Thurston Lava Tube (Nahuku Trail)

Explore the mesmerizing Thurston Lava Tube on Big Island, Hawaii. Delve into a 500-year-old volcanic tunnel and wander through lush rainforest surroundings.

Thurston Lava Tube (Nahuku Trail) is a Hiking Trail located in the city of Volcano on Big Island, Hawaii
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Things to Know About Thurston Lava Tube (Nahuku Trail)

  • Overview: Thurston Lava Tube, also known as Nahuku Trail, is a remarkable geological wonder located in Volcano on Big Island, Hawaii. Nestled within Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park, this must-see attraction offers visitors a unique opportunity to explore an ancient lava tube formed by volcanic activity.
  • Highlights: The main highlight of Thurston Lava Tube is the chance to walk through a 500-year-old lava tube, experiencing the fascinating geological formations up close. The lush rainforest surroundings and the eerie, otherworldly atmosphere within the tube make it a truly unforgettable experience.
  • Activities: Visitors to Thurston Lava Tube can enjoy a leisurely walk through the 0.3-mile (0.5 km) loop trail, which takes them through the lava tube and the surrounding rainforest. In addition, the nearby Kīlauea Iki Trail offers a more challenging hike with breathtaking views of the Kīlauea Iki Crater.
  • Information: Thurston Lava Tube is open daily from 7:00 AM to 10:00 PM. Entrance to the lava tube is included in the Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park entrance fee, which is $30 per vehicle or $15 per individual. The best time to visit is early morning or late afternoon, as the site can get crowded during peak hours.
  • History & Significance: Thurston Lava Tube was discovered in 1913 by Lorrin A. Thurston, a local newspaper publisher, and has since become an iconic symbol of Hawai’i’s volcanic history. The lava tube was formed when molten lava flowed through the area, leaving behind a hollow tunnel as it cooled and solidified.
  • Tips & Insights: To enhance your visit to Thurston Lava Tube, bring a flashlight or headlamp to better explore the darker sections of the tube. Wear comfortable walking shoes and be prepared for damp conditions, as the rainforest environment can be wet and slippery. Lastly, don’t forget your camera to capture the stunning beauty of this unique attraction!

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