Explore the Halema‘uma‘u Crater

Details

Distance

0.5 miles

Route Type

Out-and-Back

Added by Jon Mattrisch

The Halema‘uma‘u Crater is part of the much larger summit caldera of Kīlauea within Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park and routinely erupts with lava flows. Overlook the many steam vents that rise hundreds of feet above the crater floor.

Everyone knows that Hawaii was formed from a series of volcanoes over millions of years. But did you know that you can experience one of them up close? Well, as close as you can while staying safe, obviously.

The Halema'uma'u Crater has been active since 2008 when the vent first erupted. Since then, lava levels have varied in size below the crater floor.

Getting to the overlook is very easy and accessible by a short drive and subsequent walk. Enter the park off Highway 11 and head west down Crater Rim Drive to the visitor center. Grab a map and continue heading west along Crater Rim Drive for about 5 minutes until you see the Jaggar Museum. Feel free to stop in for a bit and learn about the history of the park and the volcanoes located in there.

Continue along Crater Rim Drive for a few more minutes until you come across a parking lot on the left side of the road. Park your car, get out and walk for about 2 minutes until you reach the overlook. Here you'll be presented with stunning vistas of the Halema'uma'u Crater. You'll also notice various steam vents along your way which can be quite hot.

This is a great spot for some stunning pictures, and if you're lucky enough, you might be able to see some active lava flows. Make sure you check ahead of time if the park is allowing visitors to the area as the volcano is unpredictable. More info here.

Admission fees from the National Park Service website:

Vehicle

$25.00 - 7 days

Admits one single, private, non-commercial vehicle and all of its passengers.

Individual

$12.00 - 7 days

Admits one individual when entering by foot or bicycle. Individuals 15 years old and younger are admitted free of charge.

Motorcycle

$20.00 - 7 days

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Know for

Chillin
Photography
Hiking
Dog Friendly
Easy Parking
Family Friendly
Food Nearby
Groups
Handicap Accessible
Scenic
Wildflowers

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Reviews

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🥇Top Contributor

2 months ago

Cool to see

Cool to see. Short easy walk and was not crowded at all. Is a very classic big island stop. Be sure to visit the other spots in the park too

🥇Top Contributor

7 months ago

Easy to get to

This is a nice stop when driving around the park. It's not a hard walk, and is nice when paired with some of the other hikes in Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. It has some places for photographs, but overall would spend more time in the other areas of the park.

56 total saves

3.5/5

Leave No Trace

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures and follow local regulations. Please explore responsibly!

We want to acknowledge and thank the past, present, and future generations of all Native Nations and Indigenous Peoples whose ancestral lands we travel, explore, and play on.

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