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As a guest, you’ll hear a lot about the multitude of climates that exist throughout the Big Island of Hawai`i.  I think it’s safe to say that, as locals, we’re all pretty impressed with our island’s diversity. But the number of climate zones you hear about varies depending on the person you’re talking to. What’s up with that? Here’s the scoop: out of the five climate zones that exist in the world, four of them are represented right here on the Big Island.

What are the different climate zones?

There are five major climate zones in the world. Here’s the breakdown:

·       Humid Tropical Climate

·       Dry (Arid and Semi-Arid) Climate

·       Temperate Climate

·       Continental (Cold) Climate

·       Polar Climate

On the Big Island, the only climate zone that is not represented is the Continental (Cold) Climate, the one most of our guests are familiar with from their mainland homes.

The Humid Tropical Climate

To experience Hawaii’s Humid Tropical Climate you can pretty much stay along the coast at any point, except the northwest corner. This subzone is aptly called “continuously wet.” Our eastern coastline is home to the rainiest city in the United States—Hilo, which gets as many as 129 inches of rainfall a year. That’s double New Orleans’ 62.7 inches per year and lands Hilo comfortably in first place as the United States’ rainiest city.

The Arid and Semi-Arid Climate

Visit the west and northwest coastline areas to experience the Arid and Semi-Arid Climate, anywhere from our home in Kailua-Kona to the tip of Kohala. In an arid climate, you can expect evaporation rates to at least double the rates of precipitation. What does this mean to us at Body Glove Cruises? It means we almost never have to cancel a snorkel tour in Kona due to rainfall, a benefit to all our guests who only have a limited time to play on their vacations!

The Polar Climates

To reach the Polar Climates on the Big Island, you must trek. At the peak of our volcanoes, polar climates occur naturally all year long. Even though snow may not be what springs to mind when you think of Hawai`i, don’t forget to pack your coats for your vacation on the Big Island! There is snow, and you can visit it any time.

The Temperate Climate

If you’re hoping to experience Hawaii’s Temperate Climate for yourself, just drive inland a bit from our coastline. Like snow, a Temperate Climate is not what most people visualize when they picture a Hawaiian vacation.  In this zone the coldest months can see an average temperature of just 27 degrees Fahrenheit! If you take a trip to Volcano (considered a must-see location by most booking agencies and frequent guests), you can expect this type of wear-a-hoodie, pack-a-jacket weather without losing sight of the sandy beaches.

The Moral of the Story?

Come prepared! You can have a spectrum of diverse experiences on the Big Island, from a relaxing and informative dinner cruise in Kona, to a frigid and daring trip to the top of either of our world-famous peaks. The opportunities to create an incomparable Hawaiian vacation abound!

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