Kilauea Crater Rim Drive

The colored number circles correspond to
the links on the right side of this page.

  1. Kilauea Visitor Center
  2. Sulphur Banks
  3. Steam Vents and Steaming Bluff
  4. Kilauea Overlook
  5. Hawaiian Volcano Observatory & Jaggar Museum
  6. Southwest Rift Zone
  7. Halemaumau Overlook
  8. Keanakakoi Overlooks
  9. Puu Puai Overlook
  10. Thurston Lava Tube
  11. Kilauea Iki Overlook

Crater Rim Drive, Stop 1 - Kilauea Visitor Center

A stop at the Kilauea Visitor Center is a good way to start a visit to the park. The visitor center is open from 7:45 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. daily, year round. Interpretive rangers provide information at the front desk. In addition to exhibits about the park and a sales outlet for the Hawaii Natural History Association, the center contains an auditorium for programs. A 30-minute film is shown on the hour from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. A schedule for ranger guided walks is usually posted by 10 a.m. On many Tuesday evenings a special program, After Dark in the Park, features experts on the park's geology, biology, and cultural history. This photograph shows the close proximity of the Visitor Center to Kilauea Caldera. Halemaumau pit crater is in the center of the photo and the southeast slope of Mauna Loa volcano is on the horizon.

A common question at the Visitor Center is "Where's the volcano?" The answer is "you are on it" but thick forest hides the view of Kilauea's summit. A short, 5-minute walk to the overlook behind the Volcano House Hotel will convince you that you are on an active volcano. The caldera is also seen along Crater Rim Drive and Crater Rim Trail.

Written and Photographed by Steve Mattox except where stated.

Sources of Information

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