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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Takahiro H

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
December 2016

This was an excellent tour for a first-time Big Island visitor like my girlfriend and I. We thoroughly enjoyed every part of this tour. Our guide Hank was extremely knowledgeable and knew the entire place and route like the back of his hand. Driving up the rocky mountain side in a 4-wheel drive van, I knew that it wasn't something I wanted to try myself! He expertly guided us to the best spot, and gave a great star show. The stars were amazing, even though there were clouds in the sky, they were unnoticeable because the stars were so bright. I would recommend this tour to anyone who really loves star gazing.

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

Sandra

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
November 2016

Absolutely amazing! Summit and sunset spectacular. Guide entertaining and knowledgeable. Dinner left much to be desired, only negative. That aside, this was a must do, so glad we did it!!

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

Victor M

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
November 2016

Great trip and very knowledgeable guide Nate. We had a wonderful clear night at the summit and learned a great deal about our galaxy.
Very much recommended.

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

Anja Germany

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
November 2016

The Trip was wonderfull. We were pickend up by our Guide Edmond on time and we starten our Trip to Mauna Kea. On the Way we made some Stopps and he told us a lot about history, nature and People in Hawaii. It was Perfect. Of course he cared a lot about our Safety. The Sunset was wonderfull ...Thank you for this wonderfull Time ..

Doing what: Mauna Kea Summit Small Group Stargazing Tour from Hilo

jessica b

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
November 2016

Once in a Lifetime experience. The hospitality was amazing!

Doing what: Mauna Kea Summit and Stars Kona and Waikoloa - Small Group Tour

Clay J

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
November 2016

Awesome adventure. The view and stars where magnificent. Our guide was very engaging and had a lot of interesting stories. I would highly recommend it.

Doing what: Mauna Kea Summit and Stars Kona and Waikoloa - Small Group Tour

Carol S

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
November 2016

Highly recommend this tour. Nate our guide was a wealth of knowledge and very professional. The sunset was amazing and the stargazing left one speechless!
Bucket List........Check!

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

Laurel K

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
November 2016

Truly a worthwhile experience. We were driving up the mountain on a clear night, the night of the November 2016 supermoon. Our guide, Derek, was full of interesting information about the Hawaii volcanos, geology and supermoon event. The group was small 5, ideal for good conversation. Sunrise was gorgeous, and the summit wasn't crowded at that hour, so we were able to pick and choose our camera positions to capture a glorious morning.

Doing what: Mauna Kea Above the Clouds Sunrise Tour

spanish-services

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
November 2016

All of the people involved in this trip were amazing! Glenn, our driver was very knowledgeable and super nice. Tony, Koby and Kailoa from the zip lines were also kind and reassuring. Ethan our helicopter pilot also went the extra mile to make sure we got great views of the volcano. He was also a wealth of information as to when and what had occurred with the volcanoes and their eruptions that created what we see today. Make sure you pack a good jacket for the wine tasting and volcano tour as it gets very cold and windy!

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

William R W

4 star rating: Recommended
November 2016

Great trip going up to the top of Mauna Kea to see the sunset! Very pretty! The parkas and gloves were a must for folks not traveling with winter clothes. Unfortunately the star gazing was weak due to cloud cover. Mother Nature just didn't want us to see her jewels!

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

Erik O

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
October 2016

Activity was great! Beautiful sunset and wonderful view of the stars.

Tour was really small van could only fit 7 driver, and there was only 4 of us for a lot of it. Tour guide was a bit bit of the sexist type and a bit full of it. I'd recommend the tour, not the guide Edmund.

Doing what: Mauna Kea Summit and Stars Kona and Waikoloa - Small Group Tour

Lilabeth P

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
October 2016

Great guides, Mike and Daisy! So nice to have warm gear included so you do not have to pack in your suitcase. Ramen not so tasty, but hot chocolate hit the spot. The altitude did greatly affect me, but so glad we did!

Doing what: Mauna Kea Summit Small Group Stargazing Tour from Hilo

Marlene R

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
October 2016

A wonderful experience at 13,000 ft, with great views weather permitted, fun meal and stargazing. Was a bucket list item I was thrilled to check off. Recommend to anyone who loves astronomy or astrology.

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

Robert S

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
October 2016

Brent was our tour guide. Awesome. Knowledgable. Friendly.
Would highly recommend this tour and Bent as a tour guide

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

geychner

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
September 2016

A true once-in-a-lifetime experience that exceeded our expectations. Great helicopter, great pilot, great ride!!

