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Guide to Adventures in Maui

Easy Hikes In Paradise

Maui is world renowned for it’s epic waterfalls, Jurassic rainforests, and panoramic coastline views. But a wander into Maui’s tropical jungle on your own might sound a little daunting.

Fortunately, there are many Maui hikes that are easy to get to, safe to explore, and that cost next to nothing. Check out one of these 4 awesome Maui hikes that are totally accessible.

1. Kapalua Coastal Trail

Family walking the Kapalua Coastal Trail on Maui

The Kapalua Coastal trail is a 3.5-mile promenade by 4 of Maui’s most beautiful bays. This flat, easy to navigate pathway alternates between wooden boardwalk, and volcanic rock trail.

Unencumbered views of the islands of Lana’i, and Molokai, millionaire homes and golf courses, and seabird eggs tucked into volcanic outcroppings, and are a few of the visual delights you’ll experience on this easy hike located a short 10 minutes from Kaanapali!

  • Driving Distance: 10 minutes from Kaanapali
  • Hiking Distance:   3.5 miles round trip
  • Location:  Access Kapalua Coastal Trail at Kapalua Bay Beach, The Bay Villas access parking lot, Oneloa Beach, The Ritz-Carlton, or D.T. Fleming Beach Park
  • Parking:  Free at Kapalua Bay and many other locations
  • Difficulty Level:  Easy, great for kids
  • Precautions:  The hike is windy, bring a light jacket.  The stone pathways have some uneven sections, be careful in open-toed shoes.

See more photos of The Kapalua Coastal Trail!

2. Haleakala Summit

Hikers at Haleakala on Maui

Haleakala is the largest dormant volcano in The United States, and the sunrise from its summit is incredible! We recommend you make the 2-hour drive to Haleakala the first morning of your vacation—you’ll be a bit jet lagged anyhow, and the early morning adventure will give your trip a kickstart.

If you’re not quite up for the epic morning trek, grab a good breakfast, and head to the volcano later in the morning. Haleakala has easy, well-marked hikes that will allow you to explore its Mars-like terrain on a full night’s rest.

  • Driving Distance:  2 hours from Kaanapali
  • Hiking Distance:   As short as 1/4 mile
  • Location:  Summit access from Haleakala State Park
  • Haleakala sunrise requires a reservation. Make your reservation at the National Park Service website.
  • Fees and Passes:  $20 per car (3 days—keep your pass for our #3 Hike as well!). $15 per person if you’re not in a car. $25 per motorcycle.
  • Difficulty Level:  Moderate because of elevation
  • Precautions:  The air is thin at the summit of Mt. Haleakala, so breathing will naturally be a little more challenging than at lower elevations.  This being said, the short hikes are quite easy in terms of distance and elevation gain.  Morning hikes will assure moderate temperatures.
  • Add-On:  Zipline at the base of Mt. Haleakala

See more photos of Mt. Haleakala Summit and Zipline

3.  The Pipiwai Trail

View of Pipiwai Trail

If it’s bamboo rainforest and massive waterfalls you’re looking for, the Pipiwai Trail deliver the goods!

Probably the best known hike in Maui, this well-marked trail meanders through verdant, bamboo jungle and features waterfalls of 200 and 400 feet. The 3.6-mile trek is a must-see for visitors looking to experience Maui’s natural grandeur.

Your $20 Haleakala pass gets you into this spot as well, as long as you use it in a span of 3 days. Plan your hike a couple days after visiting the volcano—with a beach day between to relax. With Upcountry Maui and east Maui under you’re belt, you’ll feel like a Maui explorer.

  • Driving Distance:  3 – 3 1/2 hours from Kaanapali
  • Hiking Distance:  7 Pools is right off the road; 3.6 miles round trip for The Pipiwai Trail
  • Location:  Mile Marker #42 along Hwy. 31
  • Parking:  Free if you keep your $20 pass from Haleakala State Park
  • Check status of this trail at the government website before heading out. Conditions can affect whether parts of this destination are open or closed.
  • Difficulty Level:  Moderate – 800 ft. elevation and mud
  • Precautions:  This popular destination is often crowded in the afternoons.  Visit before noon to avoid crowds.
  • The Pipiwai Trail includes the 200 ft. Makahiku Falls, and the 400 ft. Waimoku Falls

4.  Kapalua Village Walking Trails

People walking on Kapalua Walking Trail Maui

Kapalua Walking Trails

The old Kapalua golf course, now overrun with tropical vegetation, has taken on a life of its own. With stunning panoramic views of the Pacific Ocean and The West Maui Mountains, visitors can hike the trails once primarily traversed by golf carts.

With 6 pathways between 1 and 4 miles long, a large pond, stocked with ducks, rewards hikers at the half way point. Get some elevation and some exercise, and this rewarding hike that’s close to town.

Ask the Kapalua Visitor’s Center shuttle service for day hikers looking to hike to the arboretum.

  • Driving Distance:  10 minutes from Kaanapali
  • Hiking Distance:  Between 1 and 4 miles
  • Location:  Kapalua Visitor’s Center – you must sign-in at the visitor’s center prior to your hike
  • Parking:  Free
  • Difficulty Level:  Easy to Moderate based on distance
  • Precautions:  None

See more photos of Kapalua Village Walking Trails

Get Out And Walk

One of the best ways to ensure you optimize your Maui vacation is to get out and walk during the first few days of your trip.

These 4 easy hikes will give you the lay of the land in Maui while illustrating why the island is one of the world’s most beautiful natural destinations.

For maps to more hikes in Maui, check out The State of Hawaii’s comprehensive page at this link.

Pools of Oheo Maui

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Turtle in water with snorkelers Maui