A Note From Our Guest Editor*, TaylorThis trip was actually so special and vital to my heart. I had just gotten out of a broken relationship, so I decided to head to Kona to spend time with my sweet friend. I wanted to be surrounded by people that would love me at my worst and be surrounded by such real, breathtaking beauty. I believe that the beauty of the world and traveling to new places can heal hearts and break down walls. That is exactly what this trip was for me.

If you are anything like myself, the most important question (9 times out of 10) has to do with food. I hope you are giggling as you read this, but it’s seriously so true. I love to eat and I love to eat the best stuff out there while traveling. I’m gonna brag on a few of my favorite places I ate at while in Kona.

kona coffeecoffee shack 2 coffee shack 3

My very, very favorite was a place we ate at called The Coffee Shack. Not only was the food to die for BUT the view was just out of this universe. Geckos even run around all over the windows and it’s honestly the coolest thing.

I got a massive BLT and at the end, we all split a chocolate pie sent straight from heaven. I kid you not, it’s the best piece of pie I have ever had. I wish I had a picture so I could show you but we demolished it so fast. So so good.

coffee shack blt

The windows were wide open, creating an atmosphere of complete freedom while you were eating lunch.

The Coffee Shack in Captain Cook, HI, friends. It’s a must. Please don’t forget about the chocolate pie, too.

sushi 1

My second favorite place was a small little mom & pop shop called Hayashi’s. People line up 30 minutes before it opens just to make sure they are able to get some sushi from this place. It was so fresh and so wonderful. They close shop as soon as they are sold out for the day, so you have to definitely go as soon as they open up!

sushi 2 sushi 3

The shop was so small that I actually cried from the wasabi the entire time I was standing and ordering. Even the sushi making man was crying with me! Hayashi’s. Put that one on the list, too!

kona fruit

Here is a list of other places I really enjoyed as well that are a must when in Kona:

Longboard Legends Pizza

Basik Cafe (for a killer acai bowl)

– MUD PIE (a must. only in Hawaii. I recommend Longboard Legends Pizza for it but others say that Kona Inn has a killer pie too)

Daylight Mind Coffee (not my favorite cup I had while I was there but the view is killer)

Ken’s Diner in Hilo (you have to try the macadamia nut or banana pancakes with coconut syrup)

P.S. Walking around the Kona Marketplace is also so much fun and there is so much fresh fruit!

Also, here is a list of my top adventuring spots. Please get down to Hawaii soon. Just do it.

Beach spot: Kau Bay. Both times I went I swam with turtles! The water is crystal clear and the beach was so nice.

Cliff jumping at The End of The Earth

Hilo: Panther Falls & Rainbow Falls. Kaumana Caves. The drive out there is unreal enough.

Waipio Valley. Take the hike down and go to the beach.

Downtown Kona. Go to the market and get an acai bowl. Pier jump too!

Mauna Kea. I didn’t get the chance to go but the view of the stars and sunset is out of this world. People absolutely were crazy over this. 

Kona was so kind to me. Everything I did was unreal and absolutely filled with beauty. I met so many wonderful and kind people. This trip was one for the books. Mahalo, Hawaii. I’ll be seeing you again soon.

This post originally appeared on Taylor’s blog, here. Find more from her on Twitter, and Instagram.

*The views and opinions expressed by Darling’s Guest Editors are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official views or position of Darling Magazine.

Images provided by Taylor Tippett

Feature image via Sarah Nsikak by Brittany Phillips

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