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Maunakea Visitor Information Station

Certificate of Excellence
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Address: Mauna Kea Access Road, 6 miles uphill, Hilo, Island of Hawaii, HI 96720
Phone Number:
+1 808-961-2180
09:00 - 22:00
Open now
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Sun - Sat 09:00 - 22:00
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Mauna Kea Voyage
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Mauna Kea Summit and Stars Small-Group Adventure Tour

TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 1,258 reviews
Visitor rating
  • 699
  • 255
    Very good
  • 87
  • 17
  • 10
Sunset and Stargazing

Wow, simply wow! This is worth the trip up and worth freezing for. It gets to be 32F with the wind at night. Simply amazing how many stars, planets, and galaxies one could see... read more

5 of 5 bubblesReviewed 2 days ago
Anchorage, Alaska
via mobile
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1,258 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 1,068: English reviews
Anchorage, Alaska
Level Contributor
44 reviews
14 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 days ago NEW via mobile

Wow, simply wow! This is worth the trip up and worth freezing for. It gets to be 32F with the wind at night. Simply amazing how many stars, planets, and galaxies one could see. Get there early to watch sunset, but mainly to get a parking spot. Bring a picnic and enjoy the sunset as you wait for the night... More 

Thank AlaskaJJ
Level Contributor
69 reviews
25 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 4 days ago NEW

This visit is something I will never forget. I've been to the Big Island about 5 times but it wasn't until my sixth visit that I finally visiting Mauna Kea. The stars that I saw without even using a telescope were amazing... I saw the Milky Way, and a satellite orbiting the earth, not to mention a few planets and... More 

Thank JenniElaine
Munster, Indiana
Level Contributor
132 reviews
52 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 37 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 6 days ago NEW

The Manuakea Visitor Center has a great gift shop (unusual gifts for avid constellation fans). After sunset you can enjoy a ranger-led informational talk on constellations (so beautiful in the dark sky) with large telescopes. The Big Island uses yellow lights, directed down, for their street lights to keep the lights low for the workers using the observatories on top...makes... More 

Thank Penny37357
Chicago, Illinois
Level Contributor
183 reviews
69 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 61 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago via mobile

I even enjoyed the winding drive up the side of the volcano. After a day of hiking my daughters convinced me that we could make it up for sunset. We made it with 15 minutes to spare. The views were breathtaking. The crowds were large so stargazing meant a lot of waiting in line. Since this was the holidays they... More 

Thank Jeff P
Honolulu, Hawaii
Level Contributor
55 reviews
11 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago

We opted for a night visit to Mauna Kea for star gazing. It was one of the more manageable bucket list items; and it was manageable at 44 degrees. Clear skies made it possible not only see the many stars (simply line up to peer through any of the telescopes set up outside facility) but to notice the blanket of... More 

1 Thank Imelda A
Cedarburg, Wisconsin, United States
Level Contributor
12 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 weeks ago

Whether your an amateur astronomer or just curious about the universe, this is a great way to learn about astronomy and experience the best star show in the world. Dress warm because it will be cold! Plan to stay at least 90 minutes past sunset for best viewing. The stars really start to pop at that point.

1 Thank Jim M
Level Contributor
70 reviews
24 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 weeks ago via mobile

Interesting. Not for small children. Bathrooms are clean. Snacks and drinks available for purchase. Outside picnic area

1 Thank Brandi1970
Houghton, Michigan, Usa
Level Contributor
35 reviews
23 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 weeks ago

We drove up to the visitor center as part of our sightseeing of the north end of Hawaii Island. I saw it three years ago as a stop during an excursion to the observatories, and wanted to take the family up to see the visitor center. It's interesting driving partway up the mountain. This trip it was very cloudy at... More 

2 Thank snyderkr1
Tracy, California
Level Contributor
23 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 weeks ago via mobile

Dragged my family in their warmest clothes up the mountain of Maunakea. They couldn't believe that it would be cold in Hawaii. Not only was it cold, it was freezing! Snow on top of the mountain and loaded in the back of trucks sitting at the visitors center. We arrived shortly after 6pm and they were moving telescopes out to... More 

2 Thank ladurant2982
Kansas City
Level Contributor
87 reviews
38 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 39 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 weeks ago

Visitor's Center is the first stop before going to the Summit. It has big parking, gift shop, hot drinks stand, restrooms, several volunteers with their telescopes. Stargazing activity starts @ 5 or 6 pm and it gets very crowded.

1 Thank Ritochka

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Questions & Answers

Here's what previous visitors have asked, with answers from representatives of Maunakea Visitor Information Station and other visitors
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Questions? Get answers from Maunakea Visitor Information Station staff and past visitors.
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Typical questions asked:
  • Do I have to buy a ticket for my infant?
  • How do I get there using public transportation?
  • Is there a restaurant or café onsite?