By: Bound2explore July 2017
Road to Hana is the ultimate road trip you can take while you are in Maui. Imagine catching the waterfall on the side of the road while driving and spotting a stunning colorful beach along the way. There are so many beautiful spots you can stop along the way. Love food? Then you can stop for banana bread and fresh coconut drink. If you have time, plan for it. If you don’t, then just go with the flow. There is only one road, so you won’t get lost.
While we were supposed to plan the road trip accordingly, in reality we didn’t really plan anything. Thinking that we could rely on the GPS for each spots that we planned to hit, we just left the map at the hotel. Believing so much in technology left us with limited options when the signal completely lost. What can I say? Sometimes technology just fails you. So what did we do? We just winged it. We just kept on driving. It is easy to locate must see spot since many tourist will flock the location. Every time we saw many cars parked on the side of the road, we stopped and explored.
While it is easy to explore, driving on the road to Hana requires some good driving skill. With 59 single lane bridges, many hair pin turns around the cliffs, single road on some part, it is definitely not for faint hearted person. So consider all of those facts before deciding to drive. If you are not sure about your driving skill or you simply don’t like altitude, but still want to experience the road to Hana, then you can drive up to Paia Town. This eclectic town is fun to explore and the drive up to this town is still quite easy.
Now, if you are ready to drive on road to Hana, here are some places to stop along the way:
The Twin Falls
I’m not impressed by this waterfalls but if you want to check it out, you can park your car off the road and then walk on unpaved trail to the waterfalls. At the entrance you will see a food truck selling banana bread, fresh coconut drink and other drinks. It is a good spot to take a break but not so much for the view.
The name says it all. If you want to see the bamboo forest and some hidden waterfalls and you like hiking, this place is for you.
Garden of Eden
This place charges you the entrance fees. If you love a walk in the park and spotting different types of plants, definitely check it out. The garden has a small section of bamboo forest. My favorite part is the view from the lookout point. It is stunning. You can also see the Puohokamoa falls from here. There is a separate trail that will take you straight to Puohokamoa falls.
Pua’a ka’a state wayside park
Stopped here for a view and to stretch the leg. Here, you can also hike if you have time.
Nahiku Roadside coffee Stand
Who doesn’t need a good coffee break especially when you driving on the long road to Hana. This coffee stand is a perfect place to take a break after a long drive.
Actually we spotted this waterfall from the road while we were driving. There’s no parking space. So if you want to stop here, you have to squeeze your car on the side of the road.
Lava Tube Cave
You have to exit Hana Highway and take Ulaino Road to get to the Lava tube. The place offers self-guided tour for less than 12 dollars per person. You can walk and explore the cave at your own pace. This is one of Maui’s amazing natural wonder.
Waianapanapa Black Sand Beach
By far, this is my most favorite spot on the road to Hana. The view is absolutely breathtaking. The Coconut trees, blue ocean, beautiful rock formation along the coast and black sand beach blend perfectly to create a stunning sight. You can walk and follow the trail that will take you the black sand beach where you can swim. So pack you swimsuit. This is a must see place.
There are many waterfalls you can chase along the way that we skipped due to time constraint. While road to Hana drive can be done as a day trip, in my opinion it is easier if you actually spend at least one night in Hana and drive back the next day. Whenever you are in Maui, make sure to do this road trip adventure.