Hidden Craters Hike in Kailua-Kona, HI

Hawaii Forest & Trail73-5593 Olowalu StreetKailua-Kona, HI 96740
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Overview

Get ready for an excursion unlike any other on the Hidden Craters Hike through Kona. Your tour brings you behind 3 locked gates to discover Hualalai, Kona’s infamous volcano. Throughout your tour, you’ll have the opportunity to learn more about the island’s volcanic eruptions in the 1800s, climb through a segment of a lava tube, and embark on a 3-4 mile hike you’ll never forget.

Good To Know

from Ashley, one of our Kailua-Kona Travel Experts
  • Total hike length: approximately 3-4 miles.
  • Tour duration: approximately 6-7 hours long.
  • Walking sticks, warm wear, day packs, and rain ponchos are provided.
  • Deli-style lunch with assorted soft drinks, juices and bottled water is included.
  • Tours depart from Hawaii Forest & Trail Headquarters.

Description

from Hidden Craters Hike
Experience a peak to pint adventure on a rocky hike up the cool and misty lava-scaped slopes of Kona's own Hualalai Volcano. Enjoy exclusive access to this stunning mountain, which offers a bird's eye view of Kona's lava history. Your guide will take you off-road, through multiple locked gates and then by foot at a 6,500-foot elevation, where you will experience the surreal scene of black lava flows and native dryland forest.

You will see firsthand the geologic forces which created the islands at the heart of Hualalai’s 1801 eruption, the Kaupulehu Crater. Travel to magnificent coastal viewpoints and stunning lava formations, walk amidst a forest of native birdsong and scramble through a "lava tube".

After an afternoon of hiking the slopes, you will get a much deserved refreshing reward at Kona's newest brewery, Ola Brew, where you can enjoy a local brewery tour and tasting of several local beers.

Highlights include:
• Exclusive private access onto Hualalai volcano and into a native forest.
• Take pleasure in a 3-4 mile hike through untouched cloud forest with incredible vistas of the Kona coast.
• Stand on the edge of precipitous volcanic craters that plunge deep into the earth below.
• Climb through a segment of a lava tube.
• After your hike, tour Kona’s newest brewery and enjoy a sampling of locally made beers, ciders, and/or non-alcoholic energy drinks.

Schedule: Departing select days from our Hawaii Forest & Trail Headquarters, Queen's Marketplace, and select resorts

Rated: Moderate; hiking on uneven terrain of up to 3 miles

Included in the Tour: Lunch and beverages, water, daypacks, walking staffs, raingear, warm wear, brewery tour, and beer & cider samples*. (*Must be 21 yrs & older to sample beer & ciders; non-alcoholic samples available for underage guests)

Group Size: Tour limited to 12 people

Restrictions: Guests should be able to hike on uneven or rocky terrain. We sometimes encounter cool and wet conditions. Other tour restrictions may apply.

What to Bring & Wear: Comfortable walking shoes, a hat, sunscreen, and a light sweatshirt or jacket.

Tripster Customer Reviews

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TripAdvisor Reviews
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wefoil
Kutchan-cho, Japan
"Friendly staff and warming gift shop"
TripAdvisor user rating 5 out of 5
Reviewed July 03, 2020
An excellent place for your trail needs. They have lots of gear in stock and great tours off all kind. They are also very eco conscious. Love these guys!!
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AndrewT_TO
Toronto, Canada
"Experience you and the universe"
TripAdvisor user rating 5 out of 5
Reviewed May 05, 2020
We did a star gazing tour atop Mauna Kea on Valentine's Day 2020 - about a week after our wedding in Honolulu. Our tour guide was absolutely fantastic and extremely knowledgable - unfortunately his name escapes me right now - making for an incredible experience. I couldn't recommend this incredible excursion more!
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smestas
Los Angeles, California
"Great Day"
TripAdvisor user rating 5 out of 5
Reviewed April 03, 2020
What a day, enjoyed a small group hiking tour through though lava tubes ending at a local brewery. Felt like we got into see part of the island that most dont get to see.
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jeffzilka
Chicago, Illinois
"Outstanding guided trip to the top of Mauna Kea to see the sunset and stars!"
TripAdvisor user rating 5 out of 5
Reviewed March 29, 2020
My wife and I are very glad we book wtih Hawaii Forest and Trail for the guided trip to the top of Mauna Kea. The eight-hour trip took care of the hassle of driving to the top of the mountain (4WD is requrired), and Jeff, our guide, was knowledgable about Hawaii's flora, fauna and history. The sunset was mind-blowing and the star-gazing (their trips feature an 11-inch Celestron telescope) was fantastic. An altogether unique and worthwhile trip! How often can you go from sea level to over 13,000 feet!
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laep5655
London, United Kingdom
"Volcanos"
TripAdvisor user rating 5 out of 5
Reviewed March 28, 2020
Had a great trip to the volcanos and lava tube with Angela who was great fun and very knowlegable. Great lunch too
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Hidden Craters Hike is located at Hawaii Forest & Trail73-5593 Olowalu StreetKailua-Kona, HI 96740
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Frequently Asked Questions about Hidden Craters Hike

How much hiking do we do? 
Tours stop a couple of times throughout the adventure for short hikes of less than ½ mile. The total hiking distance is approximately 3 to 4 miles long.

Is there elevation gain? 
The tour ranges from sea level to 6,000 feet. We will meander on a single track trail through native forest with a mild elevation change of approximately 30 feet. While exploring the lava tube, expect to descend and ascend approximately 30 - 40 feet.

How many different types of volcanic features will I see? 
Along the tour, we’ll see 200-year-old lava flow, spatter cones, fissures and collapse pits.

Do we need any special type of equipment to explore the lava tube? 
The lava tube we visit is perfect for the casual adventurer. We’ll descend via earthen steps with a rope to assist and there’s enough ambient light to see all of the major features inside the cave.

Is Hualalai Volcano active? 
Technically speaking, yes. Hualalai’s last eruption ended in 1801 so it is considered active. However, magma is not close to the surface so we won't see any geothermal activity.

How long is the tour?
The tour is approximately 6 to 7 hours long in total.

Is food included?
Yes. In addition to enjoying a sampling of locally made beers, ciders and/or nonalcoholic energy drinks at Kona’s newest brewery, a deli-style lunch is also included.

What should I bring?
Guests should bring comfortable walking shoes, a hat, sunscreen, and a light sweatshirt or jacket.

Where do tours begin?
Tours meet and begin at Hawaii Forest & Trail Headquarters.