Where are the best places to live on the Big Island, Hawaii?

Have you fallen in love with The Big Island of Hawaii? As one of the best Hawaiian islands to retire to and make a life on, who can blame you? The Big Island boasts some of the most beautiful and varied scenery, the finest snorkeling, vibrant communities and, with a community of just 142,000, it enjoys the smallest population per area of any Hawaiian island, leaving you to enjoy one of the best places to live in Hawaii in peace and tranquility.

From rainforests and 14,000ft mountains, to volcanoes and waterfalls, this is the most diverse island in Hawaii, which means that there’s an incredible amount of choice when it comes to finding your perfect Big Island property. But don’t worry, you have plenty of time and lots of options, the Big Island is still home to the most affordable real estate in Hawaii.

Ready to discover your perfect place to live on The Big Island of Hawaii? Here are some incredible locations worth exploring…


On the East of the Big Island, conveniently close to Hilo International Arport (ITO), lies the small city of Hilo, one of the Big Island’s two major centers – and the oldest city in the Hawaii Islands. Home to around a third of the entire island’s population, this is a thriving spot for those who love the relaxed pace of life of Hawaii, but prefer a little hustle and bustle around them. It’s also the best spot for job-hunters on the island.

Close to the incredible, expansive Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, this corner of the Big Island is surrounded by mountains and situated right on the coast. Though much rainier than other spots on the island, downpours are typically brief and interspersed with lots of warm sunshine. In fact, the regular rain stops Hawaii’s heat from becoming oppressive, which is great news for your electricity bill.

Full of boutiques, grocery stalls, markets and spots for sitting back and watching the world go by, this is a great little island city for those of you who want to get away from it all, but stay connected to the real world. Explore North Hilo real estate.


Also known as Kailua-Kona (not to be confused with Kailua on O’ahu Island) this is The Big Island’s second little city, nestled in the West of the country, not far from the airport at Keahole. If you love the Hawaii of tropical fantasies, Kona is a tourist haven, with a slow pace of life, white beaches close at hand and lots of charming options for shopping, dining and entertainment.

The open air farmers market and “main drag” along the waterfront are certainly highlights, along with little gems of art galleries . If you don’t mind a “holiday feel” all year round, and prefer to stay close to a larger community, Kona is a great option when you’re searching for the best places to live in Hawaii. Hotter than Hilo, with more high-end housing, this side of the island gets much less rain than Hilo in the East, enjoying temperatures around the low-to-mid 80s throughout the year. Explore North Kona properties here.


Love water sports, scuba diving and snorkeling? Keauhou, just South of Kailua-Kona offers some of the best underwater wildlife in the entirety of the Hawaiian Islands, making this area one of the best locations for Kona real estate. Higher end properties, golf courses, adjacency to the ocean – all just a mile away from grocery stores, a cinema, restaurants and sublime beaches. This is a fabulous spot for those looking for a relaxed pace of life, a little peace and quiet, the best nature can offer and convenient proximity to modern comforts and community. Discover South Kona properties online.

North Kohala

If you prefer the solitude of the countryside to the buzz of the Big Island’s towns and cities and want to get “off grid”, Hawi and North Kohala are about as remote as you can get on the Big Island, situated on its North West tip. If you’re looking for a real escape amidst rolling green plains, agriculture and stunning coastline, you’ll find it here.

In fact, many people seeking “Greener”, alternative living have moved out to this part of the world to grow their own produce and enjoy the enviable freedom, proximity to the great outdoors and climate this incredible island can provide. Uncover your dream North Kohala property here.

Where do you think the best places to live in Hawaii are? Are you drawn to the warm and friendly little cities of Hilo and Kona, or tempted by an outward bound escape into The Big Island’s more remote corners? Whatever your dream location for Hawaii real estate, find yours by contacting Live on the Big Island team on (808) 217-8500 or explore Big Island properties online today.

Annette Mejia, Realtor Broker
Annette Mejia, Realtor Broker

"Everything Annette did for me was from the heart"

As someone that has spent her whole life feeling lucky to work with people in customer service, I vowed then and there to help people like you and me have the experience they deserved when moving to The Big Island. Because let’s face it, this should be the start of the happiest, proudest, and most peaceful period in your life!

For 15 years I have been helping people make the most out of life and real estate on The Big Island and I would be honored to do that for you too. I look forward to meeting you!

Warmest Aloha,
Annette Mejia

Live On The Big Island