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Mauna Kea Summit and Stars Small-Group Adventure Tour

Badge of ExcellenceKailua-Kona, United States
Likely to Sell Out

From $267.02

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Free cancellation
Up to 24 hours in advance.
  • 8 hours (approx.)
  • Pickup offered
  • Mobile ticket
  • Offered in: English


Experience big skies and incredible nighttime views on this Mauna Kea stargazing trip with a small group. Join no more than 28 guests for a warm pre-trip picnic, proceeded by a ride in a 4x4 luxury van to the summit of the Big Island's tallest peak. After admiring a sunset view, continue down to 9,000 feet (2,743 meters) for a stargazing session, complete with a telescope, hot chocolate, and dessert. The trip also includes a guide and a hooded parka to keep you warm.
  • Enjoy a private stargazing show through 11” Celestron telescopes on Mauna Kea
  • Learn about the history, culture, and ecology of Hawaii
  • Indulge in a warm picnic dinner.
  • Small-group tour limited to 14 participants, ensuring a personalized experience with a naturalist guide

What's Included

  • Guide
  • Hooded parkas and gloves
  • Hot picnic dinner
  • Hot cocoa and cookies
  • Private star show with telescope
  • Local taxes
  • Central Meeting Locations for Pick-up & Drop off
  • Gratuities

Departure & Return

This operator has two meet-up options available. You can either meet at the departure point below or select a location for pick-up.

Departure Point

  • Courtyard by Marriott King Kamehameha's Kona Beach Hotel, 75-5660 Palani Rd, Kailua-Kona, HI 96740, USA

    **IMPORTANT - Please note, guests meeting at the Courtyard by Marriott King Kamehameha Kona Beach Hotel must meet at least 15 MINUTES PRIOR to the tour's departure time. Mahalo!**

Pickup Details

    Return Details

    This activity will end right where it started.

    Please Note

    Also can pick-up from: Queens' Market Place, 69-201 Waikoloa Beach Dr, Waikoloa Village, HI 96738 Gilbert Kahele Recreation Park, 44-5400 Daniel K. Inouye Hwy, Waimea, HI 96743

    What To Expect

    Additional Info

    • Confirmation will be received at time of booking
    • Minimum age is 16 years
    • Due to the high altitude; this tour is not suitable for those with respiratory, heart or circulatory conditions, poor health, or pregnancy
    • Scuba divers should be aware of altitude dangers
    • **IMPORTANT - Please note, guests meeting at the Courtyard by Marriott King Kamehameha Kona Beach Hotel must meet at least 15 MINUTES PRIOR to the tour's departure time.**
    • Guests are required to wear closed-toe walking shoes or hiking boots, long pants. We recommend bringing a light sweatshirt or jacket
    • Guests must bring their own water bottles. Tour operator will provide filtered water refills.
    • Please advise your parka size (small, medium, large, x-large or xx-large) and choice of meal at time of booking. If you do not indicate this at the time of booking, you will be required to call and advise them of this information directly.
    • There is minimal walking on this tour, the maximum being about 150 yards
    • Not wheelchair accessible
    • Not recommended for travelers with back problems
    • Not recommended for pregnant travelers
    • No heart problems or other serious medical conditions
    • The access road to Mauna Kea is four-wheel drive only, so it can be bumpy. The custom off-road transit vans will get you to the top and back in safety and comfort. The transit vans can carry a maximum of 14 passengers
    • Most travelers can participate
    • Snow is seasonal at Mauna Kea, with the heaviest snowfall occurring during the winter months
    • This tour/activity will have a maximum of 9 travelers
    Operated by Hawaii Forest and Trail

    Cancellation Policy

    You can cancel up to 24 hours in advance of the experience for a full refund.

