Nature On Maui
Our favorite part of nature on Maui is the ocean itself. In addition to the ocean, there are a handful of places on Maui that any nature lover must visit. In random order:
- Haleakala National Park and Road To Hana. We already mentioned the sunrise in our Maui must-do list, and the Kipahulu entrance when you do the Road to Hana. But you can also go for a sunset up the mountain, or any time during the day. The views from up there are amazing, and some of the hiking trails are legendary. Similarly all along the Road to Hana there are many places to stop for waterfall viewing or hiking.
- Beaches. We've said it before and we'll say it again. More than likely the main reason you came to Maui in the first place was the plethora of beautiful beaches. To view our favorites list (hint: the one opposite Kihei Akahi D-211 is a great one), see our dedicated page for Maui Beaches.
- Blowhole at Nakalele Point. If you don't know what a blowhole is, we refer you to the wikipedia page on blowholes which actually references the Nakalele blowhole as an example. It is a nice little hike down (and then up) the lava rocks, and you will need waterproof hiking shoes (don't do it in flipflops). To make the drive to that part of the island worth it, you should go further up the road to the next item on this list: the Olivine Pools.
- Olivine Pools (in West Maui). These are natural tide pools in volcanic rocks right next to the ocean, a short hike down from where you'll park your car. Warning: Deaths have occurred here when the ocean is rough and it pounds the rocks dragging unaware tourists into the ocean, so don't go down if you are the only ones there or if the seas are rough.
- Iao Valley (and Iao Needle). If there is space, park just before the entrance on the right side of the road to avoid paying a parking fee. Very easy paved hikes (good for families), with some great views, and if you wish you can also frolic in the water streams. If you don't hang around at all and just walk all the paths, you can be done in 30 minutes. So take your time, relax at the spots you like, and enjoy nature.
- Kealia Pond National Wildlife Refuge. For bird lovers. Pleasant walk on a boardwalk along the pond on one side, and a beach on the other side.
- "Dragon's Teeth" at Makaluapuna Point between DT Fleming beach and Oneloa Bay. This is an area of white lava, instead of the usual black lava you see everywhere else, and there is a formation that looks like dragon's teeth (hence the name). Besides that photo opportunity, and the great views of the bay and the beach, there is also a labyrinth.
- Waihe'e Ridge Trail. This is a challenging 4 mile hike where you gain ~1800 feet in elevation on the West Maui Mountain. You want to do this early in the day so that the sun doesn't burn you, and also so that when you reach the top it isn't covered with clouds which apparently is what happens if you go later.
- Paid Tours. Finally, most of our recommended non-water activities take place in nature.
Looking for more stuff to do? Why not check out all of our recommendation lists for Maui: Maui Towns And Areas, Must Do, Road To Hana, Beaches, Nature, Food, Beer/Alcohol, Water Activities, Non-Water Activities, Shows and Events, Souvenirs, Grocery Shopping, and What The Owners Still Love About Maui.