Look no further for some of the best camping in Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park, plus tips to enjoy your stay from The Dyrt Ranger team the Switchback Kids.

Most Popular Campgrounds in Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park

Located on the “Big Island” of Hawai’i, Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park stretches from the summit of the world’s most massive volcano to the boiling coast where lava pours directly into the sea. At the heart of it, is Kilauea, the earth’s youngest and most active shield volcano. Its diverse landscape of thriving rainforests, volcano-induced deserts, high-mountain meadows, and coastal plains offers a truly magical camping experience.

Here are three campgrounds that will help you get up close and personal to the geological marvels of Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park:

1. Nāmakanipaio Campground, HI

Photo from The Dyrt user Dave G.

Located within close proximity to the Jagger Museum, Nāmakanipaio Campground is a large, open grassy area with tall eucalyptus and ‘ōhi’a trees. While this campground has restrooms, water, picnic tables and barbecue pits, there are no showers. However, being able to hike from the campground to the caldera overlook more than makes up for it.

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2. Kulanaokuaiki, HI

Photo from The Dyrt user Elliott B.

Showcasing the geological diversity of Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park, Kulanaokuaiki Campground is as unique as they come. The most important thing to note about this campground is that there is no available water. While there are pit toilets, you’ll have to be prepared with food, water, and supplies. Sites are given on a first-come, first-served basis and with only 9 of them, the campground can fill up fast, so be sure to arrive early.

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3. Halape Shelter, HI

Photo from The Dyrt user Laura H.

Located on the southern seacoast of Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park, Halape Shelter is a mini paradise. Favored among hearty wilderness hikers, Halape is a backcountry camping trip that is 7.7 miles from the closest trailhead. There is generally plenty of water available at the beach site but be sure to bring a water filter or purification tablets. After you complete the hike, you’ll be able to pitch your tent and enjoy an intimate sandy beach with swaying coconut trees.

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Explore Hawai’i Volcanoes

With plenty of interpretive signs, informative trail guides and an abundance of intriguing ranger-led hikes, Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park provides visitors with a solid connection to the park and the people of Hawai’i. Whether you’re watching the “glow” from Jaggar Museum or embracing the sunset from midway up Mauna Kea, exploring this unique national park offers the experience of a lifetime.

The Dyrt’s Ranger duo the Switchback Kids, who spent a year visiting all 59 National Parks, have put together this incredible video to document their firsthand experience in Hawai’i Volcanoes with the hopes of improving the visit of others.

Switchback Kids Ranger Tip: Look at reputable sites (like the NPS site) for current conditions on the lava flow viewing abilities at the park. It is in a state of constant change, and sometimes, it is impossible to view any lava flow.

And, in case you still (somehow) need convincing to fit this park in your summer itinerary, we present Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park:

Win gear for camping Hawaii Volcanoes

When you review campsites across the US on The Dyrt, you get the chance to win outdoor gear. In Hawai’i, you have the chance to win a $100 gift card from Boost Oxygen, a $75 gift card from TREDAGAIN, and an MH2 Headlamp from Ledlenser. Check out the contest leaderboard, review your camping experience, earn points for your review, and you could win prizes!

Kristen Byrne

Kristen Byrne

Kristen is a journalist turned digital account manager at The Dyrt. She has worked for various TV stations and newspapers, and now focuses on content creation for tech-loving outdoor enthusiasts. Chances are good she's outside, hiking, climbing, skiing, or exploring. Just know that you can count on her to bring canned wine to the campfire.