Big Island of Hawaii

Hawaii Volcanoes National Park and Hilo Highlights Small Group Tour

Badge of ExcellenceBig Island of Hawaii, USA
Hawaii Volcanoes National Park and Big Island Highlights Small Group Tour
  • 5 hours 30 minutes
  • Pickup offered
  • Mobile ticket
  • Offered in: English


Hawaii Volcanoes National Park is unlike anywhere else on the planet, where one of the world’s most active volcanoes sends lava dripping towards the sea, and a towering mountain lies dormant and ready to pop. On this tour of the National Park, hear the legends of Madame Pele, the mythical Hawaiian fire goddess, a tour from Hilo to the eastern coastline and climb to the rim of Kilauea volcano. On this small group tour, your guide will customize the pace and number of sights.
  • Small group day tour of Hawaii Volcanoes National Park and Hilo
  • View the Halemaumau crater, said by native Hawaiians to be the home of Pele, goddess of fire
  • Get great views of Hilo Bay from Liliuokalani Gardens
  • Taste fresh coffee and Big Island style treats at a local chocolate factory
  • Enjoy sights around Hilo including the majestic Rainbow Falls.
  • Includes private vehicle and guide, bottled water and hotel pickup and drop-off

What's Included

  • Professional guide
  • Private transportation
  • Bottled water
  • Hotel Pick-up for Select Hotels (all others please plan to meet at the Hilo Mo'oheau Bus Terminal)
  • Hilo Harbor Port pick-up and drop-off
  • Hilo Airport pick-up and drop-off
  • Lunch
  • Gratuities
  • We DO NOT provide transportation from Kona or Waikoloa. Please meet us in Hilo at the bus terminal.

Meeting and Pickup

You can head directly to the meeting point, or request pickup

Meeting point

  • 329 Kamehameha Ave, Hilo, HI 96720, USA

    Meet your tour guide at the Hilo Mo'oheau Bus Terminal (329 Kamehameha Avenue, Hilo, HI 96720). There is free parking adjacent to the bus terminal. Look for our van with the "Mauka Makai Adventures" logo on it in the parking lot. Please be waiting for your driver we may be picking up other guests.

Pickup points

Select a pickup point

End point

This activity ends back at the meeting point.

Pickup details

CRUISE SHIP PICKUP INSTRUCTIONS: Upon disembarking the cruise ship in Hilo, head through the passenger terminal and look for your guide standing to the left near the pre-arranged tour operators with a sign that reads "Mauka Makai Adventures". Please check in with your guide 10-15 minutes prior to tour start time. HILO AIRPORT PICKUP INSTRUCTIONS: Please schedule your flight to arrive at the Hilo Airport a minimum of 30 minutes prior to the tour start time. We require your airline flight number and arrival time to schedule pickup at the airport. As you disembark the airplane head towards Baggage Claim “D”. Look for the tour operator parking area near the restrooms. Our vans are marked with the logo "Mauka Makai Adventures". HILO HOTEL PICKUP INSTRUCTIONS: We provide pick up service at Hilo Hotels along Banyan Drive only. Please meet your tour guide near the front entrance to the lobby, our vans are marked with the logo "Mauka Makai Adventures." We may also contact you prior to the tour to make arrangements for a meeting time and location. ALL OTHERS MEET AT HILO MOʻOHEAU BUS TERMINAL: If you are driving from Kona, Waikoloa, or another part of the island, please confirm that you will meet us at the Hilo Mo'oheau Bus Terminal (329 Kamehameha Avenue, Hilo, HI 96720). There is free parking adjacent to the bus terminal. Look for our van parked in the parking lot with the "Mauka Makai Adventures" logo on it.

What To Expect

This tour begins when you’re picked up from your Hilo area hotel, Hilo Airport, or Hilo Port and meet your knowledgeable local guide for a day of exploring the volcanoes. Riding around in an air-conditioned vehicle, you’ll begin the day in the town of Hilo by visiting a number of highlights, including the Liliuokalani Gardens that honor Hawaii’s former Queen.

Make a stop at Wailuku River State Park and marvel at Rainbow Falls, where occasionally it’s possible to spot a rainbow when the light hits the curtain of mist. Travel to Hawaii Volcanoes National Park where your guide will make sure you have ample time to experience the most popular sights, including the rim of Kilauea Volcano and Halema'uma'u Crater.

You may even witness to an active eruption. Throughout the park, you’ll notice steam vents rising from the rock and land that’s just recently been formed, and when driving the famous Chain of Craters Road, the barren black landscape in every direction is a reminder this Earth is still raw.

