Bike the Rim of the Volcano
The forty-five minute drive from Hilo to Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park leads you to one of the twenty World Heritage sites in North America and the only one in Hawaii.
The Visitors Center was a good place to get our bearings and hear the ranger’s talk before we joined an easy, three-hour, nine-mile “Bike Volcano” excursion. We pedaled along Crater Rim Drive, stopping to see various craters and steam vents and left our eco-friendly two-wheel vehicles to hike through Thurston Lava Tube. A few miles further we rested our bikes along the guard rail and watched volcanic emissions of ash and gas spewing from the Halema’umal’u Crater. We cruised through thick forests, along roads closed to traffic (sections had sunk into the crater) and amid volcanic rock fields. After a cool downhill ride the van met us with snacks, guava and passionfruit drinks and then zipped us back uphill to our cars.
An easy ten-minute drive from the park, Volcano Village offers a variety of lunch spots. We stopped to browse the art and gardens at Volcano Garden Art Center. After placing our order at the Café Ono for a locally-grown green salad, homemade tomato-vegetable soup and a crust-less cheese and spinach quiche, we wandered through the galleries and garden. Over 70 local contemporary artists display and sell their unique pieces of jewelry, pottery, photography, floral designs and fabric art.
Bike Volcano.com 808-934-9199
Volcano Garden Arts & Café Ono