The ongoing Volcanic Eruption on Hawaii Island has opened an access highway allowing us to show you the area and its impacts from a safe distance. Leaving your ship we will travel a short distance to Liliokulani Gardens a well maintained botanical setting overlooking Hilo Bay where we will have a brief stop for photos.
Continue through urban Hilo and the outlying suburbs toward Pahoa town, you will see the Transfer Station that avoided inundation by a few yards and a section of roadway that was covered and cleared giving a unique view of the impact of a flow through a populated area.
We continue driving through Pahoa Town which is the current center of Evacuation and Disaster management for the ongoing event. You will see and experience sulphur steam venting right at the highway edge as we pass by on steel plates covering cracks in the road surface.
Heading back down to sea level we arrive at Kalapana Painted Church, which was moved to its present location from advancing lava during a large 1992 lava flow that came from miles away.
Next stop is Uncle Roberts Cultural Enclave where you will walk out on to the new black sand beach, viewing the fissure plume rising into the air and the steam clouds generated as lava enters the sea.
You will then have time to buy a snack or drink at Uncle Roberts or next door at the Kalapana Store before we head off for a scenic ride along the coastline to the sea arch and turtle viewing spot, passing through beautiful tunnels formed by arching trees. We will then return to Hilo area via the Macnut Farm with opportunities to buy Macnut gifts or indulge in ice cream or lite snacks (at guest's expense).
We will then travel to Rainbow Falls passing through Historic Hilo Town which itself has survived two modern era tsunamis and sits on lava flows from ancient times.
Note: Participants must be at least 10 years of age. Wear closed-toes shoes and bring a light jacket. There will be walking on uneven surfaces (cinder & hardened lava). Tour will pass by sulphurous steam emissions by roadside and possible wind driven volcanic gasses. No one with heart conditions, breathing difficulties or pregnant women should participate in this tour. Tour will only go to areas designated by Civil Defense and US Geologic Survey. If an actual lava viewing area is established it will be included in the tour possibly leaving out other features listed. Tour may run in a different order or in case highways are closed for any reason may go to an alternate safe area of scenic value not related to the eruption. Hiking sticks and water will be supplied as needed.
Rapidly changing conditions in East Hawaii may present opportunities on one hand or block access on the other. This tour will visit the best that is available on any given day.