At every stop throughout the tour, your guide is there to answer questions and elaborate on the history and geology and as a small group tour you will be able to enjoy a little more time at the places that everyone is interested in.

Finally, having scoured this UNESCO listed National Park and witnessed Earth being formed, this Big Island volcano tour finishes back at your original pickup location.

Hawaii Volcanoes National Park

2 hours Admission Ticket Included

Nahuku - Thurston Lava Tube

30 minutesAdmission Ticket Included

Chain of Craters Road

30 minutesAdmission Ticket Included

Rainbow Falls

20 minutesAdmission Ticket Free

Big Island Candies

15 minutesAdmission Ticket Free

Liliuokalani Gardens

20 minutesAdmission Ticket Free

Additional Info

  • Confirmation will be received at time of booking
  • Operates in all weather conditions, please dress appropriately (be prepared for sun, wind and rain).
  • Not wheelchair accessible
  • Covered walking shoes are required and a jacket is highly recommended.
  • Participants must be able to walk a minimum of 1 mile on uneven rocky terrain.
  • We do not guarantee you will see molten lava on this tour.
  • HOTEL pick-up is offered for select HILO HOTELS ONLY. If you are staying outside of Hilo, please plan to meet at the Hilo Mo'oheau Bus Terminal (please confirm at time of booking).
  • Near public transportation
  • CRUISE SHIP passengers, we pick-up directly at HILO HARBOR and will adjust the tour time as needed to accommodate your ships time in port.
  • Not recommended for travelers with back problems
  • Not recommended for pregnant travelers
  • No heart problems or other serious medical conditions
  • Travelers should have a moderate physical fitness level
  • For a one DAY TRIP to the Big Island, please make your travel arrangements to and from the HILO AIRPORT. Schedule your flight arrival a minimum of 30 minutes prior to the tour start time AND provide your flight details at time of booking.
  • Children ages 8 years and up may participate in tour. All participants must have a paid seat. We do not allow any "lap" children.
  • Kilauea volcano is an active volcano, you may be exposed to volcanic gas on this tour.
  • This tour cannot accommodate guests with wheelchairs, scooters or oxygen tanks.
  • This tour/activity will have a maximum of 12 travelers

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 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.

Traveler Photos

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Featured review
our guide was a native of the area, having lived through the most recent lava flows, very knowledgeable. we learned so much on this tour and saw breathtaking views of the volcanoes. Don't miss this tour!


