Kea'au, formerly known as Ola'a, is located in the eastern part of the Big Island in the Puna District. The town is surrounded by an Ohia forest, and nearby are black-sand beaches and a plethora of botanical gardens. The town's 20-hectar greenhouse Pacific Floral Exchange and Hi'iaka Healing Herb Garden are the most visited.
Kea'au was once connected to the neighboring towns of Hilo and Pahoa by the Hawaiian Consolidated Railway. The railroad was used to transport agricultural products and passengers in the 19th century until it was destroyed by the 1946 tsunami.
Today, the town is a bedroom community for Hilo's workforce. On weekdays in the mornings and late afternoons, the traffic is bad in this area as everybody commutes to and from work in Hilo.
Bedroom community three miles (4.8 km) south of Hilo
Two attractions are the Pacific Floral Exchange and Hi'iaka Healing Herb Garden
There are no close accessible beaches near Keaau. It
was a small village for the Puna Sugar Plantation and
is just a service stop for the community. The quaint
historic village has been completely replaced with a
hodge podge of modern buildings and businesses. The
traffic is absolutely horrible!