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Maui Vacation Guides: Haleakala National Park

Maui Vacation Guides: Haleakala National Park


One place you must visit on your next Maui vacation is Haleakala National Park.

This park is a popular stop for those who want to see a gorgeous sunrise from high above the ocean, but it also offers many other activities for nature-loving vacationers.

Here is a quick and dirty guide to Haleakala National Park in Maui:

Getting Started

Haleakala National Park has over 30,000 acres of forestland, which is dotted with volcanos and mountains. The park also has some of the island’s most beautiful coastlines.

There are two main areas of the park, the coastal area, Kipahulu, and the summit of the sleeping Haleakala Volcano. Haleakala Crater is the most-visited part of the park, which should definitely be on your agenda if you visit the park.

Things to Do in Maui’s Haleakala National Park

Here are some of the most popular activities you can enjoy on your visit to this island’s biggest volcano:

  • Visit Haleakala Crater. As mentioned, this is the park’s most popular attraction. The best time to visit this 7-mile-wide crater is in the early morning, before sunrise. You’ll need to drive quite a ways and then hike to reach the top, but the spectacular view will be unforgettable and well worth it. If you aren’t an early riser, head up to the summit area around sunset for equally gorgeous views.
  • Hike around the wilderness area. There are over 35 miles of hiking trails in the park, so come prepared. Bring your hiking shoes, food, water, rain gear, and some sun protection. The landscape here is otherworldly, offering a unique experience that you won’t find anywhere else. The only other places that come close are on the other Hawaiian islands.
  • Camp out. For the drive-up camper, stop by Hosmer Grove Campground or Kipahulu. These campgrounds give you the option to get close to nature without taking a long hike into the wilderness. Hosmer Grove is high up on the mountain in the summit area, while Kipahulu is south of the Kipahulu Visitor Center and overlooks the ocean. If you’re a wilderness camper, however, you can hike out to the Holua Campsite or the Paliku Campsite, which are both located at high elevations in the Wilderness Area.
  • Take a guided tour. A great way to experience the best that the park has to offer is to take a guided tour. There are plenty of great tours that show you the park’s best attractions, sights, and scenery. The Maui Downhill Haleakala Summit Sunrise Tour, for instance, starts out with an early morning sunrise from the summit, followed by an exhilarating bicycle tour that takes you downhill through the park and ends with a safari van tour. Other guided expeditions offer combo tours of Haleakala and other natural wonders of Maui.


Though you could probably spend days exploring Haleakala National Park, you probably have your schedule packed with places to go and things to do. To save time and money, why not book a discounted Hawaii tour?
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