Mauna Kea Summit & Observatoy
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 mountain, and the summit is topped with astronomical observatories from around the world.
The Visitor Information Station is at a lowly 9,300 ft (2,790 m) elevation, and from here a rugged hiking trail winds to the summit. It takes around five hours and you need to be fit and prepared for all kinds of weather conditions.
The visitor center has interactive displays and videos, with interactive telescopes, talks and tours. It also runs escorted tours to the summit.
The Visitor Information Station is an hour’s drive from Hilo, via Highway 200. The best way to get here, and to the summit, is on an organized tour.
Tours & Tickets
This Big Island helicopter adventure will show you the best of Hawaii – volcanoes and waterfalls – from the air! Starting from Hilo, you’ll journey over miles ... Read more
Duration: 45 minutes (approx.)
Experience an intriguing and provocative journey through space and time as you head to the Mauna Kea Observatory, nestled high in the mountains of the Big ... Read more
Duration: 8 hours (approx.)
Experience the best of the Big Island — from volcanoes to waterfalls to the rainforest — on this full-day adventure tour from Kona. During one fun-filled day, ... Read more
Duration: 14 hours (approx.)