Big Island of Hawaii
Kona Shore Excursion Kona History and Culture Tour

Cruise Ship Shore Excursion: Kona – Historic Kona

Kailua-Kona, United States
  • 4 hours
  • Pickup offered
  • Mobile ticket
  • Offered in: English


Sample the rich culture and history of Big Island life on this half-day shore excursion. Led by a local guide, make a stop at Puuhonua o Honaunau National Historical Park, a historic sanctuary for Hawaiian lawbreakers. Then, admire the three-dimensional paintings inside St. Benedict’s Church, and taste a flavorful cup of island caffeine as you learn how Kona coffee is processed. Complimentary port pickup and drop-off are included with your adventure.
  • Historical and cultural tour of Kona
  • Admire beautiful, three-dimensional paintings at St Benedict's Painted Church
  • Learn how Kona coffee is processed and enjoy a free sample
  • Learn about how Kona coffee is processed and enjoy a free sample
  • Free port pickup and drop-off
  • Covered by Viator's worry-free policy: guaranteed on-time return to your ship

What's Included

  • Air-conditioned vehicle
  • Professional guide
  • Port pickup and drop off
  • Souvenirs
  • Gratuities
  • Food and drinks, unless specified

Meeting And Pickup

Pickup point

  • Kailua Pier
    Kaahumanu Pl, Kailua-Kona, HI 96740, USA

Start time

10:00 AM

What To Expect

After being picked up at your port, you’ll begin your cultural exploration of Kona, stopping first at Puuhonua o Honaunau National Historical Park, the ‘Place of Refuge at Honaunau.’ Listen as your guide explains the island’s ancient system of kapu, or law. Kapu-breaker’s only chance for survival would be to take sanctuary in these sacred grounds, where ceremonies of absolution often took place. You’ll have a chance to stroll around the palm-covered park and witness beautiful views of Honaunau Bay.

Head next to see Father Velghe’s paintings inside St. Benedict’s Painted Church. This Belgian-born priest created the three-dimensional works of art in 1842, displaying the stories of biblical heroes for parishioners who couldn’t write or read.

Then, learn the process behind the region’s famous coffee beans at Royal Kona Coffee. Sip a flavorful cup of Kona joe as you look out on views of Kealakekua Bay. Your tour will conclude with drop-off back at your port.

Worry-free Shore Excursion:

We will ensure your timely return back to the ship in Kona Pier for this activity. If your ship is delayed and you are unable attend this activity, your money will be refunded. See our terms and conditions for full details.

Pu'uhonua O Honaunau National Historical Park

15 minutesAdmission Ticket Free

Kealakekua Bay State Historical Park (Pass By)

The Painted Church

20 minutesAdmission Ticket Free

Royal Kona Coffee Center

20 minutesAdmission Ticket Free

Additional Info

  • Confirmation will be received at time of booking, unless booked within 2 days of travel. In this case confirmation will be received within 48 hours, subject to availability
  • This shore excursion can only be booked by Norwegian Cruise Line Pride of America passengers
  • Not wheelchair accessible
  • Most travelers can participate
  • This tour/activity will have a maximum of 15 travelers
Operated by Roberts Hawaii

Cancellation Policy

You can cancel up to 24 hours in advance of the experience for a full refund.

  • For a full refund, you must cancel at least 24 hours before the experience’s start time.
  • If you cancel less than 24 hours before the experience’s start time, the amount you paid will not be refunded.
  • Any changes made less than 24 hours before the experience’s start time will not be accepted.
  • Cut-off times are based on the experience’s local time.
  • This experience requires good weather. If it’s canceled due to poor weather, you’ll be offered a different date or a full refund.
  • This experience requires a minimum number of travelers. If it’s canceled because the minimum isn’t met, you’ll be offered a different date/experience or a full refund.

Traveler Tips

If you have additional time in Kona, I highly recommend the Kona Brewing Company as well.


