Volcano Village, Hawaii Island
Name: Volcano Village
What: Artist community hidden in a rainforest
Where: Puna District (45 minutes from Hilo and 2-1/2 miles from Kailua-Kona on Hwy 11)
More Info: 5 minutes from the entrance to Hawaii Volcanoes National Park
Volcano Village is home to independent spirits: farmers, creative minds, inquisitive scientists and those who seek inspiration in the peace of the rainforest and the power of nature's might.
Located a mere five minutes from the entrance to Hawaii Volcanoes National Park on Highway 11, Volcano Village is more than just a stop along the way. Notable glass blowers, painters and ceramic artists have made their home among the towering pine trees and endemic ohia lehua. Take time to browse the galleries, or stretch your legs as you enjoy a delicious meal.
On Sunday mornings, follow the locals to the farmers' market at Cooper's Center on Wright Road for fresh cut flowers, locally grown vegetables and an irresistible variety of baked goods. Advice from those in the know: Come early.
One of the most commonly asked questions in Volcano Village is, "What's that purple flower?" We're sorry to say it's an invasive species commonly known as the "Glory Bush," a self-generating weed that's smothering the native fauna and disrupting the island's delicate ecosystem.
If you're planning to spend the day exploring the volcano or staying for the monthly After Dark in the Park, Volcano Village is also a good place to grab snacks, water, sunscreen, flashlights and of course, gas for the drive back to your hotel.