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Maui Destination Guide

National Parks

Maui National and State Parks

Haleakala National Park

Haleakala (House of the Sun) National Park is a special place with stories of ancient and modern Hawaiian culture and protects the bond between the land and its people. The park also cares for many endangered species, some of which exist nowhere else. Visit Haleakala and renew your spirit amid stark volcanic landscapes and sub-tropical rain forest with an unforgettable hike through the backcountry.

Contact the Haleakala National Park for more information at 808-572-4400.


Iao Valley State Monument

Iao Valley’s sheer green walls are adorned with long, slender waterfalls. It is one of the most awe-inspiring sights on Maui. A short 0.6 mile walk along a paved walkway provides a scenic viewpoint of Kuka‘emoku ('Iao Needle), an natural rock pinnacle which abruptly rises 1200 feet from the valley floor. Iao Valley is the site of the battle of Kepaniwai where the forces of Kamehameha I conquered the Maui army in 1790 in an effort to unite the Hawaiian Islands. This was one of the most famous and bloody battles in Hawaii’s history.

Contact the Iao Valley State Monument for more information at 808-587-0300.


Waianapanapa State Park

Located along the Hana Highway just a few miles before Hana town, Waianapanapa State Park covers about 120 acres along the eastern shore of Maui. The lovely black sand beach also offers a grassy area above the ocean that is a perfect place for a scenic picnic. Enjoy views of the dramatic sea caves, natural stone arch, hiking trails and remnants of the old King's Highway.

Contact the Waianapanapa State Park for more information at 808-587-0300.


'Ahihi Kina'u Natural Area Reserve – La Perouse Bay

La Perouse Bay is located south of Makena and is the southernmost point of Maui. Fishing is prohibited because of the bay's proximity to the Ahihi-Kinau Natural Area Reserve and is home to many endemic and other fish species, marine mammals, green sea turtles, and coastal plants. The French explorer Jean François de Galaup, comte de La Perouse landed here in 1786, making it the first point on Maui that Westerners set foot. Explore the remains of the ancient Hawaiian village – house and heiau platforms - using the trails that lead inland over the rough lava from the last eruption of Haleakala.


Makena Beach State Park

Commonly known as "Big Beach", this is one of the largest beaches on Maui, extending 2/3 of a mile long and 100 yards wide. Big Beach is located south of Wailea and is nestled between two black lava outcroppings which offer protection from the trade winds. Visitors can swim and snorkel in these pristine and secluded waters.

Contact the Makena Beach State Park for more information at 808-984-8109.