Hawaii Part 3 – Where You Can’t See the Star Constellations for the Stars

Aaaaaaaaah - was für ein Anblick!

Aaaaaaaaah – what a sight!

And now we come to „my“ island – real name also Hawai’i, and so as not to confuse people, commonly referred to as Big Island. Big Island is amongst the youngest land on Earth, every year, new land is born. The island currently rests above a „hot spot“ where hot magma is pushing through thin earth crust, which makes Kilauea the most active volcano in the world. 2 months prior to my arrival, new lava came up, but unfortunately (for me), by the time I got here, all had gone, and there was no glowing lava picturesquely flowing into the steaming sea at all. So, no pictures of firy rivers of lava, only of cold, „frozen“ one, but that has its own beauty.
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To make up for it – the stars! Yes, stars are everywhere, but rarely as beautiful as here. I had arranged to volunteer at the visitor center of Mauna Kea, the dormant volcano with some of the largest telescopes and observatories in the world, but the native Hawaiians were protesting against ever more telescopes and observatories being put on their sacred mountain, so access to the summit was blocked and the visitor center closed. No matter, all good reasons to return to Big Island one day.

In the meantime, I entertained myself by taking pictures of Kilauea’s crater, Halema’uma’u, the abode of the fire goddess, Pele. At daytime, a rather dull affair, but wait until it gets dark…

Hamela'uma'u am Tag - na ja

Hamela’uma’u at daytime – well…

Halema'uma'u bei Nacht - unvergesslich

Halema’uma’u at night – unforgettable

Ein Sternenhimmel

A sky full of stars

Eine wolkige Nacht - erst war ich enttäuscht, denn mit blossem Auge konnte man nur sehen, dass die Sterne schwach leuchteten in dieser Nacht, aber dann machte ich ein Bild mit langer Belichtungszeit und war sehr glücklich - die Wolken sind rot durch das Glühen der Lava innerhalb des Kraters.

A cloudy night – first I was disappointed, because you couldn’t really see the stars that night, but then I took a photo with a long shutter speed, and was very happy -the clouds are red because of the glow of lava inside the crater.

Auch ein netter Wolken-Effekt

Another nice cloudy effect

The only disadvantage – you literally can’t see any constellations for the stars…

Big Island has other attractions as well – black lava beaches, tide pools with wonderful snorkelling, „normal“ beaches, tropical scenery, alternating with moonscapes where lava has killed off all life (indeed, the astronauts trained here for their moon landing) – but life is fighting back and green is again sprouting through black.

Ein erstes zartes Grün

First tender green sprouts

Eine natürliche Strassen-Überdachung

Natural road-roofing

Hier war einmal der grösste und schönste schwarze Lavastrand der Welt, jetzt gibt es hier nur noch Lava - und Palmen, die von den Bewohnern von Kalapana, das gleichzeitig mit dem Strand ausgelöscht wurde, als Erinnerung gepflanzt wurden

Here used to be the largest and most beautiful black sand lava beach in the world, now there is only lava – and palm trees, planted in remembrance by the citizens of Kalapana, which was extinguished at the same time as the beach

Der letzte Rest von Lavastrand in Kalapana

The last bit of lava beach at Kalapana

I found the people were friendliest by far on Big Island, soaked with Aloha – that wasn’t always the case on the other islands. I spent some nights in Pahoa, on the South coast – this little town was nearly lost in December, when lava decided to move towards it; unbelievably, it stopped literally meters in front of the town, some say, because prayers to Pele the fire goddess were successful – who knows. On Big Island I spent most of my time, and I would immediately return there.

Aaaaaaaaah - was für ein Anblick!

Aaaaaaaaah – what a sight!

So, that was Hawaii – beautiful, remarkable, a bit far away, but definitely worth a visit.

4 responses to “Hawaii Part 3 – Where You Can’t See the Star Constellations for the Stars

      • 🙂 When I read “28” I thought – “I wish”… and then I thought “no, I don’t wish, I am actually happy to return home now and find a purpose in life that goes beyond being a short-term passer-by of other people’s life”. How are you – you sound so happy in Portugal, am happy for you!

      • I understand what you mean. The readjustment process should be very interesting though. I’m sure you’ll hear the same questions a million times, and you can direct them to your blog. :)…. Portugal is wonderful; more than I imagined. Thank you.

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