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Mauna Kea Recreation Area County of Hawaii Parks and Recreation (HAW2)


Mauna Kea Recreation Area is situated approximately 6,500 feet above sea level and generally experiences cool, dry and breezy conditions.  On days with sparse or no cloud cover, persons should protect themselves from sun exposure.  High winds and heavy rains, though atypical, are possibilities that should be prepared for.  Nighttime temperatures during winter months may drop below 30 degrees Fahrenheit (-1 degrees Celsius).

Overnight stays are available for qualifying groups (up to 48 individuals) at the park’s bunkhouse facilities with an approved permit. Bunkhouse permit application can be submitted here.

The park, in addition to the bunkhouses and cabins, features a large children’s playground, picnic areas, a walking path with adult exercise equipment, parking areas and public toilet facilities.  Designated toilet facilities are available to the public 24/7 year-round.


The park is situated at the base of Mauna Kea and is accessed via the Daniel K. Inouye Highway (Highway 200 or “Saddle Road”) located between the 34 and 35 mile markers.  

Special Conditions

  1. The park is relatively isolated.  Nearest public eateries, gas/service stations or stores/markets are approximately 30 miles away.  Be prepared and plan ahead.
  2. Bunkhouse/Cabin permittees shall check in between 3-8 pm on the first day of their stay.
  3. Checkout is no later than 9 am on the final day of their stay.  Keys shall be deposited in the drop box located at the Headquarters building.
  4. Bunkhouse/Cabin permittees will be provided the following items per individual bunkhouse/cabin unit:
    •  1 folding table and 6 folding chairs
    •  Broom and dustpan
    •  Toilet paper
  5. Bunkhouse/Cabin permittees are responsible to provide all of their own supplies: bedding (cots, sleeping bags, blankets, air mattresses, etc.); toiletries, first aid and personal items; cooking, serving and eating pots/pans, dishes, cups, utensils, etc.; cleaning and sanitation items.
  6. Bunkhouse/cabin permittees should ensure that their sleeping system's temperature rating is sufficient and attire is suitable for the climate.  Bunkhouses/cabins are NOT heated.
  7. Bunkhouse permittees shall automatically have access to the Dining/Recreation Hall and its kitchen facilities.  The kitchen is provided with an electric range/stove, refrigerator/freezer and microwave.  The dining room is provided with folding tables and plastic chairs sufficient to seat 48 individuals.
  8. Bunkhouse/Cabin permittees are responsible for the cleaning and upkeep of their permitted facilities and final cleaning of such prior to departure.  Park staff will NOT perform daily or periodic cleaning of bunkhouses during a permittee’s duration of stay.
  9. Gates for vehicular access to the bunkhouses will be closed at 11 pm and opened at 6 am daily. 
  10. Security Deposit Refunds are processed by CHECK and mailed to the address listed on the permit 2-3 weeks after rental. 


No hazards.


icons/prohibited/no-motorizedvehicles.gif No Motorized Vehicles/ATV's

icons/prohibited/no-animals.gif No Animals/Pets

icons/prohibited/no-alcohol.gif No Alcoholic Beverages

icons/prohibited/no-openfires.gif No Open Fires

icons/prohibited/no-littering.gif No Littering/Dumping

icons/prohibited/no-camping.gif No Camping

icons/prohibited/no-hunting.gif No Hunting

icons/prohibited/no-smoking.gif No Smoking

icons/prohibited/no-plantsanddirtrockremoval.gif No Removal of Sand/Rocks/Plants

icons/prohibited/no-commercial.gif No Commercial Activities

icons/prohibited/no-plantsanddirtrockremoval.gif No Plant Removal


No activities.


icons/amenities/icon-bathroom.gif Restrooms icons/amenities/icon-picnic.gif Picnic tables
icons/amenities/icon-trash.gif Trash cans icons/amenities/icon-lodging.gif Lodging
icons/amenities/icon-security-night.gif Night Security Guard icons/amenities/icon-secluded-location.gif Secluded Location
icons/amenities/icon-gates-locked.gif Gates locked when park closes


icons/facilities/icon-ada.gif ADA Accessible

No sites.

Refund Policy

Refund requests must be received by the Department a minimum of fourteen (14) calendar days prior to the first occupancy use date designated on the lodging permit.   A processing fee equal to ten dollars ($10) for each day stated in each cabin lodging permit and twenty dollars ($20) each day stated in each bunkhouse lodging permit will be withheld from all lodging permit refunds.  Permittees who request a refund thirteen (13) or fewer calendar days before the first occupancy use date on their lodging permit shall forfeit the entire lodging permit cost. 

Request for refunds can be submitted by logging into your account and selecting "My Reservations". Next under the refund column click "Apply".  Refunds can also be submitted in writing via email to from the email address used to purchase the lodging permit, by postal mail or in person at 101 Pauahi St Suite 6, Hilo, HI  96720 during normal business hours (M-F 745am-430pm, closed on holidays and weekends).  


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Number of Nights: 0 Number of Days: 0
Planned Activities:

* (Ages 18 & older) (Ages 13 to 17) (Ages 0 to 12)
Total Number of Guests: 0

No sites.