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overnight stay for volcano national park?

elaine

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If we are staying in Waikoloa, do we need to stay overnight near Volcano Nat. Park to see the volcano? Where should we stay for 1 night--2 adults, 3 kids? If we stay overnight, other things to see/do on that side? Esp. shore snorkeling. thanks, Elaine
 
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slip

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You don't need to but it depends how much driving your used to. I wouldn't
drive back in one day. My brother went and drove all over in a day and thought
nothing of it. If you plan on returning to the Big Island, I would relax take your
time and see what you want to see on the west side without being rushed.
That's what I did. We're saving the east side and the volcano for another trip.
Not that you would need an excuse to go back to Hawaii.:D

There is another thread that talks about places to stay. Sounds like the choices
are limited. When we go back, we planned staying at Sea Mountain for our stay.
 

DeniseM

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There is plenty to do in the park for an over-night stay. I don't believe you can shore snorkel there - I don't think the park even has a beach/swimming area. The shore line within the park is all new rocky lava flow. But you can snorkel many other places, so I'd use my time to explore the park while you are there - there is a lot to see. I would recommend that you stay right in the park if you can.

More info. - http://www.nps.gov/havo/planyourvisit/index.htm

The park hotel (Volcano House) is currently closed for renovations, but a good alternative is the inexpensive R&R Military Camp located right in the park: Kilauea Military Camp. If you have a military connection (friend or family, current or former military) they can make a Resv. for you (this is permitted.) The camp has comfortable rooms and cottages, a store, coffee shop, buffet, recreation, and it's right across from the big caldera.

http://www.kmc-volcano.com/

If that's not an option for you, there are many B&B's and small hotels in the area, and Hilo is not too far with more hotel options.
 
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Luanne

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Our favorite place to stay in Volcano Village, in fact the only place we've ever stayed there, is the Kilauea Lodge. Even if you don't stay there, plan to have dinner there one night (reservations are a must).

http://www.kilauealodge.com/
 

T_R_Oglodyte

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If we are staying in Waikoloa, do we need to stay overnight near Volcano Nat. Park to see the volcano? Where should we stay for 1 night--2 adults, 3 kids? If we stay overnight, other things to see/do on that side? Esp. shore snorkeling. thanks, Elaine
There is plenty to see and do on that side of the island. Because it's less heavily touristed it's much less crowded and relaxing. When we're on that side of the island we always try to stay at least three nights.

****

As for logistics from Waikoloa ... by far the best volcano viewing is at night if the is an exposed lava flow. If you do that, which I highly recommend, it's about a four-hour drive back to Waikoloa from the end of Charin of Craters Road. If the flow is going it couild be anywhere on the lava field out there - you should figure it's going to take you at least one-hour to get back to where you parked your car for the viewing (and 1-1/2 hours is more likely). And you'll want to be out there for at least one hour sunset.

IOW - you will likely return no earlier than 1 am. Hence my steadfast recommendation to get some accommodations on that side of the island.

But if you only book one night you spend a day driving down, and you need to get out to the lava field that night since you'll be driving back to Kona or Waikoloa the next night. So that means you arrive late in the afternoon to check in, and you don't have time to settle in because you need to get out to the park for lava viewing. Then you get back about 9 pm that night. In the morning you need to check out again. You now have just a few hours to spend in the park before it's time to head out.

Pretty rushed and cramped if you ask me. So I always say book at least two night on the south side of the Island. We book a minimum of three nights when we are on that side of the island so that we have time to do more than the volcano.

***

Other activities on that side of the island. There are good hikes on that side of the island, including many inside the park. South Point is pretty neat. The whole Puna Coast is great, and there are many natural hot pools that are great for relaxing. There is the Hawaii Tropical Botanical Garden just north of Hilo on the Hamakua Coast. If you want to do an aerial view of the volcano, Hilo airport is the best location for doing a volcano flight.

Get the "Big Island Revealed" Wizard Publications book for lots of ideas.
 

