Hawai‘i Tropical Botanical Garden is at 27-717 Old Māmalahoa Hwy. Tickets are purchased at the visitor center; access is through a wrought iron gate across the street. On Hawai‘i Island's lush windward coast, this botanic garden is one of the finest on the islands. Hand-built by Dan Lutkenhouse, an ex-trucker from San Francisco, Calif., the 17-acre Eden boasts more than 2,000 species of tropical plants, trees and flowers, including an impressive collection of orchids.
A 1.25-mile network of paved paths winds through the garden, where highlights include a serene palm jungle, a koi-filled lily pond, a macaw aviary, monkeypod trees and the lovely, three-tiered Onomea Falls. The grand finale is an overlook of rugged, wave-lashed Onomea Bay.