often referred to as "Kona" by the locals is nestled at the bottom of the
. It is the main western city of the Big Island of Hawaii. In ancient times, the area was considered the premier place to live due to the excellent weather and good water. Many kings made their homes here. Later, missionaries built churches and residences turning the tiny fishing village into a small seaport. It was the home of King Kamehameha I who united the Hawaiian Islands. Now Kona has become known for sport fishing, snorkeling, sunsets and coffee, which is cultivated on the slopes of Mount Hualalai. Because the mountains block the northeasterly trade winds, Kona gets very little rain and enjoys more than 300 days of sunshine a year. Kona is also home to the Hawaiian International Billfish Tournament and the Ironman Triathlon World Championship.
The community was established by King Kamehameha I to be his seat of government when he was chief of Kona before he consolidated the rule of the archipelago, and it later it became the capital of the newly unified Kingdom of Hawaiʻi. The capital later moved to Lāhainā, and then to Honolulu. Royal fishponds at Kaloko-Honokōhau National Historical Park were the hub of unified Hawaiian culture. The town later functioned as a retreat of the Hawaiian royal family. Up until the late 1900s, Kailua-Kona was primarily a small fishing village. In the late 20th and early 21st centuries, the region has undergone a real estate and construction boom fueled by tourism and investment.
Kailua is located along the shoreline of Kailua Bay and up the southern slope of Hualālai volcano. There are no major rivers or streams in Kailua or on the Kona side of Hawaii.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the CDP has a total area of 39.9 square miles (103.3 km2), of which 35.6 square miles (92.3 km2) are land and 4.2 square miles (11.0 km2), or 10.67%, is water.
Kailua-Kona is bordered to the north by Kalaoa, to the south by Holualoa, and to the west by the Pacific Ocean from Kailua Bay in the south to Honokohau Bay in the north. The Kailua-Kona postal code is 96740 (post office boxes – 96745).
Kona has a tropical, semi-arid climate (Köppen BSh) with warm temperatures year-round, typical of its latitude in the tropics. It is the warmest place in the United States of America in January on average. The coolest month is February, with an average high temperature of 81.2 °F (27.3 °C), while the warmest is August, with an average high of 86.9 °F (30.5 °C). In addition to being the warmest place in the United States in January, it is also the city with the highest record low in the United States with an all-time low temperature of 56 °F (13 °C). Humidity is generally between 50% and 70%. Kona is generally dry, with an average annual precipitation of 32.05 inches (814 mm). Mornings are typically clear, while thermal clouds created in the day raise the temperature during the day.