ALOHA!

 

I spent one week along the Hana Highway in January and February 2020.

Well, whether you are camping or not, things are a little different now.

I originally posted this as a one week Maui itinerary for if you want a different kind of Hawaii vacation. 

 

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Best things to do on the Road to Hana with 7 days in Maui Hawaii. Where to stay on the Road to Hana. camping, cabins, hotels. Maui Hawaii travel blog

 

But, the status of the Road to Hana campgrounds I stayed at is different now, and you’ll want to check for current updates.

You can still do one week on the Road to Hana, it just won’t be as easy or as cheap since the accommodation options are even more limited now, so you might need to look outside of camping. There is the Hyatt Hana Resort located on the Road to Hana.

If you find that the things to do on the Road to Hana are interesting to you, I would still recommend staying at least one night so you can take things more slowly.

With that said…

These are ideas on how to spend one week on Maui… by staying ONLY along the Hana Highway! (aka THE famous drive of Maui.)

The vast majority of people who do the Road to Hana do so as a day trip.

And for many people this turns into a long and exhausting day. (But still a very great day. It’s the Road to Hana after all.)

It’s not unusual to hear of people starting their day at 7am and then returning back to their hotels at 7pm. 

But you can also make a Road to Hana trip last over several days, and that would mean you don’t have to pack a ton in your day, you can take things more slowly, and you can even do more if you want! There are campgrounds on the Road to Hana!

 

 

You’re outdoors for most of this Road to Hana trip below. (Heading to the island of Lanai that’s a ferry ride away from Maui is another outdoors trip in Hawaii. In 2020, there was also beach camping on Lanai… this campground may also be closed… check for updates.)

If you’re looking for a slightly more typical type of Hawaii vacation, have a look at this shorter Maui itinerary (that includes one day on the Road to Hana), and then you can go for some easy beach days or water adventure tours on the other days for your one week in Hawaii!

Here’s a longer Maui itinerary for more ideas.

If you’re still choosing which Hawaiian island to visit, have a look at the comparison between 2 of the top islands in Hawaii.

 

More below about the Hana Highway!

 

 

🌴

 

 

 

So…

How to spend one week in Hawaii on the Road to Hana!

aka one week of camping on the Road to Hana!

This outline below is mostly how I did it. This does not go in the order as you’ll see it when on the Road to Hana. The state park cabins were limited in availability, so I worked around the dates that were available. So while there was some backtracking on the Hana Highway, the Road to Hana isn’t THAT long so it really wasn’t that big of a deal! 

 

Day 1: Drive from Paia to Haleakala National Park

 

Campground to stay at

 

I stayed in a Paia hostel before the start of the Road to Hana trip.

A typical way to do the Road to Hana is to make stops as you head towards Hana. For this trip, I basically drove straight through to the “end” of the Road to Hana (or, as far as many people go) which is to the national park. 

So, I started from Paia at 8am, and my first stop was the Haleakala National Park! From Paia to the national park was around 2 hours, and there was minimal traffic. (The Kipahulu district of the national park. There’s also the summit district of the Haleakala National Park, and that’s not connected by road to the Road to Hana area.)

The Pipiwai Trail is where you can see THE famous bamboo forest of Maui, and this leads to the magnificent Waimoku Falls. The Seven Sacred Falls is also a popular swimming spot within the national park area, but it can get closed off if it’s deemed unsafe, like a greater risk of flash flooding.

If you’re looking for more quiet things to do after these national park activities, you can head a bit further down the Hana Highway to see a small Hawaiian church and find a local fruit stand.

