Kilauea Volcano, Hawaii, is the youngest volcano on the Big Island, and is located in the South-western area of the island. The “pipes” transporting the lava to the surface are up to 60 km long.
The almost constant eruptions of Kilauea have proved to be very useful for the geologists, but for the inhabitants of the island, the volcano proved to be a very dangerous neighbor. Kilauea “breaths out” a toxic gas that can cause respiratory diseases leading to severe intoxications and even death. The lava rivers have destroyed hundreds of houses and areas of the coastal highway.
Kilauea is the house of Pele, the Godess of the Hawaii Volcano. Lots of legends and traditional songs speak about Pele, who made Kilauea erupt hundreds of times until an European would have touched the highest peak in 1823.
Located within Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, Kīlauea is visited by millions of tourists each year, making it the most visited attraction in Hawaii and the most visited volcano in the world.
Hawaii Volcanoes National Park
This park is located in the South-east of the Hawaii Island and was founded in 1916. Here you can find both the biggest volcano in the world, Mauna Loa (4,168 m), and the most active volcano in the world – Kilauea, which continues erupt since 1983. In Hawaii Volcanoes National Park you can drive around the Rim crater, observing the 3 km diameter and the smoke and also on the road near the craters chain to see the fresh lava covering the highway and leaking in the ocean.
The local Hawaiians believe that Pele is the “body” of the Kilauea Volcano. So, the native have named several lava formation after the Legendary Godess: Pele’s tears (small droplets of lava that cool in the air and retain their teardrop shapes) and Pele’s hair (thin, brittle strands of volcanic glass that often form during the explosions that accompany a lava flow as it enters the ocean).
The Hawaiian mythology speaks about the Kilaue as the place where the conflicts between Pele and Kamapua’a deployed. After several battles ended every time with a draw, the two gods decided to divide the island in two: Kamapuaʻa got the windward northeastern side, and Pele got the drier Kona (or leeward) side.