We booked the guided lava tour with Kalapana cultural tours. At $100 per person, it is a steep price to pay to hike 2.5 miles one way to see the lava. We were told we would observe several lava entries into the ocean. That we did, and it was impressive. However, we were also told that we would see the overland lava flow up close and personal. This was the part of the tour I was most looking forward to. Once we had hiked across the recent lava deposits to reach the ocean location, we were told there was no overland lava flow to view that evening. I was so disappointed! I did not feel I received the value for my money. I recommend you ask whether the tour will include views of both the lava flow on land and entry into the ocean, if this is important to you. I learned the hard way that this is not always the case (nature being what it is), and the company will not inform you of this, although I have asked them to inform participants of this from now on. Because I was falsely given certain expectations, I was very disillusioned with the tour company when they didn't deliver. As the lava is currently flowing outside Volcanoes National Park and is occurring on private land, this company may be making hay while the sun shines. I would suggest anyone who is interested in seeing the lava try to see if there are other companies offering similar tours at a better price and ask what they will show you on the tour. Observing flowing lava is one of the reasons many of us choose to visit the Big Island, it is a unique opportunity.
We noticed a boat tour come in for a viewing while we were observing the lava. Consider this another option, but be aware, the boat we observed was over to see the lava entries and then out again rather quickly, probably only about 5 minutes in the lava area. Another possibility is a helicopter tour, but I am uncertain as to cost. Or maybe wait until lava is once again flowing in the National Park or closer to a public road.
If you own or manage Kalapana Cultural Tours, register now for free tools to enhance your listing, attract new reviews, and respond to reviewers.