James Cook Monument
Your next stop is one that goes hand in hand with the Kealakekua Bay visit, the James Cook Monument. This memorial statue, part of the State Park, is located along the shore of the deep Kealakekua Bay waters, making it a perfect seaside spot to snorkel and spot dolphins. Some people actually dub this area the best snorkeling spot in the entire world, definitely being one of the favorite spots among the locals. You and your group can get to the actual monument either by charter boat or by a steep windy train alongside the shore. The trail is a bit physically challenging but if you are up for the adventure it begins just off Old Mamalahoa Bay. Be sure to wear good walking/hiking shoes and bring a camera with plenty of memory!
Again, a little brush up on your Hawaiian history, this monument honors the legendary explorer James Cook, or Captain Cook. Captain Cook is the first documented westerner to arrive on the Big Island, though it is locally believed that the Spanish were the first to arrive in the past. James Cook arrived on the morning of January 17, 1779, with his crew on the Resolution and Discovery, and was welcomed warmly at first, with gifts and women. He predicted that the two villages he stumbled across held several thousand people, mostly nice natives, but upon trying to depart the next year on another voyage and being forced to return after a storm, he was killed on the shoreline by locals and his body was thrown into the bay. Also sometimes called Cook City, this area is ironically very popular for swimming today, as your group can also choose to take part in while here!