Please enjoy this very exciting Hawaii itinerary for a whole family that was submitted to us by A.Katz from New Jersey.
With much deliberation this detailed trip into the unique and surreal landscapes of The Big Island of Hawaii has won the Best Family Travel Itinerary Contest!
It is truly amazing that there are so many unusual places that we can visit and almost feel on another planet. This is nature at its best, telling us that we should keep discovering the unknown terrains and really enjoy bonding with your whole family.
Month Visited: August
We like to see new and interesting things, we enjoy adventure and we like activities that are exciting. Historic places and educational attractions are also important on our travels, and we want our family to have fun and make incredible memories. We are very active and want to spend each moment of the day doing something when we are not sleeping and we often pack our days very full. Our children at the time of this itinerary: 3 children-Boy age 16 years, Boy age 11 years, Boy age 9 years.
Special tips and warnings about this trip: Make sure to pay attention to all of the warning signs posted in the park. The fumes that may be present due to active volcanic activity can pose serious health risks. Pregnant women, infants, small children, and anyone who has breathing problems or respiratory conditions should completely avoid the areas of the tour where the volcanic fumes may be found. These areas include the sulfur banks and the Halema’uma’u Crater. Many visitors in Hawaii Volcano National Park will see the Hawaiian goose, called nene, and these birds are endangered and should be protected. Watch out for these birds while driving and do not feed them.
Address: Hawaii National Park, HI 96718
Phone: (808) 985-6000
Hours: 24 Hours a day
Admission: $5 per individual or $10 per vehicle, fee covers a 7 day period
Description: Hawaii Volcano National Park is home to a large number of current and previously active volcanoes and fascinating geographical features. Visitors will find the Jagger museum, see steam vents caused by lava under the crust of the earth, and even view active volcanic eruptions flowing into the sea. Crater rim drive offers spectacular views and a sense of water, and visitors can experience tubes caused by the flow of lava. This is an incredible place, full of natural beauty and wonder, and many people visit the park every year.
Our Experiences: We spent the day at Hawaii Volcano National Park visiting many of the attractions in this park. The experience was unforgettable and the kids had a terrific time, rating it as one of the best ever. We visited the Jagger Museum, enjoyed the Crater Rim, and marveled over the steam vents. The Thurston lava tube was fascinating, we also visited the hidden underground tunnel and Devastation Trail. The sulfur banks and the lava flows from past eruptions were really exciting to see, and watching the lava flow into the ocean at sunset was incredibly beautiful. This national park is extremely recommended by our family.
Description: The crater rim tour allows you to drive through some of the most incredible terrain in the world. You will get a chance to experience a caldera, rain forest scenery, and desert landscape within a short distance. Along the tour rate there are areas where visitors can hike or walk and see the hardened lava flows that have been deposited over the years. Search for the hidden underground tunnel that was recently discovered.
Our Experiences: Everyone really loved the crater rim tour, and all of the attractions and stops along the way. The diversity of the landscapes and the fascinating sights were very exciting to see, and the kids were really excited to know that they were really close to actual lava. The entire tour and all of the stops on it rated very highly with our whole family. This is an unforgettable experience that everyone should have.
Description: The Jagger Museum is named after Thomas A. Jagger, and it contains many exhibits and artifacts on volcanology. Visitors will find displays of clothing, equipment, and other items from the past that came from scientists who worked with volcanoes. There are working seismographs and also a gift shop which offers many items for sale on the subject of volcanoes.
Our Experiences: This stop was really interesting, the kids had a lot of fun looking at the clothing and other items that were exhibited. We spent some time in the bookstore looking at the different videos, books, and other things that related to volcanoes.
Description: The steam vents and the sulfur banks are very popular stops along the tour. The rocks under the ground are extremely hot, and when groundwater flows onto these rocks steam erupts from the steam vents in the earth. The sulfur banks also experience steam eruptions, only this steam is mixed with volcanic gases. This area is not recommended for pregnant women, infants and small children, or anyone with respiratory problems.
Our Experiences: The steam vents and sulfur bank were fascinating, and the kids were thrilled to see the eruptions. The sulfur bank had a smell like rotten eggs, and this is caused by the volcanic gases coming from beneath the ground. Both of these spots were very memorable.
Description: The Thurston lava tube is a tube through the earth that was carved out by a flow of lava many centuries ago, and you must go through a rainforest jungle in order to reach this spectacular natural wonder. A walk of around one third of a mile will lead you to the tube, which dates back to prehistoric times and was discovered by a man named Lorrin Thurston in 1913.
Our Experiences: We walked through the tube and marveled over the incredible history and amazing formation of the Thurston lava tube. Be careful as you walk along the tube because the ceiling can be somewhat low in spots. This is a unique experience that you will not forgot, and one that we highly recommend.
Description: Devastation Trail is a trail that leads through an area that was devastated by volcanic activity when Kīlauea Iki erupted in 1959. The trail is approximately one half mile each way and it is accessible by wheelchair and stroller.
Our Experiences: Seeing the cinders made us realize just how devastating the volcanic eruption was. This was an interesting walk with plenty to see, and the kids were excited and explored the landscape thoroughly. Many areas of cinders were being taken over by native plants, and also by plant species introduced to the area.
Description: One of the most awe inspiring sights is seeing the sun set while viewing the active lava flow that goes into the ocean. This spectacular experience is gorgeous, and it must be seen to be believed.
Our Experiences: We watched the lava flow into the ocean with the sunset as a backdrop, and even the kids were amazed at the beauty and excitement of this stop. We all want to do it again in the future, and we will never forget this experience. It is a unique and one of a kind show that comes with our highest recommendations.