#1. Paia: Not only is Paia the last place to get gas and a great opportunity to grab a smoothie and a boxed lunch at Hana Picnic Lunch, it is a charming town to experience in its own right. Don’t miss the laid-back vibe of what is called “Maui’s Hippie Haven”. It’s the official first stop on the Hana Highway
#2. Twin Falls: Just after mile marker 2, there is a large turnout on your right. The first waterfall is on the left after a short hike – be careful, it can be super slippery. A little farther up is a second, larger fall that you may see locals jumping from. If you decide to try it, be aware that the water below is more shallow than it looks.
#3. Waikamoi Falls: Waikamoi is located just after mile marker 10, and has a reputation for being unpredictable. If the rain has been falling, it’s a spectacular 70 foot waterfall. If not, it may not be visible. The best way to tell if the hike upstream will be worth it is to take a look at the smaller waterfall right by the highway. If it’s flowing, the larger one usually is, too.
#4. Garden of Eden: The Garden of Eden arboretum is the next noteworthy stop. It’s located about a mile past Waikamoi, and in our opinion is not to be missed. For ten dollars per person, you can drive or walk through the gardens. We say walk – there are over 500 fragrant flowers to be enjoyed along the paths.
#5. Ke’anae Peninsula: To get to the magical shoreline of Ke’anae Peninsula, take a left at the Ke’anae sign just past the Ke’anae Arboretum. You’ll see the beach after driving through a flat area of land and some taro beds. Definitely get out of the car and explore here – but watch out for big waves as you get closer to the ocean.
#6. Pua’a Ka’a: We love this state park for so many reasons! Number one: there is a bathroom and a picnic area! Also, there is an easily accessible 20 foot waterfall with two great swimming holes – perfect for the whole family. If you want to check out the more powerful waterfall located higher up, keep in mind that the hike to get there is pretty challenging.
#7. Waianapanapa: This is a small, family-run recreation area with a lot to see and do. It’s also beautiful! It’s located just past mile-marker 32, right before you get to Hana. Check out the black sand beach and the blowhole, and be sure to walk down the path through the hau forest – it’s unforgettable.
#8. Oheo Gulch: Back in the forties, Oheo Gulch was renamed the Seven Sacred Pools in an attempt to attract more visitors – and it worked! This is truly a great place to get out of the car for a swim along the Road to Hana, and it even has a parking lot and a picni
#9. The Pipiwai Trail: This trail is located just above Oheo Gulch and is widely considered one of the best hikes on Maui. It’s a four mile round trip, and goes all the way up to an elevation of 650 ft! Allow at least a couple of hours so you don’t miss the bamboo forest at the end – it’s otherworldly.
#10. Waimoku Falls: Remember the bamboo forest we mentioned at the end of Pipiwai Trail? Well, there is another reason you don’t want to skip it – it ends at Waimoku Falls, sometimes called the best waterfall on Maui. At 400 feet, it is an awe-inspiring sight!