Discover the wonders of the universe and marvel at Earth’s immense geological forces and the undersea world during this unique tour of the Hawaiian islands of Maui and Hawai’i.

Starting at: $7,295 * Price includes special offer Make a Reservation Ask Us A Question or Call 855-330-1542
 Haleakala observatory  Viewing center and observatory at Haleakala   Landscape of Haleakala  Volcanoes National Park, island of Hawai'i  Bottlenose Dolphins  Green Sea Turtle  Plumeria  One of many scenic waterfalls in Hawai'i  Lava flow in Hawai'i

Astronomy and Natural Wonders of Hawai’i

9 days from $7,295

Discover the wonders of the universe and marvel at Earth’s immense geological forces and the undersea world during this unique tour of the Hawaiian islands of Maui and Hawai’i.

or Call 855-330-1542

Accommodations

* Click on hotel name to visit hotel web-site.

Hotel Wailea

Maui, United States

Located on the southwestern coast of Maui, the Hotel Wailea, has a stunning location with beautiful views of the Pacific Ocean, on 15 acres of Zen-inspired landscaped grounds which include a cascading waterfall and Koi pond.  It is the first and only Relais & Châteaux property in Hawaii offering European inspired elegance with relaxed island luxury.  The hotel has just 72 suites, each has a private lanai (balcony or a patio), air-conditioning, direct-dial telephones with voicemail, two LCD TVs, in-room coffee and tea, a safe, a work desk and an alarm clock. Complimentary high-speed Internet access is available in each guest suite, the lobby, and public areas. 

Number of nights: 3

Kilauea Lodge

Volcano Village, United States

The Kilauea Lodge is located in Volcano Village, just a mile from Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. The park, with its active volcano, offers miles of trails and scenic overlooks. There is a relaxing hot tub for guests to enjoy and a large common room with a fireplace, games, and library. The restaurant’s unique Fireplace of Friendship was built with stones from 32 different countries, providing an exceptional backdrop for meals in the award-winning restaurant. The 12 guestrooms and two separate cottages are beautifully decorated with volcano art, flowers, and stained glass windows. Complimentary Internet access is available in common areas.

Number of nights: 2

Fairmont Orchid

Hawaii, United States

Located on the sunny South Kohala Coast, the Fairmont Orchid is a modern, upscale oceanfront resort with 540 guest rooms set on a 32-acre site with lush native gardens, waterfalls, and picturesque nature trails overlooking Pauoa Bay. The airy rooms have balconies with ocean or garden views and feature mini-fridges, coffeemakers, direct- dial telephones, an LCD flat screen TV, in-room safe and bathrobes. Property amenities include access to two 18-hole golf courses, 10 tennis courts, and 6 restaurants. There is also an award-winning outdoor spa, a white sand lagoon, a 10,000 square foot ocean side pool, a beach club and a fitness center.

Number of nights: 3

Activity Level

Activity Level 3:  Moderate / Active

Expectations: This trip features two islands, some long touring days and many full-day excursions with a faster pace and longer distances. There are a few walks of up to one mile on well-marked, sometimes muddy and uneven trails, and you will be outdoors for several hours at a time, sometimes in the warm tropical sun. On Maui, travelers will venture to Haleakala National Park and Haleakala Observatory (at 10,023 feet) where the weather can be unpredictable and it can be up to 30 degrees colder than at sea level. On the Big Island, there will be bird-watching (at 8,000 feet) and star-gazing (at 6,000 feet) on the slopes of Mauna Kea and in the evening it can get much cooler. Should access to Mauna Kea summit (at 13,796 feet) be open we will advise guests on how to prepare. Higher altitudes may be difficult for some participants, especially coming from sea level. At a minimum, people may be affected with shortness of breath, dehydration, and headache and/or nausea.

Appropriate for: Travelers who are physically fit, lead active lives, are comfortable participating in long days of activities, traveling to high elevations and expect some physical exertion. We recommend checking with your physician prior to registering for this trip if you have any concerns about traveling to higher altitudes.

