Road To Hana On Maui
The winding road to Hana is not for the timid driver, or for those who get car sick. For those who brave it, the lush greenery, waterfalls, hikes, unique coastline, and other wonders await! You could drive the road to Hana every day for a month and still not see all the waterfalls, sights, or hikes. We keep doing it when we visit and always discover new places to see. Wherever you decide to stop, we highly recommend you go all the way round, and not come back the same way you drive there - assuming you are OK with being on gravel road for 5-10 miles and your car insurance covers you. Fill up your tank the night before, pack some food, start the trip very early to avoid traffic, and drive all the way round. In the list below are our favorite stops, which you probably wouldn't have time to do on a single trip, in the order you'll encounter them.
- Garden of Eden (Mile 10). Explore the beautiful and exotic vegetation. There is an entrance fee. [budget at least 1 hour]
- Ke'anae Peninsula (Mile 16+). Drive round the peninsula and stop to take awesome photos, and to eat Aunty Sandy's banana bread [budget 30 minutes]. Go slow not to miss the turn on the opposite side of the road, if you miss it, still on the opposite side of the road there is a lookout later that is worth stopping to see the peninsula from above. [budget 5 minutes]
- Halfway to Hana (Mile 17). Devour their freshly made banana bread. [budget 15 minutes]
- Upper Waikani falls (Mile 19). Take some photos. [5 minutes]
- Pua'a Ka'a State Wayside Park (Mile 22). Another photo opportunity. [20 minutes]
- Hanawi Falls (Mile 24). More photos. [5 minutes ]
- Ka’eleku Cave (Hana Lava Tube). Turn at mile 31. Especially if you have kids who are excited about the idea of being in a pitch dark lava cave. If the idea doesn't excite you, then skip it. There is a entrance fee. [1 hour]
- Wai'anapanapa Park (Mile 32). Last stop before Hana. Our second favorite stop, with water caves, black sand beach, hikes etc. [1 hour]
- Hamoa Beach (Mile 49). First stop past Hana. If you love playful waves then you'll love this beach [1 hour]. Otherwise, especially if it is getting late, drive down to take photos from the top, and continue round to get back on the highway. [10 minutes]
- Wailua Falls (Mile 45, yes the numbers go back down). Yet another beautiful waterfall. [15 minutes]
- 'Ohe'o Gulch (Seven Sacred Pools) and Pipiwai Trail. (Mile 42). At Kipahulu entrance to Haleakala National Park. Our favorite stop mostly due to the Pipiwai Trail leading up to Waimoku Falls. You have to pay to enter the national park and the ticket is valid for 2-3 days, so you could plan to reuse it to visit the top of Haleakala. [budget for as many hours as it will take you to hike 2 miles up to 800 feet elevation, and back]
- Palapala Ho'omau Church. (Mile 41). If you are interested, stop to see Charles Lindbergh's grave. [15 minutes]
- Drive the rest, from Kipahulu to Kihei Akahi D-211. The drive on this side of the island (aka as the dry side) is very different to the drive you have done so far. Instead of a lot of green vegetation, you can see as far as your eye goes and enjoy the majestic coastal and ocean views from your car windows. That is if you are the passenger, because the driver will need to keep their eyes on the road and their hands on the wheel, especially on some of the unpaved parts of the road in this area. [2 hours]
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.