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Wai' Opae Tide Pools

Camp Hill...
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37 posts
28 reviews
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Wai' Opae Tide Pools

Hi,

Looking for feedback on the conditions of this area? We found a nice rental near Wai' Opae Tide pools for a few days on the big island but I'm now reading about the conditions of the tidepool due to the homes having septic and cesspools. Some of the posts I read were from 2012 so I'm really hoping it has improved. Should I be concerned about staying/visiting in this area?

Hawaii
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1. Re: Wai' Opae Tide Pools

Hurricane Iselle happened in 2014.

It's a nice area, but very hot in summer, and remote from services. That may be what you want, don't know. It is 15 minutes from Pahoa, and the traffic around Pahoa is a mess, so don't expect to get to Hilo or Volcano without slowdowns on the road.

Do you have kids?

Personally, I wouldn't stay there thinking it is great swimming. The cesspool leakage is only improving very gradually. New homes are required to have better wastewater systems, but the old homes are not required to do anything.

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Pahoa
Pahoa
Island of Hawaii, HI
Hilo
Hilo
Island of Hawaii, HI
Camp Hill...
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37 posts
28 reviews
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2. Re: Wai' Opae Tide Pools

Hi,

Yes we do have two boys, ages 11 and 9. The idea of playing in the tide pools was the appeal but I hadn't researched the area that well yet. I greatly appreciate your feedback .

Big Island, Hawaii
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31,162 posts
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3. Re: Wai' Opae Tide Pools

I stopped going into the tidepools years ago and since then there have been multiple mass fish dieoffs and other weird events. I don't recommend them. With children that age I would concentrate on staying on the Kohala Coast with nice sandy beaches and clean water, great snorkeling, and close to many other things to do and see. Volcano for a night or two would be nice as well to explore VNP.

Edited: 09 February 2016, 10:08
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Kohala Coast
Kohala Coast
Island of Hawaii, HI
Hawaii
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40,617 posts
4 reviews
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4. Re: Wai' Opae Tide Pools

Well, the cleaner pools are out close to the reef, and they're not as safe for kids as the ones close in. At outgoing tides, the tidal suction out of the pools can be strong. The inner pools are worse for bacterial. Also popular for babes in diapers to go, double meaning intended.

The tidepools were really crowded all day and especially on weekends when I lived there (which was in summer). I thought it would be peaceful when I sublet there, but from sunrise to sunset it was constant coming and going and noise. My place was oceanfront on the pools (and facing the road; most houses now are mauka of the road, as makai side is underwater).

Also the house was on 12 foot piers as required there, and the stairs got old.

You should post a link and give the month you are coming for better advice. I have no way of knowing whether this rental is in a good site without seeing the ad.

Edited: 09 February 2016, 10:13
Hawaii
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5. Re: Wai' Opae Tide Pools

One issue to consider is the lava rock is so sharp in places (not the worn parts where you walk); that it's real hard to play around lava rock without getting scrapes and other skin breaks. Skin breaks are when the bacterial risk gets to be a big concern, because now the microbes have a direct passage in.

So say you rent a place there with nothing to do by swim--and the first day, your kid gets a skin break. Then what?

Last time I snorkeled there, I was sitting on a rock by the outer pools drying off, and a visitor woman got out and noticed she was bleeding from a fresh cut. It actually made a puddle of blood on the wet rock next to me. She was like oh, I'll just hit that with liquid bandage. I watched while she sealed whatever was already in there in, mentally shaking my head. Then she walked off leaving this large bloody area without a second thought. People can be so clueless on vacation.

So I'm not exaggerating how easy it is to get sliced and scraped on the rocks.

Edited: 09 February 2016, 10:23
6. Re: Wai' Opae Tide Pools

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