Thurston Lava Tube is one of the most visited attractions in the volcanic landscape at Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. The 15-foot diameter tube was formed about 500 years ago and has been attracting visitors since its discovery in 1912. The lava tube extends approximately 1,500’ from the wall of a collapsed pit crater. Visitors access the lava tube via a loop trail that descends into the pit crater through the rain forest setting.
RHAA prepared a cultural landscape report for the Thurston Lave Tube. The cultural landscape report analyzed the historic features associated with the lava tube including the loop trail, rock steps and walls, pit crater overlook, comfort station, and the lava tube itself. The report concludes that the lava tube site is a significant cultural landscape and it eligible for the National Register of Historic Places. The report also recommended treatments for the preservation and rehabilitation of the historic features at the site.