Hawaii Mom Blog: Visit Island of Hawai`i: Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park




June 16, 2023

Visit Island of Hawai`i: Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park

Despite having been in Hilo during the Kilauea eruptions, I never had an itch to go visit.  But I recently went for an impromptu visit, and it was really a special experience.

We arrived at the Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park around 945pm (it's highly discouraged to go between 6pm to 9pm because of traffic and crowds).  

There are 3 recommended viewing spots -  Kīlauea Overlook, Kūpinaʻi Pali, and the eruption viewing overlook near Keanakākoʻi.  

We decided to go to the Keanakākoʻi overlook, which can be accessed by the Devastation Trail parking lot.  This lot is the smallest of the 3 recommended viewing areas, but we lucked out with finding a stall immediately (other visitors began making their own parking on the street).

With headlamps ready and a quick stop to use the vault restroom (portable lavatories were also nearby) we followed other park visitors and signs to get to the overlook.

It was an easy, paved walk for about a mile, with the last few hundred yards on graveled terrain (lights / lamps are imperative, as there are huge rocks that one can easily trip over on the graveled terrain).  

There were about two dozen people at the viewing spot, and it was very awe-inspiring to see the power of Pele. 

We watched the lava flow, the fountains grow - and it was just a neat experience.

For the most part, visitors were quite respectful.  Of course many were there to take photos and selfies.  There was only one visitor we came across that was a little obnoxious, but everyone else we encountered appreciated the beauty and history behind what they were witnessing.

When we went, it was warm, but bring a jacket since I heard it often gets quite chilly.  And don't forget a headlamp!  


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