Island Life  --  North America Travel

Six Great Hikes on the Island of Maui

Explore This Beautiful Island

Location: Maui Hawaii USA

Enjoy this one again or for the very first time. Originally published October 2021.

We love to hike and when we are traveling we always set aside at least one day a week to hike and get out into nature. And during our recent visit to Maui we discovered another great hike to add to the many favorites we already have on this beautiful island. So today I thought I would share with you six great hikes on the island of Maui.

West Maui

West Maui

The area known as West Maui is home to Lahaina, Kaanapali, Napili and Kapalua. We spent six weeks exploring this area recently. Here are two of our favorite hikes.

Kapalua Coastal Trail

This trail can be busy but it’s worth it because it is so beautiful and definitely one of the six great hikes on the island of Maui. Parking can be difficult but look for street parking near the Napili Kai Resort, or paid parking at Kapalua Golf Course. Start the hike right at Merriman’s Restaurant where the trail heads north. The trail then winds through spectacular lava flows where you can see crashing waves and nesting shearwaters birds nesting. Follow the trail along the road at the Kapalua Golf Course and out to the Dragons Teeth Labyrinth. Round trip about 4 miles. Learn more here.

Kapalua Coastal Trail

The Village Course and Duck Pond

The Kapalua Golf Club closed one of their three courses in 2007. Today the cart paths of the defunct Village Course are a unique and somewhat eerie (and steep) walk through a golf ghost town. It’s astonishing actually how quickly nature has reclaimed this course, making the fairways essentially unrecognizable only fourteen years later. The walk is about four miles round trip at the top is Duck Pond, a nice stop to rest or picnic before returning down. Learn more here.

The Village Course Trail

South Maui

South Maui is usually defined as Kihei, Wailea and Makena. We have spent a great deal of time in this part of the island and we love it.

South Maui

La Perouse/Hoapili Trail

This is one of my favorites of the six great hikes on the island of Maui, but also a bit rough and difficult. Traversing over sharp lava beds, come prepared with the right shoes. It’s a hot and arid trail but provides some stunning views across to the Big Island of Hawaii. The trail is also a sacred trail for Hawaiians, once part of the King’s Highway that circled the island. Crossing the 300 year old lava field is a unique experience, if you are up for it I recommend it highly. Wear a hat and bring lots of water. Learn more here.

La Perouse Hoapili Trail

Central Maui

The region sometimes referred to as Central Maui is home to the airport in Kahului and the government seat city of Wailuku as well as malls, shopping and industrial areas.

Central Maui

Waihee Ridge

About a 7 mile drive north and west from Wailuku you find the parking area for the Waihee Ridge Trail. We have done this trail several times and had a wide variance in weather each time. Come prepared for rain, wind, fog or clear blue skies…you never know. Arrive early for parking. The trail goes up and up the green and beautiful ridge for about 2.5 miles and if you are lucky the views are phenomenal. Learn more here.

Waihee Ridge


The astonishing volcano Haleakala rises 10,000 feet (3048 meters) out of the island and can be seen from almost anywhere on the island. If you go to do either of these suggested hikes get an early start. Often the volcano is clear in the morning but clouds roll in later in the day. BE PREPARED, Haleakala can be very cold in the morning…cold enough to warrant a stocking cap and warm coat.


Sliding Sands

This is one of my favorite hikes on the island. Starting at the top of the volcano at the Visitor Information Center, Sliding Sands, as it’s name implies, is a red sandy trail that goes down inside the volcano crater. Don’t do more than you are capable of on this eleven mile round trip trail, because you need to come back up! Along this trail you will feel like you are on the moon. It’s beautiful, and you will also see the rare and endangered Silver Sword plant known only to grow in this volcano and the two volcanoes on the Big Island. Learn more here.

Sliding Sands and Haleakala Silver Sword

Halemau’u Trail

Approximately 14.2 miles up Highway 378 but before you reach the summit, you will see the Halemau’u Trail parking on the left side of the road. This trail often starts in the mist and clouds, but don’t despair. As you walk the ridge and then go down the rock face trail into the crater the weather usually warms and clears. There is a picnic area that is a good turn around point. Or you can hike all the way through to Sliding Sands and back up to the Visitor Center. But you will need to either have two cars or someone to bring you back to the Halemau’u parking area. Learn more here.

Halemau’u Trail

Maui Hikes

These are just a few of the many hikes available on the beautiful island of Maui. No matter your hiking skill level you can find a walk or hike on this island. If you are looking for additions to the six great hikes on the island of Maui check this out.

See our post about things to do in Napili Maui here.

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  • Reply Heather Markel

    These look amazing! I’m so glad you’re back on the road and sharing with us. You guys look awesome! The photos are beautiful. Make me want to go!

    November 5, 2021 at 5:13 pm
    • Reply Laureen

      Thanks Heather! Aloha!

      November 5, 2021 at 9:23 pm
  • Reply Linda (LD Holland)

    It is hard to believe but we have never visited Hawaii. But it is on the list. And hiking on Maui sounds idyllic. What a great collection of sights on these hikes. Definitely need a long stay. Or multiple visits to see them all.

    November 5, 2021 at 5:21 pm
    • Reply Laureen

      It’s so beautiful here. Thank you!

      November 5, 2021 at 9:23 pm
  • Reply sue

    I’ve never been to Maui but it’s on my list & when I go I will definitely be back here. These hikes look fab. I love the idea of walking through a golf ghost town but especialy the volcano hikes. Thank you for sharing!

    November 6, 2021 at 12:30 am
  • Reply Alma

    Maui looks amazing and I’d love to visit. Some of those hikes have fantastic views! Some interesting landscapes and the silver sword is an interesting looking plant too.

    November 6, 2021 at 1:57 am
    • Reply Laureen

      I hope you can visit some day.

      November 6, 2021 at 1:32 pm
  • Reply Renee

    They all seem like dream hikes to me. It’s great that you were able to do so many. I think the standout one for me is Halemau’u Trail. I love the height of it and imagine the views were incredible.

    November 6, 2021 at 3:18 am
    • Reply Laureen

      I love that one too.

      November 6, 2021 at 1:32 pm
  • Reply Katie

    Some awesome hikes there! I’d love to hike over lava fields !

    November 6, 2021 at 11:46 am
    • Reply Laureen

      I hope you can some day!

      November 6, 2021 at 1:32 pm

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