Hawaii Volcanoes National Park has officially reopened following volcanic activity from Kilauea that had kicked off May 11.
During the eruption, most of the national park had been closed to the public, with only the Kahuku Unit remaining open. Most of the rest of the park officially resumed its 24-hour a day operation as of September 22. While an official count was not immediately available, officials estimated that several thousand people returned to the park on its official reopening day. Workers were able to restore the park’s drinking water in time for the reopening, and the park’s mule, Clyde, and the park’s part quarter horse, ‘Ōhi‘a, were also on hand to greet guests.
Some parts of the park remain closed while further damage assessments and repairs are underway. The park has a map of the closed areas, as well as new hazards created during the eruption, at https://www.nps.gov/havo/closed_areas.htm.
New Tours From KapohoKine
To celebrate the reopening Hawaii Island-based KapohoKine Adventures has launched two new adventure and hotel packages. The “Hawaii Volcanoes National Park Adventure by LAND” will take visitors to the Kilauea Caldera, which since the May 11 eruption has become a massive, 1,000+ foot deep crater rather than a lava lake, according to the company. Also included are a deli lunch, Hawaiian-style barbeque dinner with vineyard tour and wine tasting at Volcano Winery and one room night accommodations. Price is $358 plus tax for two persons, with $179 plus tax per person for additional guests, representing a 30 percent discount.
The “GRAND” package includes everything in the “LAND” package, as well as two more experiences. At the Zipline Through Paradise eight-line ziplining course, guests will be able to experience the island’s longest riding tandem line at 2,400 feet. After that, the package includes a 50-minute Circle of Fire Helicopter Tour, which offers sights of rain forests, waterfalls and the volcano from above. Price is $1,118 plus tax for two, with additional guests at $579 per person plus tax, representing a $200 discount.
Accommodations are at the Grand Naniloa Hilo Hotel. Rates are valid through December 31.
The Kilauea volcanic activity, which began May 11, destroyed more than 700 homes and covered approximately 13.7 square miles of land in the lower Puna area with lava. It also added an estimated 875 acres of new land to the island.
In early September, the Hawaii Tourism Authority (HTA) officially noted the one-month mark since the continuous flow of lava from Kilauea had ceased. The HTA also reported that air quality island-wide is clean and clear.