Iao Needle Overlook and Botanical Garden, Iao Valley State Park

Wailuku, Hawaii

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3 Reviews
3 out of 5
Iao Valley, an ancient sacred site and spiritual center, sits in a rich green chasm in the West Maui Mountains above the town of Wailuku. The six-acre state park is home of Kukaemoku, commonly referred to as the Iao Needle, a moss-covered 2,250-foot basalt mantle that sharply rises 1,200 feet from the valley floor. The Iao Needle Overlook is a roofed pavilion with benches overlooking Wailuku, the Iao Valley, Iao Needle and the precipitous steep valley walls. A paved nature trail curves through a tropical botanic garden that borders the banks of the Iao Stream. The gardens are landscaped with native and introduced plants. Hike up the paved path past the restrooms towards the bridge crossing over a tributary of Iao Stream. Before crossing, take the interpretive nature trail to the left, descending into the botanical garden. Follow the paved path, exploring the gardens and ponds. The trail loops at the southern end along Iao Stream.
Day Hikes on Maui

DESCRIPTION FROM:

Day Hikes on Maui

by Robert Stone (Day Hike Books)

Iao Valley, an ancient sacred site and spiritual center, sits in a rich green chasm in the West Maui Mountains above the town of Wailuku. The six-acre state park is home of Kukaemoku, commonly referred to as the Iao Needle, a moss-covered 2,250-foot basalt mantle that sharply rises 1,200 feet from the valley floor. The Iao Needle Overlook is a roofed pavilion with benches overlooking Wailuku, the Iao Valley, Iao Needle and the precipitous steep valley walls.

A paved nature trail curves through a tropical botanic garden that borders the banks of the Iao Stream. The gardens are landscaped with native and introduced plants. Hike up the paved path past the restrooms towards the bridge crossing over a tributary of Iao Stream. Before crossing, take the interpretive nature trail to the left, descending into the botanical garden. Follow the paved path, exploring the gardens and ponds. The trail loops at the southern end along Iao Stream.

©  Robert Stone/Day Hike Books. All Rights Reserved.

Activity Type: Hiking
Nearby City: Wailuku
Distance: 0.6
Elevation Gain: 130 feet
Trail Type: Loop/Lollipop
Duration: 30 minutes
Season: Year-round
Local Maps: U.S.G.S. Wailuku
Driving Directions: Directions to Iao Needle Overlook and Botanical Garden, Iao Valley State Park

Recent Trail Reviews

6/29/2010
0

Very scenic, but very short, paved trail. Generally a nice break from the beach. Worth a visit.


4/14/2010
0

Very short and easy (paved) trail. It's a worthwhile visit, but nothing too exciting. There are several hikes nearby that will walk you up the nearby mountains if you want a strenuous trail. Arrive early to avoid crowds, it's a known tourist spot. Also has several geocaches nearby.


1/24/2003
1

This is not much of a hike, but the Iao (ee-ow) Park should not be missed on your visit to Maui. Go very early in the morning to have the park to yourself (it can get very crowded by late morning) and enjoy the scenic trails.



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May 2018