Rainbow falls at Hilo, Hawaii

Rainbow Falls! The name conjures up vivid imagery. I had imagined a large waterfall, resplendent in its cascading glory, and a huge rainbow framing it end to end. Gentle reader, I will have to let you down. For I didn't get to see any rainbow in Rainbow falls.

We were in Hilo, Big Island, in the "Old Hawaiian Bed and Breakfast", which was very close to the rainbow falls state park, so on the day we were leaving Hilo, we decide to go see the Rainbow falls and the so called "Boiling Pots". These two places were within a mile of each other, and, in fact, on the same Wailuku river.

Rainbow falls is 80 feet high, small as waterfalls go. Its quite pretty, no doubt, even when not framed by any rainbows. It flows over a lava cave, for underneath the ledge there is a gaping opening which vanishes in the darkness, as far as I could see. Legend has it that the cave is the abode of Hawaiian goddess Hina.

You can take a short trail up to the upper reaches of the falls, where there is another lookout. The striking feature there is a collection of rather large trees. The river upstream of the falls looked rather calm. I suspect that after a huge downpour it may look rather different, though.

We also went to see the "Boiling Pots", about a mile upstream. This is where the river gets all frothy passing through some minor lava gorges. There were some tourists there, enjoying the beautiful scenery. Some kind souls took a picture of us for the records.

If you don't have that much time in Big Island, you may as well give these two attractions a miss. They do not measure up either in scale, or beauty, to other Hawaii water shows, such as the Akaka falls.