A Full Mauna Kea Resort Travel Guide

Only have 72 hours in Mauna Kea? Check out our 3-day Mauna Kea itinerary and get inspired for a family-friendly visit to paradise.

Located on the Island of Hawaii in the Kauna’oa Bay, Mauna Kea Residences are part of the storied Mauna Kea Resort, Hawaii’s first resort dreamed up by Rockefeller in 1960. Six months before the hotel was ready to receive guests in 1964, a Robert Trent Jones course debuted with a televised match between Jack Nicklaus, Arnold Palmer, and Gary Player. With the resort reaching historical status in 2015, the Mauna Kea Residences are a modern idyllic place to call home while on vacation, all while accessing the convenient amenities of a luxurious resort.

Best food at Mauna Kea Resort

Luau | People travel to Mauna Kea Beach Hotel from all over the island to experience the Mauna Kea Luau. The background sound of surf blended with soulful steel guitars. Imagine tables laden with imu-roasted kālua pig, grilled catch with ginger lime butter, shrimp cocktail on ice, ahi poke, and the freshest pineapple and papaya. See orange fire dancing against a black velvet sky. The luau is Tuesday and Friday so if you have never experienced one, make this a priority.

Manta | After dinner at Manta, take a stroll down the stone path to watch the manta rays swim by moonlight. If you’re still looking for adventure after the sun sets, book a moonlight snorkel with a team of manta ray researchers and check stargazing and night snorkeling off your bucket list.

If you’re looking to venture out and discover what the locals are talking about, visit the nearby Big Island BrewHaus. It is about 20 minutes inland in the town of Waimea. The beers are local, and the fish tacos are fresh. And they also feature handcrafted cocktails with fresh, local ingredients.

What to do in Mauna Kea Resort

Explore | Looking for some adventure outside of the resort? Immerse yourself in the natural beauty of the island by visiting the Kohala waterfalls, tranquil streams, scenic coastlines, and rugged valleys of North Kohala. Experience an off-road drive to an exclusive trailhead where you will hike, picnic, and swim beneath one of seven waterfalls. If you prefer to play at the beach club, the resort offers watersports including SUP, surfing, boogie board rentals, sea kayaking, snorkeling, and sailing.

Relax | Experience true relaxation at the world-renowned Mandara Spa with treatments that combine Balinese and Hawaiian therapies. Don’t miss the outdoor cabana massage overlooking the spectacular Kauna’oa Beach.

Golf & Tennis | The Seaside Tennis Club is one of the largest and most highly sought-after tennis experiences in Hawaii, with its oceanfront tennis and pickleball courts. Enjoy daily clinics, round-robin tournaments, private or group lessons, and a fully equipped pro shop. If a championship 18-hole golf course is more your speed, book a tee time for the Robert Trent Jones-designed Mauna Kea Golf Course or the Arnold Palmer-designed Hapuna Golf Course.


Where to stay in Mauna Kea Resort

Whether you stay at the modern Hapuna Beach Residences or a private estate with ocean views, enjoy charging privileges at both Mauna Kea Beach Hotel and Westin Hapuna Beach Resort. There are 12 restaurants and lounges available so if you prefer to use your kitchen exclusively for morning coffee, find yourself enjoying the open-air dining options scattered around the resort.

Kauna'Oa Residence 10B

This 4 bedroom, 4.5 bath residence spans over 3500 square feet set in the gated community of Kauna’oa. This luxury residence is within walking distance of Mauna Kea Beach Hotel and Westin Hapuna Beach Resort, where you have access to all of the amenities. This home features an outdoor shower, air conditioning, ceiling fans, a swimming pool, a hot tub, and impeccable tropical landscaping. Don’t need that much space? The villas range from 2 to 4 bedrooms and each has its own private pool and lanai. With commanding ocean views, window walls offer tropical breezes indoors and out. With over 2700 square feet, make it your home or venture out and enjoy hotel amenities at Mauna Kea Beach Hotel and The Westin Hapuna Beach Resort. Our newest Hapuna Beach Residences offer studio to 4 bedrooms so if you’re traveling as a couple or small family, these residences are the perfect solution for those seeking proximity to the resort, and beach, while still maintaining the convenience of being in a space much larger than a hotel room. Some residences offer feature a private plunge pool and a private staircase to cross the manicured lawn into the resort area.

Whether you have been coming to Mauna Kea for years, decades, or it’s your first time here, we hope to see you soon in our little corner of paradise in the Pacific.