IMPORTANT WILDLIFE AREAS
NORTHWESTERN HAWAIIAN ISLANDS:
The largest, oldest and most pristine coral reefs in the United States are located in the waters surrounding this almost uninhabited archipelago. The reefs support an astonishing 7,000 marine species, including the endangered Hawaiian monk seal and several sea turtles. The islands are also a nesting site for 14 million seabirds.
HAWAI'I VOLCANOES NATIONAL PARK:
Covering 10 percent of the Big Island, this fiery park is also designated a World Heritage Site and an International Biosphere Reserve. Despite the park's explosive nature, rare native plants and animals thrive in its unique ecosystem. Endangered hawksbill turtles nest on protected beaches, and the dark-rumped petrel burrows into lava tubes to make a haven for its chicks.
Hawaii's oldest island boasts the wettest place on earth—the northeast slope of Mount Waialeale. Jurassic Park was filmed in this primordial landscape, and while you won't find dinosaurs in the greenery, you may catch a glimpse of some their avian descendents. Rare Hawaiian forest birds such as the Akikiki, a Hawaiian honeycreeper, live exclusively in Kauai's isolated rainforests.