Akaka Falls on the Big Island of Hawaii

Akaka falls on the Big Island

Panoramic vista of the falls


Akaka Falls on the Big Island of Hawaii

It’s one of the most beautiful and scenic waterfalls on the Big Island, surrounded by a lush botanical garden, the walk around the gardens and two main waterfalls are quite dramatic. The wet side of the island creates these lush jungles with amazing waterfalls throughout the park along with scenic vistas to different segments of the park. The walkways around the park are easy to maneuver with paved cement walkways and stairs, guard rails line the walkways for extra protection and holding security if the paths are wet.



Akaka falls on the Big Island

Lush jungles with huge leaved plants

Lush tropical plants


It’s easy to enjoy a few hours in this garden and just absorb the complete quiet and focus to the wild and green surroundings. Strange large-leafed plants are also joined with large protruding and wildly colored spikes of flowers, it’s almost surreal. The air is perfumed with thousands of white and yellow ginger plants with clusters of delicate blooms – from a distance the air is delicious and sweet, but up close to the flower it’s almost nauseatingly sweet. Exotic huge blooms of giant Heliconia and hibiscus plants take over the landscape and become huge as if nothing can stop them from taking over the jungle, everything seems over-sized in this environment.


Akaka Falls on the Big Island

A torch ginger along the walkways



Giant tree ferns, gingers and heliconia grow to extra large size and dominate the landscape.

Akaka Falls on the Big Island

Whole fields of wild ginger in the jungle





Akaka Falls on the Big Island

Huge heliconias with their red tiered flowers


The pathways are fun to walk through crossing little creeks, dense bamboo forests with exotic tropical plantings, it’s like a small adventure walking through the different areas of the park with gorgeous vistas of the gulches, waterfalls and other scenic spots to enjoy along the trails. When the hordes of tourists coming in from their bussed groups finally leave, it’s so different, quiet and luxurious just observing nature on your own and seeing things almost grow by the minute it seems!


Akaka Falls on the Big Island

Overlooking an expansive bamboo forest



Akaka Falls on the Big Island

Well maintained cement walkways

Entering Akaka Falls


The loop trail around Akaka falls is a wonderful discovery walk and you get see both the upper and lower falls up close, and the views are quite spectacular! Initially hidden by tropical blooms and trees, you finally get to the observation platform to see the upper falls. You get this expansive view of the gulch, lush greenery  and the long free-falling waterfall. It must have rained a lot because the falls were roaring loudly and dramatic in their free-fall.

First the lower falls comes into view


Akaka Falls on the Big Island

Hidden lower falls in the park





Akaka Falls on the Big Island

Akaka Falls hidden with dense foliage



The main waterfalls are finally starting to come into view and framed by gorgeous tropical foliage and flowers.


Akaka Falls on the Big Island

Framed with tropical foliage and flowers





Akaka Falls on the Big Island


The area finally clears to these expansive views of the waterfalls and surrounding gulch, it’s a green jungle paradise and there are thousands of ferns lining the observation area and framing the views to the small pond below.


Akaka Falls on the Big Island

Observation platform to main falls.



Along the loop trail are many smaller waterfalls and tributaries that finally connect to the river below and travel down into the coastline and ocean below.

Akaka Falls on the Big Island

Many small water falls and features along the tour.



In this lush jungle, ferns the size of giant trees reach out to the skies and completely dominate this area, they are huge!


Akaka Falls on the Big Island

Whole fields of wild ginger in the jungle





Akaka Falls on the Big Island

Giant tree ferns and variegated bamboo








The park is a nice loop trail that is easily manage and relatively flat terrain except for a set up stairs to walk down to the main trail. Unfortunately it is not handicap accessible through the flight of stairs heading down to the main pathways. Thanks for visiting Akaka falls on the Big Island today. If you more highlights of the island take a look at my post of attractions on the east side  and the west side of the island.


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36 Responses to Akaka Falls on the Big Island of Hawaii

  1. Suzanne Fluhr (Boomeresque) September 12, 2013 at 3:07 pm #

    You can sure grow some mega ferns on the east side of the Big Island. (I assume this park is on the eastern (i.e. wet) side of the island). Every time I find myself thinking it’s a hassle to pack up and move to Hawaii for three months next year — all I have to do is look at your blog to remind me why it is so definitely worth it!

  2. Mike September 10, 2013 at 9:20 am #

    You poor man….having to take more pictures in Hawaii 🙂 Love them as always, Noel! 🙂

  3. Patti September 7, 2013 at 12:50 pm #

    Beautiful photos as always, these are particularly dramatic. Thanks for linking up!

  4. santafetraveler September 6, 2013 at 6:48 pm #

    Lovely falls! Thanks for sharing them.

  5. Neva Fels September 6, 2013 at 6:21 pm #

    I’ve visited only the big island and if I don’t get to this place, I feel as if I was there because of your amazing pictures. Thanks for the trip.

