to the spatula by the time we left, it was cool.
After that we bought a coffee to go at an unremarkable small Kona coffee shop from some rather rude plastic smile chic and decided to head back toward home as there was so much we didn't do.
We stopped at a couple of beaches that were VERY crowded, but beautiful. I've included a couple of pics from there, but will explore there more on future trips.
On the way home we stopped to check out a cool hiking trail that was out in the open and connected with several miles of trial. We weren't prepared to do any hiking but checked it out for future trips.
We stopped and tasted some wine at the Volcano Winery, pretty darn good - much better than the wine we tasted at the winery on Maui. We purchased a red, and at it later with Poke and Korean tri tip both from KTA - very good. Thomas thinks the wine we bought tastes like the one he made from the farm grapes, those of you who've tried that... well, I think this wine is better.
ok, all for now, the rest of that night was spent with pupus and drinks and an early bed time.