Make a list & check it twice for a low-stress visit to Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park this holiday season

Thurston Lava Tube parking at capacity
Thurston Lava Tube parking at capacity

NPS/Janice Wei

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News Release Date: December 8, 2017

Contact: Jessica Ferracane, 808-985-6018

Hawaii National Park, Hawai‘i – Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park rangers expect another busy holiday season starting now and into the New Year. Here are their tips on what to bring and what to leave behind: 



 
NPS Volunteer Marius Arigot gives a talk at Jaggar Museum Overlook to a crowd of visitors
NPS Volunteer Marius Arigot gives a talk at Jaggar Museum Overlook to a crowd of visitors

NPS/Janice Wei

Bring:
  • Patience. Vehicle and pedestrian traffic surges during the festive season, with anxious drivers, limited parking, and long waits for stalls. Visitors are encouraged to plan accordingly and treat other visitors and park staff with aloha. Minimize the time your vehicle is parked at popular spots.
  • Flashlight (or light source other than a cell phone). After dark, flashlights are needed throughout the park. The parking lot at Jaggar Museum reaches capacity early, and visitors are directed to park and walk from unlit overflow lots.
  • Warm clothing. Winter temperatures at the summit of Kīlauea (4,000 feet) are much colder than at sea level, day and night.
 
Visitors mingle at the entry to Thurston Lava Tube
Visitors mingle at the entry to Thurston Lava Tube

NPS/Janice Wei

  • Water. It’s important to stay hydrated, even on short walks. Hikers planning long hikes or a trek to see lava (currently a 10-mile roundtrip hike from the end of Chain of Craters Road) should carry at least three to four liters of water each, wear long pants and sturdy closed-toe footwear, have sun protection, a first-aid kit, a flashlight with extra batteries, and food.

Leave Behind:

  • Drones. Drones (unmanned aerial systems) are prohibited in the park.

Kīlauea volcano’s summit eruption is the most popular sight in the park. Thousands gather at Jaggar Museum each night to observe the lava lake cast its reddish-orange reflection into the sky. Less-crowded locations to see the “glow show” include Waldron Ledge, and overlooks off Crater Rim Trail.

 
Waiting for parking at Jaggar Museum
Waiting for parking at Jaggar Museum

NPS/Janice Wei

“Plan ahead and prepare is our holiday message,” said Chief Ranger John Broward. “Use the park website. Have your itinerary planned out before you arrive and leave plenty of time for delays. The park is open 24 hours a day so it’s easy to avoid the crowds and have a festive experience,” he said.
 
-NPS-

Last updated: December 11, 2017

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Mailing Address:

P.O. Box 52
Hawaii National Park, HI 96718

Phone:

(808) 985-6000

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