Photograph Hawaii – The Big Island

7 Days - Hilo & Kona, HI
Feb 1 - Feb 7, 2023
Activity Level
Skill Level
All Levels


Registration deadline: January 2, 2023

Looking for the ultimate Hawaii photo adventure?  Look no further!  This 7-day, 6-night Big Island workshop is a photo-filled wonderland of landscapes, waterscapes, and nightscapes.  But it doesn’t stop there.  We will also take a special helicopter tour to photograph lava flows, a whale watching tour to photograph the humpbacks migrating, and a photoshoot with world-renowned lava photographer Mr. Bruce Omori at one of the active island craters.


On this incredible journey, we will travel the island photographing green and black sand beaches where you will learn long exposure photography for creative beach/water/surf/wave images, green turtles coming to the beach, waterfalls using both short and long exposures, botanical treasures of Hawaii with and without flash, amazing sunrises and sunsets, and, of course, fantastic night photography. During this epic Hawaiian adventure, we will stay three nights on the Hilo side of the island before transferring to the Kona side for three more nights.


So if you are looking for the epic Hawaiian experience, this one is for you.


Workshop Includes:

  • Photographic instruction
  • Transportation from Hilo to Kona
  • 6 Nights Single Occupancy Lodging*
  • Water, snacks, and a farewell dinner
  • All applicable entrance, park, permit, and tour fees
  • Pre-workshop webinar
  • Post-workshop critique

A deduction for double occupancy is available for companions traveling together.

Please be aware that shooting locations stated in this itinerary may change depending on weather and lighting conditions.  We want to give you the best possible photo opportunities.


Day 1 – Wednesday, February 1, 2023

  • Meet in a conference room at the hotel in Hilo at 3:00 pm for introductions and orientation.
  • Following the presentation, the group will have dinner

Day 2 – Thursday, February 2, 2023

  • We will depart early from our hotel to the airport for a sunrise helicopter ride over Kilauea Volcano to photograph the lava flow.  (If the lava isn’t flowing we will opt out of the helicopter tour and replace it with another great tour out of Kona).
  • After breakfast, we will visit Hawaii Tropical Botanical Garden to shoot the vast variety of tropical plants and flowers, and even a waterfall.
  • Return to the hotel for lunch, rest, and to download images.
  • In the afternoon, we will head out to photograph Rainbow Falls, stopping along the way to shoot other scenic areas.
  • On our drive back to the hotel, we will stop for dinner.

Day 3 –  Friday, February 3, 2023

  • Another big day on the Big Island, we will start with a sunrise shoot at the shoreline outside the hotel using long exposures and creative techniques.
  • Mid-afternoon we will drive to Volcanoes National Park to explore the lava tubes and volcanic craters.
  • Late in the afternoon, we will be joined by Hilo-based acclaimed photographer, Bruce Omori as we visit and photograph Halema’uma’u Crater.

Day 4Saturday, February 4, 2023

  • We will spend our last morning sunrise at Laupa’hoe’hoe Beach with its dramatic sea stacks and crashing waves.
  • Upon returning to the hotel, we’ll grab breakfast and then check out of our Hilo accommodations.
  • Next up is our drive to Kona, where we will head to the west side of the island.  Along the way, we will stop to shoot at Waipio Valley and Polulu Valley Lookout.
  • Arrive in Kona and check in to our hotel.
  • Dinner and downtime.

Day 5Sunday, February 5, 2023

  • Our first morning in Kona will find us on a whale-watching excursion to photograph the humpback whales that winter in these waters.
  • After we are back ashore, we will have lunch, and a bit of downtime.  Beth will utilize this time to meet one-on-one to review some of your images and assist with any questions.
  • (Substituted tour to Mauna Kea at sunset if helicopter tour is canceled.)
  • If the helicopter tour continues as planned, on Day 2, we will instead head to the magnificent Makalawena Beach to shoot sunset instead of taking the Mauna Kea tour.
  • Return to town for dinner and back to the hotel.

