Big Island of Hawaii ATTRACTIONS See all

Mauna Kea Summit & Observatory

Whether you’re a budding astrophysicist or just a fan of Big Bang Theory, take the opportunity while you’re on the Big Island to visit the Mauna Kea Summit and Observatory. At a lofty height of 13,796 ft (4,138 m) Mauna Kea is Hawaii's tallest ... 

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Certified reviews by travelers like you.

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
December 2014

Excellent trip. The weather was perfect so the view of the sunset and the stars was amazing.

The journey up isn't long at all, it's a little bumpy but really not a problem.

The guide was really knowledgeable and showed us the star formations and a nebula and the Milky Way.

Doing what: Mauna Kea Summit and Stars Small Group Adventure Tour

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
December 2014

When we first booked and heard it was a 14-hour day, we second guessed ourselves because it seemed so daunting. But our tour guide Kelsey made it so seamless and easy that it seemed like it was was just another day at the beach, only a lot more informative and valuable, Kelsey was very well informed and provided great customer service. The overall day was indeed five stars.

Doing what: Big Island Adventure Combo: Helicopter, Zipline and Lava Tour

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
December 2014

Had a wonderful time and saw a beautiful star filled sky. The parkas were perfect. Nate was a wonderful guide, and Hawaii Forest and Trails was excellent. The veggie roll was a little bland but other than that it was a highlight on our trip!

Doing what: Mauna Kea Summit and Stars Small Group Adventure Tour

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
December 2014

This was an amazing experience!

Doing what: 2-Hour Big Island Helicopter Flight from Kona

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
December 2014

A great tour. Knowledgable and friendly guide. He'd got a tough crowd - Aussies and Canadians. Despite that, we really enjoyed it.

Doing what: Mauna Kea Summit and Stars Small Group Adventure Tour

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
December 2014

Nate was a very informative guide, giving both the geographic and cultural history of the island. The dinner was excellent and the viewing (star show) was great too.

Doing what: Mauna Kea Summit and Stars Small Group Adventure Tour

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
December 2014

This tour was the highlight of my trip. Nate was my guide. He was so informative. The whole ride up he shared incredible knowledge of the evolution of the big island. He asked if the guests would like to share aliitle bit about themselves, which I thought was great. You did not feel like we 12 strangers, but we were 12 people sharing an experience. Nate did an incredible job sharing the celestial sky with us. He gave the history as he showed us through telescope. That you for a great experience.

Doing what: Mauna Kea Summit and Stars Small Group Adventure Tour

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
December 2014

Wow! One of the best tours I've ever taken, and an amazingly knowledgeable tour guide. If you are at all interested in astronomy or the night sky take this tour. The views at sunset are amazing, and you may wonder why you spent so little time at the top... but you don't need any longer than they give you. It's a pretty tough environment up there. After the sun goes down you descend a little for comfort in oxygen and temperature and that's the highlight of the tour. You are still above the clouds and have one of the darkest clearest skies in the world. They bring out a very nice telescope, but I spent very little time looking through it because the sky itself naked eye was incredible. It's quite a trip overall, and you learn lots about the natural and human history of Hawaii on the way.

Doing what: Mauna Kea Summit and Stars Small Group Adventure Tour

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
December 2014

An incredibly great and very memorable experience! It is, of course, in many ways dependent on weather conditions.However, our pilot Dan always called ahead to get weather updates and was able to make modifications in the flight plan. His ground crew, the other two Dans, were also very helpful in the flight preparation, and in the post flight photo session! Thanks to Dan, Dan, and Dan of the helicopter operators. They did their duties...and they did them well!... :-)
Gerhard A. Fuerst, Kalamazoo, Michigan (G1st@aol.com)

We winged our way
to Hawaii…
by means of jet-powered flights,
to escape Michigan’s wintry cold,
seeking sun, sand, and surf,
wondrous warmth, balmy winds,
miraculous flora and fauna,
soothing sounds and sights,
the treasures of dreamily tropical delights…
exotic aromas, secretive smells,
pleasing, pleasant,
taunting, teasing, tempting
fine fragrances of myriad colorful blossoms…
We sailed and soared at incredible heights,
easily overcoming continental and oceanic differences in time…
leaping over enormous distances in space…
We landed at Kona…
to experience Hawaiian hospitality…
the joys, challenges, and memorable adventures
of a shared family vacation…
to sample tasty treats and liquid libations
of the local cuisine…
and to leave temporary footprints
in soft sands…on beautiful beaches…
until washed away once again
by blue waters with perpetually rolling
and rhythmically undulating waves…
of the vast Pacific Ocean…
resulting in dramatic effects
of crashing surf…
dashing and splashing
on massive volcanic rocks
along curvy coasts and shores.
Footprints in the sand
are symbolic of our human existence…
which is temporal at best…
with the passage of time
fast and fleeting…
So, in order to leave
a lasting impression
our daily deeds done
must be purposeful, positive,
principled, and passionately peaceful…
Come see these wondrous vistas in Paradise...
Gerhard A. Fuerst
12/14/2014
Kailua-Kona, Hawai'i

Doing what: 2-Hour Big Island Helicopter Flight from Kona

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
December 2014

This was a great day trip. Informative island history, blended with just the right amount of "star tour". We would recommend this one to anyone! Plus, the sunset on top is FANTASTIC!

Doing what: Mauna Kea Summit and Stars Small Group Adventure Tour

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
December 2014

Awesome tour with a knowledgible guide.

Doing what: Mauna Kea Summit and Stars Small Group Adventure Tour

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
December 2014

I cannot say enough about this tour. Thank you Koji (pilot) and Michelle (guest coordinator) for an amazing experience. We saw the Big Island from a diffent view point. We saw molten lava, amazing waterfalls, whales and the most amazing views. Worth every cent.

Doing what: 2-Hour Big Island Helicopter Flight from Kona

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
December 2014

I cannot say enough about this tour. Thank you Koji (pilot) and Michelle (guest coordinator) for an amazing experience. We saw the Big Island from a different view point. We saw molten lava, amazing waterfalls, whales and the most amazing views. Worth every cent.

Doing what: 2-Hour Big Island Helicopter Flight from Kona

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
December 2014

I cannot say enough about this tour. Thank you Koji (pilot) and Michelle (guest coordinator) for an amazing experience. We saw the Big Island from a different view point. We saw molten lava, amazing waterfalls, whales and the most amazing views. Worth every cent.

Doing what: 2-Hour Big Island Helicopter Flight from Kona

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