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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5 star rating: Highly Recommended
August 2014

This was a great tour. We did it all. Long day and not cheap but full of great activities for the whole family. The zipline was scarey initially but kids loved it. Helicopter was excellent, walked through lava tube and then the view of the caldera at night was fantastic. Vern was a great tour leader

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

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
August 2014

It was an awesome trip. We saw Mars, Jupiter and Saturn. We saw another entire galaxy.
The view was amazing.

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

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
August 2014

This was the highlight of our vacation. Absolutely breathtaking sunset. Our tour guide was very knowledgeable. Saw the International Space Station zip by.

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

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
August 2014

My wife and I celebrated our 30th anniversary, doors off the helicopter so nothing to block view. It was amazing! The entire staff was great, especially the pilot.

Doing what: Fire and Falls Helicopter Adventure from Hilo

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
August 2014

We had an excellent flight with our pilot Koji! He rocks! I would suggest this company and tour to anyone who wants a beautiful, breathtaking view of the Big Island! We had a great view of the activity over the volcanos and also the waterfalls in the Valley! Thanks Paradise for our memories!

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

4 star rating: Recommended
August 2014

Great pilot! The ride was interesting and pilot did a great job getting in the right spots for great pictures.

Doing what: Fire and Falls Helicopter Adventure from Hilo

2 star rating: It was OK, but could have been better
August 2014

It was a fun ride on the helicopter--especially when the front passenger door opened and we had to reclose it in flight! Also, since they squeezed two passengers upfront with the pilot, the middle passenger (me) could not take pictures. We did see a little lava flow in the rain forest, and saw that the rain forest was burning where the lava is now flowing. I was disappointed that the flow no longer goes into the ocean as the promotion picture suggests. We saw one fall that was not all that impressive. I think the promotion should be more upfront and the cost should be less. So other than this being a first time experience which was fun, it was disappointing.

Doing what: Fire and Falls Helicopter Adventure from Hilo

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
July 2014

The helicopter tour was a perfect start to our trip and a great way to see the water falls! Our pilot was funny, knowledgeable and just made our experience that more special! If you never been to the Big Island, I would highly recommend seeing it from the sky!

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

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
July 2014

What an awesome way to discover the beauty of the Big Island! My wife and I drove around the island the day before to view the geological and biological differences that the island has to offer. Then took this tour the next day! What a perspective! Well worth your time! The pilot was informative and skilled in his craft!

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

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
July 2014

Definitely worth it. We had fantastic guides who took great care of us. I was contemplating making the drive up Mauna Kea myself, but it is a really tough drive and you WILL void your rental car agreement. Why worry? Particularly when you throw the altitude issue in the mix. Worth it.

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

4 star rating: Recommended
July 2014

Falls part seemed a bit like an after thought but the volcano tour was the best...the pilot circled so all could see from all angles!

Doing what: Fire and Falls Helicopter Adventure from Hilo

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
June 2014

Awesome !!!!!
Be sure to move slowly! 13,800 ft. Will get you a little lite headed.
Tour guide was very well educated in astronomy.

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

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
June 2014

While this tour was long, it was full of adventure and very entertaining! Grant was the tour guide with us all day and was very informative. He kept me awake and engaged on the drive to the other side of the island at 6:30 AM by sharing Hawaiian legends. We had Gavin, Chris, and Urie distracting us w/ jokes that are just as cheesy as mine while they promptly hooked us from one zipline to the other. This was an efficient process that soared us over beautiful waterfalls and rivers. I ordered a tuna salad for lunch…mmMMmm. There were many drink/chip/snack options. The helicopter was awesome! It was my first time and I felt like a dragon fly floating up in the air. Kevin, the pilot, took us over two eruption sites where we could see the lava burning down trees and also over a set of waterfalls and rivers. We hiked through the Volcano National Park and stood in lava tunnels, learned the history, and got some great action shots. That was followed by a nice dinner. Get the chicken! I normally go for fish, but it was a little dry. Good thing I bought a long sleeve shirt at the gift shop bc I was freezing after, but standing in front of those steam pods was so nice and warm…until you walk away from it! We went to a museum after dinner, watched the lava glow, star gazed, and listened to a nice informational video about Hawaii on the drive back. Though Grant had other movie options, this video was surprisingly engaging and kept me in the Hawaiian spirit! The trip was awesome and definitely a time to remember. Us three Vegas girls did have to sneak away for 5 minutes after the helicopter ride to grab a quick drink in the airport bar, but the group was great and understanding. We lucked out with the weather! It was a beautiful day, even though we drove across the island through a nice amount of rain. Both Grant and the zip liners had rain jackets to offer, but as soon as we started, it all cleared up and the jackets were dropping like flies. I will never forget this day! Thanks!

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

3 star rating: Worth doing
June 2014

I enjoyed it but would have liked to seen the lava flow into the water. I was impressed by the waterfalls but not with just flying over the top of the crater. No real activity, which you can't help. Seemed to be alot of money for the flight. Ialso would have liked to be in the smaller helicopter and not so crowed in the big one. I was stuck in the middle and didnt get the quality of pictures I wanted. Overall liked the people.

Doing what: Fire and Falls Helicopter Adventure from Hilo

1 star rating: I do not recommend this
June 2014

Don't let the advertised photos fool you...all the "lava" we saw was a few spirals of smoke and old lava flows. I had expected to see the caldera or at least where the lava flows into the sea...we were terribly disappointed. There were two seats beside the pilot and my niece and I were so cramped that neither of us could move or even turn to take pictures of the waterfalls we flew by. (She weighs 125 and I weigh 140--not very large women). We luckily had also rented a car for the day and were able to drive to the caldera and get some excellent photos. I cannot recommed this particular flight at all and it was a huge waste of money that we flew from Oahu to the Big Island for the day just to do.

Doing what: Fire and Falls Helicopter Adventure from Hilo

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