Legend has it that to appease his mother, who felt the sun passed over Hawaii too quickly, the demigod Maui climbed Haleakala and ensnared the sun as it passed overhead. He held the sun until it agreed to pass more slowly over the islands. Thus Haleakala, meaning "rays of the sun," got its name.
Today, Haleakala more than lives up to its moniker. Most travel guides list the Haleakala summit as the place to enjoy a sunrise adventure in Hawaii. Haleakala National Park is open 24 hours per day to accommodate visitors anxious to see the fruits of Maui's labors.
According to the Haleakala National Park website, however, sunset might be an even better time to experience celestial phenomena from the volcano. Not only are Haleakala's sunsets as spectacular as its sunrises, once the sun goes down, stargazers will be dazzled by the sight of the Milky Way from the top of a volcano.
Whether you're huddling on top of Haleakala staring at fist-sized stars, biking down a volcano, ziplining through the trees, checking out a birds-eye view of Kilauea from a helicopter or getting up close and personal with molten lava at Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, there are plenty of volcano adventures to be had all over the Hawaiian islands. Want more Hawaiian volcano hana ho'opīhoihoi (adventure)? We wrap up with related articles and more great links on the next page.