Holidays in Rainbow Falls

Holiday Travel Guide
Rainbow Falls featuring a garden and a waterfall

Rise early to come to this scenic waterfall for the best chance of seeing the beautiful rainbows that give it its name.

The Rainbow Falls, set amid lush vegetation and incredible scenery, are jewels of the Hilo landscape. They are named for the miniature rainbows that appear at the foot of the falls in certain weather conditions. Come here to get close to nature and take photographs of the scenic cascade.

The Hawaiian name for the falls is Waiānuenue, which roughly translates to “rainbow water.” The water spills over a hidden volcanic cave. Legend has it that Hina, the Hawaiian moon goddess, lives in this secret place.

Come to the falls in the early morning on a sunny day for a better likelihood of seeing the famous rainbows caused by the light moving through the water. This is also the most peaceful time at the falls, which attract more visitors later in the day.

The waterfall is an imposing at 80 feet (24 meters) high and 100 feet (30 meters) wide. Expect a very different sight depending on the time of year and the weather. When the rains have been heavy, the rainbows may not show up, but the crashing, full waters will be spectacular in a different way. Come on another day, in different weather conditions, and see the waterfall at a fraction of the size.

It’s easy to reach the waterfall, even accompanied by small children or older family members. However, to gain access to an extra-special view, climb the set of steps by the side of the water and be rewarded with a bird’s-eye perspective. Remember to wear sturdy shoes, as the steps are roughly carved into the rock and can be uneven. After taking photos that seem too good to be true, head to the nearby café to reward yourself with coffee or ice cream.

Drive to Rainbow Falls from downtown Hilo in just 5 minutes and use the parking lot by the site. Alternately, walk and make the most of the beautiful Hawaiian sunshine. Either way, be prepared to be blown away by this natural spectacle in the heart of Hilo.

238 Cheap Hotels Near Rainbow Falls

Hilltop Vacation Rental
Hilltop Vacation Rental
3 out of 5
57 Hina St, Hilo, HI
The price is AU$282 per night from 25 Jan. to 26 Jan.
Situated in the mountains, this guesthouse is 0.6 mi (0.9 km) from Lyman Museum and within 3 miles (5 km) of Rainbow Falls and University of Hawaii at Hilo. ...
3.9/5 Good! (38 reviews)
"This was a well-located property on a hill with a great view of Hilo and the water. Dining options were 5 minutes away as were lovely, walkable parks and a farmers market. The Botanical Garden was a 15 minute drive. The property is dated and basic, but includes a very pretty garden and a responsive ..."

Reviewed on 30 Oct. 2021

Hilltop Vacation Rental
Grand Naniloa Hotel Hilo - a Doubletree by Hilton
Grand Naniloa Hotel Hilo - a Doubletree by Hilton
4 out of 5
93 Banyan Dr, Hilo, HI
The price is AU$306 per night from 1 Feb. to 2 Feb.
Located in Keaukaha, this golf hotel is within 1 mi (2 km) of Coconut Island Park and Port of Hilo. Hilo Farmers Market and Mokupapapa Discovery Center are also ...
4.1/5 Very Good! (943 reviews)
"Near a beautiful Japanese garden style park and the ocean. Peaceful setting."

Reviewed on 19 Jan. 2022

Grand Naniloa Hotel Hilo - a Doubletree by Hilton
SCP Hilo Hotel
SCP Hilo Hotel
3.5 out of 5
126 Banyan Way, Hilo, HI
Fully refundableReserve now, pay when you stay
The price is AU$283 per night from 28 Jan. to 29 Jan.
Located in Keaukaha, this beach hotel is within a 15-minute walk of Coconut Island Park and Liliuokalani Park and Gardens. Port of Hilo and Hilo Farmers Market ...
4.2/5 Excellent! (96 reviews)
"Very pretty!!"

Reviewed on 17 Jan. 2022

SCP Hilo Hotel
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

Plan a trip to see Rainbow Falls

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Popular places to visit in Rainbow Falls

Holidays in Rainbow Falls

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Top Rainbow Falls Hotel & Accommodation Deals

Wild Ginger Hotel
Wild Ginger Hotel
2 out of 5
100 Pu'ueo Street Building A, Hilo, HI
The price is AU$162 per night from 11 Feb. to 12 Feb.
Wild Ginger Hotel
Grand Naniloa Hotel Hilo - a Doubletree by Hilton
Grand Naniloa Hotel Hilo - a Doubletree by Hilton
4 out of 5
93 Banyan Dr, Hilo, HI
The price is AU$306 per night from 1 Feb. to 2 Feb.
Grand Naniloa Hotel Hilo - a Doubletree by Hilton
SCP Hilo Hotel
SCP Hilo Hotel
3.5 out of 5
126 Banyan Way, Hilo, HI
The price is AU$283 per night from 28 Jan. to 29 Jan.
SCP Hilo Hotel
Hilltop Vacation Rental
Hilltop Vacation Rental
3 out of 5
57 Hina St, Hilo, HI
The price is AU$282 per night from 25 Jan. to 26 Jan.
Hilltop Vacation Rental
Hilo Vacation Rental
Hilo Vacation Rental
3 out of 5
15 Aipuni St, Hilo, HI
The price is AU$211 per night from 1 Feb. to 2 Feb.
Hilo Vacation Rental
 Incredible Reeds Island Of Hilo Ohana 1 Tropical Premier Five Star Guest House
Incredible Reeds Island Of Hilo Ohana 1 Tropical Premier Five Star Guest House
273 Kaiulani St, Hilo, HI
Incredible Reeds Island Of Hilo Ohana 1 Tropical Premier Five Star Guest House
Full kitchen, walk-in shower, blocks from the beach!
Full kitchen, walk-in shower, blocks from the beach!
694 Waianuenue Avenue, Hilo, HI
Full kitchen, walk-in shower, blocks from the beach!
Incredible Reeds Island Of Hilo #2 Tropical Premier Five Star Guest House~
Incredible Reeds Island Of Hilo #2 Tropical Premier Five Star Guest House~
273 Kaiulani St, Hilo, HI
Incredible Reeds Island Of Hilo #2 Tropical Premier Five Star Guest House~
Hilltop Legacy Vacation Rental
Hilltop Legacy Vacation Rental
2.5 out of 5
57 Hina St., Hilo, HI
Hilltop Legacy Vacation Rental
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.