In the Big Island's North Kohala region, past the quaint towns of Hawi and Kapa'au, at the end of Highway 270, you'll find the Pololu Valley. the Pololu Valley is the first of five majestic valleys that stretch along the Big Island's coast to the southeast, the most famous of which is Waipio Valley.
Views of the coast, the black sand beach and beautiful valley beyond are obstructed from the lookout. The best way to see all that this area of the Big Island has to offer is to hike down the four-mile trail to the valley floor 1000 feet below.
The hike is moderately difficult with a rocky path. The climb back up is strenuous. In wet conditions, the path can be dangerous. Allow yourself about two to three hours for the round-trip hike including time to explore the beach area.
The path takes you through groves of hau and ironwood trees, marshland and across the valley stream which, depending on recent rainfall, may be easy to cross or even set off from the shoreline by a sandbar. You'll then arrive at the valley's black sand beach, a favorite spot for family outings.