No visit to the Hilo area is complete without a walk through downtown Hilo. It is a rare surviving example of a Hawaiian plantation town, but one which has been partially destroyed and rebuilt following two devastating tsunamis in 1946 and 1960.
Where once the government and commercial areas were situated right near Hilo Bay, they are now set back on the other side of a park and highway. Still, downtown has numerous historic buildings and interesting stores that are well worth a morning or afternoon stroll.
The Hilo Downtown Improvement Association has an excellent printed walking tour which you can pickup downtown.