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Walk through a verdant rainforest and listen for the calls of native birds before entering a 500-year old lava tube where a river of 2000 degree fahrenheit (1093° celsius) lava once flowed. Its Hawaiian name, Nāhuku, means "the protuberances," which possibly refers to the lava drippings that once hung from the ceiling.
The Thurston Lava Tube is a must see. Your imagination can make you feel the hot air and lava nipping at your heels. Don't pass it on, but the secret we found was after arriving at ~9:30 from Hilo, we drove directly to the Thurston Tube, got parked right opposite in one of the
Nāhuku (Thurston Lava Tube), one of many such tubes on the island, was created by a river of molten lava. When a lava tube is active, lava travels along its floor at temperatures that exceed 2,000º F (1090º C). When the supply of lava stops at the end of an eruption, or if it gets diverted elsewhere, it leaves behind an empty cave.
Nahuku Thurston Lava Tube Hawaii Volcanoes National Park Lava Tube Located in Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, Nahuku (Thurston Lava Tube) is one of the main attractions for visitors as they explore the park. Like veins leading from the central 'heart' of the volcano, lava tubes direct molten earth toward the ocean.
The quarter mile path to the Thurston Lava Tube is beautiful, serene, and tropical. Before you start walking though, you should remember to bring a flashlight with you since the lava tube is dimly lit. You can't walk too far into the lava tube since the path is blocked off (possibly for repair/safety reasons).
Thurston Lava Tube, or Nahuku (nah- hoo -koo) by its Hawaiian name, sits hidden deep under a lush rainforest canopy inside Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, a dramatic remnant of what was once an enormous river of lava. This stunning example of a large feeder tube from an ancient lava flow is well worth a visit.