179 reviews
Total review count and overall rating based on Viator and Tripadvisor reviews
Reviews by Viator travelers.
Showing 1-10 of 179 reviews
Loved this adventure
stacey_h, Apr 2024
We were so excited to see the volcano in Hilo and this trip exceeded all of our expectations. Jill, our guide, did an amazing job sharing all the myths and legends of the area. The geological information was easy to digest and provided an excellent learning experience. We had several stops along the way (Rainbow Falls, Gardens, Craters, etc) and at each stop. we had plenty of time to explore and take lots of pictures. Our transportation was extremely comfortable.
Great tour
Mary_M, Apr 2024
Had a great time hitting all key spots including a lava tube and rainbow falls. Josh was very dynamic. He kept us laughing and informed.
RUTH_G, Apr 2024
Our guide was also the owner. Wonderful people and so knowledgeable. She was a born in the volcano and could share her personal experiences. Just fantastic!
Great Day
Judy_K, Mar 2024
Jill had great info and interesting personal stories. The stops were well timed. We would highly recommend this tour.
So much knowledge in one day!
Jill_B, Mar 2024
We had a great time on this excursion! Our tour guide, Josh, was very knowledgeable about the island, the history and the Hawaiian folk tales about so many facets of the land and the plants and animals who inhabit the area.
A day in Hilo-loved it!
Lori_K, Mar 2024
Our guide was amazing! Very knowledgeable about Hilo and the islands. I had never visited the big island and wanted to see the volcano and this was the perfect trip for a day visit to see the Hilo area. The van was quite comfortable and I love having a small group on tours (we had 10 people).
Great trip!!!
Melchor_d, Mar 2024
Jill was the best tour guide ever. She was very informative, friendly and simply amazing. The trip was worth it because of despite the occasional rains and freezing temperature.
Great tour of The Volcano National Park
Walter_C, Mar 2024
A wonderful tour with very knowledgeable staff. Nice coaches, informative talks, multiple stops and activities, snacks and drinks. A great job at a reasonable price.
Wonderful Experience
Maria_L, Mar 2024
Jill did a wonderful job of narrating and guiding us to the various sites, particularly the volcano. Her knowledge and connection with the island made it much more personal experience. Adequate time and information was provided for each one of our stops. My only recommendation would be to allow participants to decide on whether or not they wanted to go to the candy store to shop. As a customer who is paying for a custom tour, we should have the option to not be taken to an unwanted stop or destination. While others in our small-group tour appreciated the opportunity to shop, providing some flexibility or variation for those who did not want to shop, would have been appreciated as well.
Response from Host, Mar 2024
Aloha Maria, Thank you for your feedback. It was great having both you and your husband on tour. I am aware of your concern with the stop at the chocolate factory, however you were booked on a small group tour and part of the itinerary includes the experience at our island confection shop. This was a brief stop which most people do enjoy as part of our tour. Again, thank you for your understanding as we try to give a well rounded experience of the Hilo & Volcano area. Mahalo, Jill
Saw so much in one short day!
Joseph_L, Feb 2024
Jill was waiting for us as soon as we got off the ship. She had a great day planned and we got to see it all. Her timing was spot on!
Great Tour!
Roland_V, Feb 2024
The view of the main crater from the viewing area was awesome. Also, looking at past lava flows and how time affects them was educational. Outstanding guide!
Outstanding day at Hilo Hawaii
eRIC_E, Feb 2024
Josh the tour guide was fantastic great knowledge of the area and history of the islands. Saw a lot of very interesting and informative sites. The Volcano National Park was outstanding.
Donna_E, Feb 2024
What a wonderful day on the Big Island. Josh picked us up and dropped us off at the Hilo airport for a very full and exciting day trip on the Big Island. We visited many sites in the park, Josh was very knowledgeable about island history, culture and the volcanoes. The sites included the Volcanoes Visitor Center, a lava tube, a steam vent, a lava field, the active crater with steam vents popping up everywhere. It was amazing to see. We have been before, never gets old. We also visited Rainbow falls and a local coffee/bakery. We had a blast and will hire Josh again on our next visit. Five stars all the way! Donna, Mark and family
Excellent National Park Tour
Jane_M, Feb 2024
Jill collected us at cruise terminal on time, lovely clean van, and she was a wonderful guide. Lots of information through the day and all from her perspective as local resident. Was an excellent tour and we are very pleased we chose to go with her company
Exceptional tour
Maryanne_I, Feb 2024
Josh was an excellent tour guide. He is deeply and personally knowledgeable about history and Hawaiian culture and able to communicate both in a clear and engaging way. We appreciated this tour greatly. (Note: I am a lifetime resident of Hawaii on Oahu and have taught a few classes on Hawaiian history. My wife is from the mainland and only beginning to learn about Hawaii. We both loved the tour and what Josh shared.)
Bucket list for seeing active volcanoes....check!
Cheryl_P, Feb 2024
Our guide Josh was SO knowledgeable about Hawaii and the National Park. He certainly made the trip amazing. I would highly recommend taking this tour and booking through Viator as the price per person was lower and it was easy to do! Thanks for the memories.
Fun and informative day trip
Shelby_R, Feb 2024
Our first stop was Rainbow Falls which was a beautiful waterfall. Afterwards we went to Volcanoes National Park and even visited the lava tube. The park was amazing and our guide was very knowledgeable and very sweet. Highly recommended.
Volcanoes National Park
Pamela_S, Jan 2024
Tour guide was very nice & knowledgeable- loved the Volcanoes National Park & Rainbow Falls- very fun excursion
Excellent, largely due to the driver/guide.
Thomas_K, Nov 2023
The driver/guide (Josh) was very knowledgeable on the flora, fauna, geology, history and folklore/legend of Hawaii, as well as infusing everything with a lot of “local color.”
🌋 Explosively Interesting & Informative Volcano Tour
Natalie_R, Nov 2023
We highly recommend this small group tour. Our guide Jill was engaging and informative, giving us a very local and personalized experience of living on the Big Island with an active volcano. She was great chatting to our two boys (10 & 8yo) (together with other tourists) and it was the perfect amount of walking and sightseeing of the rainbow falls, Kilauea volcano crater, steam vents and old lava flows, so our kids weren’t too exhausted by the end of it - especially given the final destination, the chocolate factory! The only thing I’d say is there is a lot of driving, but we got around it by giving them Audiobooks with headphones. We didn’t feel rushed and really enjoyed every aspect of this tour and it certainly helped with our homeschooling efforts 😂. Mahalo 🤙🏽
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From $167.54

up to 24 hours before the experience starts (local time)

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