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Road to Hana Waterfalls

The island of Maui is full of beauty everywhere you look. When taking the road to Hana, waterfalls are among the many incredible sights you will witness along the way. Here are the top waterfalls to keep an eye out for.

Upper Waikani Falls

Upper Waikani Falls (Three Bears Falls) along the Hana Highway, Maui, Hawaii

Also known as Three Bears Falls, this waterfall becomes visible around mile marker 20 on the road to Hana. It can be easily seen from the road and is quite breathtaking. When there is the right amount of water present, you can see three separate waterfalls which is where the nickname Three Bears comes from. A photo of this waterfall looks like it belongs on a postcard. 

Pua’a Ka’a State Park Waterfalls

Pua’a Ka’a State Park Waterfalls

Pua’a Ka’a State Park is located at mile marker 22.5 and features a pair of waterfalls surrounded by lush greenery. These waterfalls are more easily accessible since there is parking at the state park as well as bathrooms and covered picnic tables. Many people do swim in the pool below these waterfalls, but the area can be challenging to access when it is muddy after a good rain. So keep an eye out for signage with warnings and proceed with caution. 

Hanawi Falls

Hanawi Falls waterfall next to a river on the road to Hana in Maui

Right after mile marker 24, you can see Hanawi Falls. This waterfall is sustained by a spring-fed river, Hanawi Stream, that makes its way into the ocean about nine miles downslope. An upper and lower waterfall both cascade into an ice-cold pool below. Hanawi Falls is one of the most photographed waterfalls in Hawaii. 

Makapipi Falls

view of Makapipi Falls. waterfall under bridge as orange van drives along road

When you reach mile marker 25, you can see Makapipi Falls beneath you as you cross the bridge that passes over the top. It provides a unique angle to see a waterfall since most of the time you won’t be able to look down at one from up above.

Paihi Falls

a large waterfall in a forest

When you hit mile marker 45, you will pass the lovely Paihi Falls. This 50-foot waterfall is easy to spot from the road. You will see the water cascading in between lush green vegetation into a serene pool below. With views like a rainforest Maui does not disappoint. So have your camera ready!

Tips for Seeing Waterfalls on the Road to Hana

Proceed with Caution

While it might be tempting to get as close to a waterfall as you can, hiking to certain waterfalls can be quite dangerous, especially if anyone in your group is not an experienced hiker or isn’t wearing proper shoes. It is best to view waterfalls from a distance. That way, you can take in the whole view of the waterfall and get amazing pictures as a keepsake to remember its beauty. 

Follow Signs

Many of the waterfalls have very inviting swimming pools at the bottom and some of them do allow swimming. However, you should never jump into a pool from above without knowing how deep it is. Some pools will be marked with a “CAUTION” sign or a sign that indicates “NO SWIMMING” and these should always be followed. It might be tempting to dip into that cool mountain water, but you should only do so if it is safe and allowed. 

Get Expert Guidance

Since many of the Hana waterfalls are fed by rain, it can take some local expertise to know which waterfalls are flowing on any given day. Finding the best waterfalls will depend on when and where rains fell on Haleakala. It is much easier to catch a waterfall flowing with the help of a local guide. 

Be Weather Aware

Driving on the Road to Hana can be dangerous, even in perfect weather. However, the weather can be unpredictable, which makes driving the winding highway quite hazardous for inexperienced drivers. Sudden downpours can catch tourists off guard and they may not know how to react. Taking a Road to Hana tour is the best way to be safe, as the local guides are highly experienced at driving the hairpin turns, even during rain showers. 

Tour Maui Waterfalls with Valley Isle Excursions

While on the Road to Hana Highway, plenty of waterfalls can be seen right for your vehicle. Since the Road to Hana can take several hours to travel across, stopping at each waterfall would make for an extremely long trip. When you take a guided tour on the Road to Hana, you can safely view all of the sights, including waterfalls, from your window without having to worry about keeping your eye on the road. Valley Isle Excursion’s customized Comfort Cruisers were specifically designed to elevate you to help ensure you can see it all. These vehicles have huge windows and are elevated higher above the ground than most vehicle, even Jeeps, so you can see above the guard rails and have an unobstructed view of the beauty that surrounds you. Book your tour online today with Valley Isle Excursions!