You’re Hawaiian trip will not be complete without a visit to the famous and unique Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. You may need a whole day though, because there is much to see. You will see tropical sandy beachfronts to the sunken crater of the Kilauea Volcano. It is also know as the Kilauea Caldera and is active, regularly steaming and can be viewed from the Crater Rim Drive. The Hawaii Volcanoes National Park also hosts Mauna Loa. Mauna Loa is 13,700 ft high and is the largest volcano in existence. Mauna Loa is a favorite Hawaiian Landmark. 550-year old Thurston Lava Tube is an attraction to see. As you drive along the Chain of Craters Road, notice the landscape change before your eyes. 30 miles southwest of Hilo, is the home of Kilauea Volcano. Kilauea Volcano is the most active volcanos on earth. Having an opportunity to witness the primal process of creation and destruction, make this park the most popular visitor attraction in Hawaii. It is also a sacred place for Native Hawaiians.
Founded in 1916, the Park encompasses 333,000 acres from the summit of Maunaloa to the sea. Here you'll find 150 miles of hiking trails through volcanic craters, scalded deserts and rainforests as well as a museum, petroglyphs, a walk-in lava tube and two active volcanoes: Maunaloa, which last erupted in 1984 and Kilauea which has been erupting since January 3rd, 1983. The extraordinary natural diversity of the park was recognized in 1980 when it was named a World Biosphere site by UNESCO and in 1987 when the park was again honored as a World Heritage site — the only such site in Hawaii, and one of only 20 in the U.S.
Kilauea is sometimes called "the world's only drive-in volcano." This prolific volcano currently produces 250,000-650,000 cubic yards of lava per day, enough to resurface a 20-mile-long, two-lane road daily. As of January 1994, 491 acres of new land have been created on Hawaii's Big Island. The current eruption may last another 100 years or stop tomorrow. Pele, the volcano goddess who lives here, is very unpredictable. But the chance to watch Kilauea's blistering lava flows meet the sea is just one of the reasons to visit.