Tallest Mountains in Hawaii Island
Tall mountains and the snow-capped peaks have attracted everyone forever. For any travel enthusiast or nature lover or adventure seeker, Hawaii is a perfect destination to explore. From Kauai’s green lush mountain ranges to rugged beauties of Big Islands, It has something for everyone. Hawaii or the Big Island from the United States is blessed with not one but 13 mountains peaks that are higher than 500m, of which Mount Kea is the tallest.
Nature’s beauty is Hawaii’s greatest asset. Hawaii has 13 mountains and astonishingly most of the highest peaks of Hawaii are volcanic in nature. These mountains are a rich source of the natural resource. They have been exploited to a very large extent in the past, that now they have been left to recover.
Most of the tourists are attracted to the sandy beaches of Hawaii and its natural beauty, but then these tallest mountains are a visual treat and should be trailed:
1. Mauna Kea
Mauna Kea is the tallest Mountain in Hawaii. Towering above the Kohala coast at 13,796 feet above the sea level and stands 33,476 feet from the Pacific ocean. Because of its mighty height, it was earlier named as Mauna a Wakea which means “the mountain that belongs to the sky”. Later the name was changed to Mauna Kea within a year. The mythology associated this mountain is that it is the place of Gods and Kapu. You can marvel at the tallest mountain of the world when measured from base to summit and enjoy stargazing here.
Things to do near- Mauna Kea observatories, Onizuka Astronomy complex, Mauna Kea State Park
Know with the name of ‘House of the Sun’, this peak measures 10,023 feet. Haleakala is a massive summit which is seven miles long and two miles wide and 2600 deep with steep walls. The mountain is bare and is a part of the Haleakala National Park. The hikers here go 200 feet downhill in the volcano and uphill on the way back. The experience one can get is truly unforgettable. Visiting the summit during sunrise is very popular. It is one of the most active volcanoes in Hawaii.
Things to do nearby: Haleakala National Park, Kaanapali Beach, Waianapanapa State Park
It is an active volcano of Hawaii which emerged from the ocean around 300,000 years ago. Its peak stands 8271 feet tall above the sea level. This fascinating peak, and as per studies, could erupt in the next century. The natives inhabit it, and many royals had built palaces on its slope. The majority of the land around the base is privately owned, and this peak has an easy hike. On your trek, you may encounter many rare plant species and nature reserves.
Things to do nearby: Visit Mountain Thunder Coffee plantation
4. Diamond Head
close to the eastern coastline Oahu, Diamond Head is Waikiki’s most prominent landmark. It is very popular and easy to hike. The hikers can go upto 560 feet in elevation from the floor of the volcano. The views are spectacular from this place and one can also view Waikiki and the near lying ocean.
Things to do nearby– KCC Farmers Market, Kapiolani Park, Diamond Head Beach Park
Kamakou is the highest peak of the island Molokai, at 4961 feet is a shield volcano. It has been converted to Nature Conservancy site as it has 250 rare Hawaiian Plants. It is a very pristine and hidden peak, so it gives you a fantastic feeling when you hike it. The best time to hike is from April to October.
Things to do Nearby: visit the lush Waikolu Valley.
Kawaikini is the highest summit on the central volcano on the island of Kauai. It perhaps the wettest place on the Earth and offers the best picturesque views. Thanks to the extinct volcano, rain, and erosions that have contributed to its jagged. Now it serves as a backdrop for many films like South Pacific, Jurassic Park, and a few others. As it remains damp throughout the year, it is very challenging to climb it. However, you can manage to reach the summit by climbing a ridge from the northeast side. Another way to reach there is by slogging through the Alakai Swamp, starting from the tracks of Kokee State Park. The cliffs along the summit rim are known as “The Blue Hole” and “Waialeale Crater” which is not a crater but mainly an erosional feature. This place draws many tourists every year.
Things to do Nearby: Beaches, waterfalls, and state parks are beautiful and are free of cost so you can visit them.
7. Mount Lao
Mount Lao is amongst the five volcanoes that form the Hawaii island in the United States. It is an active volcano which stands 13,679 feet tall and has erupted multiple times in the 20th century. Mt Lao has been often a matter of great interest for the tourists as the dry lava often attracts them for great scenic beauties. It is also an excellent place for astronomical observation. Apart from this, Mount Lao provides a great trail and is hiked by many every year.
The above are the few tallest mountains of Hawaii, which should be in your bucket list for your next vacation to Hawaii. However, if you plan to visit or hike these mountains take all safety measures and consult the visitor center before hiking these beauties.