One of Hawaii‘s most active volcanoes, Kilauea, is located within the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. Its name literally means “Spewing” or “much spreading” since it often “spews” lava. It is so active that it is considered one of the most active volcanoes in the world. It has had more than 30 eruptions since 1952.
This Volcanao is also Hawaii‘s youngest Volcano. Legend tells of a Hawaiian Volcano goddess that calls this young volcano her home, the goddess name is Pele. In the legend, Kamapua`a is Pele’s suitor. This suitor apparently built a house of fern for Pele to contain her and stop her from causing damage by erupting.
One of the good things about Kilauea is its gentle nature, although it is constantly pouring out lava, it doesn’t violently erupt, making it a perfect subject for volcanologists.
For this reason, Kilauea is the most visited volcano in the world. But despite its “gentle eruptions” it still poses significant dangers to those who visit it; and this isn’t just speculation too. In 2010 and early this year, its lava destroyed homes nearby. In fact, it was listed as the US’s most dangerous volcano, according to USGS.
This young volcano sits on the southeast of the much bigger and older volcano, Mauna Loa. Even as a small volcano, it is interesting how Kilauea is so tiny and significantly more flat than most… It’s not like how you would expect a volcano to look like, not at all like Mt. Fuji or Mount St. Helen’s.
To visit this super active volcano, just head over to Hawaii Volcanoes National Park and enjoy going up and down the volcanoes. Elevation changes are extreme and can go as high as couple thousands of feet. As you make your way around this protected park, you will ride through stretches of Kona Coffee, macadamia nuts and sugar plantation. Don’t expect to smell roasted coffee, these are coffee beans in their berry stage.
Inside the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park is an exotic native rainforest, lava tubes, and numerous volcanic formations; prepare for the strong smell of sulfur and a sudden change in temperature, suddenly the climate will feel like a sauna bath.
If you want to learn more about volcanoes as you enjoy these spectacular sights, choose to go on a tour with guides that are always present during these volcanic tours. Make sure you listen well to their discussions on Hawaii’s volcanoes.
For a better look at the crater, you can climb up the Kilauea using this route: turn westward if you are travelling southbound to Kea-au and head westward. When taking this route, you will be passing through the damp and dark vegetation of Mauna Loa.
If you are one of those who want to be really up close and personal with Hawaii’s youngest non-stop lava spewer, make sure you go with the experts. You can always join an eco tour and explore the volcanoes whilst an expert guide talks you through Hawaiian history, interesting facts, geologic and natural history and many more. Some holiday packages already include such tours so make it a point to ask your travel agent.