Although we had a rental car, we decided to visit the summit with Mauna Kea Summit Adventures. If you want the full experience, I would recommend this tour. We were driven to the visitor center aboard their bus and there we had a yummy meal of hearty veggie lasagne and a brownie. We were also provided parkas and mittens for the trip. Our tour guide gave information all along the way about the Big Island and about Mauna Kea. At the summit we saw the large telescopes (although you cannot go inside) it was a surreal experience. You are literally above the clouds and we saw a beautiful sunset. Don't forget your camera! As we arrived at the summit, some of the scientists were arriving and we got to see one of the telescopes being opened and aimed. Shortly after sunset we were taken to a site where there were two large telescopes set up and we were able to see constellations and planets and were taught about the night sky. We were also treated to coffee/cocoa and a snack while viewing the stars. What a fun night it was and I recommend this for people of all ages.
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