Location: northshore, at the end of road 240
Features: Oceancliffs, waterfalls, valley
Waipio Valley, the counterpart of Pololu Valley, is the other end of the rugged north shore of Big Island. The lookout over Waipio Valley at the end of the road is already an impressive view, but going down into the valley is a must.
The 1-mile road from the viewing area to the bottom is so steep, that it's not recommended to drive it without a 4wd car. So you basically have three options: getting there by feet, hiring a driver or hitch-hiking. We did the first, which is easy downhill but really annoying on the way back to the top.
To get to the island's highest waterfall, Hi'ilawe Falls, take a left once you're at the bottom. 10 minutes later you'll see the falls, a really impressive sight.
If you wanna hike to the falls, prepare for a strenous and wet 'trail'. You have to cross the river at least twice and the stones on both sides are very slippery. The first part of the trail goes IN the river for about 50 yards then it continues on both sides of the stream. The trail is not marked, always follow the river, 45 minutes should do it to the falls...
Big Island of Hawaii
Akaka Falls / Pololu Valley / Rainbow Falls / South Coast / Volcano National Park / Waipio Valley