25 reviews
Total review count and overall rating based on Viator and Tripadvisor reviews
Reviews by Viator travelers.
Showing 1-10 of 25 reviews
Aloha Kona
Diane_B, Sep 2023
We joined a small group tour which picked us up at the pier. Our driver was professional and the vehicle clean and cool. We headed out of Kona and the scenery was lovely along the route. First stop was sampling coffee at the Kona plantation, then a visit to Pu'uhonua, the National Historic Park, which was in a beautiful setting. The last stop was the Painted church, also an interesting stop. Great excursion, recommended. Mahalo
Response from Host, Sep 2023
Aloha Diane, Mahalo for your wonderful review. Please enjoy the rest of your cruise through out the Hawaiian Islands. Aloha
Disappointing, not very historical
LANNY_M, Jun 2023
The tour was very disappointing and not very historical. Of the 4 locations listed, only 3 were visited and only 2 of them could be considered historical. The Captain Cook Memorial was described as a “pass by” but it was so far way and the bus was moving so fast that you couldn’t even see it. It was not a well managed tour time wise. It was supposed to be four hours but was only three, with half of that time dedicated to driving. More time could have been allocated for Pu’uhonua o Honaunau historical park because the park had much more Hawaiian historical significance and more to see and do then the other stops. Also, the tour guide was new, which may have explained why he didn’t have much flow or polish and talked more about random things in Honolulu than culturally significant things in Kona.
Response from Host, Jun 2023
Aloha Lanny, I'm sorry to hear that we didn't meet your expectations. I appreciate your review and comments. We will look into your recommendations to help us improve this experience. Mahalo
Kona excursion
Rochelle_M, Aug 2019
The guide spoke in a monotone the entire time....could hardly understand what he was saying. Just sort of dropped off at spots and figure it out on your own. You need to add the amount of time just riding in the bus to get to one place to the other.
Jim_P, Mar 2019
Beautiful and very informative. Enjoyed the tour very much. Tour guide was friendly and very knowledgeable.
This tour was okay, but it was not...
Veronica P, Aug 2018
This tour was okay, but it was not my favorite. We got to see some nice things including Puuhonua o Honaunau National Historical Park. There were spiders EVERYWHERE. However, although terrifying, they did make a great subject for a few photos. The location was highly crowded, but it was definitely beautiful. We also got to stop and sample coffee at Royal Kona Coffee, which was good, but also very crowded! However, they had tons of different coffees you could sample for free! Really delicious! I would do the tour again, it was just not the highlight of our trip. If you have additional time in Kona, I highly recommend the Kona Brewing Company as well.
This is a good tour, that let's you...
Michael N, Nov 2017
This is a good tour, that let's you see some parts of Kona you might not get to. Problem is that it is too short. You could use more time at most stops . Tours drivers are good, though and add a lot to the sights you are seeing through their knowledge of history of the island.
Great Guide , visiting the refuge...
Susan D, Sep 2017
Great Guide , visiting the refuge was the best part , a beautiful place enjoyed the history of this place , we were given plenty of time for this visit. We also visited the Kona Coffee and the Painted Church.
We didn't get much of a tour of the...
Janice_H, Mar 2017
We didn't get much of a tour of the coffee plantation. I did a coffee plantation Tour in Costa Rico, so I know what the bean cherry looks like on the bush and how all the layers are separated after the beans are dried out in the sun. All the free samples were tasty if you like coffee. The chocolate covered coffee beans were really good, too and I bought many packages of chocolate covered macadamia nuts as requested by my family...some milk chocolate and some dark chocolate. many varieties. No need for a stop at the Mona Laua -most popular brand on the mainland factory. I would have liked to see how they are processed. Fascinated by the prep- work required to make cashews into cocktail nuts. As seen in Malaysia...ever wonder why cashews are so expensive? Why you cannot buy them in the shell? workers wrap fingers with cling wrap because the nut meat is floating in a toxin liquid just inside the shell.
The beach history was good. We could...
Laxman_B, Dec 2016
The beach history was good. We could have had Kona coffee anywhere on the island. The tour should have also included Captain Cook's site, which it did not. The drive thru Kona was okay.
Excellent Tour. Well worth the...
Richard T, Jul 2016
Excellent Tour. Well worth the cost. Beautiful location in Kona. History and culture were both found in one location. Excellent narration to and from the sites.
Lincoln our tour guide/ bus driver...
Linda B, Jul 2016
Lincoln our tour guide/ bus driver was great! We learned so much about Kona history. I highly recommend this tour!
Good for what we saw, just not as...
Fred P, Jan 2016
Good for what we saw, just not as interesting as other sites on the Big Island.
The tour was very informative and...
judyanapier, Dec 2015
The tour was very informative and the sites were interesting. We finished in 3 and 1/2 hours and it was booked as a 4 hour tour so I think we could have spent a little more time at some locations especially the National Park as there was an interesting self guided tour but we had to rush through it. Our guide was very knowledgeable.
The Historical Refuge Park is a must...
Adrienne H, Sep 2015
The Historical Refuge Park is a must see and very relaxing. Most interesting was St Benedicts's Painted Church. Imagine a priest sent to this side of the island not knowing how to communicate with people then painted murals so they could understand him.
fair, guide talked more about his own...
LESTER W, Oct 2013
fair, guide talked more about his own life than anything else
Great tour guide. Just enough history...
bsteeves8, Jun 2013
Great tour guide. Just enough history, great swim in heated natural swimming area.
Contractor claimed the booking had not...
JANICE E H, Apr 2013
Contractor claimed the booking had not been confirmed by viator
We choose to tour with Roberts...
Paul T, Mar 2013
We choose to tour with Roberts Hawaii as we heard good reviews from other people and it is much cheaper than the tour provided by Pride of America. We saw the same places as those on the more expensive tours. Kona is on a big island of Hawaii. It is also one of the driest place compared to Hilo which is on the same island but on the other side. The tour bus driver is a local and knew much of the history and interesting facts of the areas. We went to Puuhonua o Honaunau National Park which was once belong to the Royal family. This place has a place of refuse for law breakers who can get to the place of refuse before being captured. These people would be pardoned by the king and allowed to be returned to normal life. We visited a nice painted church at St. Benedict which had nice paintings inside painted by the former priest. We also visited a Kona coffee plantation to taste the coffee and to purchase 100% Kona Coffee.
Working with Viator for any of my shore...
Patricia Mary N, Jan 2013
Working with Viator for any of my shore excursions has been a pleasure.
Had a knowledgable driver who added...
Edward G, Dec 2012
Had a knowledgable driver who added to the historical and cultural part of the tour. Liked the Kona coffee stop.

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Cruise Ship Shore Excursion: Kona – Historic Kona


4 hours
Free Cancellation

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