You are here

By the Numbers: Hawaii Volcanoes National Park


Halemaumau fountains light the night at Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. USGS photo by JP Eaton.

Hawaii Volcanoes National Park generates interesting statistics, having the world's most active volcano, the planet's largest mountain, the longest continuously operating hotel in Hawaii, and other distinctions.

1.4 billion cubic meters

Volume of lava erupted from Kilauea since 1983 when the current period of continuous eruption got underway. Kilauea is considered the world's most active volcano.


Recreational visits to Hawaii Volcanoes National Park in 2009. Visitation peaked at over 2.2 million in 1983 when Kilauea erupted spectacularly.


Acreage of the park (about 520 square miles). Nearly 40% of Hawaii Volcanoes (130,750 acres) is federally protected wilderness.


Acreage of the Kahuku Ranch. Added to Hawaii Volcanoes in 2003, this huge tract nearly doubled the size of the park.


Flightseeing tours of the park each year. Hawaii Volcanoes has one of the highest levels of overflights in the entire National Park System.

~10,000 cubic miles

Volume of basalt rock comprising Mauna Loa. Measured from the ocean floor (at a depth of over 18,000 feet) to its summit at 13,680 feet above sea level, Mauna Loa is taller than Mt. Everest. In terms of both volume and footprint, it is easily the largest mountain on earth.

150-200 tons

Sulfur dioxide gas and other fumes issuing from volcanic vents in the park on a typical day. The emissions rate can reach hazardous levels at times, necessitating temporary road/area closings. An atmospheric phenomenon called “vog” sometimes occurs on the Kona coast.

84 years

Interval between most recent explosive-type eruptions. Kilauea and Mauna Loa are remarkably approachable because they characteristically have "quiet" eruptions featuring lava flows (mostly via lava tubes). However, there was an explosive eruption of Kilauea in 2008 that created a mile-high ash plume. This was the first such eruption in the park since 1924.


Number of "Crater View" rooms in the 42-room Volcano House hotel, which is perched high on Kilauea's caldera rim. The historic hotel -- Hawaii's oldest continually operating one -- is closed until early 2012 for seismic- and fire safety-related improvements.


Number of cars and buses that have traveled from Hilo to Hawaii Volcanoes via the Chain of Craters Road since 1995. In that year, lava flows blocked this route to the park. Since 1983, nearly 9 miles of highway in the park (including about 7.5 miles of the Chain of Craters Road) have been covered by lava flows to depths as great as 115 feet.

Featured Article

Add comment


This question is for testing whether or not you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.

National Parks Traveler's Essential Park Guide