 

 

Pipiwai Trail

One week in Maui Hawaii - Things to do on the Road to Hana in one day: Haleakala National Park Kipahulu - pipiwai trail bamboo forest. Hawaii travel blog

One week in Maui Hawaii - Things to do on the Road to Hana: Haleakala National Park Kipahulu - pipiwai trail bamboo forest. Hawaii travel blog

 

 

Waimoku Falls

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Things to do on the Road to Hana in one day: Haleakala National Park Kipahulu - pipiwai trail to see waimoku falls waterfalls. Hawaii travel blog

 

 

Oheo Gulch / Seven Sacred Falls

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Things to do on the Road to Hana in one day: Haleakala National Park Kipahulu - seven sacred falls, oheo gulch waterfalls. Hawaii travel blog

 

 

Palapala Hoomau Church

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Things to do on the Road to Hana in one day: Hawaiian church - Palapala Hoomau Church. Hawaii travel blog

 

 

Local fruit stand

One week in Maui Hawaii - Things to do on the Road to Hana in one day: local fruit stand. Hawaii travel blog

 

 

Where to stay camping in Maui: Haleakala National Park Kipahulu campground

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Where to stay on the Road to Hana: Camping at Haleakala National Park Kipahulu campground. Hawaii travel blog

 

I spent 2 nights camping at the national park campground, which is the Kipahulu campground.

When I went camping here, there were no camping reservations or permits required or allowed, and you set up camp where you could find a spot.

When you drive in, you’ll see the main campground area.

You could also take the trail to find some more camping spots to be closer to the ocean too, and it comes with more privacy! 

 

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Where to stay on the Road to Hana: Camping at Haleakala National Park Kipahulu campground. Hawaii travel blog

 

Prior to the 2020 travel shutdown, there were no reservations necessary (or possible) for Kipahulu Campground which meant that you set up camp where you can find a spot on the campground.

At that time, outside of the national park entry fee, there was no additional fee to camp at the Kipahulu campground.

As of 2021, the Kipahulu Campground is closed. See current updates.

When it does re-open, it’s quite possible that camping reservations for Kipahulu Campground will be necessary. It’s also quite possible that there will be a camping fee for Kipahulu Campground. This is what happened for Haleakala National Park’s other campground, which previously was also free and first come first serve.

 

 

Day 2: Back Road to Hana

 

Campground to stay at
  • Kipahulu campground at Haleakala National Park

 

So if you keep going along on the Hana Highway, you’ll come across what’s called the “back road to Hana” or the backside of Haleakala.

This is considered to be a “scary” or “dangerous” drive, mostly because there are sections of one-lane roads with steep drop-offs on one side.

There’s also rockfall possible.

It’s also said that car rental companies won’t cover you if something happens to your car in what car rental companies might call a “no-go” zone.

Many tourists still do this drive.

 

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Things to do on the Road to Hana in 2 days: Back road to Hana, backside of Haleakala. Hawaii travel blog

 

I didn’t want to. So, I walked!

From the national park, I went to Kaupo and back, and this was a total of around 15 miles of walking. Yes it was a lot.

But even if you don’t want to make driving an option for you, you don’t need to walk 15 miles in order to see the back road to Hana (and to make it worth it)!

When you’re starting at the national park, heading to Kamilo Point and back will be around 5 miles round trip.

If you don’t mind walking a little further, then I’d say another perfect turnaround point would be at the Alelele Bridge. Here you’ll find a small black sand beach and a trail to hidden waterfalls! Walking to Alelele Falls and back is around 7 miles round trip.

There’s a small Hawaiian church further along where you can see the Mokulau islets, and if you walk to the Huialoha Church and back, it’ll be around 14 miles round trip.

The Kaupo General Store really wasn’t anything exciting, especially compared to the Kuau Store and Jaws Country Store that serve fresh food and sell a good amount of local products on the early part of the Road to Hana. The Kaupo General Store is really more or less a stop to make if you’re driving and want to pick up some snacks or something. It can give you a small town feel. There is a bathroom here for a “donation.” Note that as of spring 2021, google maps does list the Kaupo General Store as “permanently closed.”

Consider these beautiful scenic coastal walks! You will be walking on the same road the cars drive on.

