HAWAII VOLCANOES NATIONAL PARK FACTS YOU SHOULD KNOW!
The Hawaiian Islands offer some of the most diverse landscapes, climates and ecologies in the world. In one corner of the Big Island of Hawaii, you can bask in the warm rays of the sun. In another corner, you can lose yourself under the canopy of tropical trees. You can even see the world’s most active volcano! Read on to discover some of the most fascinating facts about Hawaii Volcanoes National Park.
5 facts about Hawaii Volcanoes National Park
1. Two active volcanoes
In this park you’ll find two active volcanoes: Kilauea, which is one of the most active volcanoes in the entire world, and Mauna Loa, the largest volcano!
Pele is known as the creator of the Hawaiian Islands. There are several mythologies and legends surrounding the goddess and her relationship with Kilauea.
3. Exploring the park is easy by car
There are multiple ways to see the park’s various attractions. Opt for a guided tour of the volcano or drive around on your own. If you like the idea of embarking on a tour of the park by car, you can choose from two popular tours.
The Crater Rim Drive Tour will take you to the Kilauea Visitor Centre, the steam vents and sulphur banks, Kilauea Iki Lookout, Pu’u Pua’i Lookout, Devastation Trail and Keanokako’i Crater.
The Chain of Craters road winds through the park. You’ll find stops such as Lua Manu Crater, Pauahi Crater, Mauna Ulu, Kealakomo Lookout and Pu’u Loa Petroglyphs.
4. You can also explore on foot
Walk through otherworldly craters and along densely forested trails. Watch steam rising from volcanoes and feel the buoyancy of hardened volcanic rock beneath your hiking shoes. There’s nothing like seeing these natural wonders in person.
- Ha’akulamanu (sulphur banks) Trails
- Trail of Devastation
- Crater Rim Trail
5. History abounds throughout the park
Learn about Native Hawaiian history through a variety of archaeological features. For example, petroglyphs at Puuloa shed light on various depictions of the families, traditions and beliefs of early settlers.
Facts about volcanoes:
1. Mauna Loa is the world’s largest active volcano (not to be confused with Mauna Kea, which stands proudly as the world’s tallest mountain if you include the part below sea level) – it covers half the island!
2. The volcano reaches an altitude of 13,677 feet!
3. It has erupted three dozen times. However, it has been active for almost 700,000 years. Its most recent eruption was in 1984.
4. Two trails allow visitors to access the summit of Mauna Loa: Mauna Loa Road and Mauna Loa Observatory Road. Mauna Loa Observatory Road is the shorter of the two options.
1. Located east of Mauna Loa, Kilauea is considered the most active volcano in the world. Halemaumau Crater is the volcano’s most active vent.
2. Kilauea is the youngest volcano in the state of Hawaii.
3. Almost continuous eruptions of the volcano occurred from 1983 to 2018, but the most recent eruption was in 2020.
4. The Kilauea Iki crater overlook marks the start of the ever-popular Kilauea Iki trail.
5. The crater floor is nothing more than hardened lava, but it was once a red-hot lava lake.
6. A trail at the Kilauea Iki Crater overlook leads to the Thurston Lava Tube. A river of lava excavated the tube 500 years ago, and visitors can now walk through it.
7. Many people come to the top of Kilauea to see the captivating views of steam vents and sulfur banks. These mystical attractions are a sight to behold.
8. In 2018, an eruption of Kilauea sent a volcanic ash plume some 9,000 meters into the sky. The eruption, which lasted for months, destroyed hundreds of homes.
9. The Crater Rim Drive curves along the rim of Kilauea’s crater, leading visitors to vantage points from which they can view the crater’s interior. In addition, several points along the route mark the start of some of the volcano’s hikes.