The Big Island of Hawaii is an incredibly unique environment. It may only be 4,028 square miles (on the surface), yet, it encompasses 8 out of the 13 climate zones found in the world. The Hamakua coast is known for its lush and tropical landscaping, known as a humid tropical climate. When on the Hamakua coast, you will inevitably endure rainfall as Hilo is known for being rainy and humid, but that makes for intense yet beautiful waterfalls such as Rainbow falls, Pe’epe’e falls, Wai’ale falls, and many more. The Kohala coast is considered to be dry and desert-like due to vast lava rock fields, yet it is also known for its breathtaking white sand beaches such as Hapuna, Kua Bay, Mauna Kea, and many more.
The areas surrounding Hawaii Volcanoes National Park are classified as a temperate climate, which stays cool to chilly all year round and hosts marvelous rainforests. The rainforests are filled with both native and non-native plant species. Mauna Loa and Mauna Kea, the two volcanoes on the island that are tall enough to snow on the summit during the winter season, are categorized as polar climates as they reach temperatures below 50 degrees Fahrenheit all year round. The towns of Kohala and Waimea are filled with lush green mountains and pastures; the climates are unique due to their hot summers and frigid/rainy winters.