When most people think of Hawai’i, they think of paradise. With its lush green islands, dramatic waterfalls, and gorgeous beaches, it’s easy to see why. But what many people don’t know is that Hawai’i is also home to some of the most active volcanoes in the world! So if you’re looking for an adventure, then a trip to Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park on the Big Island is a must.
Volcanoes National Park is about a 45-minute drive south of Hio, and about a two and a half hour drive from Kailua Kona. There are many things to do at Volcanoes National Park — from overlooking the Halema’uma’u Crater which lives on the Kilauea volcano, to hiking lava tubes, to taking a scenic drive through the park, and more! I would definitely recommend coming here to experience being close to one of the worlds most active volcanoes. Check out this YouTube video by GoTraveler — it gives an in-depth look at the two “super volcanoes” on the Big Island — Mauna Loa and Kilauea:
Seeing the glow of the lava lake in the Halemaʻ’umaʻ’u crater after sunset is one of the most popular things to do in the park. Kilauea volcano actually began erupting in late September of last year (2021) in this crater. Take a look at this clip posted by Hawaii Volcanoes National Park’s Twitter during the recent months of its eruption:
I’m sure some of you have heard about it in the news — but there was a massive Kilauea eruption in May of 2018, resulting in lava flows that covered over 13 miles of land — destroying homes and roads along the way. Here’s a YouTube video explaining the eruption from beginning to end:
As you can imagine, it was a frightening time for the residents of Hawai’i. I was in college at the time, so I was away from home and in Arizona. I remember hearing about the eruption for the first time and getting so worried. I followed reports from Hawai’i News Now and KHON2 News every day, while speaking to my family about what it was like back home. The eruption was not close to Hilo where my family was, but it did affect a lot of lives. I remember listening to this podcast below for the first time during this event. It includes information and news about what was happening at the time: