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Maunakea Visitor Information Station

Mauna Kea Access Road, 6 miles uphill from the intersection of Route 200, Hilo, Island of Hawaii, HI 96720
+1 808-961-2180
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US$ 230.00*
and up
Mauna Kea Summit and Stars Small-Group Adventure Tour
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Overview
  • Excellent64%
  • Very good25%
  • Average9%
  • Poor1%
  • Terrible1%
Travellers talk about
“star gazing” (147 reviews)
“night sky” (100 reviews)
“mauna kea” (184 reviews)
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Hours Today: 12:00 PM - 10:00 PM
LOCATION
Mauna Kea Access Road, 6 miles uphill from the intersection of Route 200, Hilo, Island of Hawaii, HI 96720
CONTACT
Website
+1 808-961-2180
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JPMiles / Payback Arrow
Reviews (1,508)
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All reviews
"star gazing"
in 147 reviews
"night sky"
in 100 reviews
"mauna kea"
in 184 reviews
"hot chocolate"
in 72 reviews
"wheel drive"
in 70 reviews
"milky way"
in 68 reviews
"bring warm clothes"
in 40 reviews
"stargazing program"
in 25 reviews
"watch the sunset"
in 55 reviews
"night vision"
in 18 reviews
"light pollution"
in 23 reviews
"saddle road"
in 78 reviews
"visitor's center"
in 51 reviews
"new moon"
in 17 reviews
"sea level"
in 30 reviews
"gift shop"
in 62 reviews
"naked eye"
in 19 reviews
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1 - 10 of 1,279 reviews

Reviewed 2 days ago

Took a little time to make it to the top, and we were only there for a short while during the daytime hours, but view was exhilarating. Don't underestimate the temperature change and oxygen decrease as you ascend. We were prepared and still became short...More

Thank philsbert
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 6 days ago via mobile

Pretty chilly day the upper part of the summit was closed 0 degree weather up there... I Spar Center... Don't forget your jacket... Incredible View... What can you say it's Mauna Kea

Thank David A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 week ago

this was the 2nd year in a row we booked the tour to summit and star gazing and 2 years in a row cancelled due to weather. We waited a few days and decided to drive the saddle road ourselves and visit the Mauna Kea...More

1  Thank WeekendWalker0891
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
See more reviews
Reviewed 1 week ago

It is a trek to get up there but it is very worth it, so many stars and so bright this was differently worth the trip.

Thank FogHat13
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 week ago via mobile

The drive to the visitors center (not all the way to the summit) was scenic and relatively easy. Parking at the visitors center was organized chaos. The small visitors center was crowded. The center offered a video presentation and basic information about the observatory and...More

Thank alwaysplanning50
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 weeks ago via mobile

This trip is a must if you are on the island. Need to do a little research on the activities prior to going. You might Google MKVIS and follow advice or call. I have been up here several times, but only to the top once....More

2  Thank Bob R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 weeks ago

Start by the sea and drive up, and up, and up, and up some more. Watch the climate change form tropical jungle to temperate to high desert. Bring warm clothes because you may even experience Hawai'ian snow. It does happen. Caution! Do not go if...More

2  Thank 673jaya
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 weeks ago via mobile

I wasn’t impressed with the staff, the place or the stars. The last is controlled by the weather and you can’t fault that but the rest really wasn’t worth the trip. I was happier stopping along the route and taking pictures. You get what you...More

1  Thank DeniseD2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 weeks ago

All the times we've been to the Big Island this is the first time we went to Mauna Kea. The visitors center was smaller than I thought it would be but there were some cool things there. They have several telescopes for night time viewing....More

1  Thank molokaimama
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 weeks ago via mobile

Are you kidding???? We.drove 6 miles up the road to find the visitor information center closed!!! Perhaps the state should have a.sign on saddle road with the hours???

Thank dolly572016
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Questions & Answers
d h
I’m planning on going to Hawaii in December 2017. Is going to the Visitor Information Station (VIS) worth it, without visiting the summit? Does it matter for the VIS if you’re there during the day only, or if is it better if you’re there at dark? (I’m not bringing my own telescope). Is it regular practice to ignore the rental contract and just drive to the summit if you know how to drive mountain roads (weather permitting)? Basically, I don’t want to take the time to drive up the mountain road and only look at a kiosk. If the VIS is just a kiosk, with no view, I’d rather go the summit. If I can’t do that, I’d just skip it altogether, I have mountain views at home :) As background, I’m from Colorado and drive in the mountains frequently. I have no qualms about driving 2WD vehicles on gravel, steep, narrow roads - in good conditions. I really understand that wet, snowy or icy conditions (and night) changes things dramatically, as does roads with crazy steep inclines, large boulders, and bad weather, will make any trip high-clearance 4WD vehicle worthy.
7 December 2017|
AnswerShow all 7 answers
Response from WonderingWhimsy | Reviewed this property |
The Visitor Information Station and watching the sunset was the best thing I did on the Big Island.
0
Votes
Cee G
26 October 2017|
AnswerShow all 4 answers
Response from Beth C | Reviewed this property |
I agree with Brad W. However, I wouldn't count on anyone bringing their personal telescope and would bring your own.
1
Vote
deepakwins
30 August 2017|
AnswerShow all 15 answers
Response from wgregbraun | Reviewed this property |
If you are going to the visitor center any decent rental car will make it there...you need a four well drive to onward to the summit Bring warm clothes and arrive a half hour before sunset so you can enjoy that...there is... More
0
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