When the first Jurassic Park movie came out in 1993, it became an instant hit that many viewers stood in awe as they watched it for the first time!
The movie franchise sets a new standard for how any other movie about humans and dinosaurs should be, and it brings back some of the greatest memories to anyone born in the 80s and 90s.
Although the original park’s location was set on the fictional island of Isla Nublar, Costa Rica, many scenes in the movie were actually shot in various locations in Hawaii.
In today’s guide, we’ll walk you through 14 of the scenes from the Jurassic Park movie shot in Hawaii. Let’s dive right in!
14 Jurassic Park Filming Locations in Hawaii
There are plenty of locations in Hawaii that were used while filming the movie franchise. In the following list, we’ll provide you with a brief overview of the most iconic locations there.
While you can visit many of these locations today, you should keep in mind that some of them are privately owned and may require permission from the owners:
1. Kualoa Ranch, Oahu
Let’s start with one of the most iconic spots in Hawaii, the Kualoa Ranch in Oahu is among the most constantly used locations to shoot movies and shows, hence the nickname “backlot of Hawaii”.
The private nature reserve stretches over 4,000 acres but what makes it highly recognizable is the mountainous backdrop. In addition to the original movie, Kualoa Ranch was also used while filming Jurassic World and Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom.
Many of the stampede scenes were filmed in that spot as well as Gyrosphere from Jurassic World. You can even take an ATV tour of the area. You can also find the fallen log that Grant and the kids hid behind while being chased by dinosaurs.
Although the ranch is privately owned, it offers a variety of ATV and boat tours, but it’s actually one of the relatively pricey spots when compared to others.
2. Honolulu Zoo, Waikiki, Oahu
While you’re in Waikiki, you might want to check out Honolulu Zoo. In addition to being a major tourist attraction, the elephant pen was also used in filming Jurassic World where kids were riding small dinosaurs. The zoo also made an appearance later in the movie showing an injured little dino.
You can easily reach the zoo within a 3 minute drive from Waikiki through Kalakaua Ave. The entrance fee for children from 3 to 12 years old is $11 and $19 for anyone above 13 years old, so it’s decently affordable.
3. Kipu Kai, Kauai
Kauai is the 4th largest island in Hawaii, and like Oahu, it’s heavily featured in Jurassic Park movies. While the island has a huge coastline, Kipu Kai is one of the most popular beaches on Kauai Island.
At the beginning of the Lost World movie, the Bowman family were enjoying their lunch on that beach as the daughter (Cathy) encounters dinosaurs as she wanders off.
The sandy beach is only 2 miles long and is quite difficult to reach. The easiest way to get there is by taking a boat, which is offered on the Kipu Kai Ranch tour, but many other tours may also offer a boat ride to the beach.
Alternatively, you can simply take a helicopter tour in that area, which should definitely pass by the beach since it’s pretty close to the airport.
4. Hawaii Convention Center, Oahu
One of the locations that look almost the same as it was in the movie is the lobby of the Hilton Resort in Isla Nublar.
In fact, the escalator that the children took in the first few minutes of the Jurassic World movie is from the Hawaii Convention Center, not the Hilton Resort.
Although you can easily get in and take pictures similar to the one taken in the movie, you can still see the center through the glass walls if you’re simply passing by, so you don’t have to get in to add this one to your bucket list.
5. Na Pali Coast, Kauai
In the Jurassic Park universe, Isla Sora is found around 90 miles from Isla Nublar. While both locations are fictional, Isla Sorna scenes were actually shot in Na Pali.
Not only that, but the Na Pali Coast also appears in Jurassic World as Isla Nublar in the scene where visitors enter the park for the first time.
Moreover, it’s one of the first few aerial shots in the Lost World movie where helicopters were used to shoot the scenes.
According to many Jurassic Park fans that visited the original sites, enjoying the view of the cliffs at Na Pali Coast is one of the most beautiful things they’ve ever seen.
Of course, you can reach the coast using a boat. However, we highly recommend that you take a helicopter tour to enjoy the view from the sky. Not only does it add to the authentic experience of the movie, but it’s the best way to enjoy the full view of the coast.
6. Manawaiopuna Falls, Kauai
Manawaiopuna Falls is one of the most recognizable spots in the first Jurassic Park movie. It’s the spot where the helicopter landed and fook off near the base of a waterfall.
In fact, this waterfall area became so famous after the movie came out that a lot of people simply call it “Jurassic Park Falls”.
Although the area around the waterfall is privately owned, many aerial tour companies are granted permission to land by helicopter over the area, such as Island Helicopters Kauai and Hawaii Adventure Center.
Back in the day, Manawaiopuna Falls owners didn’t allow helicopters to land in the waterfall area. However, they now allow visitors to land on specific days of the week, so make sure that you communicate with the aerial tour agency if you want to land there.
7. Keopuka Rock, Maui
Around 16 minutes into the first Jurassic Park movie where you see a helicopter taking the team to Jurassic park, the chopper passes through a very characteristic rock.
This shot was actually taken from a helicopter off the coast of the Island of Maui. The Iconic Keopuka Rock that was featured in the scene was made so popular by the movie that it’s now called the “Jurassic Rock”. This is one of many things worth doing in Maui.
