Just a month ago, Jason and I made our way over to the Big Island of Hawaii to attend a friend’s wedding. Never one to miss a National Park opportunity, I planned a side trip to visit Volcanoes. And to our surprise, the island’s volcanic activity decided to give us a spectacular show! So after a beautiful wedding in Kona, we set out to witness Volcanoes and the lava flow up close and personal. We did both a bike & hike tour and the unbelievable (but scary!) lava boat ride.
Sunset in Kona
Turtles on Punalu’u black sand beach
Park visit #20 out of 59!
Steam rising from a lava tube below
Our bike & hike tour took us to the viewpoint for the lava flow ocean entry. We were a bit stunned to see how close this boat was to the lava flow, especially since we would be on that same boat in the morning…
As soon as the sun started to set, you could really see the glow from the lava
The next morning, we boarded the boat to get even closer to the lava flow
We sat in the 2nd row from the front which made for an exciting experience. The water was steaming and sizzling with volcanic debris
With so much smoke, the lava was only visible for a few moments at a time but you could hear and feel each time it exploded with powerful force
It was truly a once-in-a-lifetime experience but the ride was rough and made me very seasick! Can’t say I’d do this again…
That same day, we took our short flight over to the island of Maui. We were fortunate enough to spend a few nights, in order to mark another National Park visit off my list with Haleakalā 🙂
On a suggestion from a friend, we drove to Julia’s Banana Bread for a tasty treat. The road to get there was so beautiful and fun to drive! One of our favorite memories from Maui.
We stayed in a great Airbnb in Paia, just down the road from Ho’okipa Beach, which turned out to be a great spot to watch surfers and sea turtles alike.
21/59 on my list is Haleakalā!
We got up early and drove the winding road up to the summit for sunrise
Wow, looks like you had an amazing trip. It must have been an incredible experience to get such a close view of the lava. Thanks for sharing!
Thank you! Yes, quite an experience. The boat ride was a bit terrifying.
Thanks for putting together another great trip!
Anytime, can’t wait for the next one!
I was in Hawaii with my husband two years ago. We did the sunset, followed by the sunrise the next morning on top of the volcano.
I enjoyed your post and your pictures. I thought the ones of the lava flow in the water were really stunning.
Thanks so much!