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  • Writer's pictureJyothi Vummiti

Rainbow Falls - Hilo, Hawaii

Rainbow falls is a modest 80 foot waterfall located close to downtown Hilo in the Big Island of Hawaii. Part of Wailuku River State Park, it is known for "rainbows" that are formed by the mist during morning hours of the day. Though not as tall or pretty as its neighboring "Akaka Falls", this place has more to offer.

Rainbow Falls - Hilo, Hawaii

Waterfall could be seen from the lookout just a short walk from the parking lot. The rainbows that this falls is known for can be seen only during early hours of the day, which we missed. Although we didn't find this falls that attractive, we weren't disappointed because huge mango trees around the parking lot and a giant banyan tree to the side of the falls made it a worth while stop. Not sure how old those mango trees are but they are definitely some of the biggest we have ever seen. 

Gigantic Banyan Tree / One of many old mango trees

To the left of the lookout, there is a walkway with steps that lead to a magnificent banyan tree grove. The banyan tree is so huge that it made the people standing next to it look tiny. Vines and branches twisted and intertwined to form a canopy, in dark this area would look like a scene from a horror movie.

Stream feeding the falls

From there is a short uphill trail to the stream that feeds the waterfalls and those adventurous could catch a top view of the falls. We couldn't get a proper grip on some smooth rock surfaces so we didn't make it to the end. It was worth trying though.

Gear Used: We used Fuji X-T1 with 18-55mm lens. As a secondary camera Fuji X-70.

Useful Information:

Where to Stay: We stayed in a vacation rental in Volcano town close to Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. Check out other options. For accommodations near the falls check here. Hours and Cost: Open 24/7. No fee.  Trail: Short walkway with steps becomes uneven as you get closer to the banyan tree. Trail to the stream has less traction. What to Bring: Umbrella or rain jacket, sunscreen, water, hat, sunglasses, sturdy shoes and a camera. Things to do in the area: Check out Akaka Falls and Hawaii Tropical Botanical Garden.



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