The big Island of Hawaii is blessed with numerous natural wonders, among which are the rainbow falls. In Hawaiian language, the falls are known as Waiānuenue, which literally translates to “rainbow water” The Island is the home of some of the tallest waterfalls that can be seen the world over.
Rainbow falls which are located in Hilo, the eastern coast of the Island,cascade 80 feet down to spill into a big round natural pool that is surrounded by wild ginger. Rainbow falls derive its name from the fact that the rainbow comes to life on sunny mornings through a mist that is thrown up by the waterfall. These magnificent falls are found on the Wailuku River; the longest river in Hawaii. The name Wailuku means “waters of destruction” in Hawaiian language. The name may be derived from the fact that following a heavy rainfall, the river’s currents turn into a raging flood.
Directly beneath rainbow falls is a huge natural cave, which was carved into the rocky cliff by years of powerful splash back. There is a legend that the cave is where Hina, mother of the demi-god Maui called home, it is also said that it is the place where Kamehameha, who conquered the Hawaiian Islands buried his father’s bones. It is said that Maui chased a giant lizard all the way up to the boiling point area of the falls, and asked Pele; the goddess of fire, lightening and volcanoes to send down fire rocks to kill the lizard, the rocks hit the waters and made them boil. Until today, the water boils in what is known as boiling pots. The area known as boiling pots near the falls is where the Wailuku River’s current forms a number of cascading pools. The pools are connected by an underground flow, and their waters roll and bubble as if they are boiling.
The waters in the large pool may be inviting you out to a swim, but it is strictly prohibited asthere are no lifeguards in the area. A rock stairway to the left of the lookout platform leads the way for the adventurous at heart to have an up-close view of the magnificent falls. The stairway will lead you to a hidden area that allows you to gaze at the waterfall from above. However, you should be careful as this can be a very slippery spot. Depending on the amount of rainfall in the area, the beautiful falls can transform from clear water that flows in a single thin stream to a raging cascade of muddy waters.
Looking around the falls and its surrounding areas, you will be mesmerized by the sheer beauty that nature bestowed in the region, as well as the dense vegetation; that is a jungle of a variety of plant life, such as the Monstera, the wild ginger, the African tulip, the tall mango trees draped in philodendron,the state tree, and the candlenut or “Kukui”, which symbolizes peace, protection and enlightenment.
Ultimately, the Island of Hawaii has a lot to offer its visitors, all you have to do is plan your trip, pack your tour gear and go holoholo(which is Hawaiian for cruising around at leisure)