Day 6 – Monday, February 6, 2023

  • We will start our day with breakfast first before driving to Kaloko-Honokohau National Historic Park to photograph a variety of island birds.
  • Then in the afternoon, we will depart for the Pu’uhonua O Honaunau National Historic Park where we will photograph the historical and cultural sacred sites of Hawaiian ancestors.
  • Then it is back to Kona where we will meet for our farewell dinner and reminisce on the incredible week we experienced.

Day 7 – Thursday, February 7, 2023

  • Participants depart for home or places beyond.

Lodging During the Workshop:


Grand Naniloa Hotel Hilo
93 Banyan Drive
Hilo, HI 96720
(808) 969-3333


The first three nights of this workshop will be based in Hilo at the Grand Naniloa Hotel.  Three nights of single-occupancy lodging are included in your workshop fee.  Should you require a pre-night arrival, you must contact the hotel directly and mention you are traveling with Arizona Highways PhotoScapes.

Kona Seaside Hotel
75-5646 Palini Road
Kailua-Kona, HI 96740
(808) 329-2455

The last three nights will be spent on the Kona side of the island where our preferred stay will be at the Kona Seaside Hotel.  At the time of this posting, the hotel is currently changing management and we are unable to book until the fall of 2022, however, we have an alternate hotel reserved as a backup option.  Three nights of single-occupancy lodging will be included in your workshop fee.  Should you wish to stay beyond the end of the workshop, you must contact the hotel directly and mention you are traveling with Arizona Highways PhotoScapes.



Beth Ruggiero-York
John Ellis
Photo Guide
Ron York
Photo Guide

If you are concerned about the possibility of canceling your trip we urge you to protect your workshop investment and purchase travel insurance.  We strongly recommend that you purchase a travel insurance plan with a “Cancel for Any Reason” option. Many guests have last-minute injuries, emergencies, or life changes that can disrupt their plans only to wish they had a way to recoup their lost expenses.


There are a number of reputable companies that provide Travel Insurance.  For a listing of providers, you can visit  AHPS has partnered with TravelEx Insurance Services over the years and has found them to be reputable and offer comprehensive plans at competitive prices.  For more information visit or contact them at 800-228-9792 and reference location number 03-0147.  Travel Insurance is underwritten by, Berkshire Hathaway Specialty Insurance Company, NAIC #22276. W20


CANCELATION POLICY:  All Cancelations must be received in writing at


    • If you cancel your reservation 181 days or more from departure, your deposit will be refunded less a $100 cancelation fee.
    • If you must cancel your reservation between 120 days and 180 days prior to your trip, you will be refunded any amount you have paid less a $750 cancelation fee.
    • If your cancelation occurs between 90-119 days before your workshop departure, Arizona Highways PhotoScapes will issue a credit voucher less the cancelation fee.  The remainder of the fees paid can be used toward a future workshop within 18 months of cancelation.
    • Should you cancel less than 90 days prior to your trip, no refunds will be made and you will forfeit any funds paid to Arizona Highways PhotoScapes.

    If we are able to fill your seat and the workshop runs at full enrollment we will refund your workshop fees less a $100 processing fee.


This cancellation policy applies in every situation and there will be no exceptions made for any reason. We will not issue refunds for cancelations due to illness or late arrivals due to travel delays.


Arizona Highways PhotoScapes reserves the right to cancel or change any workshop if our minimum enrollment is not met or if situations beyond our control arise that may create unsafe or undesirable travel conditions.  Any cancelation or postponement as a result of situations beyond our control, AHPS does not promise any refunds or credits.  If and when feasible, we will attempt to reschedule the workshop at a later date.  Alternatively, we may decide to issue you credit for a future workshop, or issue a refund, less any non-refundable deposits we have paid to workshop providers on your behalf.


Please note that AHPS is not liable for any additional participant expenses incurred such as airfare, hotel accommodations, or any other components booked outside of the workshop.


PAYMENT TERMS:  A minimum deposit is due at registration to reserve your space.  Please refer to the specific workshop for the required deposit.  Final payments are due 90 days prior to departure.  Approximately 15 days prior to the due date you will receive a reminder email that your balance is coming due.   If final payments are not received by 75 days prior to your workshop, your registration is subject to forfeiture including all fees paid to date.


If registering within 90 days of your workshop, full payment is due at the time of registration.