Reading List

Highly Recommended

DK Eyewitness Travel Guide: Hawaii
By: DK Travel
Packed with culture and activities for travelers to enjoy including beautiful beaches, volcanoes, and insider tips for everywhere from Honolulu to Waikiki. Try local delicacies with our guide to great restaurants and cafes featuring island cuisine, or check out the best restaurants, clubs, and bars. We have the best hotels for every budget, plus fun activities for solitary travel or for families and children to make the very best of any visit to Hawaii.Discover DK Eyewitness Travel Guide: Hawaii.   • Hotel and restaurant listings and recommendations.    • Detailed itineraries and "don't miss" destination highlights at a glance.    • Illustrated cutaway 3-D drawings of important sights.    • Floor plans and guided visitor information for major museums.    • Guided walking tours, local drink and dining specialties to try, things to do, and places to eat, drink, and shop by area.    • Area maps marked with sights.    • Insights into history and culture to help you understand the stories behind the sights. With hundreds of full-color photographs, hand-drawn illustrations, and custom maps that illuminate every page, DK Eyewitness Travel Guide: Hawaii truly shows you Hawaii as no one else can.Series Overview: For more than two decades, DK Eyewitness Travel Guides have helped travelers experience the world through the history, art, architecture, and culture of their destinations. Expert travel writers and researchers provide independent editorial advice, recommendations, and reviews. With guidebooks to hundreds of places around the globe available in print and digital formats, DK Eyewitness Travel Guides show travelers how they can discover more.
Hawaii
By: James A. Michener
Pulitzer Prize–winning author James A. Michener brings Hawaii’s epic history vividly to life in a classic saga that has captivated readers since its initial publication in 1959. As the volcanic Hawaiian Islands sprout from the ocean floor, the land remains untouched for centuries—until, little more than a thousand years ago, Polynesian seafarers make the perilous journey across the Pacific, flourishing in this tropical paradise according to their ancient traditions. Then, in the early nineteenth century, American missionaries arrive, bringing with them a new creed and a new way of life. Based on exhaustive research and told in Michener’s immersive prose, Hawaii is the story of disparate peoples struggling to keep their identity, live in harmony, and, ultimately, join together.   Praise for Hawaii   “Wonderful . . . [a] mammoth epic of the islands.”—The Baltimore Sun   “One novel you must not miss! A tremendous work from every point of view—thrilling, exciting, lusty, vivid, stupendous.”—Chicago Tribune   “From Michener’s devotion to the islands, he has written a monumental chronicle of Hawaii, an extraordinary and fascinating novel.”—Saturday Review   “Memorable . . . a superb biography of a people.”—Houston Chronicle
NightWatch: A Practical Guide to Viewing the Universe
By: TerenceDickinson
Solar System: A Visual Exploration of the Planets, Moons, and Other Heavenly Bodies that Orbit Our Sun
By: Chown, Marcus

