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Hot Holidays: You¡¯ll Lava Hawaii Published: 22.10.2008 | Author: icampbell | Category: Destinations , Tour, Travel & Leisure
July 9th¡¯s eruption of Mount Kilauea on Hawaii¡¯s Big Island has done little to dissuade Hawaii¡¯s many tourists. In fact, it has had the opposite effect and has actually become something of a major tourist draw, as the magma flows reach the ocean and the volcano continues to spout lava bursts reaching up to 150 feet. The volcano has actually been erupting for over twenty years, with a continuous flow of lava being spewed forth from Kilauea since January 1983.

But while the spectacular lava waves provide an exhilarating spectacle for many tourists watching from a safe distance, many are availing themselves of a better view and an unforgettable experience by taking a helicopter tour over Hawaii¡¯s Volcanoes National Park and getting up close and personal with one of Mother Nature¡¯s most devastating natural phenomena.

Hawaii is essentially one giant volcano, and as you might expect , the volcanoes serve as a mainstay of Hawaiian tourism. Hawaii is the largest and youngest island in the Hawaii archipelago, and is formed from five different volcanoes, including the active Kilauea volcano. Of the remainder, three are dormant, while Mauna Loa, the world¡¯s largest shield volcano, is in an active state and last erupted in 1984. Kilauea lies situated against the southeast side of the much larger Mauna Loa volcano , and reaches only 1,247 metres above sea level. In contrast, Mauna Loa¡¯s rises 4,169 metres above sea level

Kilauea and Mauna Loa form the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, which is the island¡¯s most popular tourist attraction. Covering 377 square miles, over half of the park is designated as wilderness and offers exceptional hiking and camping opportunities. The Park was named as a World Heritage Site in 1987 and in addition to the helicopter tour, visitors can also take a crater rim drive around the 10 mile route which circles Kilauea Caldera and explore the parks main attractions , including the Jaggar Museum, the Thurston Lava Tube (which can be walked along) as well as overlooking the Halemaumau and Kilauea Iki craters.

However, if visiting the Volcanoes National Park sounds too hot to handle, then getting to grips with Hawaii¡¯s natural beauty with a trek through the Waipio Valley could be the answer. Located to the north of Big Island, Waipio Valley is sacred land to Hawaiians and was the boyhood home of King Kameameha I. The valley itself stretches for five miles, is a mile across and winds through cliffs up to 2000-feet in height. Extremely fertile, Waipio Valley was once home to thousands of Hawaiian natives , but now only a handful of natives still call the Valley home, living among the exhilarating waterfalls which cascade down over the cliffs. Take a tour and view the valley from the coastal overlook route, or explore the valley with a guided van or hiking tour, or even on horseback.

Sports enthusiasts can take advantage of any of Hawaii¡¯s twenty golf courses, some of which have been designed by the biggest names in golf course architecture, and wind their way through amazing contrasts where lush-green fairways meet jet-black lava rock, while the plentiful beaches and crystal clear waters are a magnet for swimmers , surfers and sun-worshippers.

However, if you just want to eat, drink and be merry then the towns of Hilo and Kialua-Kona are sure to appeal. Hilo is Hawaii¡¯s main town and lies at the feet of three of the island¡¯s volcanoes. Despite its centuries-old wooden shopfronts, Hilo is a bustling, modern town which encompasses sophisticated galleries, restaurants, shops and an array of cultural attractions , including the Pacific Tsunami Museum and the Lyman Museum and House among others.

On the opposite side of Hawaii, Kailua-Kona is a lively seaside town and was once home for Hawaiian royalty. Nowadays Kailua town is a place to shop, dine and immerse oneself in Hawaii¡¯s rich culture, encapsulated by the Kaila-Kona coastline.

If you¡¯re considering a United States holiday, but are growing tired of the endless theme parks of Florida, then Hawaii holidays could provide an exciting alternative. After all, not everyone can say they¡¯ve holidayed on a volcano!

Isla Campbell writes on a number of topics on behalf of a digital marketing agency and a variety of clients. As such , this article is to be considered a professional piece with business interests in mind.

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Article Tags: Hawaii holidays, Hilo, Kaila-Kona, Kilauea, Mauna Loa, volcanic eruption, volcano , Waipo Valley

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