Escorted Summit Tours

Escorted Summit Tours are scheduled every Saturday and Sunday (weather permitting).  Participants must arrive at the V.I.S. by 1:00 PM. but reservations are not required.

You must provide your own TRUE 4-wheel-drive vehicle with LOW Range to participate in the tour.  If renting, confirm with your rental company that your vehicle has a separate LOW range.

The Station does not provide any transportation to the summit.

After the orientation, we will caravan up to the summit. The drive to the summit takes about half an hour and the speed limit is 25 miles an hour. The tour will go into at least one of the Maunakea Observatories and will end between 4:15 and 4:30 pm on the summit. Those wishing to stay at the summit after that time may do so.

Very important note: Be sure that you have a full tank of fuel in the vehicle you are driving to Mauna Kea. The steep grade combined with the lower oxygen level makes internal combustion engines run inefficiently. Fuel is NOT available for purchase on Mauna Kea!


    • All participants in the Summit Tour must have their own 4-wheel drive transportation to the summit.
    • Everyone must be at least 16 years of age
    • No one may be pregnant.
    • Persons who are extremely over-weight, in poor health, and those with a history of heart or respiratory problems should check with their personal physician before planning a trip to the summit of Maunakea (considered to be HIGH ALTITUDE -- 13,796 feet above sea level).
    • No one should have been SCUBA diving in the previous 24 hours.
    • All of these regulations are strictly enforced!

Please call the road report number, (808) 935 - 6268, to hear a recording of the current road conditions on the summit. The summit tour will happen as long as the road is open. However, the road is subject to closure at any time if bad weather occurs.   


Free Nightly Stargazing

FREE Nightly Stargazing & Star Tours

Open to everyone! Every night of the year from 6pm - 10pm MKVIS conducts star tours and operates several telescopes for public viewing by our knowledgeable guides.
Learn More about our Stargazing Program »

Escorted Summit Tours

Every Sat. & Sun. Bring your 4WD vehicle and join our free summit tour caravan. Tours will go into at least one of the observatories.
Details of Escorted Summit Tours »

Volunteer Program

Learn about astronomy and Mauna Kea as a volunteer. No experience required.
Volunteer Positions at MKVIS »

First Light E-Store - Apparel, Souvenirs, DVDs and Books - Employment, internships and volunteer opportunities on Mauna Kea

Content © 2010-2015 Mauna Kea Support Services / Mauna Kea Visitor Information Station
Website design by Curly Pinky Designs. A Kilauea WebWorks production. Internal

MKVIS Hours: 9am - 10pm every day.

Current road conditions - call (808)935-6268