 

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Things to do on the Road to Hana in 2 days: Back road to Hana, backside of Haleakala. Hawaii travel blog

 

 

Kamilo Point

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Things to do on the back Road to Hana in 2 days: Kamilo Point. Hawaii travel blog

 

 

Alelele black sand beach

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Things to do on the back Road to Hana in 2 days: Alelele black sand beach. Hawaii travel blog

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Things to do on the back Road to Hana in 2 days: Alelele black sand beach. Hawaii travel blog

 

 

Alelele Falls

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Things to do on the back Road to Hana in 2 days: Alelele Falls, waterfall trail hike. Hawaii travel blog

 

 

Huialoha Church

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Things to do on the back Road to Hana in 2 days: Hawaiian church - Huialoha Church. Hawaii travel blog

 

 

Kaupo General Store

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Things to do on the back Road to Hana in 2 days: Kaupo General Store. Hawaii travel blog

 

 

Day 3: Drive from Haleakala National Park to Keanae

 

Campground I stayed at
  • YMCA Camp Keanae campground or cabin

 

Yes there’s a lot you can see on this stretch of the Hana Highway! Many of these can be quick stops. Going from Kipahulu to Keanae, you will also pass the Waianapanapa State Park (the black sand beach state park), but there will be days dedicated to that later! You can also choose to just do as many (or as few) activities as you are feeling up to, and then save some of these activities for later days!

This was the campground that was the closest to Paia out of the Road to Hana campgrounds.

Camp Keanae no longer operates as a YMCA. It has changed management, and as of early 2021 it’s unclear if the same camping opportunities will be available in the future.

 

 

Wailua Falls

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Things to do on the Road to Hana in 3 days: Wailua Falls waterfalls. Hawaii travel blog

 

 

St Peter Church

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Things to do on the Road to Hana in 3 days: Hawaiian church - St Peter church. Hawaii travel blog

 

 

Venus Pools

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Things to do on the Road to Hana in 3 days: Venus pools cliff jumping. waioka ponds. Hawaii travel blog

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Things to do on the Road to Hana in 3 days: Venus pools cliff jumping. waioka ponds. Hawaii travel blog

 

 

Waioka black sand beach

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Things to do on the Road to Hana in 3 days: waioka black sand beach near Venus pools cliff jumping. waioka ponds. Hawaii travel blog

 

 

Hamoa Beach

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Things to do on the Road to Hana in 3 days: hamoa beach. Hawaii travel blog

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Things to do on the Road to Hana in 3 days: hamoa beach. Hawaii travel blog

 

 

Koki Beach

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Things to do on the Road to Hana in 3 days: koki beach - red sand. Hawaii travel blog

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Things to do on the Road to Hana in 3 days: koki beach - red sand. Hawaii travel blog

 

 

Kaihalulu red sand beach

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Things to do on the Road to Hana in 3 days: kaihalulu red sand beach. Hawaii travel blog

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Things to do on the Road to Hana in 3 days: kaihalulu red sand beach. Hawaii travel blog

 

 

Nahiku Church

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Things to do on the Road to Hana in 3 days: Hawaiian church - Nahiku church. Hawaii travel blog

 

 

Nahiku wayside viewpoint

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Things to do on the Road to Hana in 3 days: Nahiku wayside lookout. Hawaii travel blog

 

 

Makapipi Falls

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Things to do on the Road to Hana in 3 days: Makapipi Falls waterfalls. Hawaii travel blog

 

 

Hanawi Falls

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Things to do on the Road to Hana in 3 days: Hanawi Falls waterfalls. Hawaii travel blog

 

 

Puaa Kaa Falls

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Things to do on the Road to Hana in 3 days: Puaa Kaa state park waterfalls. Hawaii travel blog

 

 

Wailuaiki Falls

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Things to do on the Road to Hana in 3 days: Wailuaiki Falls waterfalls. Hawaii travel blog

 

 

Upper Waikani Falls

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Things to do on the Road to Hana in 3 days: Upper Waikani Falls waterfalls. Hawaii travel blog

 

 

Wailua Valley wayside

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Things to do on the Road to Hana in 3 days: Wailua Valley state wayside. Hawaii travel blog

 

 

Keanae Point

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Things to do on the Road to Hana in 3 days: Keanae peninsula point lookout. Hawaii travel blog

 

 

Camp Keanae

One week in Maui Hawaii - Where to stay on the Road to Hana: Camping at YMCA Camp Keanae. Hawaii travel blog

 

I spent 2 nights in a dorm-style cabin at Camp Keanae. There were designated spots for tent camping and car camping. There was also a cottage. This may or may not be open to camping in the future.

