As an island destination, it is probably no surprise that Hawaii is home to a rich diversity of sea life. Not only can sea creatures often be spotted in their natural environment, but there are also a variety of research centers and aquariums where visitors can get a closer look at some of Hawaii’s most spectacular wildlife. The Kanaloa Octopus Farm on the Big Island of Hawaii is one such destination, where visitors can learn fascinating facts about these marine animals while getting an up close and personal look!
Visiting the Kanaloa Octopus Farm
The Kanaloa Octopus Farm is an active cephalopod aquaculture research facility. The scientists here focus on sustainable farming and on learning more about the life cycle of the octopus. Pipelines deliver ocean water into their lab from a 3000 ft depth in order to create a sustainable environment for their research. However, don’t be overwhelmed by the seriousness of this dedicated research facility. This is also a fun-loving place where visitors can interact with octopi!
Visitors to the Kanaloa Octopus Farm are often initially surprised at how interactive octopi can be. Octopi are highly intelligent creatures, able to interact with humans and even engage with toys. Accessible tanks make it possible for visitors to get up close and personal with the octopi, touching and feeding them. Knowledgeable researchers provide information about the octopus life cycle and behaviors and are patient and informative in their interactions with visitors. While there are octopi in the waters surrounding the Hawaiian Islands, you are unlikely to spot these elusive creatures while swimming or snorkeling. Unless you plan to Scuba dive while in Hawaii, visiting the Kanaloa Octopus Farm is the best option for viewing these intriguing creatures up close!
Planning Your Outing to Kanaloa Octopus Farm
The Kona Octopus Farm is located behind the Kona International Airport in the Hawai’i Ocean Science and Technology Park. Tours can be booked daily at 10am, 2pm, and 4pm and are approximately one hour long. Tours must be booked in advance via the Kanaloa Octopus Farm website. The cost is $50 for general admission, $40 per child (5 and under), and free for infants. Entrance costs support the research that is done in this facility. The Kanaloa Octopus Farm staff can be contacted with any questions at 808-747-6895.
Other Nearby Attractions
The Kanaloa Octopus Farm is located right next to the Kona International Airport, so this is a good place to go if you have some time to kill before or after your flight. If you’re interested in more hands-on interactions with ocean animals, consider stopping at Ocean Rider Seahorse Farm, also located in the Hawai’i Ocean Science and Technology Park. Ocean Rider is the only seahorse aqua farm in the country and offers the unique opportunity to get up close and personal with sea horses. This facility is home to over 20 endangered species who are being bred at Ocean Rider and is a completely sustainable marine aquarium. From newborn babies to pregnant males, there are many wonders to be observed. The tours at Ocean Rider Seahorse Farm are all lead by biologists, who offer extensive knowledge in ocean conservation and about seahorses. These tours are not only informational, but also fun and engaging for the entire family!
Hit the beach one last time before heading to the airport. Kona Octopus Farm and the Kona Airport are sandwiched between two picturesque white sand beaches – Makalawena Beach and Kohanaiki Beach Park. If you have a little more time, consider making the hike to Makalawena Beach, a secluded stretch of pristine white sand that is inaccessible by road. The hike in is approximately 2 miles in each direction. Though there’s little elevation gain, be sure to be bring plenty of water, as the trail is largely exposed to the elements. When the water is calm, Makalawena Beach offers a serene place to swim in the crystal clear aqua blue sea.
Kohanaiki Beach Park is easier accessed and is a great place to catch the sunset before a red eye flight. This is also a popular beach for surfing, although it is better suited for intermediate surfers rather than beginners. The Ala Kahakai and the Ala Mamalahoa trails here also offer a good place to stretch your legs.
Whether you’re visiting these attractions before or after your flight or you’re basing your stay in the Kona area, sights such as the Kanaloa Octopus Farm and the surrounding beaches are great options for making the most of your time on the Big Island! Visiting the Kanaloa Octopus Farm is a great idea for the holidays as well! If you’re coming to Kona with your family, be sure to check out our holiday cottages!
Nearby Kona Accommodations
Planning a stay in Kona near attractions such as the Kanaloa Octopus Farm and the Kona International Airport? Our Kona vacation rentals are situated near many of the island’s top attractions and beaches. View our listings and contact us at Venture Hawaii with any questions you may have! Also, check out our oceanfront vacation rentals today. Browse our private vacation rentals in Kona.