Hawaii Volcanoes National Park

General Information

Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, established in 1916, displays the results of 70 million years of volcanism, migration, and evolution -- processes that thrust a bare land from the sea and clothed it with complex and unique ecosystems and a distinct human culture. The park encompasses 230,000 acres and ranges from sea level to the summit of the earth's most massive volcano, Mauna Loa at 13,677 feet. Kilauea, the world's most active volcano, offers scientists insights on the birth of the Hawaiian Islands and visitors views of dramatic volcanic landscapes.

Over half of the park is designated wilderness and provides unusual hiking and camping opportunities. In recognition of its outstanding natural values, Hawaii Volcanoes National Park has been honored as an International Biosphere Reserve and a World Heritage Site.

About 2.5 million visitors a year; summer, Christmas and Easter are peak visitation periods.

Hawaii Volcanoes National Park
P.O. Box 52
Hawaii National Park, HI 96718-0052

Park Headquarters/Visitor Information (808) 985-6000 (daily, 7:30 a.m. - 4:00 p.m., Hawaii Standard Time)
Fax (24 hours) (808) 967-8186
Eruption Information Message (24 hours) (808) 985-6000

Awaiting your discovery is a fascinating world of active volcanism and biological diversity and a legacy of prehistoric culture.  Before you begin your park adventure, stop at the Kilauea Visitor Center for an orientation to the park's roads, trails, activities, and safety precautions.   For information contact:  Superintendent, Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, P.O. Box 52, Hawaii National Park, HI 96718-0052 or visit www.nps.gov/havo on the Internet.

What to See and Do:
If you have only a few hours, take one of the "short" drives or hikes around Kilauea Crater.

Crater Rim Drive
This 11-mile drive circles Kilauea's summit caldera and craters, passes through rainforest and desert, and provides access to well marked scenic stops and short walks.   Highlights include Sulphur Banks, Steam Vents, Jaggar Museum, halema'uma'u Crater, Devastation Trail, Kilauea Iki Crater and Thurston Lava Tube.

Chain of Craters Road
This 40-mile roundtrip drive intersects with Crater Rim Drive, descends 3,700 feet to the coast and dead ends at a lava flow across the road, Points of interest include Lua Manu and Pauahi craters, Mauna Ulu Lava Shield, Kealakomo Overlook and Holei Sea Arch.

Hawi2083.jpg (51586 bytes)

The character of the park is best discovered on foot.  There are over 150 miles of trails in the park.  If you have only a single day, explore Kilauea's summit trails.   Highly recommended is the Kilauea Iki trail, a four mile (two-hour) hike, descending 400 feet through native rainforest into a crater, and across lava flows still steaming from the 1959 eruption.  Additional trails options are marked on the map.

On Mauna Loa
For an unforgettable back-country trip, hike the 19.6-mile trail (three or four days) to the summit of Mauna Loa (nearly 14,000 feet).  But be forewarned: hikers must be in good physical condition and properly equipped for winter mountaineering.



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Sulphur Banks

Steam Vents

Kilauea Military Camp

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Jaggar Museum ( See the Types of Lava )
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Royal Court Investiture
Free Program:
After Dark in the Park
Kilauea Cultural Festival
July 11, 2009


What is the  "Ring of Fire


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