 

 

Day 4: Drive from Keanae towards Paia

 

Campground I stayed at
  • YMCA Camp Keanae campground or cabin

 

I didn’t go to the Garden of Eden since there’s a $15 admissions fee, but it’s a popular stop. Same with Mama’s Fish House. It’s a popular restaurant that people go to for the experience. 

 

 

Honomanu Bay Beach

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Things to do on the Road to Hana with 4 days in Maui Hawaii: Honomanu Beach. Hawaii travel blog

 

 

Waikamoi Falls

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Things to do on the Road to Hana with 4 days in Maui Hawaii: Waikamoi Falls waterfalls. Hawaii travel blog

 

 

Rainbow Trees

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Things to do on the Road to Hana with 4 days in Maui Hawaii: Rainbow Trees. Hawaii travel blog

 

 

Twin Falls / Caveman Falls

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Things to do on the Road to Hana with 4 days in Maui Hawaii: Twin Falls waterfalls. Hawaii travel blog

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Things to do on the Road to Hana with 4 days in Maui Hawaii: Caveman Falls waterfalls. Hawaii travel blog

 

 

Hookipa Beach

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Things to do on the Road to Hana with 4 days in Maui Hawaii: Hookipa Beach. Hawaii travel blog

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Things to do on the Road to Hana with 4 days in Maui Hawaii: Hookipa Beach to see turtles. Hawaii travel blog

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Things to do on the Road to Hana with 4 days in Maui Hawaii: Hookipa Beach to see hawaiian monk seals. Hawaii travel blog

 

 

Day 5: Drive from Keanae to Waianapanapa State Park

  • Drive and do some activities you didn’t get around to doing before!
  • Find more hidden gems on the Road to Hana!
  • First glimpse of the black sand beach!

 

Campground to stay at
  • Waianapanapa State Park campground or cabin

 

This is a stretch of the Hana Highway that was backtracking a bit. So you can do some of the activities you didn’t get around to doing before when you were driving to Keanae.

 

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Things to do on the Road to Hana with 5 days in Maui Hawaii: Waianapanapa black sand beach - Pailoa Bay, Honokalani Beach. Hawaii travel blog

 

 

Where to stay camping in Maui: Waianapanapa State Park campground or cabin

One week in Maui Hawaii - Where to stay on the Road to Hana: Camping at Waianapanapa state park campground, black sand beach. Hawaii travel blog

One week in Maui Hawaii - Where to stay on the Road to Hana: Camping at Waianapanapa state park campground. Hawaii travel blog

One week in Maui Hawaii - Where to stay on the Road to Hana: Cabins at Waianapanapa state park campground, black sand beach. Hawaii travel blog

 

I spent 1 night camping at Waianapanapa State Park, and then 2 nights staying in a cabin.

A permit is required to stay at the state park, whether you’re camping or staying in a cabin. You need to print if off before you arrive at the state park. (This seems more important if you’re camping – there will be someone who checks.)

Cabins book up in advance so it’s better to book sooner rather than later! Camping spots are also limited, but this is probably more of an issue if you’re looking to camp on the weekend and wait until a couple of days before to book. The night I camped, it was full.

Cabins are right along the coast. You can have an ocean view when sitting on the balcony of your cabin!

 

 

Day 6: Waianapanapa State Park area

 

Campground to stay at
  • Waianapanapa State Park campground or cabin

 

If you head to the black sand beach in the morning shortly after sunrise, it’s very possible that you can be the only one there! The crowds generally don’t start arriving towards later.

Be sure not to miss the black sand beach lava tube that’s off to the side of the beach!

And then from the black sand beach, there’s a coastal trail that you can take. You can go as far as you want and then turn around, but going to the end will take you to Hana Airport.

