Millions of people everywhere travel to Hawaii to visit the beautiful beaches and soak up the sun in the warm climate. While this is what Hawaii is known for, the state is also home to the volcanoes national park, which makes a great destination for visitors wanting to experience something new in their next trip to the island.
Established in 1916 as the 13th national park, Hawaii Volcanoes National Park is located on the Big Island. It encompasses 377 square miles of land, which contains seven different ecosystems. They are seacoast, lowland, mid-elevation woodland, rainforest, upland forest, sub alpine and alpine.
Hawaii Volcanoes National Park is home to Kilauea, the world's most active volcano, and Mauna Loa, which is the world's most massive volcano. It also contains the largest rainforest in the United States. The variety of scenery from the coastal views to the rainforest to the volcanoes is part of what attracts over 2.5 million visitors per year. Its excellent natural resources and its work to preserve its different ecosystems and the species living within these ecosystems is why the volcanoes national park has been recognized by the International Biosphere Reserve and the World Heritage Site.
Upon your visit to Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, you can experience the park through a one to three hour auto tour or go backpacking and hiking through the park. You can also bird watch, camp, hunt, view wildlife, and participate in nature walks while you are there. Hawaii Volcanoes National Park hosts a visitor's center, art gallery and volcano house, which operates a hotel, restaurants, snack bar and gift shop to meet the needs of guests at the park.
Hawaii Volcanoes National Park features a variety of events and programs for visitors. For children the park has the junior ranger program, where kids can learn about the park, meet some park rangers, and become officially certified as a junior ranger. There's also the after dark in the park programs which features special guests and speakers throughout the year.
One of the favorite events held at Hawaii Volcanoes National Park is the annual Kilauea Cultural Festival, which is in its 25th year of celebration. Held every July, the festival provides visitors with a chance to learn how to make Hawaiian crafts such as leis, feather kahili or palai'e, which are lap and ball games. Guests can also weave coconut baskets and lauhala bracelets and play musical instruments and Hawaiian games. When visitors to Hawaii Volcanoes National Park are hungry, they can get a taste of traditional foods such as kalua pig, tara, sweet potato, sugar cane and breadfruit.
When coming to Hawaii on your next vacation, remember there's more to the islands than just relaxing on the beach and swimming in the ocean. Hawaii Volcanoes National Park offers guests with spectacular scenery that varies to allow visitors to enjoy a variety of scenery and wildlife. It's perfect for any traveler wanting to experience something new on their next trip to Hawaii.