It was a bit ugly as we sailed toward Hilo but as we got closer, the weather improved…. We picked up a rental car in Hilo and headed to the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. Since this was Ann and Cathy's first visit to the Big Island, the volcanoes were a must. The best way to explore the Kilauea Summit and Caldera was to start with a drive along Crater Rim Drive. Our first stop was at the Sulphur and Steam vents then on to the Kilauea Overlook. From the Kilauea Overlook we had stunning views of the Kilauea Caldera a vast crater measuring 3000 feet across. Next we made our way to the Jagger Museum, which offered different angles of the crater plus a magnificent view of the brilliant red-orange lava flowing and shooting up in the air from the east rift zone. Our trek back-tracked to intersect with the Chain of Craters Road a 38 mile round trip drive descending 4000 feet through fern forests, lava fields and ending at the seacoast. The wave action at the shore was spectacular as were the sea arches formed by the erosion of the volcanic rocks. We were very lucky that we had perfect weather for our Park visit. We then made our way to Akaka Falls State Park and took the longer loop trail to the best spots to see the spectacular Akaka Falls drop in excess of 400 feet. Next, we visited Rainbow Falls in Wailiku State Park. It had rained for 5 straight days before our visit to Hilo so we were lucky to see the falls after a good rain. We had some extra time before the ships departure so we drove three miles north of Rainbow Falls to the Boiling Pots. This falls has four streams failing into a series of circular pools looking like boiling pots of water….. Spectacular view! Today, we had a great day for touring the majestic sites of Hawaii…. It is amazing how lucky we were… When we were driving it was pouring rain quite often but when it was time to visit a site of stop at an overlook, perfect weather…. What a day! This is a three part blog, went a little nuts today with photos…. This is part one.