Volcano Tour: Kona Coffee & Craters
Schedule: Tour daily. 6 - 7 hours round trip, departs from Hawaii Forest & Trail Headquarters.
Rated: Easy to Moderate; ages 8 and over.
Included in the Tour: Deli style lunch with assorted soft drinks, juices and bottled water. 100% Kona coffee tasting served at coffee farm.
Gear Provided: Walking sticks, warm wear, day packs and rain ponchos.
Prices: Adult: $159.00, plus tax. Child (8 - 12): $139.00, plus tax.
Group Size: Tour limited to a maximum of 12 guests.
Restrictions: Guests should be able to hike on uneven or rocky terrain. We sometimes encounter cool, wet or muddy conditions. Other tour restrictions may apply.
What to Bring & Wear: Comfortable walking shoes, a hat, sunscreen and a light sweatshirt or jacket.
On the slopes of Hualalai lies the world famous Kona Coffee Belt. Nourished by afternoon showers and rich volcanic soil, this region produces some of the finest and most sought after coffee in the world. On this fun and exciting exploration we’ll journey from sea-level through a dense rainforest to a world of volcanic majesty at the 6,000 ft. elevation on the privately owned lands of Kaupulehu. Although in plain sight of Kailua-Kona, these seldom-visited uplands are seemingly geologic light-years away.
The story of Kona Coffee unfolds as we explore the volcanic and royal history of this area. Amidst distinctive native birdsongs, our rock-rambling tour will take you through a beautiful and surreal landscape of native dryland forest, lava flows and stunning craters. We focus on the northwest rift of Hualalai where most of the volcanic activity has been concentrated over the years. Along with three distinctive types of craters, your Interpretive Guide will also lead you on foot on an exploration through an impressive lava tube. If you don’t have time to visit Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, this is your chance to experience a Hawaiian volcano.
After exploring the area’s volcanic features we’ll descend into the Kona Coffee Belt to a family-owned coffee estate. This working coffee farm encompasses all aspects of the coffee process: growing, harvest, processing, roasting and packaging all happens here. You’ll go behind the scenes to see how bright red coffee cherries are hand-picked, meticulously sorted for color and size, then roasted to perfection to produce a delicious cup of Kona coffee. Of course, you’ll have a chance to sample the varieties and roasts, and buy whole-bean coffee direct from the farmer.
If you’ve always wondered what makes Kona Coffee so special then this is the tour for you!
How much hiking do we do? We’ll stop a couple times throughout the adventure for short hikes of less than ½ a mile.
Is there elevation gain? The single track trail meanders through native forest with a mild elevation change of approximately 30 feet. While exploring the lava tube, expect to descend and ascend approximately 30 - 40 feet.
How many different types of craters do we see? Along the tour, we’ll see three distinct types of craters: spatter cone, fissure and pit collapse.
Do we need any special type of equipment to explore the lava tube? The lava tube we visit is perfect for the casual adventurer. We’ll descend via earthen steps with a rope to assist and there’s enough ambient light to see all of the major features.
Is Hualalai Volcano active? Technically speaking, yes. Hualalai’s last eruption ended in 1801 so it is considered active. However, the magma is not close to the surface so don’t expect to see any geothermal activity.