    • For a full refund, you must cancel at least 24 hours before the experience’s start time.
    • If you cancel less than 24 hours before the experience’s start time, the amount you paid will not be refunded.
    • Any changes made less than 24 hours before the experience’s start time will not be accepted.
    • Cut-off times are based on the experience’s local time.
    • This experience requires good weather. If it’s canceled due to poor weather, you’ll be offered a different date or a full refund.
    • This experience requires a minimum number of travelers. If it’s canceled because the minimum isn’t met, you’ll be offered a different date/experience or a full refund.

    about cancellations

    Frequently Asked Questions

    The answers provided below are based on answers previously given by the tour provider to customers’ questions.

    Q:What is the policy on sanitization during Mauna Kea Summit and Stars Small-Group Adventure Tour?

    A:The policies on sanitization are:
    • Hand sanitizer available to travelers and staff
    • Regularly sanitized high-traffic areas
    • Gear/equipment sanitized between use
    • Transportation vehicles regularly sanitized

    Traveler Photos

    See more
    792 reviews
    Total review count and overall rating based on Viator and Tripadvisor reviews
    Reviews by Viator travelers
    Showing 1-10 of 792 reviews
    An experience unlike any other.
    Candace_R, May 2022
    Yesterday we accented 13,000 ft to the summit of Mauna Kea, the largest mountain on our planet! Due to its elevation it is home to 13 observatories!! We saw the VLBA, Keck, Subaru and Gemini telescopes, witnessed the sunset above the clouds and got to star gaze in absolute zero light pollution! The sky was so clear we could see Maui’s hook, the Southern crux and the light from Kilauea’s lava lake! Jason our guide was absolutely fantastic, his knowledge and passion for the Big Island and her history are unmatched!! 🌌☄️💫🔭
    Great services! Great value!
    Andy_S, Mar 2022
    Really appreciated their discount on cloudy weather. And communicated to us way in advance!! Tour guide/driver is very informative and careful on driving. Learned so much Hawaiian history from guide!!! Good food and nice comfy and warm amenities for the summit, including hot beverages and parka, etc. Excellent service. Highly recommended!!!
    Unforgettable Tour!
    Val, Mar 2022
    So we were notified before the tour that our chances of seeing stars was low due to the weather. But we were told we would still see a pretty sunset and still given the choice to cancel with no penalties. We decided to go on the tour and we were not disappointed! Our tour guide Jason was amazing with lots of information and jokes; and even though we didn't see stars the rest of the tour was well worth it. They did give us a discount because of the weather which was really kind of them and another reason I would recommend this tour hands down.
    You have to do this!
    Paula_A, Mar 2022
    Amazing experience! No photos can capture the awe inspiring sunset or vastness of the stars you can see!
    Wonderful tour!
    Shelby_L, Mar 2022
    We had a great time with our guide Justin. He was very knowledgeable and made us all very comfortable. The dinner was nice and there is time to shop for souvenirs and use the restroom along the way. We really enjoyed seeing the sunset and telescopes as well as the stars at night! We were informed that this is the only tour with a Vaonis Stellina telescope! This was a wonderful trip and I’d recommend it to anyone who travels to the big island.
    Overall, worthwhile experience, family loved it!
    mary_g, Mar 2022
    It was a great experience, something you really should do while on the big island. Don't recommend driving by yourself, roads are tortuous. Moon was a bit bright so stars were not as clear as might have been. Sunset was lovely. The guide was okay, not a regular though so not as much of a personality, but he was knowledgeable. Unfortunately gave away my vegan stew so I did not get one, others said stew was really good. It is freezing cold up there, so dress warmly. On way back heating too high in van and music too loud. (Just my opinion). Absolutely NO social distancing so don't expect it. Overall, worthwhile experience, family loved it!
    2 travelers found this review helpful
    Star gazing
    Mark_S, Mar 2022
    Great guide with a bumpy ride to an amazing sunset and beautiful viewing of the stars. Highly recommend.
    1 traveler found this review helpful
    May_K, Mar 2022
