leaving the doors off meant there was nothing between us and the sights and open air. it definitely took a couple minutes to get used to as the wind was whipping in quite viciously. it was amazing to feel the heat from the lava on my bare legs though!
we started the trip with a view of these macadamia nut fields on our way to the volcano.
next, we started our lava hunt…
yep, I’m basically obsessed with lava now.
after finding our lava, we cooled off over hilo’s lush rain forests and the plunging wai‘ānuenue (rainbow falls). it was so cool to see all these waterfalls from the air, which would take you hours to see by car including driving, parking, and walking to each waterfall.
we loved our extreme doors-off helicopter ride in hilo, it was a great way to kick off our day in volcano village afterward.
have you ever ridden in a helicopter before? I took dramamine before and wore sea bands (no shame here!) and had no issue with motion sickness, even though I have heard a lot of other people who got sick on helicopter rides. it was surprisingly smooth and made for a hawaiian adventure we will never forget!