Doing what: Experience Hawai'i Big Island Helicopter Flight from Kona

Cassandra L

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
September 2016

Not only was the view from the summit spectacular, our guide, Nate, was so knowledgeable about the night sky that we had an amazing time with his explanation of space. My husband had a hard time with the high altitude, but Nate was prepared to accommodate him with oxygen readily available, which allowed him to enjoy the experience. This tour was not only a must do, we also felt safe and was well taken care of throughout.

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

Louis S Australia

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
September 2016

Our pilot was ex military and flew the aircraft brilliantly. The 2 hour flight was fantastic and we spent a good time over the volcanos, turning around so that all passengers got a good view and able to take some good photos whatever side of the aircraft you were sitting. Seeing the lava entering the sea was good as was the flight up the coast and into the valleys. The entire flight was smooth and the weather on the day was very clear and fine. We flew back to Kona down the coast and you could see all the major resorts from the air. The driver who collected me arrived on time and drove very well and was very knowledgeable about the area and could answer any questions you had. I had the same driver on the return journey and was able to continue our conversations. A great time was had and I would highly recommend this trip. Great was to see the Big Island.

Doing what: Experience Hawai'i Big Island Helicopter Flight from Kona

Jim R

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
September 2016

We thoroughly enjoyed this tour. It is timed just right so that you have enough time to have a good look around the summit before sunset but not too long that you get really cold.

Our guide Brett was excellent. He was very safety conscious whilst we were up at the summit checking that no one was feeling the effects of the high altitude. Also he was very knowledgable about Mauna Kea and the Stars. He made it all very interesting and we learnt a lot.

We highly recommend this tour.

Annette and Jim, Australia

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

Anthony P

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
September 2016

What a brilliant day if but long. The zippling was fantastic as was the helicopter.

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

Rachel B

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
September 2016

Absolutely stunning sunsets and stargazing.
Edmond was very knowledgeable and friendly and made the trip very enjoyable. Wrap up warm! !

Doing what: Mauna Kea Summit Small Group Stargazing Tour from Hilo

Jennifer N

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
August 2016

It was a long day but well worth it! Jon, our tour guide was nice, and super knowledgeable. He shared a lot of history with us, especially during the car ride, which made the trips between each of the excursions feel less mundane. He was also a wonderful storyteller and introduced us to many of the historic storylines of the Hawaiian gods.

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

Andy L

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
August 2016

Edmund was our friendly tour guide, and we couldn't have been more pleased with anyone else! He thoroughly made our trip to summit worth every penny! Edmund picked us up at our condo rental and drove us to another location to pick up other guests. While in the vehicle, he gave us a snapshot of what we'd be doing in the evening. He shared many stories, and ensured we were safely driven to summit. We stopped at the Visitors Centre to acclimate our bodies to the high altitudes, and he also gave use some hot chocolate packets and a cup of instant noodles for dinner. Be warned: dinner is exactly what is advertised in the tour description, so don't expect anything more fancy. Bring snacks if you feel hungry. We were happy with dinner because it started to get pretty chilly going up to summit, so the hot coco and cup of noodles warmed us up. When we got to summit, the sunset was beautiful! We were provided with thin fleece sweaters, so I would recommend that guests bring their own jackets, hats, and gloves, as it does get very chilly at the top. If you need to use the bathroom, ensure you go at the Visitors Centre before heading to summit. Edmund was helpful with another guest who felt altitude sickness, and stayed close to the car to provide assistance. After the sunset, we headed back to the Visitors Centre to stargaze. I must say, this was a wonderful experience! You will never see the sky so beautiful and so clear in your entire lifetime! There were also telescopes set up, so we were able to see Saturn and Mars too! Overall, without Edmund this tour wouldn't have been the same! He provided a personal touch, and I would highly recommend him and this tour to other guests!

Doing what: Mauna Kea Summit and Stars Kona and Waikoloa - Small Group Tour

Anne Marie L

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
August 2016

Wonderful trip. We have done helicopter tours several times in various places, but this one ranks on top, on par with Grand Canyon. The weather was rainy on the Volcanoes, so we followed the coast. The lava flowing into the sea and the flight over the cascades in the valleys were awesome.

Doing what: Experience Hawai'i Big Island Helicopter Flight from Kona

greatdayinhawaii

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
August 2016

My big island trip was fantastic! Edmond who guided us came to hotel to pick up and explained about the island in detail so that I could be well awared of the island. He was so kind and friendly that he cared about our condition and told. I would like to recommend him to other travelers.

Doing what: Mauna Kea Summit and Stars Kona and Waikoloa - Small Group Tour

Florence R

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
August 2016

The weather wasn't the best, too many clouds but there was a great sunset. Edmond was an excellent tour guide.

Doing what: Mauna Kea Summit Small Group Stargazing Tour from Hilo

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