I left part of my heart in Hawaii

My husband and I have traveled to most of the Caribbean Islands. So, while I knew I would like Hawaii, I quickly realized it is so much more. From the moment we set foot on Hawaii's volcanic soil, a sense of wonder and awe envelops the soul. The islands boast a mesmerizing blend of lush rainforests, cascading waterfalls, and pristine beaches fringed by turquoise waters, each scene more breathtaking than the last.

Hawaii's diverse landscapes is nature's artistic paintbrush. There are towering volcanic peaks, such as the iconic Mauna Kea and Mauna Loa that rise majestically above the clouds. The fiery birth of these islands is evident in the dramatic cliffs of the Napali Coast on Kauai or the lunar-like landscapes of Haleakalā on Maui, where otherworldly beauty reigns supreme. There are lush green valleys, stunning mountains cascaded with waterfalls, and of course beaches. In Hawaii, beauty is more than just a sight to behold—it's a feeling that lingers long after you've left its shores. It's the sense of awe that washes over you as you witness the power of nature in all its glory, the feeling of connection to something greater than yourself, and the knowledge that you've experienced a piece of paradise on Earth. We visited several of the islands, I will post several blogs about them. This blog describes and shows the inside of a lava tube.

Lava Tube

A lava tube is essentially a cave formed from lava. That’s my non-scientific definition of it. This lava tube was formed when the lava flow got thick enough, the outside cooled faster than the inside.  The surface crusts over. This crust insulates the lava inside, keeping it molten, and eventually forcing it through.  

As you step into a lava tube, you're transported into a realm that feels both ancient and surreal. The first thing that captures your attention is the unique architecture of the tube itself. Smooth, undulating walls curve gracefully around you, their surfaces show the marks of the lava's journey. Sometimes, you'll spot delicate formations like shelves and ledges carved by the flowing molten rock.

The lighting within the lava tube plays a crucial role in enhancing its beauty. Soft, diffuse light filters in through openings in the ceiling and entrance, casting shadows that dance across the walls. The light reveals unexpected colors in the rock, ranging from deep reds and oranges to cool blues and greens, creating a mesmerizing visual tapestry. The lighting is what made this particular lava tube incredible.

Hawaii has several lava tubes. I believe there are some on each island.  If you get the opportunity to explore a lava tube, go for it.  It is an experience to remember.  

I was eager to photograph inside the lava tube. The opening was a little intimidating. Yes, that’s the entrance.  I knew you could stand up once inside so off I went. It was about a 4 foot long walk ducking down to get inside. Once inside, you are treated to an awe inspiring work of volcanic art.  

Entrance to lava tube

The colors, the shape, the turquoise water of the ocean and beautiful rock formations is something out of a postcard.  

Inside the lava tube

Inside the lava tube looking out

This particular lava tube has a skylight that was formed during the lava flow.  

Volcanic skylight

Inside the lava tube

Camera Equipment

I normally travel with two camera bodies and several lenses to be equipped for every photographic situation. Because it was a relatively steep decent to get to the lava tube and the space inside was unknown, I choose to bring one camera and one lens.  I brought my Canon R5 with the 24-105 lens.  It’s not the fastest lens in low light, but this particular zoom lens would give me the focal length for almost anything once inside.  It is a great travel lens and definitely one of my most used lenses. The camera and lens worked flawlessly.  

I have several Hawaii posts if you are interested in seeing more of Hawaii. My blog posts can be found on my website.

Debbi Marquette Photography is located in Upstate New York at the foothills of the Adirondack Mountains. Debbi is an award winning and published travel, landscape and bald eagle photographer specializing in artistic, authentic, and memorable landscape and wildlife photography. She travels frequently, lives near the mountains and constantly has a camera in her hand to capture photographs so others can see the beauty of our world.

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