The trees look as if they have plotted a slow attack to take over the road. Vines hang down trying to slyly block my way and hinder my vision. The road isn’t straight nor does it have any defined shoulders or boundaries. The asphalt is laid around each tree trunk making the road look like a frayed ribbon blowing in the wind.
The drive around the Puna region of the Big Island is what Sunday drives are made of; curves, views, and solitude all requiring you to slow down and enjoy each minute ticking away in the day. And yes, rather than playing golf in Hawaii like most tourists, I’d much rather spend my day driving down the open road!
Puna is located on the eastern side of the Big Island nestled between the rainy town of Hilo and the volatile Volcanoes National Park. The region is full of energy, both above and below ground. Above ground are the creative, funky residents of the region; the region is home to the artists and the hippies. Below ground is the rumbling lava flow; the region is in the path of the lava flows when the Volcano Goddess, Pele, decides to get angry.
The town of Pahoa is worth a visit and a stop for lunch, however my real joy is simply driving down the secluded coastal roads (Highway 137 and Pohaiki Road). The views are phenomenal and I hardly see another person or car. I am able to pull over, walk out on the rocky coast, and sit taking it all in with no one around.
This road trip through Puna is peaceful, spiritual, and something not to miss. You can see why below.
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