A charming rural community with picturesque views.

Welcome to Kamuela/Waimea

Waimea, also known to locals as Kamuela, is a charming rural town in Hawaii County, Hawaii. Known to locals as Paniolo Country, or Hawaiian Cowboy Country because of its rich history, rolling green pastures, and hazy, purple mountains, Kamuela/Waimea boasts incredible natural views around every corner. Waimea is bursting with ranching traditions and history and is one of the oldest and most established communities on the island of Hawaii. Parker Ranch was established over 160 years ago, and the town of Waimea grew as the ranchers employed here needed amenities, services, and goods. There still lingers a strong ranch-town feel in Waimea, and it is seen in the many cowboy clothing stores, gift shops, and eateries that thrive in this town. While the area is still home to cattle ranches and farms, the town is also a thriving community with a rich arts and culture scene, delightful dining options, and premier recreational opportunities. 

What to Love

  • Rolling green hills and stunning vistas
  • Thriving theatre and food scene
  • Ranch-town feel 
  • Proximity to Waipi'o Valley

Local Lifestyle

Waimea is a town mainly known for its cowboy heritage and ranching traditions. The scenery around this town is stunning, and you will find many horseback riding and hiking opportunities here. A short distance away is Waipio Valley, one of the most scenic places on the island. Waipi'o Valley offers stunning vistas and miles of hiking trails to attractions such as Black Sand Beach. 

Residents can also access the sand beaches at the Kohala Coast and North Kona, which are only a short drive away. These beaches offer activities such as surfing, paddle boarding, windsurfing, and snorkeling. Waimea is ideal for anyone looking to have an active lifestyle. 

Dining, Entertainment & Shopping

There is no shortage of trendy stores and fine dining restaurants in Waimea. KTA Super Stores is a locally owned grocery store chain in Waimea with restaurants such as Hina Rae's Café, AKA Sushi Bar, and Luna Italian Cuisine. 

Parker Ranch Center along Hawaii Belt Road features a wide range of eateries, stores, salons, and financial service providers. While there, be sure to grab dim sum at Don's Chinese Kitchen. 
If you are craving a locally sourced menu of Hawaiian dishes, head to Merriman's Big Island. Pioneered by award-winning chef Peter Merriman, you'll enjoy a menu of fresh inland flavors, an extensive wine list, and cozy upcountry dining.
The Red Water Cafe is a stylish restaurant in Waimea offering inventive menu options and international flavors, including daily fish and chef specials. 
Visit Pau Pizza for homemade pies, salads, and sandwiches, or head to Big Island Brewhaus for authentic Mexican cuisine and vegan options. 

Things to Do

There are many activities available in and around Waimea. Visit Parker Ranch to learn more about Hawaii's ranching history. Visitors can participate in activities such as horse races, hunting tours, rodeos, and a self-guided tour of the historic homes on this ranch. These homes are fascinating, as many rooms are lined with heirlooms, artifacts, and works of art. 

Head to the Kahilu Theatre Foundation, a non-profit arts facility with a 490-seat theatre dedicated to serving the Hawaii island community. Arts education seminars, musical performances, and live stage shows occur in this theatre.

In February, the town of Waimea hosts the yearly Waimea Cherry Blossom Heritage Festival. This festival marks the budding of the historic cherry trees at Church Row Park. Those who attend are treated to live performances, craft fairs, tea tastings, and a hands-on origami demonstration. 
The Waimea Town Market at Parker School happens every Saturday morning and offers treats such as fresh island produce, jams, beef jerky, and homemade gifts. 


The Hawaii Department of Education serves the community of Kamuela/Waimea. Top schools in the area include: 

  • Parker School, K-12
  • Waimea Country School, K-5
  • Waimea Middle Public Conversion Charter School, 6-8
  • Kanu O Ka' Aina, K-12
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