If you’re planning to recreate the landing, the sky is your way to go. Luckily, there are plenty of aerial tour agencies in Maui, such as Air Maui Helicopter Tours, Blue Hawaiian Helicopters, and Maverick Helicopters.
8. Halona Beach Cove, Oahu
Halona Beach Cove is relatively new to the Jurassic Park franchise but is quickly gaining traffic because of its stunning beauty and its appeal to adventure lovers.
The beach was featured in one of the scenes in Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom when Owen, Franklin, and Claire escaped the dinosaur stampede as well as the eruption of the volcano.
Additionally, the same beach was used to shoot scenes from other movies. The first one was a 1953 movie called “From Here to Eternity” and the other one was the 4th installment of the Pirates of the Caribbean movie franchise, where it was called “Whitecap Bay”
Reaching the beach cove takes a bit of a hike but is quite doable. After reaching the Halona Blowhole Lookout, you should face the road, then go left through an unmarked trail.
The trail is quite rocky and steep, so you have to be careful as you go. When you reach the beach, you’ll find the magnificent scenery truly worth the hike!
9. Pearl Harbor Aviation Museum, Oahu
If you’re going to Oahu, you’re definitely visiting the Pearl Harbor Aviation Museum. In that case, you’ll be hitting two birds with one stone, as one of the final scenes of the Jurassic World movie was actually shot there where the team reunites again in an airplane hangar to receive treatment.
The shots for this scene are actually taken from Hangar no. 79, which belongs to the museum. You can reach the museum easily through a shuttle bus.
Entry fees for adults are $25.99 while children between 4 to 12 years old are only $15.99. If you’re planning to check out the rest of the museum too, dedicate at least 3 more hours to the trip.
10. Paradise Park, Oahu
The Paradise Park on Oahu Island is actually an abandoned zoo for exotic birds. This overgrown vibes that the park gives made it a perfect setting to portray the ruins of the original park while filming Jurassic World.
Reaching the park is quite a challenge, and you’ll need to walk down a trail in order to reach it. If you want to enjoy its scenery without trespassing, an Oahu helicopter tour is the best option.
11. Allerton Garden, Kauai
The Allerton Garden, locally called “Lāwaʻi-kai”, is a botanical garden that belongs to the National Tropical Botanical Gardens. You can find it in southern Kauai, which includes a huge range of trees and plants.
One of the largest and most iconic trees in the park is the Moreton Bay fig tree, which is where Grant discovers the nest of some hatched raptor eggs. Additionally, it’s the spot where the “clever girl” scene was shot.
While there’s a privately owned estate on the beach, the garden offers a guided walking tour for around $50. As you can see there are a ton of things worth doing in Kauai, this is one of them!
12. Garden of Eden Arboretum, Maui
The Garden of Eden Arboretum is one of the most colorful and lush locations on the island of Maui.
The beautiful tropical scenery of the arboretum’s north shore was used to shoot a helicopter scene for Jurassic World.
If you want to check it out up close, you can enter the Garden of Eden for a small fee of around $20 for adults and $10 for children under 16.
13. Jurassic Kahili Ranch, Kauai
The Jurassic Kahili Ranch is another private property that was used to shoot some scenes for the franchise, in Jurassic Park III. Despite having the word “Jurassic” in it, it’s actually a cattle ranch.
Unlike many other private properties that capitalized on the Jurassic Park fame, the ranch rarely allows any tours within its borders, mainly because the property has been for sale for quite some time now.
14. Makai Research Pier, Oahu
Last but not least, the Makai Research Pier is another public location that has been featured in the Jurassic World where ferries were used.
Although you won’t find the Navatek boat that was used in the movie, the area is popular for whales, so you can watch them there from the pier.
Are All Scenes from the Movie Shot Outside the Studios?
Although the Jurassic Park franchise heavily relied on backdrops and shots from various outdoor locations, especially in Hawaii, a lot of shots were still taken in Universal Studios in California.
Various stages were used to shoot various scenes from the movie. Out of the 30 soundstages of Universal Studios, 6 were used to shoot in-house scenes. These stages are: Stages 12, 16, 23, 24, 27, and 28.
What Are Other Movie Franchises Shot in Hawaii?
As you can see from the list above, there are several movies that also utilized the magnificent beauty of Hawaii as a backdrop in their scenes.
Besides the entire Jurassic Park franchise, the most notable movies that were partly shot in Hawaii are:
- Raiders of the Lost Ark
- Indiana Jones and The Kingdom of the Crystal Skull
- The Hunger Games
- Tropic Thunder
- The Informant
- Kong: Skull Island
- 50 First Dates
- Pearl Harbor
- Forgetting Sarah Marshall
- Point Break, and many more!
There you have it! A brief guide that walks you through some of the most notable Hawaiian locations that were used to shoot scenes from the Jurassic Park Movie Franchise. Don’t forget to take a good beach bag if you plan on visiting some of these spots… Lots of hiking is involved.
Now that you know more about the locations, it’s no wonder why filmmakers choose Hawaii as a backdrop for their most amazing scenes.
Luckily, many spots mentioned in this article are accessible today, so you can visit them and get a real feel of what these brilliant sites looked like in real life!