Many travelers come to the Big Island just to see one of the most active volcanoes on the surface of the earth: the Kilauea Volcano. Volcano Village is the little village on the doorstep of this impressive National Park.
Even if the volcano is not your main reason to visit, we recommend to spend at least a full day in the Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park. The Kilauea is sometimes referred to as the world’s only “drive in volcano”, and has lots to offer. Next to molten lava flows, sulfur banks, hot steam vents, ancient lava tubes and a huge summit caldera, the park also offers 150 miles of hiking trails and attraction such as the Volcano Art Center and the Jaggar Museum.
The perfect place to set up camp and spend the night is located just minutes from the park entrance: Volcano Village. This is a rustic village in the middle of a lush rainforest, and is famous for its beauty and tranquility. There are no hotels to speak of, but this is made up by a multitude of charming vacation rentals – many with fireplace and hot-tub!
Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park was established in 1916, it encompasses over 500 square miles of land, and is a must-see for any visitor of the Big Island with an interest in (active) Volcanoes. It has been designated as an International Biosphere Reserve in 1980 and as a World Heritage Site in 1987, and provides unique hiking and camping opportunities.
On the doorstep of the National Park lies one of the best kept secrets of the Big Island: Volcano Village. It is the hideout of many artists, is build in the middle of a lush tropical Ohia and Hapu’u fern forest, and is a place to relax – far away from the traffic, the crowds and even the streetlights. Surrounded by the Volcanoes National Park, and with access to many stunning hikes and vistas, it is a perfect place to set up camp for a couple of days and to see a side of the Island that is guaranteed to leave a deep impression.
The village itself also offers plenty of diversions. There is a Farmers market every Sunday between 06:30 and 10:00 a.m., the Winery sells locally produced wine and offers tours, there is an Orchid Farm in the native Hawaiian Ola`a Rainforest Reserve, and the Volcano Art Center organizes “after dark in the park” nature walks. (back to top)
Volcano National Park and Volcano Village lie on Highway 11 between Hilo (27 miles, 50 minutes) and Kailua Kona (96 miles, 2 hr. 15 minutes). The bus passes through it a couple of times per day from both Kona and Hilo, but the bus takes significantly longer than the car, and you will want to have a car to visit all the sights in Volcano village and the Volcanoes National Park. We highly recommend a car in order to get the most out of your stay. (back to top)
Volcano National Park and Volcano Village are located in a Rain Forest at an elevation of 4000 feet. They offer a refreshing change from the arid Hawaiian coastal areas, but it is wise to bring a rain coat and a sweater since temperatures are on average 15 degrees F cooler compared to the rest of the island due to the elevation. (back to top)
A short summary of the weather in Volcano Village: on average it is 10 degrees (Fahrenheit) cooler than in Kona, so the evenings can be cool: take a sweater. It also may rain so take a light raincoat, but also expect sun. When it does rain, remember that the rainforest looks as amazingly lush as it does exactly because of the rain.
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If you want to see what this means for your visit to Hawaii (average temperature, hours of sunshine, cloudy days and precipitation), check out the monthly average weather for Volcano Village, Hawaii.
The icons on the map are clickable. Clicking on them will display information above the map with a link to an article with more information. (back to top)