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Kona Is it actually as bad as others say? Positives?

Edmonton
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Kona Is it actually as bad as others say? Positives?

I booked a condo on Ali drive in December for our week long trip to the big island. I thought Kona was the place to stay when we initially booked but now it seems I'm reading that Kona in dangerous, there's crime and drugs, you cannot walk anywhere, it's not as nice weather, there's Vog and beaches are an hour away. I'm looking for some positives as I feel I've potentially ruined the trip by telling my husband this is where we should stay. We will definitely probably do a day trip to VNP and would like to visit some beaches and do some things like snorkelling with the manta rays. My husband does not mind driving at all and we rented a car.

81. Re: Kona Is it actually as bad as others say? Positives?

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Removed on: 20 September 2017, 16:18
Cambridge, Canada
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82. Re: Kona Is it actually as bad as others say? Positives?

DH and I really like Kona. We are returning for the 4th year in a row this March...and staying again on Ali'i Dr. For the first 2 years, we didn't even have a car rental. We have never felt unsafe wandering about, and we wander a lot. You will find lots to do, and lots of places to eat and shop. Relax....and enjoy your vacation!

Kailua-Kona, Hawaii
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83. Re: Kona Is it actually as bad as others say? Positives?

Not sure what those people are talking about. I live in Kona and love it. Yes we have crime and you should NEVER leave luggage, cameras or any other valuables in your car but that is true of anywhere you go. We deal with mostly tourist at our shop (Big Island Tattoo) and have family's that have been coming to Kona for 3 generations every year or two because of its beauty and friendly people. Depending on where on Alii you are staying you may not be able to just walk into town but there are free parking lots in town. There are several beach right on Alli as well as some wonderful beaches all along the Kona coast to go to it just depends on what you are looking for. Hope this helps, Aloha

Island of Hawaii...
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for Hilo, Island of Hawaii
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84. Re: Kona Is it actually as bad as others say? Positives?

There are a few places that are safe enough to have luggage in the car. Kohala resort area and Hualalai ... the difference in crime potential from Kailua Kona or East Hawaii is really substantial. They are not even close to being equal.

Las Vegas, Nevada
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121 posts
12 reviews
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85. Re: Kona Is it actually as bad as others say? Positives?

We stayed at Kona a Reef for two weeks this past June and absolutely loved the location! We explored the entire island and cancelled our last three nights on the kohala coast and stayed at our oceanfront condo three extra days because we liked it so much better than the remote north locations with views only at the $$$$$ levels. Walked to happy hours and some shops. Don't stay any further north than around Kona Reef and it will be great, the actual town that is just a bit north can seem a bit gritty but does not encompass the entire area considered Kona. Enjoy!

Salem, Virginia
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54 posts
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86. Re: Kona Is it actually as bad as others say? Positives?

We stayed at the Casa de Emdeko for 10 days this September and loved it. For the very brief time that we actually spent at the condo we enjoyed messing around in the tidal pools outside of our condo and playing with the geckos and marine toads around the grounds. In that brief time we saw dolphins not far off of "our" coast and observed a large eagle ray for a while just 50 feet off of our parking lot.

We didn't walk into town and the traffic wasn't difficult to avoid with good timing. We'd definitely go again.

Wenatchee...
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87. Re: Kona Is it actually as bad as others say? Positives?

I'm coming to Kona in October. Doing a house trade for a couple of months with someone who has a condo on Alii Dr. They seem to think I can't do without a car there, but can't afford to rent a car for that long. When you were there without a car, did you use the Hele-on-bus?

Island of Hawaii...
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for Hilo, Island of Hawaii
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88. Re: Kona Is it actually as bad as others say? Positives?

Hele On bus schedules and routes are planned for commuters and work shifts. They go to places that people work, not to sightseeing spots. If they do work it's accidental. For example, they take employees to hotels that may be near beaches. They also serve the needs of elders, school children, residents who cannot drive or cannot afford cars, and they are often standing room only on some routes.

You can get up and down Ali'i Drive with the slow trolley from Keauhou, which is a tourist resource, but you'll want a vehicle to explore the island beyond Kailua Kona, which it would be a shame to miss.

Big Island, Hawaii
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for Island of Hawaii
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89. Re: Kona Is it actually as bad as others say? Positives?

There are few places worse to be on the island without a car than stuck on Alii Drive in Kailua Kona. Depending on where it is exactly you can't even safely walk anywhere and there are no attractive beach options and little safe open ocean access. It's tourist central, crowded, noisy, hot, voggy. I would get a car the entire time, from the time you land at the airport to the day you leave. Usually car rentals are maxed at 30 days so you'll have to bring it back then and re-contract. Look at discount Hawaii car rental. I got a pretty good deal for my son recently for a 30 day rental, it was about $450 for the month, all in, for a midsize.

United States
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364 posts
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90. Re: Kona Is it actually as bad as others say? Positives?

The new season of Hawaii Life on HGTV started yesterday with a doctor and his wife with four children buying a house in Kona just south of Kailua. It appeared to be on Ali Drive. It must be a desirable place to live.