What can I say about Pahoa? Well, Pahoa is very funky and fun place. Pahoa is the center of a lot of agricultural activity and the heart of the Puna district. There’s a number of excellent restaurants and shops including a health food store and a new shopping complex (where our office is). Pahoa just has to be experienced to be understood.
Just outside Pahoa is Nanawale Estates, a subdivision with smaller lots (mostly 8,000 square feet) and its “sister subdivision” Nanawale Farm Lots with lots of up to five acres. Its about 5 minutes from Pahoa and about 15 minutes from snorkeling and swimming. I like Nanawale. It used to have a really bad reputation, but I think that’s changing. The community association is actively working to improve the area and a lot of people have renovated the older homes. Some nice new homes are going up in the area as well.
Leilani Estates has long had the reputation as the premier subdivision in the Pahoa area. It has the strongest CC&Rs in the area and the community association actively enforces them — which means you don’t find a lot of the junk cars and people living in tents that you sometimes find in other areas. In the parts of Leilani covered by the CC&Rs, all the roads are paved and in good shape. These are all one acre lots.
Lanipuna Gardens is like the “subdivision that time forgot”. It has all utilities including county water (which is a rarity), but not much built there. They are one acre lots. Some people don’t like it because its the subdivision closest to the geothermal plant, but I haven’t heard any reports of problems in Lanipuna Gardens because of the geothermal plant.
Black Sand Beach is really badly named. Its nowhere near the beach, plus on the Hilo side of the island is Black Sand Beach and on the Kona-side is 49 Black Sand Beach. One costs about 100X more than the other. Guess which. Well, it might only be a 10 minute drive from there to Kehena, but the name makes you think its right on the water. Its not. The lots are smaller (7,500 to 8,500 square feet). It does not have strong CC&Rs so you do occasionally find people living in buses or tents.