Big Island Things to Do, Extreme Activities on the Big Island

Extreme Activities on the Big Island - and Not-So-Extreme Alternatives

Enjoy these Extreme Activities on the Big Island or the not-so-extreme options of similar Big Island Things to Do.

September 7, 2016

For some visitors to the Big Island, lounging on the beach just isn’t enough. If you’re looking for Extreme Activities on the Big Island then consider shark diving, ziplining over a volcano, or taking part in the Ironman Triathlon. These Big Island Things to Do aren’t for everyone, but if you love to get your adrenaline pumping then they just might be for you! If less-extreme adventures are more your style, then check out the not-so-extreme alternative for each Big Island Activity.

Manta Ray Night Dives
It has been called one of the best night dives in the world. SCUBA divers love this Big Island Thing to Do, but it can also be enjoyed by snorkelers, so no special training or skills are required. Mantas feed on plankton, so lights are used to attract plankton which, in turn, attracts the manta rays. You’ll swim among these graceful creatures in the night sea, and this is sure to be one of the most memorable parts of your visit to the Big Island. Not so extreme? Go along and stay on the boat. You’ll still get to see the glowing plankton, and you’ll likely see some manta rays from the comfort of the boat.  

Ironman Triathlon
Of all the Extreme Activities on the Big Island, this is one that is for the truly dedicated. This Big Island Event includes a 2.4-mile swim, 112-mile bike ride, and a 26.2-mile run. The training for any triathlon is grueling, but for those who thrive on extreme adventures, completing an Ironman is a fabulous achievement. Not so extreme? Volunteer to man one of the aid stations or line the route to cheer on the athletes.

Lava Boat Sunrise Adventure Tour
Want to get a close up look at the red hot lava of some of the Big Island volcanoes? The Lava Boat Sunrise Adventure Tour operators know that sunrise is the best time for viewing the lava and for taking photographs. You’ll have the sun behind you which will make your photographs impressively beautiful. Not so extreme? This Big Island Thing to Do is fun for both extreme adventurers and those who want to safely view the lava.

Big Wave Surfing
Big wave surfing isn’t something you should jump into without the proper skills. Trying to surf above your skill level can be deadly. If you are a skilled surfer then this Extreme Activity on the Big Island could be a highlight of your visit. The spot of the biggest waves depends on the season, so be sure to do some research once you have your travel dates if you want the chance to catch the biggest waves. Not so extreme? Take a surfing lesson in calmer waters or enjoy a shave ice on the shore and watch the pros catching waves.

Hang Gliding
The Big Island boasts some of the most beautiful scenery on the planet. Hang gliding gives you a bird’s-eye-view of the lush green valleys, volcanos, and blue waters off the coast. Powered hang gliding is a Big Island Thing to Do that is surprisingly easy to learn. Lessons are available, so you can be soaring over the Big Island in no time. Not so extreme? Tandem hang gliding is available for those who aren’t comfortable venturing out on their own.

Shark Diving
Another popular Extreme Activity on the Big Island is participating in a shark cage dive. You’ll come face to face with sharks and get a perfect view of the creatures that inspire such awe in so many people. Various types of shark cage dives are available, and some of them do not require any special skills, so even the less extreme in your party can enjoy shark diving. Not so extreme? Consider swimming with dolphins instead of swimming with sharks.