No Filter: St. George or Kona? Exploring the similarities between these iconic Ironman host cities

ST. GEORGE — It’s true that Hawaii has some of the most beautiful beaches anywhere in the world, but Southern Utah has its own share of stunning red sands, striking volcanic flows and plenty of opportunities to enjoy the great outdoors.

In this episode of “No Filter,” presented by Cloud 9, host Grady Sinclair compares the attractions of the Big Island to life in red rock country.

Compare Ironman host cities St. George and Kona, Hawaii, with Grady in this episode of “No Filter” in the media player above.

Kona, Hawaii, has long been known as the host city of the Ironman World Championship, a grueling test of human endurance in which thousands of competitors from all around the world push their limits. But this year, the famed triathlon will take place right here in our backyard.

Sinclair visited Hawaii recently and found himself pondering the similarities between the two locales.

Each of these vacation destinations offers snorkeling, shaved ice and palm trees. Hawaii has sea turtles aplenty, while hikers in Southern Utah may be fortunate enough to spot a land-dwelling Mojave desert tortoise. Both have a long history of volcanic activity, although the local cinder cones are dormant and have been for millennia.

Hawaiian and Polynesian music, dance and art are alive and well in Southern Utah. These cultural roots run deep within the community, so keep an eye out for a luau in your neighborhood.

And if you’re in the mood for Hawaiian food, stop by the Honolulu Grill in St. George. It’s the best island cuisine in all the land, Sinclair said.

“Southern Utah is bringing Hawaii to you. We’ve got it all here,” he added. “Kona’s got nothing on Southern Utah!”

The Ironman World Championship is coming to Southern Utah on May 7. Learn more about this iconic race and how you can get involved at

Copyright St. George News, LLC, 2022, all rights reserved.

Free News Delivery by Email

Would you like to have the day's news stories delivered right to your inbox every evening? Enter your email below to start!