Stargazing Tours (Outdoor Adventures), Big Island tours & activities, fun things to do in Big Island | HawaiiActivities.com
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Stargazing Tours

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If you enjoy looking at the stars, a visit to the Big Island is not complete without stargazing at Mauna Kea through a powerful telescope. Stargazing is one of the top things to do on the Big Island and it should be on everyone’s Hawaii bucket list. Big Island is home to some of the best stargazing conditions in the world. The elevation and isolated location in the middle of the Pacific Ocean allow you to see the starry night sky more clearly than you have ever seen.

From the slopes of Mauna Kea to the summit, there are incredible sites for viewing the night sky that is sure to leave you in awe. Hawaii Activities has a selection of Hawaii’s most popular stargazing tours on Big Island. Find great deals and discounts on the best Hawaii stargazing experiences departing from Kona, Waikoloa, and Hilo. Book early as they sell out quickly!


Frequently Asked Questions


Where can you stargaze in Hawaii?

Mauna Kea is a premier location to view the stars. The high altitude, the geographic location, and the lack of light pollution create perfect conditions for astronomical observation. There are several different types of stargazing tours in Hawaii, and all the options provide excellent opportunities to observe the Milky Way, planets, galaxies, nebula, and the moon.

The most popular tours are operated by Hawaii Forest & Trail and Mauna Kea Summit Adventures. They are the only tours licensed to take guests to watch the sunset at the summit of Mauna Kea and do stargazing at the Mauna Kea Visitor Center. We recommend making reservations at least 2-3 weeks in advance since they sell out quickly.


What are the advantages of doing a stargazing tour on the slopes of Mauna Kea compared to at the Mauna Kea Visitor Center?

Here are some advantages of stargazing from the slopes of Mauna Kea compared to the visitor center near the summit:

• Family Friendly - Due to lower altitude, kids younger than 16 years old can join the tour.

• More Affordable & Easier to Find Last Minute Availability.

• Premier Location - Secluded spots on the slopes of Mauna Kea.

• Small Group Tours - Skip the crowds of Mauna Kea Visitor Center.


Wasabi Tours, Kapohokine Adventures, and Epic Tours have the best tours to stargazing on the Big Island:

Kapohokine Mauna Kea Stellar Explorer combines both daytime solar viewing and nighttime astronomical observing. It is also the most family friendly stargazing tour in regards to age restrictions.

Epic Tours Mauna Kea - A Mars and Stars Photo Experience and Wasabi Tours Sunset & Astro Photo Tour specializes in night photography and the guides are also astro-photographer experts. You can learn how to take memorable pictures of the Milky Way.


Do you have any tours that combine a Volcano Sightseeing and Stargazing on the same day?

Kailani Tours Deluxe Volcano Tour & Stargazing and Wasabi Tours Twilight Volcano & Stargazing Tour are two great options that will take you to explore Volcanoes National Park top attractions and the recent 2018 eruptions sights. At the end of the tour, they stop along Saddle Road for a 20 - 30 minute stargazing experience with telescopes.


When is the best time to go on a stargazing tour?

Stargazing is great year-round in Hawaii, although weather can be unpredictable. For the most superb conditions, try and book your tour for a New Moon night (moonless night). Try using a lunar calendar to select your tour date and book as early in advance as possible to get the best tour.


Can we go into the observatories at the Mauna Kea summit?

The Mauna Kea observatories are used exclusively for Astro scientific research, especially at night, and are rarely open to the general public. However, if you choose to go on one of the summit sunset or sunrise tours, you’ll have some free time to walk around and see the massive observatories from the outside. Just after the sunset you can also watch the domes of the observatories open and rotate as the astronomers inside are setting the telescopes for their research.

Top-Rated Activities for Big Island

Latest reviews of Stargazing Tours

Big Island Private Tours - Kilauea Volcano & Mauna Kea Stargazing with Dinner

Long but amazing day

2023/02/03 Families Jim

We really enjoyed our full day tour filled with waterfalls, visiting volcanoes national park and capping it off with a stargazing tour at the end. Our guide was good but would have liked him to relate more of his storie... more

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Mauna Kea Stargazing Tour Experience with Free Professional Photos - Epic Tours

Starstruck!!

2023/01/25 Families Jason

My family included two children and two seniors; thus reserved this trip as it was less strenuous (lower altitude, shorter time). Thought we'd see some stars and hear some stories, and was worried whether my family membe... more

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Twilight Volcano Tour with Stargazing, Black Sand Beach & Coffee Farm

Fun and Convenient Volcano Tour

2023/01/12 Families Katherine Y.

This trip was such a convenient way to see Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. I think it can be a bit daunting when planning trips to the different islands for the first time especially considering location of places, terra... more

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Twilight Volcano Tour with Stargazing, Black Sand Beach & Coffee Farm

Amazingly jaw dropping views of the volcanic eruption with a very knowledgeable and patient guide

2023/01/07 Couples Gitika

Todd was great, he went out of his way to make it a great experience for us. He set up his own telescope for the group to get a good look at the stars and moon. He was very knowledgeable and extremely patient. We were al... more

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Mauna Kea Stargazing Tour & Summit Sunset Adventure

Outstanding Star Hazing!

2022/12/25 Couples Jen & Dion

Travis was phenomenal. Knew so much about the island as well as space facts. Definitely worth the price and time.

Mauna Kea Evening Stargazing & Daytime Solar Viewing Tour with Dinner

Clouds and storms ruined it

2022/12/20 Families Fiona

We had hoped the weather would clear, but, unfortunately, despite our tour guide’s best efforts to find some clearing, we were beaten by the weather. Our guide, Hunter, was extremely knowledgeable and tried really hard t... more

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Stargazing Tours (Outdoor Adventures), Big Island tours & activities, fun things to do in Big Island | HawaiiActivities.com
If you enjoy looking at the stars, a visit to the Big Island is not complete without stargazing at Mauna Kea through a powerful telescope. Stargazing is one of the top things to do on the Big Island and it should be on everyone’s Hawaii bucket list. Big Island is home to some of the best stargazing conditions in the world. The elevation and isolated location in the middle of the Pacific Ocean allow you to see the starry night sky more clearly than you have ever seen.