Also Recommended

Astrophysics for People in a Hurry
By: Neil deGrasse Tyson
Over a year on the New York Times bestseller list and more than a million copies sold. The essential universe, from our most celebrated and beloved astrophysicist.What is the nature of space and time? How do we fit within the universe? How does the universe fit within us? There’s no better guide through these mind-expanding questions than acclaimed astrophysicist and best-selling author Neil deGrasse Tyson.But today, few of us have time to contemplate the cosmos. So Tyson brings the universe down to Earth succinctly and clearly, with sparkling wit, in tasty chapters consumable anytime and anywhere in your busy day.While you wait for your morning coffee to brew, for the bus, the train, or a plane to arrive, Astrophysics for People in a Hurry will reveal just what you need to be fluent and ready for the next cosmic headlines: from the Big Bang to black holes, from quarks to quantum mechanics, and from the search for planets to the search for life in the universe.
100 Things to See in the Night Sky: From Planets and Satellites to Meteors and Constellations, Your Guide to Stargazing
By: Dean Regas
A handy field guide for the best stargazing experience whether in your own back yard, camping, or travelling—including information showing you which planets, constellations, stars, and manmade objects you can see with a telescope, or just your naked eye!The night sky is full of amazing things to see—from shooting stars and constellations to planets and satellites—but it can be hard to tell what you’re seeing, or where to look for the best view. 100 Things to See in the Night Sky gives you a clear picture of what you can see on any given night, either using a small telescope, or just your naked eye. Each object is presented as a separate entry, with background information on the makeup, appearance, and history of the object, along with easy-to-follow instructions on how to find it. For astronomy and space fans of all ages, this guide helps you explore the galaxy and see the stars—while keeping your feet on the ground.
Universe
By: Robert Dinwiddie, Philip Eales, David Hughes, Iain Nicolson, Ian Ridpath, Robin Scagell, Giles Sparrow, Pam Spence, Carole Stott, Kevin Tildsley
From the fiery mass of the Sun's core to the black hole at the center of the Milky Way, Universe takes you on the ultimate guided tour of the cosmos. Full of stunning out-of-this world images reflecting recent advances in space imagery, you'll go on a journey from our solar system all the way to the farthest limits of space. With information on the nature of the universe, the study of cosmology, Earth's motion, modern telescopes, astrophotography, and even a comprehensive star atlas, this groundbreaking encyclopedia takes a dazzling and expansive look at the Universe and is a must-have for both students and astronomy enthusiasts. Includes a comprehensive star atlas that covers all the constellations and planetary charts showing their positions right up to 2019, with entries on each of the 88 constellations and notable celestial objects that lie within them, and a monthly sky guide showing the night sky as it appears throughout the year.
Volcano: Creation in Motion
By: G. Brad Lewis
Enter the realm of Pele, goddess of fire: mountainsides ablaze; fountains of incandescence; molten lakes that glow in the twilight; bubbles of lava exploding and showers of volcanic glass. Where the flow meets the ocean, pillars of acid-laden steam rise from the boiling sea. From the smooth slopes of Mauna Loa to the deep, rain-sculpted valleys of Kauai; from the atolls of Northwest Hawaii to the island Loihi: this is the story of the Hawaiian Islands, inscribed in earth, water, and fire.
In the Land of Pele, In the Land of the Extraordinary!
By: Kahu Robert Kalama Frutos
Pele is well-known as both the Hawaiian Goddess of Volcano and Fire.  Her long-standing reputation of being of a wrathful and destructive force - is the one most recognized and always emphasized from the western standpoint… the Hawaiian perspective holds yet, an entirely different relationship to the Goddess Pele, including - not only an ancestral kinship and common lineage, but a remarkable endearment, and an extraordinary spiritual inner connectedness. One of deepest respect, alliance, and admiration. From this approach, Pele is not merely a wrathful and destructive force, but rather a benevolent benefactor… a Living Goddess that is Present in now time, a protector, a friend who is loving, generous, encouraging, inspiring and supportive. Pele plays many roles: Pele is the Goddess of the Volcano Pele is the Goddess of the Fire Pele is the Flame of Passion Pele is the Fire of Purpose Pele is the Goddess/Divine Mother. She is ultimately an expression of unconditional love, and the embodiment of the Divine Feminine. While this is not a factual rendering of the Goddess Pele, nor even a historical account of her feats and achievements, it is rather a lyrical, expressive account centered on Her True Spiritual Gifts, from a Mu – Hawaiian perspective… drawn from the Mu – Hawaiian ancient oral tradition of song and chant. This is also a wholehearted invitation to explore and discover Pele’s deeper significance and magnificence, and the vital role she plays in the transformation of world today!
Flowers and Plants of Hawaii: Pocket Guide Series
By: Paul Wood
"Flowers and Plants of Hawaii" is a beautifully photographed, informative guide, designed to provide ready answers to basic questions about Hawaii's plants. The book is divided into nine sections and categorizes plants into various groups. A picture index is also included for easy reference.
Hawaii (Travellers' Wildlife Guides)
By: Les Beletsky
One volume color guide to finding and identifying the most frequently encountered birds, mammals, amphibians, reptiles, fish, and insects.
Volcanoes
By: Richard V. Fisher, Grant Heiken, Jeffrey Hulen
Whenever a volcano threatens to erupt, scientists and adventurers from around the world flock to the site in response to the irresistible allure of one of nature's most dangerous and unpredictable phenomena. In a unique book probing the science and mystery of these fiery features, the authors chronicle not only their geologic behavior but also their profound effect on human life. From Mount Vesuvius to Mount St. Helens, the book covers the surprisingly large variety of volcanoes, the subtle to conspicuous signs preceding their eruptions, and their far-reaching atmospheric consequences. Here scientific facts take on a very human dimension, as the authors draw upon actual encounters with volcanoes, often through firsthand accounts of those who have witnessed eruptions and miraculously survived the aftermath. The book begins with a description of the lethal May 1980 eruption of Mount St. Helens--complete with an explanation of how safety officials and scientists tried to predict events, and how unsuspecting campers and loggers miles away struggled against terrifying blasts of ash, stone, and heat. The story moves quickly to the ways volcanoes have enhanced our lives, creating mineral-rich land, clean thermal energy, and haunting landscapes that in turn benefit agriculture, recreation, mining, and commerce. Religion and psychology embroider the account, as the authors explore the impact of volcanoes on the human psyche through tales of the capricious volcano gods and attempts to appease them, ranging from simple homage to horrific ritual sacrifice. Volcanoes concludes by assisting readers in experiencing these geological phenomena for themselves. An unprecedented "tourist guide to volcanoes" outlines over forty sites throughout the world. Not only will travelers find information on where to go and how to get there, they will also learn what precautions to take at each volcano. Tourists, amateur naturalists, and armchair travelers alike will find their scientific curiosity whetted by this informative and entertaining book.
Smithsonian Handbooks: Stars and Planets (Smithsonian Handbooks)
By: Ian Ridpath
Authoritative text, charts and diagrams, photographs, and a systematic approach make DK's Smithsonian Handbooks: Stars and Planets the most comprehensive and concise pocket guide to observing the night sky.Each planet is illustrated and described in detail, with location charts and diagrams and a month-by-month guide to interesting features of the night sky. All 88 constellations are examined, along with objects they contain, such as notable stars, star clusters, nebulae, and galaxies. For those new to astronomy, a highly visual introduction explains many basic concepts and offers expert advice on the best methods and equipment for observation.This book is one of a series covering plants, animals, and other natural phenomena from around the world and is published in association with the Smithsonian Institution.
24x36 World Wall Map by Smithsonian Journeys - Tan Oceans Special Edition (24x36 Laminated)
Travel Insurance

For the convenience of our travelers, Travel Guard provides an on-tour Insurance Plan. On-tour emergency evacuation insurance (up to $100,000), medical expense coverage (up to $25,000), dental expense coverage (up to $500), travel medical assistance and worldwide travel assistance (U.S. Residents only). It also includes up to $25,000 medical and up to $500 dental expense coverage, and 24-hour worldwide travel and medical assistance. Please click here to view complete coverage details.

Please visit www.TravelGuard.com/SmithsonianJourneys or call Travel Guard at 1-800-208-6142 to learn about additional (optional) coverage.