The Hana lava tube is located near the state park. If you’re into learning about Maui’s volcanic landscape, it can be an interesting visit! This costs around $12 per person.

 

 

Pailoa Bay / Honokalani Beach

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Things to do on the Road to Hana with 6 days in Maui Hawaii: Waianapanapa State park black sand beach - Pailoa Bay, Honokalani Beach. Hawaii travel blog

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Things to do on the Road to Hana with 6 days in Maui Hawaii: Waianapanapa State park black sand beach - Pailoa Bay, Honokalani Beach. Hawaii travel blog

 

 

Waianapanapa black sand beach lava tube

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Things to do on the Road to Hana with 6 days in Maui Hawaii: Waianapanapa State park black sand beach lava tube. Hawaii travel blog

 

 

Piilani Trail towards Hana Airport

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Things to do on the Road to Hana with 6 days in Maui Hawaii: Waianapanapa State park coastal trail, piilani trail to hana airport. Hawaii travel blog

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Things to do on the Road to Hana with 6 days in Maui Hawaii: Waianapanapa State park coastal trail, piilani trail to hana airport. Hawaii travel blog

 

 

Hana lava tube

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Things to do on the Road to Hana with 6 days in Maui Hawaii: Hana lava tube. Hawaii travel blog

 

 

Day 7: Waianapanapa State Park

  • Piilani Trail to Hana (Waianapanapa coastal trail)

 

Campground to stay at
  • Waianapanapa State Park campground or cabin

 

And then you can also take the Waianapanapa coastal trail in the other direction, towards Hana. You’ll look for the cemetery to find the start of the trail in this direction. If you’re staying in a cabin, you can access the coastal trail a few steps from your cabin! 

And enjoy a slow last day on the Road to Hana!

 

 

Piilani Trail towards Hana

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Things to do on the Road to Hana with 7 days in Maui Hawaii: Waianapanapa State park coastal trail, piilani trail to hana. Hawaii travel blog

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Things to do on the Road to Hana with 7 days in Maui Hawaii: Waianapanapa State park coastal trail, piilani trail to hana. Hawaii travel blog

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Things to do on the Road to Hana with 7 days in Maui Hawaii: Waianapanapa State park coastal trail, piilani trail to hana. Hawaii travel blog

 

 

And those are some ideas on how to spend one week in Hawaii!

 

I was in airplane mode most of the time on the Hana Highway to save battery life, but when I did check my phone I never did get any data, and that includes in Hana town. I wasn’t even able to make any phone calls in Hana using my phone. (Emergency mode only.) I have t-mobile.

 

See more about the Road to Hana:

 

HAPPY ONE WEEK IN MAUI ON THE ROAD TO HANA!

 

One week in Maui Hawaii itinerary - Best things to do on the Road to Hana with 7 days in Maui Hawaii. Where to stay on the Road to Hana. camping, cabins, hotels. Maui Hawaii travel blog

 

 

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Top things to pack for your Hawaii vacation!

The ultimate beach towel for travel?!
Turkish towels are considered to be more absorbent and lightweight than your average beach towel. Be sure to check out turkish towels like these!
Possibly among the best Maui maps for tourists!
The Franko maps of Hawaii have a high level of detail for activities and it's beachproof aka waterproof. There's an "adventure" guide map and a "snorkel/dive" guide map. Plus a wall map for home to get you excited for your upcoming trip!
The cheapo way to waterproof your phone
You can take underwater pictures with a simple waterproof phone case like this. Touch screen may not work well underwater - try the volume button to snap the pic instead!
Get your suitcase more organized!
Packing cubes can make it so you're spending less time on your vacation looking for things! They are basically a form of drawers in your suitcase. Take a look at these packing cubes.
Wear less sunscreen by wearing a UPF swim shirt!
Wearing a swim shirt means less skin that's exposed to the sun which means less sunscreen you need to apply! See about wearing swim shirts with UV protection like these when you're snorkeling.

PLUS...
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ALOHA!