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Mauna Kea Observatories

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Address: Island of Hawaii, HI
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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

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  • 39
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    Very good
  • 2
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Best star gazing in the world!

We have been to the big island of Hawaii, many times, and made it a point to drive up to Mauna Kea Observatory on this trip. There are many tours you can take, we did it on our... read more

5 of 5 starsReviewed 1 week ago

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49 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Level Contributor
82 reviews
14 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 35 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 1 week ago

We have been to the big island of Hawaii, many times, and made it a point to drive up to Mauna Kea Observatory on this trip. There are many tours you can take, we did it on our own, but the dirt road going up, is slow going, and hard on cars! Wanted to reach up there to see the... More 

Thank luvintotravel
Level Contributor
62 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 1 week ago via mobile

This is a great place to understand the complex astronomy of the world. Great video. Nice shop. If you plan on Hiking dress accordingly. Bring a jacket.

Thank LLenke
Telford, Pennsylvania
Level Contributor
14 reviews
13 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 1 week ago

Timed it perfectly -- short hike from the parking (did not make it all the way to the top - you need 4 wheel drive) and caught the sunset. Then waited for the sky to fill with stars. Just stunning

Thank TerryC1959
Edmonton, Alberta
Level Contributor
6 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 2 weeks ago via mobile

A must must go.. The stargazing experience here is one of a kind. You have to drive up to visitor centre where you will find lot of other cars parked. They have set up telescopes there and also do a laser show. Its one of the most surreal experiences ever. You can not only see million stars by naked eye... More 

Thank sam_bagai
Kosice Region, Slovakia
Level Contributor
24 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 10, 2015

To get to the top you will need 4x4 car or stop someone with that car who has available seat for you as I did. Make sure you are dressed warmer than you are because temperature difference between beach down there and observatories could be 25°C. You might feel dizzy as there is not enough oxygen. You can try one... More 

Thank vitaminxxl
New Berlin, Wisconsin
Level Contributor
165 reviews
33 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 60 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 6, 2015

I am not into astronomy and I cannot identify any of the constellations by name. However, we drove up to the observatory visitor center to stargaze and I say it is a "must-do." I have never seen a sky so filled with stars - it was amazing! Had we had 4WD, we would have went to the summit, though the... More 

Thank Oatgirl12
Staten Island, New York
Level Contributor
11 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 26, 2015

I have to admit this is one of the highlights of my life. Being on top of the world is something you can only appreciate by being 15,000 feet up. You have to dress warm it's about 32° At 15,000 feet and 40% less oxygen. I had a rental car so I drove up which can be a challenge because... More 

Thank Blueline4395
Conway, Arkansas
Level Contributor
56 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 55 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 19, 2015

The big telescopes are fascinating if you know what you're looking at. It was cool (literally) to be at 13,700 feet. They make you leave the summit after sunset. It was too rainy at the visitor center at 9,200 ft to see anything.

Thank timurray2000
Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Level Contributor
6 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 4, 2015

We went to Mauna Kea observatories by ourselves, they say that is recommended to rent a 4X4. We did just for that day thinking that the part of 4Km without asfalt was really bad. but NOO! it is so good even without asfalt... we change the car for a 4x4 but actually once we were up, there were normals car... More 

2 Thank Marinaortizz
Adelaide, Australia
Level Contributor
909 reviews
740 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 371 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 23, 2015

The drive to the top of Mauna Kea is a must do, really is. The drive is spectacular and the views at the top are even better. Stay for the sunset, it is worth it regardless of how cold and windy it is,

Thank aussie_traveler_7

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Typical questions asked:
  • Do I have to buy a ticket for my infant?
  • How do I get there using public transportation?
  • Is there a restaurant or café onsite?