Explore Big Island - view hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Big Island Map

As the locals say “1 mile down-10 miles up”! Worth the leg burn down. Beach and waterfall views are awesome. Think Stairmaster going up! Pack water, snacks and wear good shoes. Go earn that beer! Recommend the nachos at Big Island Brewing in Waimea for post-climb refuel.

Yes absolutely should you rent a bike, and I command you to rent it from Stretch, the gentle giant with plush spirit animals tied to his bikes for half the price of the competitors. No, you do not need no stinking map, it will be obvious where to go, there's smoke. You will want to mark the location of your bike on your map though, as you'll be hiking back to it in pitch darkness, unless there's something wrong with you and you don't want to see lava in the dark. You want to see it in the dark. From the bike ditch point we hiked about 2 miles to the north east towards the slopes, there was no flow into the ocean that day. After your hike at dusk over crispity crunchy newly formed earth, you will come upon an the active area, active with lava and active with people. At this point you will start to notice many people freaking out as they realize their feet are burning. This should alarm you, especially if you're wearing Converse Chuck Taylor's (humanity's greatest hiking shoe), as you soon become aware that your feet are practically on fire because you just ran right up to lava and locked eyes with it, unable to look away. There is a simple trick: Move to a cooler rock. Yes, there are cool rocks right next to the hot ones, they are typically the ones that don't look like there's a BBQ underneath them. Another trick for not dying: try to stay upwind of the lava. Death tends to occur when one is standing near the lava, it begins to rain, and POOF! a beautiful hot cloud of sulfurous death envelopes you! Now that's what I call fun. Certainly someone has died trying to cook a hot dog over the stuff. Some people deserve it, hot dogs are bad news. Be sure to have fresh batteries in your headlamp, the hike back to your bike will take longer since you're not racing towards sexy magma in the daylight, you're stumbling around in the dark and giggling. Stretch had already closed up by the time we got back, but we ran into him the next day and he was thankful we put the bikes away under the tarp. What a guy. Thank you Stretch. Thank you Pele.

Neat hike through island rain forest and down into an inactive volcano's crater. According to the NPS, the volcano last erupted in 1959 sending lava 1900 feet into the air. Incredible to consider all the plant life that has grown in around the rim of the crater considering what must have been left after such a violent irruption. The rainforest along the rim was lush and green which was an amazing contrast to what you find in the crater once you descend in. It was like walking through an asphalt paved valley, complete with steam as if parts of the asphalt were freshly laid! Also amazing was the plant life that has begun to grow through the lava to begin reclaiming the crater floor. We hiked this on a day when the air quality was rated as unhealthy for sensitive groups, but felt no effects. Bring water, as it does get hot on the crater floor. The descent and ascent back out of the crater are a good workout. We also through on the Lava Tubes at the tail end of the hike before returning to the parking lot where we parked the rental car. Great hike!

5 days ago

Please don't "climb over the rocks" to get a better view. We have had rain here everyday for over a month. I work across the street- the river is fast and high.

Great fairly easy hike. Closer to 4 Miles making the whole loop. I advise taking the recommended path starting with the long side of the crater rim on top. Awesome flora and fauna along the way, and the descent into the crater is steeper that way than the ascent will be in the other end. Plus, you will end up close to the entrance of Thurston Lava Tube which is just under 0.5 mile lava tube you can walk through.

Quick and easy view. Not really a hike at all. Except to go up the stairs to see it from the top.

I'm sure this is a beautiful trail, but I also don't want to get abducted while trying to see it.

I was about to begin the trail with my mom, when a car pulled over by where I was parked and the two locals inside kindly advised us against it. The man told us that a young man had been abducted in the last few weeks while hiking this trail, and although the views were lovely, that it was the type of area where people could hide and catch you if you weren't well-guarded. He mentioned that a group or burly-looking guy could probably manage, but not two ladies. Shame to be a woman at times like these.

Paying it forward - hopefully no one else gets hurt here.

road biking
12 days ago

Wow! Amazing! We biked to see the lava flow into the ocean. Be sure you lock your bike and hike inland to see the surface lava flow if possible! Dangerous but I you’ll never see something like this somewhere else...

Nice and easy hike, beautiful scenery, beautiful contrast between the forest and the desertic look of the crater :)

We hiked (walked a gravel road) to the US Park boundary and then another 2 hours up towards the mountain and found a small area of lava. The lava fields are expansive and deceptive in size. 6 hours roundtrip with 20 min oooh and ahhh.

Great hike, see the rain forest and the crater

A short and well maintained trail, cool to see the lava tube. But there were so many tour buses pulling up every moment that there was basically a line to get through and everyone was moving very slowly and taking up the whole path with their selfie sticks.

Short, easy, crowded. But pretty cool looking and especially interesting geologically

Did this one a little over a week ago. Amazing, especially in the rain! Can’t miss this if you’re on the big island.

My husband and I walked this trail on a cool rainy day and it was absolutely fantastic! Start in lush rain forest then pick your way through lava rocks, then walk along the flat surface of the caldera. Be sure and pick up a guide at the start of the trail to learn interesting facts along the way. We arrived around 9:30 and found a convenient parking place and started hiking. We encountered very few people until toward the end. As others have said - walk counter clockwise on this trail. Also, when it seems you have reached the end - you haven't - continue walking along the overflow parking area and follow the trail back to the main Kilauea Iki parking lot. Do not miss this!

26 days ago

Easy trail to beautiful beaches.

Easy paved trail to view of the falls.

Short and easy. Many water puddles in cave. Prepare to get your feet wet.

Nice trail and view of crater.

A short but beautiful walk! The tubes were cool but I wished it was longer. It took about 2 minutes to walk through the tubes and the rest of the trail took about 10 minutes.

Beautiful lookout over the falls! The lookout is really close to the parking lot, so not really a hike. You can head up a staircase and climb over some rocks to see the falls from the top, I would definitely recommend doing that.

Awesome trail through gorgeous rain forest and across the crater. We went early so it was nice and cool. Would definitely hike it again.

Easy and beautiful. 5/5

1 month ago

Super easy paved walk way to both waterfalls

Amazing waterfalls! Water drops down almost vertically.

The trail has great views of the bay. It is strenuous on the way back. Tallest waterfalls in Big island is visible on the hike when you follow hike along the back waters. Black sand beach is very nice too. Should visit in the morning hours as later than noon gets very hot in the valley.

So much to see! After you stop at the overload to see the waterfall, drive on past the the actual lookout and park at the next pull off area on the left. Cross the road into the wooden area...unbelievable trees-beyond description! Excellent for kids (& adults) to play on. Continue on through a narrow pathway to find a path to a swimming area-gorgeous! You can't see the waterfall from here. In fact, it was all so beautiful, we forgot to go back to see the waterfall but didn't even care.

Beautiful falls! Only four stars because the entire trail is paved and we don't count those as "real" trails. :) Much of the trail is up and down on stairs but plenty of level paths in between to catch your breath. Not much parking. $1 per person entry fee if you park on the road and not their parking lot.

Very cool! Grab a trail guide from the Kilauea Iki trailhead for a number of informational blurbs at marked points along the hike.

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