On the Hunt

Historic Big Island ranch connects visitors to rich heritage with scenic tours and guided hunts

By: By Joanna Pawlowska

Historic Parker Ranch on Hawaii’s Big Island is offering visitors a glimpse into Hawaii’s rich heritage with unique tours and guided hunting excursions on its tens of thousands of acres of rugged terrain in Waimea.

The Parker Ranch Cattle Country Tour allows for visitors to connect the ranch’s influential past, and the revived Parker Ranch Hunt Club provides hunters with an opportunity to participate in guided hunts for diverse and exotic game species that reside within the territory.

The ranch’s exclusive Cattle Country Tour provides visitors with a four-hour VIP exploration of more than 160 years of heritage at the ranch. Guides couple visits to historical and operational sites previously closed to the public while retelling vibrant stories that depict the successes and tragedies of Hawaii’s royal-blooded ranching dynasty. The tales are meant to convey the legacy of Parker Ranch and the weight of its influence on the Waimea Community. The tour also visits two historic Parker Ranch homes and explores what is believed to be the island’s oldest road, Mana Road. Stops are made along the open range to admire the breathtaking scenery and explore rustic cowboy stations before the tour reaches its turnaround at the historic Makahalau Cowboy station. This gives clients a chance to enjoy a lovely picnic lunch before observing the legendary Parker family burial plot. The tour takes place in the comfort of an air-conditioned ranch vehicle and costs $135 per person. Tours accommodate a maximum of six individuals and a minimum of two, and a picnic lunch and beverage are included.

For clients with a shorter time commitment in mind, the ranch also offers the Parker Ranch Mana Road Tour, which lasts just over one hour. The tour costs $50 per person and includes a snack and beverage. It also accommodates a maximum of six and a minimum of two individuals. 

Parker Ranch is also home to a wide spectrum of fascinating species and its year-round hunting conditions makes it an appealing destination for big game seekers from all over the world. The ranch has been featured on ESPN, TNN and in various specialty publications. Highly experienced and knowledgeable guides lead exciting hunts for exotic game such as the wild Polynesian boar, Spanish Ibex goat, Vancouver bull and 12 species of upland birds. Costs for big game hunts range from $800 for boar hunts to $2,250 for the Vancouver bull. Costs for bird hunts range from $475 for half-day upland bird hunts to $1,300 for a 2 ½- day Rio Grande turkey hunt. Upland bird hunting is allowed from October through February, while turkey hunting is permitted from March 1 until April 15. All animals are hunted on preserve land and are regulated by the point system with a maximum of 14 points per day per hunter.

Hunts are highly flexible and are arranged directly with the guides. They include a registered gun and appropriate ammunition, meat handling, caping, ranch transportation, beverages and snacks. Mounting taxidermy can be arranged by request. Clients without a Hawaii hunting license may purchase one on reserve from the Ranch.

Parker Ranch