    Jeff was so knowledgeable and great. The food and parkas made me feel really cared for and that Hawaii forest and trails is thoughtful about the guest experience .
    1 traveler found this review helpful
    Everything was great -...
    JacquelineI_D, Feb 2022
    Everything was great - star gazing so clear . Sunset stunning , tour guide very informative. Nice people in the group
    Must do!
    Kathy_B, Feb 2022
    Sunset and shadow of mountain on clouds. Learning about differences in latitude. Justin is extremely knowledgeable.
    1 traveler found this review helpful
    Great night sky you won't see anywhere else
    Jim_S, Jan 2022
    Seeing all the stars you can't see because of light pollution was amazing. Entire trip was well thought out and Justin was stellar.
    Excellent experience. Our...
    Lisa_H, Jan 2022
    Excellent experience. Our guide Jason was fantastic. Don’t underestimate how cold it is at 13,800 feet.
    The star gazing ...
    Cathryn_h, Jan 2022
    The star gazing The tour guide was knowledgeable and very well prepared The tour bus was nice and comfortable and food was great We had warm clothes for the cold weather Pick up directions were easy and exactly as we were told
    My favorite excursion on our Hawaii trip!
    Sarah_N, Jan 2022
    Our tour guide, Jason was extremely knowledgeable and made the trip even better! The views at the summit were absolutely stunning! The star gazing afterwards was the best we’ve ever seen. Jason sent us photos of constellations that he took while together. It was a thoughtful extra touch. Thank you!
    Outstanding all the way around!
    Diane_K, Jan 2022
    Our trip up Mauna Kea was a “once-in-a-lifetime” kind of thrill. We had a great driver, who talked about everything under the sun and answered everyone’s questions beautifully on the drive. Dinner was a wonderful beef stew, snacks, drinks, everything was perfect. The top was so beautiful, cold [wind chills -16], and the telescopes were fascinating. While we were there with a full moon, we still had a stupendous stargazing experience. They also have a telescope with camera set-up that allowed us to receive color photos of everything we saw.
    Heaven on earth
    Rebecca_H, Jan 2022
    What an amazing adventure. The sunset from the summit was incredible…high above the clouds in freezing wind the blue sky melted to shades of purple, orange and yellow as the sun slowly dipped below the horizon. Then Jason regaled us with tales of Hawaiian mythology as we headed down to base camp for an evening of crystal clear skies and a million stars. Our guide Jason was funny knowledgeable and a great guide. We saw planets, galaxies star clusters among other heavenly bodies….well worth the money time and trip! A memory for a lifetime!
    Fabulous experience on Mauna Kea
    David_S, Dec 2021
    Journeying to the summit of Mauna Kea with its amazing views and group of huge telescopes was remarkable, especially at sunset. The stargazing at the station somewhat below through the high-quality telescope was also excellent. We had an exceptional guide, Jason, who brought the whole experience to life. He was very knowledgeable about a whole range of applicable subjects and a really nice guy too. Before departing we were sent by email the photos of the astronomical objects we had just observed. Well done and so enjoyable!
    1 traveler found this review helpful
    Cheryl_F, Nov 2021
    Wow! The trip was great. Jeff was so knowledgeable, really knows the night sky. He also shares Hawaiian lore and facts. You can tell he loves what he does. We saw Saturn, Jupiter, 3 nebula, the Milky Way. The Hubble satellite went over head. The sunset at the summit was beautiful. The trip was enjoyable. It’s a long day so be prepared. Dress warmly especially good shoes and socks. It’s cold up there.
    1 traveler found this review helpful
    Experience of a Lifetime
    Rylie_B, Oct 2021
    My husband and I were most excited for this experience on our trip to Maui and the Big Island, and we ended the trip with this experience as by far our favorite. Our tour guide, Justin, made the experience both so culturally enriching and fun all while making sure everyone in the group was safe. This tour is truly a once in a lifetime experience. We couldn’t recommend this tour enough!!
    3 travelers found this review helpful
    Maunakea summit
    Rebeca_S, Sep 2021
    Awesome and surreal experience. Jason was our tour guide and he made sure we were comfortable and enjoying ourselves . He was very knowledgeable and an great driver.


    Product code: 2804MKS