Kilauea volcano hiking: Thrilling Hawaiian experience



Wish to discover a mountain that is younger than you? If yes, then this time plan to visit the most active volcano on the planet that is Kilauea. It is the territory that is not even 10 years old. I think that with these two statements, one can imagine the excitement and fascination hidden in the trip of Kilauea volcano hiking. Dwelling on the Big Island of Hawaii, Kilauea is paradoxically the most simple to approach volcano that is only at a distance of 15 miles from the towering Mauna Loa volcano. Do not be that surprise to know this because Hawaii itself is formed from the lava of the volcanoes.  Contradicting the belief that the shield Kilauea volcano is the part of this latter volcano, it has a unique magma chamber and is nestled in the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. The volcano has played a significant role in forming the largest as well as youngest island of Hawaii by pouring out 3 billion cubic yards until now since 1983 forming 600 acres of novel territory and making high-end changes to the island’s territory. This is the reason that it is named Kilauea that means ‘to spread much’. However, a majority of the eruptions are gradually moving flows.

A trip to the Volcanoes National Park including the Kilauea volcano is a must as it is an experience that anyone will relish as well as cherish. The terrain here is just unthinkable, while the entrance is unparalleled on Earth. The entire park landscape is the outcome of eruption for more than 70 million years and evolution blessing the area to hold the diverse setting starting from sea level to the giant Mauna Loa’s apex. Herein, the Kilauea volcano is not only the top attraction for the visitors who admire the dramatic terrain, but also for the scientists who are always eager to know more about the island birth. With its 60 miles of paves roads and 119 miles of unusual hiking trails with the camping facilities, the park is designated as the World Heritage Site along with the International Biosphere Reserve.

Hiking is possible across the caldera that stays on the territory of just some years old below which the magma is just at 300 feet. Now, this is where the true adventure and fun lies! This activity on the Kilauea volcano facilitates the visitors to spot for the features and sights that only the geologists mostly get to see. So, do not miss this wonderful opportunity to explore the rare volcanic trip of Hawaii, which requires many days of discovery. The trails here are full of lava tubes, green rain forests, desert, craters, steam vents, islands of foliage separated via the lava flows, and even the sites of eruption holding liquid lava. On my trip, I could walk for some six miles on a medium level trail. However, you will find trails of simple to hard levels. Despite the fact that risk is meager, do not play or enter the collapsing lava if you can see it and avoid entering the closed areas. Just follow the instructions of the park rangers and you will be safe from any kind of unstable land and inactive vents that are so deep to take you down forever. As sulphur dioxide surrounds the park, young children, pregnant ladies, heart patients, and lung victims should not hike at all.

It is also interesting to know that the Kilauea volcano is recognized as a holy site by the traditional Hawaiian inhabitants. This territory is considered as the home of Pele, the ancient deity of volcano whose hair and tears are actually the names given to the formation of the lava particles erupted from the vent in 2008.

Quick facts

  • Best time: Throughout the year
  • Duration of Hiking: Maximum 6 hours
  • Level of Difficulty: Up to 6 miles, it is moderate
  • Opening Time: 10 in the morning
  • Children permit: Yes, but should be at least of 8 years
  • Packing: Closed shoes, rain wear, light backpacks, food, walking sticks, and bottled water
  • Guide: 1 per 10 hikers
  • Reaching path: Come on Route 11 from any side of the Big Island and go upwards until a turn-off that is marked for the known doorway to the park. Arrive then at the Visitor’s Center for hiking, which is over the main caldera. From Hilo, the journey to the park is of 26 miles; while from Kona, it is 88 miles.
  • Fees: $10 including consecutive seven days of access

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