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“Highly recommend Mauna Kea Summit Adventures!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Mauna Kea Summit Adventures

Mauna Kea Summit Adventures
P.O. Box 9027, Kailua-Kona, Island of Hawaii, HI 96745
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Ranked #43 of 178 activities in Kailua-Kona
Type: Tours
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Attraction Details
Owner description: Guided trips to Mauna Kea at sunset and for stargazing.
Regina, Canada
14 reviews 14 reviews
7 attraction reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
“Highly recommend Mauna Kea Summit Adventures!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 17, 2013

My wife and I recently did a tour with these guys and had a wonderful time. Chris was our tour guide on this day and we can't say enough about him. I won't go into his details here but this guy is highly qualified and was everything you could hope for in a tour guide. He kept us all entertained and interested in what we were seeing and about to see. I assumed our guide would tell us about the geography, geology, astronomy etc, but had no idea he would know so much about the history, birds, animals, marine life, trees/plants/flowers etc. Also you could just tell that Chris really likes what he does and was very professional about it. He also answered and had answers for everbody's questions.

After eating and climatizing at the visitor centre we headed for the summit and took in a most spectacular sunset. I can honesty say I saw colors in the sky I have never seen before, and it felt like we were standing on the top of the world. After sunset the Stars program started and we were both amazed at what we saw through their high end telescopes. Although we were in a group of about 12 people, never did we feel rushed to look through the telescope and move on, plus there was always opportunities to have a second look (which I did) after everyone was done. Chris did not move onto the next part of the program until everybody was done.

All in all we had a great time with memories that will last a lifetime. This company was excellent to deal with, and our guide Chris just made the trip even better.

As a final note I would just like to say that it bothers me when I see people on Trip Advisor basically say to others that they should save their money and go at it yourself for free, and not be on somebody elses clock. We have done both and there is pros and cons to each. However this is definately something I think should be done in a tour like this. There was just so much to be learned on this trip, we would have really missed out doing it on our own. Also after spending a few hours at high altitude, I would have been way too tired to drive all the way down and back to Kona, at night, in the dark, on these roads. Our whole van fell asleep on the ride back (except for Chris of course).

Visited January 2013
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436 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
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English first
5 reviews 5 reviews
4 attraction reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“On Top of the World”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 17, 2013

We did a tour with Mauna Kea Summit Adventures and had a great experience. You just can't describe the feeling you have standing up there above the clouds. It's just breathtaking!!! And the sunset was amazing!!! We were very impressed with our guides that we had. They were very informative and obviously loved what they were doing. They also spoke highly of their company and boss, which was very nice to hear. They took us out to a field to star gaze instead of at the packed visitor center. We had never seen so many stars in the sky before, it was just unbelievable. I learned and saw more stars that night than I ever have before. Your company does a great job, couldn't ask for anything more. Thank you for a great experience.

Visited February 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Oslo, Norway
2 reviews
“A must at the Big Island”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 15, 2013

Skilled and knowledgeable guides. A very informative introduction to the formation and life of stars, with amazing gazes into the universe. An unforgettable sunset at the holy summit of Mauna Kea 4200 m over sea level.

Visited February 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
St. Louis, MO
Senior Contributor
30 reviews 30 reviews
6 attraction reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
“Nice 8 hour excursion for stargazing”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 7, 2013

If you don't want the hassle of driving yourself, this is a great way to see the summit of Mauna Kea and learn about the 13 observatories there. The guides are entertaining and informative and the equipment (including their $5000 telescope) are first rate. The parka and gloves provided are definitely required equipment for this adventure. It would be nice if they had a list of the stellar sites that are viewable by time of year so that you would know what you can see (we saw Jupiter and 4 moons but Saturn didn't rise until a couple hours after our excursion).

Visited February 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Boston, Massachusetts
12 reviews 12 reviews
7 attraction reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
“Mauna Kea summit tour”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 5, 2013

This was on my list for a long time and Chris was an excellent guide. Seeing the telescopes was fantastic and the star gazing superb. The landscape is unlike anything I'd seen before. Sunset at the top was beautiful. Chris answered all of our questions and was very knowledgeable about the stars, telescopes, geology, plants and animals. He managed a perfect balance of educating us and entertaining us. We stopped at the visitor center for about a half hour to eat and get a bit acclimatized (it's at 9200 feet). Very crowded with lots of tours but but we found a place to sit. Then off to the summit for sunset. We spent about 40 minutes up there (about 13800 feet) well equipped with parkas and gloves from the company. Then back down to just past the visitor center (and all the crowds) to a secluded spot where two vans (ours and another from the company) did our star gazing. Really great. Then back down the mountain to our pick-up spot. Really a fantastic time. I have had problems with altitude before but none this time.

Visited February 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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