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Volcanoes National Park – Big Island (Hawaii Island)

Located on the Big Island of Hawaii, sometimes called “Hawaii Island,” sits Volcanoes National Park. This treasure is one of the true natural wonders of the world and is actually home to the Kilauea Volcano, which is always erupting, as well as the dormant Mauna Loa Volcano, which you can drive to the summit of and have a chance to see snow in Hawaii.

Volcanoes National Park Offers?

 The park is absolutely a “must see and do” when you are on the Big Island of Hawaii. Not only will you have the chance to hike and explore through lava fields and lava caves, as there are many trails throughout, but you will also be afforded the opportunity to drive up to the summit of the dormant volcano Mauna Loa. Do this at the right time of the year and you will be able to see snow, that’s right, snow in Hawaii!

All that being said, perhaps the biggest attraction of Volcanoes National Park is the fact that you will have a great chance at seeing a lava flow and/or eruption. There are a couple of ways to achieve this. Sometimes you can get lucky enough to view live lava from a point in the park, however, if you really want to get a bird’s eye view of everything then there are helicopter tours you can take that will hover you directly over the Kilauea Volcano eruption, or the Goddess Pele, as the locals call her.

Operating Hours and Fees

 The Volcanoes National Park is actually open 24 hours a day, seven days a week. This includes all major holidays throughout the year. That being said, the visitor center and the museum hold strict operating hours. They are as follows:


  • Kilauea Visitor Center is open daily from 7:45 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
  • Jaggar Museum is open daily from 8:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.


There are fees to get into the Park, those fees cover vehicles and persons, and will vary depending on a number of factors. To find out more about fees for the park go here.

The State of Hawaii has also set aside a number of “free days” throughout the year. These days you can get into the park and all fees will be waived. The free days are as follows for 2013:


  • January 21, 2013 (Martin Luther King, Jr. Day)
  • April 22-26, 2013 (National Park Week)
  • July 13, 2013 (Annual Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park Cultural Festival)
  • August 25, 2013 (National Park Service Birthday)
  • September 28, 2013 (National Public Lands Day)
  • November 9-11, 2013 (Veterans Day weekend)

Hawaii Tourism