Mauna Kea Summit and Stars - Gecko Big Island Tours
The drive to the summit of Mauna Kea is one you'll never forget. It's hard to believe you're in Hawaii as you climb to 13,796 feet above sea level. Once at the summit you are afforded spectacular views of the horizon, Haleakala on Maui, Mauna Loa and Hualalai, and Mauna Kea the world's tallest mountain, rising over 32,000 feet from the ocean floor to its summit, which is considered by many Hawaiians to be the most sacred place in all the islands. You'll stand in awe at both nature's sublime creation and man's astonishing technological achievements.
Starting out from Kona, travel up the coast over desolate lava flows for about a half hour before proceeding up the rolling pastureland's on the flanks of Mauna Kea. From Hilo are lush green flora and moonscape lava fields. Turning onto the Saddle Road it travels the island between Mauna Loa and Mauna Kea, you'll see a dramatic and diverse landscape of ranch-land, sub-alpine dry forest and rain-forest (with striking features such as cinder cones, lava flows, lava tubes and kipuka). You will first spend some time acclimating at the 9,200 level while enjoying hot soup. After dinner and with a jacket in hand, you'll make the 45 minute drive to the summit, you'll be fascinated by your interpretive guide's interpretation of Hawaii's remarkable natural, cultural, and geologic history. After sunset descend to the Visitor's Information Station at the 9,000 foot elevation for a special stargazing show from your guide and volunteer astronomers. Wrapped warm in your jacket, enjoying hot beverages, you will marvel at the brilliance of the Hawaiian night sky. Your knowledgeable interpretive guide will share with you stories of the observable universe and offer you a personal and educational look at the heavens.
Operates: Daily meeting time between 2:00 to 4:00pm, times vary with season
Departure Point: Pick Up at choice Hotels and Condos from Hilo or Kona side.
Duration: 6-7 Hours from Hilo and 8-9 hours from Kona Side
Equipment: 4x4 Luxury SUV or on occassion a 4x4 van.
Capacity: Minimum of 4, maximum 14 passengers
Hot Ramen Cup of Soup, picnic dinner, hot chocolate and bottled water.
Inclusions: Transportation, tour guide, food and a jacket.
Serves Alcohol: There is not any alcohol available during the activity.
Foreign Language Translation: There is no foreign language translation available.
Handicapped Accessible: This tour is not suitable for handicapped individuals.
What to Bring: It is recommended that you bring a camera with you. We suggest bringing your camera in a ziplock bag in case you need to protect it from the elements. It is required that everyone wears closed toed shoes on this activity. We recommend that you bring a light sweater or jacket. It is required that everyone wears long pants on this activity. We recommend that everyone in your group brings sunglasses. We recommend that everyone in your group brings warm clothes.
Restrictions: Children whose age is less than thirteen years old are not permitted on this activity. People who do not have a moderate level of physical fitness will not be permitted on this activity. People who have gone SCUBA diving within twenty-four hours of the scheduled check in time are not permitted on this activity. Cancellations of this reservation cannot be made within seventy-two hours of the scheduled check in time.
Guests should be able to walk on uneven or rocky terrain. We sometimes encounter cool, wet or muddy conditions. Because of high altitude this tour is not advised for those with respiratory, circulatory or heart conditions, pregnancy or poor health.Scuba divers should be aware of altitude dangers. No diving with in 24 hours of going to Mauna Kea summit.Children must be 13 years or older to go to the summit of Mauna Kea. This tour has a 72 hour cancellation policy. This means that once you're within 72 hours of the start time, the tour the tour is non refundable. If you choose to cancel before this time, the standard 10% cancellation fee will apply. If the vendor needs to cancel your tour because of weather, a mechanical issue or any other reason you will receive a 100% refund of the price you paid.
From Hilo - Adult 13 and Up
From Kona - Adult 13 and Up
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