Kulaniapia Adventures

Experience nature up close and personal, and rappel 120 ft down Kulaniapia Falls.

Guests are equipped with top of the line equipment, and provided with ample instruction to ensure the descent down the falls will be safe, fun and exhilarating.

Kulaniapia Adventures tours depart form The Inn at Kulaniapia Falls at 100 Kulaniapia Dr, Hilo, HI. Parking available on site for registered guests only. NO ACCESS TO PROPERTY WITHOUT BOOKING.



Kulaniapia Adventures operates Waterfall Rappelling tours daily at 8am and 1pm. Kama’aina rates (40% off) are available for HI state residents with ID on the 8am tour.

What to Expect

Kulaniapia Adventures operates rain or shine, unless conditions are dangerous. You will get wet, and you will love it. Depending on the flow of the waterfall, you may be right up next to it or a few feet away. We have 3 decent paths so you can safely experience the falls, in a wide variety of weather.

You will be outfitted with a top of the line safety harness, helmet, and felt bottom water shoes for traction. Our guides will go over all of the equipment and teach you the basic techniques you need to stay safe and have fun. You will get to do a practice rappel before confronting Kulaniapia Falls.

Typical duration is 2.5-3 hours depending on the size and capabilities of the group.

If you would like to join us as a guest at the Inn, you may select the Waterfall Rappelling add-on and save 25% by booking with your room reservation. We suggest staying for at least two nights to minimize the potential impact of tropical weather on your adventure.

Meet the Team

The Kulaniapia Adventures team has decades of experience canyoneering, and with the Kulaniapia grounds. Our Master Guide has taught canyoneering, mountaineering, search, rescue and emergency response for over 40 years, and personally trains each of our staff.

Dave Black

Master Guide
Safety and Community Manager

Dave is a world renowned canyoneering guide, instructor and trainer, with more than 40 years of experience. He has served on the board and the accreditation team of the American Canyoneering Association, and is a certified Master Guide. In addition to keeping our guests safe, Dave brings together those who share his passion for outdoor adventure and supporting combat veterans to do as much good as possible, in partnership with the larger Kulaniapia community.

Lara Harton

Operations Manager

Lara has been with Kulaniapia for 10 years, having played all roles at the Inn, and taken occasional breaks to travel the world and pick up new skills. Lara received her lifeguard certification while working for Disney, and has worked with activity companies throughout Hawaii and Europe.

Whether helping you with your reservations, or guiding you down the falls, Lara has it all under control.

Eli Sanderson

Assistant Safety Manager

Eli has grown up on the Big Island, and is no stranger to a harness. With his military background and having run a successful "extreme" tree timing business on the side, long before and while working at Kulaniapia, Eli brings 20+ years of rigging and operational risk management experience to Kulaniapia Adventures.

When not guiding or keeping guests safe behind the scenes, you will find Eli overseeing the larger experience of the Kulaniapia grounds, ranging from maintenance to landscaping design and art direction.


Our Commitment to Veterans

When Dave Black joined the Kulaniapia Team, he did so with a very personal story. Kulaniapia supports Dave’s mission and our combat veterans in two key ways:

    • 3% of the profits from Kulaniapia Adventures go towards providing free room nights at the Inn for veterans suffering from life threatening PTSD, in need of a peaceful retreat.
    • Kulaniapia has contributed $15,000 to the Darby Charles Black Memorial Fund, which selects retreat recipients and provides need based support for travel and other expenses for those attending.

In addition to the above support, Kulaniapia also welcomes the broader military community at reduced rates. Active duty and military veterans receive 20% off for stays at the Inn of 3 or more nights. Just use the discount code DARBY when booking your room online.