Top Trails Maui Must-Do Hikes for Everyone  by Sara Benson

Top Trails Maui: Must-Do Hikes for Everyone Guide Book

by Sara Benson (Wilderness Press)
Top Trails Maui Must-Do Hikes for Everyone  by Sara Benson
The latest title in the award-winning Top Trails series covers the best hiking trails on Maui. Top Trails: Maui presents 37 premier day-hikes and overnight backpacking trips suited to all levels of ability and interests in west Maui, central/south Maui, east Maui/upcountry, and Haleakala National Park. All of the trails offer scenic beauty and ease of access for hikers. Some of the hiking trails described here are popular with both locals and visitors, while others remain local secrets. All trails are within a two-hour drive from virtually any point on the island. With the Top Trails winning formula of easy-to-follow maps for every hike, trail-feature charts, feature icons, "don't get lost" trail milestones, and GPS waypoints, travelers can easily identify the right trail for their interests, abilities, and available time.

© 2011 Sara Benson/Wilderness Press. All Rights Reserved.

Trails from the "Top Trails Maui: Must-Do Hikes for Everyone" Guide Book
Displaying trails 20 of 33.

Displaying trails 1 to 20 of 33.

Haleakala National Park’s most challenging backpacking trip combines the popular Sliding Sands and Halemauu trails with a detour to the volcano’s more lush rainy side at Paliku. Make time to explore the colorful cinder desert in between, too.
Red Hill, HI - Backpacking,Hiking - Trail Length: 20.9
Hike a dizzying cliffside trail down into Haleakala volcano’s erosional valley, then strike off into a rainbow- colored cinder desert to visit a natural garden of rare silversword plants. Overnight stays at Holua’s wilderness cabin or camping area require permits.
Red Hill, HI - Hiking - Trail Length: 10.8
Drop through tropical cloud forest, then make a heart-stopping descent on well-cut switchbacks into Haleakala volcano. If you only have time to walk halfway, you can still peek over the rim of the volcano’s eroded cliffs for inspiring views.
Red Hill, HI - Hiking - Trail Length: 8
Trek from the volcano’s rim down past Holua cabin and across a multicolored cinder desert to emerge in the misty rain shadow of the volcano’s windward side. Linger overnight in Paliku’s peaceful meadows, tucked underneath towering cliffs.
Red Hill, HI - Backpacking,Hiking - Trail Length: 21
From La Pérouse Bay, where surf slaps the rocky shoreline, trek across jagged lava fields past archaeological sites to a secluded beach. Carry extra water and don’t hike midday, when dehydration and heat exhaustion are serious risks. Hiking boots are helpful here.
Kula, HI - Hiking - Trail Length: 4
West Maui’s longest hiking trail tackles a forested ridgeline, starting from the Maunalei Arboretum and winding downhill through the forest toward the sea. Bird’s-eye ocean views, a rainbow variety of native plants, and a sandy beach at trail’s end await.
Kihei, HI - Hiking - Trail Length: 6.5
In the misty cloud-forest belt on the upland slopes of Haleakala volcano, a family-friendly nature trail loops around native and exotic flora. Bird-watching is excellent along this gentle path.
Red Hill, HI - Hiking - Trail Length: 0.5
Central Maui’s most popular tourist stop, this state park offers exhilarating views of Iao Needle against a painterly backdrop of the West Maui Mountains, often veiled by rain clouds and mist. Stroll past native Hawaiian plants in the streamside botanical garden.
Wailuku, HI - Hiking - Trail Length: 0.6
Just north of Lahaina, this wheelchair-accessible recreational path hugs Kaanapali’s shoreline. Show up around sunset to see the hotels’ Hawaiian music and hula shows and a cliff-diving ceremony, or bring binoculars to watch for whales offshore during winter.
Lahaina, HI - Hiking - Trail Length: 2.8
After a short hike down the cliffs north of Kahakuloa town, you can soak in these natural saltwater pools, with no tourist development to intrude upon the horizon. Avoid getting in the water here during periods of dangerously high surf.
Kihei, HI - Hiking - Trail Length: 0.6
Follow this gentle trail alongside the coast in the early morning or late afternoon, when temperatures are cooler. Ancient jet-black lava flows jut out into the ocean, marking the boundaries of idyllic beaches with white-capped surf and hypnotizing sunset views.
Wailuku, HI - Hiking - Trail Length: 3
Laid out around a former golf course, Kapalua resort’s network of paved walking and running trails with steep inclines are a cardio challenge. In the early morning, it’s mercifully not as hot on these mostly sunny and exposed trails.
Wailuku, HI - Hiking - Trail Length: 3.9
It’s ranked among the most difficult, but also the most impressively scenic hikes on Maui. A rugged trail switchbacks down from Paliku, on the windward side of the volcano’s summit area, to Kaupo, on the island’s lonely, windswept south coast.
Lahaina, HI - Hiking - Trail Length: 7.2
Come at dawn, around sunset, or on full-moon nights for a scenic walk beside Kihei’s southern beaches, with their golden sands and gentle swimmable waves. This child-friendly oceanfront recreational trail also accommodates runners.
Hana, HI - Hiking - Trail Length: 1.2
Starting at the state park’s black-sand Pailoa Beach, explore the jagged lava flows along this historic Hawaiian footpath. Here the ocean bursts through lava-rock blowholes and the wind whips against outcroppings that make scenic perches for catching the sunrise.
Hana, HI - Hiking - Trail Length: 1.8
Ready for an adventure? From Waianapanapa State Park, follow the ancient King’s Highway south along the dramatically rocky coast, passing archaeological sites and primitive beaches, all the way to crescentshaped Hana Bay. This hike requires sturdy shoes.
Kauiki Head, HI - Hiking - Trail Length: 3.7
Lahaina means “cruel sun” in Hawaiian, as you’ll soon find out while hiking over the West Maui Mountains on this historic footpath and horseback trail with ocean views. To avoid getting dehydrated, carry plenty of water and don’t hike midday.
Lahaina, HI - Hiking - Trail Length: 5
Make a cool escape up into the West Maui Mountains, where a shady arboretum is a living outdoor gallery of native and exotic plants. Shorter walking loops are available, too, but the Puu Kaeo Lookout is worth the ridge climb.
Lahaina, HI - Hiking - Trail Length: 3
A short scramble down a seaside cliff scattered with lava rocks brings hikers to a grand viewpoint overlooking a natural blowhole. When the surf’s up, the ocean shoots powerfully into the air—just remember to stay back a safe distance.
Kihei, HI - Hiking - Trail Length: 0.9
This gently sloping, but often very windy coastal trail loops around Poelua Point inside the West Maui Forest Reserve. Illustrated signs point out native coastal plants that have been painstakingly restored, while benches provide panoramic clifftop ocean views.
Kihei, HI - Hiking - Trail Length: 1.3