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Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Hawaii Volcanoes National Park Driving Tour

Hello readers!  Today I am going to introduce another blog mini-series for you all to enjoy!  It'll be similar to the Oahu Favorites mini-series I completed a few months ago, but this time, I'm moving to the southeastern part Big Island and focusing on a driving tour of the widely known and incredibly popular Volcanoes National Park!  Here is a Google Maps link to show all of the stops along the drive: 

Because I could never fit all of this information into a single blog post, I will be tackling each stop along my driving route in either its own separate post or grouped with other stops.  Some posts will have more information and pictures and be longer than others, but this way I'm able to say everything I'd like to say about all the cool things along the way and not feel like I'm leaving anything out!

I will throw in a quick disclaimer.  This isn't the end-all, be-all Volcanoes National Park driving tour or anything like that.  Unfortunately Mr. L and I didn't take enough trips to the park for me to be able to make that claim!  But these are the sights that we did get to see and I'm happy to share them all with you.  And as each post is published, I'll be adding in links over on my Travel page, so feel free to keep it bookmarked!

So for now, let's go ahead and get started with some need to knows on Volcanoes National Park to kick us off!

The Need to Knows for Hawaii Volcanoes National Park:
  • Hawaii Volcanoes National Park is located on the southeastern side of the island of Hawaii next to the town of Volcano.  The exact location of its entrance can be found here:
  • Volcanoes National Park is open 24 hours a day year round, including all holidays.
  • Entrance fees are as follows: $10 per vehicle (good for 7 days); $5 per individual (good for 7 days); $25 for a Hawaii Tri-Park Annual Pass.  Click here to see the designated FREE days for 2015 and how to purchase passes in advance online.
  • Because this area houses Kilauea, a volcano that's been active since 1984, sometimes there are closures due to volcanic gases and other issues.  You can find information on current conditions on the park's website here and also area closures on their website here.
  • There are no gas stations in the park, so make sure you fill up before you enter!
  • It's a good idea to keep in mind the temperature differences here in Volcanoes National Park compared to the rest of the island.  The town of Volcano sits at an elevation of approximately 4,000 feet, which is actually the highest elevation point recorded on Oahu.  Temperatures in the 40s through 60s throughout the year are common, so you should dress warmly and in layers!
  • When lava is actively flowing and reachable by either hiking or otherwise, it is always the best idea to listen to the park rangers when it comes to safety.  They know what's best and what to expect, especially in situations that can be potentially life-threatening (for example, with volcanic gases).  Always heed your park rangers' warnings and be careful while exploring the park!
  • For any additional information, particularly regarding volcano and lava activity, check out Volcanoes National Park's website here, for current park closures, visit this NPS page here, and keep in mind that any information in these posts is subject to change any time by the National Park Service!
Be sure to stick around and check out the next post in this new mini-series.  I'll be covering everyone's first stop in Hawaii Volcanoes National Park -- the Kilauea Visitor Center!


Catch up on the rest of the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park Driving Tour below!

Crater Rim Drive
Chain of Craters Road


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