  6. Wanda Ann @ Memories by the Mile August 17, 2013 at 12:51 pm #

    Your pictures are so beautiful. I in love with your blog and everywhere you get to travel. Thank you for sharing your travels and talent.
    My blog is http://www.memoriesbythemile.com/ On Tuesday’s I do a trivia featuring a different state each week. I will be featuring Hawaii the first of September and would love to share a couple of your photo’s, I link them back to your blog and then thank you again and link back to your blog on Friday’s post. Let me know if you are interested.
    Hope to hear from you.
    Thank you,
    Wanda Ann @ Memories by the Mile

  7. Freya Renders August 11, 2013 at 9:27 am #

    That’s a very high waterfalls! I agree with the others, it’s very lush too. Even just a bit of time spent there would surely relax me like no other view can.

  8. Patti August 10, 2013 at 2:52 pm #

    Your photos are just breath taking! I have dreams of going there, but if I never make it,
    Your photos made me feel as if I did! Thanks for sharing them with us.

    • Noel August 10, 2013 at 3:01 pm #

      Hi Patti,

      Definitely visit, Hawaii is truly paradise especially the Big Island of Hawaii.

  9. Leigh McAdam (@hikebiketravel) August 10, 2013 at 12:35 pm #

    This place looks like it gets lots of rain but what a lush & beautiful spot in the sunshine.

  10. Nancie August 9, 2013 at 12:38 pm #

    What a gorgeous place…love the lushness!

  11. Ruth August 9, 2013 at 7:24 am #

    We have Bridal Veil Falls in Provo Canyon which might come close to the beauty of your falls. I’ll have to go take some photos of it. Lovely lush and green jungle.

  12. Michele {Malaysian Meanders} August 9, 2013 at 3:20 am #

    Those are great photos. That first one especially captures the beauty of the place. I remember really enjoying our time hiking around Akaka Falls, so thanks for the trip down memory lane.

  13. Mary {The World Is A Book} August 8, 2013 at 5:21 pm #

    I felt like I was browsing a tourist brochure for the Big Island. Fantastic photos of the waterfalls and the surrounding hike. What a satisfying end through a walk in the lush foliage. I miss the islands!

  14. travelnwrite August 8, 2013 at 1:45 pm #

    I can almost smell and hear it in your photos. A wonderful walk you led us on today.

  15. Marisol@TravelingSolemates August 8, 2013 at 7:43 am #

    Wow, such breathtaking waterfalls and greeneries – my kind of scenery. Lovely photos, as usual.

  16. KAN August 8, 2013 at 7:29 am #

    There’s a famous Hawaiian song about Akaka Falls as well. Here’s a link to the Nathan Aweau version in which he accompanies a hula dancer.

    • Noel August 8, 2013 at 9:07 am #

      excellent, thanks for sharing this

  17. Meghana August 8, 2013 at 5:42 am #

    Wow, this is such a scenic place…

  18. muzachan August 7, 2013 at 7:02 pm #

    A very beautiful place. Great photos 🙂

  19. InsideJourneys August 7, 2013 at 6:42 pm #

    What lush vegetation. I love the pop of red in the heliconia.
    Your photos make me feel so peaceful I can hear the waterfalls.

  20. January August 7, 2013 at 4:18 pm #

    lush and refreshing series of photos.. 🙂


  21. Kim,USA August 7, 2013 at 9:37 am #

    These is an awesome shots! Love love it reminds me of the Philippines. ^_^

    Thank you for joining Water World Wednesday

  22. Magali@TheLittleWhiteHouse August 7, 2013 at 1:26 am #

    I felt like I travelled far, far away without leaving the couch, thanks!

  23. artmusedog and carol August 7, 2013 at 1:07 am #

    It truly is a ‘paradise’ to behold in your wonderful photography ~ Happy Day to you ~ xxooo

  24. Gemma Wiseman August 6, 2013 at 10:52 pm #

    Like paradise! Lush and beautiful. Wonderful scenes.

  25. Pat August 6, 2013 at 7:27 pm #

    What an amazingly beautiful place! I love looking at waterfalls.

  26. Marilyn Armstrong August 6, 2013 at 5:33 pm #

    Wow. Do you ever get tired of all the lushness? It is amazing. The colors. It must smell great too.

    • Noel August 6, 2013 at 5:58 pm #

      No unless it’s in my garden and I have to keep weeding because it never stops growing, those pesky weeds

  27. Mama Zen August 6, 2013 at 5:06 pm #

    What a gorgeous place!

  28. Karen, Pixel Posts August 6, 2013 at 4:52 pm #

    Looks like paradise! Wonderful shots!

  29. Marlee August 6, 2013 at 4:29 pm #

    Your pictures of this lovely paradise are fantastic. I can almost hear the roar of the falls. ~Marlee

  30. Irene August 6, 2013 at 3:20 pm #

    Everything looks so lush and green. Is it like that all year?

    • Noel August 6, 2013 at 3:29 pm #

      Yes this is year round, thanks for commenting Irene

  31. Jocelyn August 6, 2013 at 3:19 pm #

    Beautiful pictures!! Such lush greenery.


  1. Tips for Visiting Akaka Falls State Park, Hawaii - February 27, 2014

    […] you visited Akaka Falls State Park? Post a comment to share your experience. Noel Morata of Travel Photo Discovery lives on the Big Island. Check out his beautiful photos of the […]

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