T_R_Oglodyte

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Added comments:

We have stayed at Bed and Breakfast Mountain View and highly recommend it. Mountain View is halfway between Hilo and Volcano, and makes a great location for activities on that side of the island. Not quite as convenient to the volcano, but much more convenient for activities in the Puna, Hilo, and Hamakua areas.

This summer we stayed at Sea Mountain, which is a VI timeshare right next to the black sand beach at Punalu'u. We were able to book there directly using our DRI points.

Finally, if anyone in your party has any breathing difficulties (emphysema,asthma, advanced CHF) you should exercise extreme caution when visiting the park. The volcano is a huge source of sulfur oxides and nitrogen oxides and if meteorologic conditions are right, the concentrations are high enough to trigger respiratory distress even in perfectly healthy people.
 

mbh

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Another vote for the Kilauea Lodge

Relax and enjoy the park without rushing. Also, book dinner there
 

riverdees05

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We have stayed twice at Kilauea Military Camp. The units are a little rustic, but the location is great. Availability depends on when you will be there and you do need an active or retired Military sponsor if you are not either. If you want to look into that option, I would suggest that you start asap.
 

Margariet

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If we are staying in Waikoloa, do we need to stay overnight near Volcano Nat. Park to see the volcano? Where should we stay for 1 night--2 adults, 3 kids? If we stay overnight, other things to see/do on that side? Esp. shore snorkeling. thanks, Elaine
Lots of B&B's and cottages for rent in Volcano. Best place to visit park by night and see the glowing. Some prefer a 2 night stay.
 

ronandjoan

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Sea mountain is only 30 minutes from the park entrance and for that many people will be cheaper to book a few nights directly with them . You can get nights for as low as $75 which is much less than the military housing at the volcano, and less than a B&B, where you would need 2 rooms, at least.

Then you could enjoy the Black Sand Beach at Sea Mountain, just a short walk from the resort, as well as other hiking around there.
 
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LisaRex

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I stayed at Aloha Junction B&B. It's definitely not a 5 star hotel, but it's clean and comfortable, and extremely close to Volcanoes National Park.

I highly recommend spending at least one night on that side of the island, if not two. It'll make things so much easier.
 

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Sea mountain is only 30 minutes from the park entrance and for that many people will be cheaper to book a few nights directly with them . You can get nights for as low as $75 which is much less than the military housing at the volcano, and less than a B&B, where you would need 2 rooms, at least.

Then you could enjoy the Black Sand Beach at Sea Mountain, just a shirt walk from the resort, as well as other hiking around there.
Booked it for November. Seems good location!
 

T_R_Oglodyte

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Booked it for November. Seems good location!
That's a good choice, though it's not quite as convenient to the Park entrance as a place in Volcano would be.

Note that Sea Mountain is mostly non-timeshare. If you rented through the resort I believe your unit will not be one of the VI timeshare units. Accordingly, the reviews of Sea Mountain in the TUG timeshare reviews may not be accurate as regards units features and facilities. Comments about resort amenities and location will still be relevant though.
 

ronandjoan

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That's a good choice, though it's not quite as convenient to the Park entrance as a place in Volcano would be.

Note that Sea Mountain is mostly non-timeshare. If you rented through the resort I believe your unit will not be one of the VI timeshare units. Accordingly, the reviews of Sea Mountain in the TUG timeshare reviews may not be accurate as regards units features and facilities. Comments about resort amenities and location will still be relevant though.
And my photos would still be relevant :) .....write me for them, Elaine.
 

T_R_Oglodyte

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And my photos would still be relevant :) .....write me for them, Elaine.
Here are a couple of photos that were taken early one morning last summer outside our unit at Sea Mountain:



 

elaine

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Is there any place that I can I book Sea Mountain for 1-2 nights that is not thru RCI?
 

ronandjoan

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Is there any place that I can I book Sea Mountain for 1-2 nights that is not thru RCI?
Yes , just google Sea Mountain or ColonyOne ( the other company there besides VI) and I found them for $75/ night as I was looking for a few extra nights for a friend. Or ask a VI owner to rent you single nights with their points (PS I am not a VI owner, so this is not an ad... We were able to get the extra nights needed once on Kauai this way)
 
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