Picture ancient Hawaiian fishponds, a full moon rising over the waters of Makaiwa Bay, live music, hula, and storytelling by one of Hawaii Island’s most respected cultural practitioners – that’s Twilight at Kalahuipua’a, an event held monthly at Mauna Lani resort
for 25 years running. Danny “Kaniela” Akaka, son of former U.S. Senator Daniel Akaka, hosts this complimentary program that includes performances by some of the biggest names in Hawaiian music. These talented artists share mo’olelo
(stories) of Hawaii’s past, including songs of the island’s paniolo
(cowboy) heritage, a proud ranching tradition that dates back to the early nineteenth century. Bring a chair or blanket to spread on the lawn of the resort’s charming Eva Parker Woods Cottage, at the edge of the Kalahuipua’a fishponds, and join Akaka as he ceremoniously blows the pu
(conch) to greet the full moon.
In 1959, Kilauea Iki, a pit crater next to the Kilauea caldera, was molten. Fountains of lava erupted almost 2,000 feet high (the highest ever recorded anywhere on earth), filling the crater with a 2,000 degree lake. Today, the lake is a flat, rocky plain that’s one of Hawaii Volcanoes National Park’s most rewarding and accessible hikes – one that will appeal to even the most trekking-averse. It’s a moderate, 4-mile round trip along the Crater Rim Trail, which winds through a lush forest of ferns and ohia trees, with their red pom-pom blossoms visited by endemic birds. The trail descends into the crater and runs across the lava lake, an otherworldly landscape of spatter cones and steaming vents. Park at the Kilauea Iki lot, and bring water and protection from rain and sun.