- Type: Nature & Wildlife
NileGuide Expert tip:
The Federally protected endangered Nene goose always has the right of way.
- The Park Headquarters Visitor Center is located one mile from the park entrance at 7,000' elevation. Driving time from the resort areas of Kihei and Ka'anapali is about two hours. Restrooms, public telephone, and a picnic area are available here. This is a Hawaii Natural History Assoc sales area as well as a backcountry camping/ cabin permit station. No food or gas are available.
The Haleakala Visitor Center is located near the summit of Haleakala, at 9,700' elevation, ten miles from the park entrance off the Park Road. The center includes interpretive exhibits on the natural, geologic and cultural heritage of Haleakala. Facilities include restrooms, and a Hawaii Natural History Assoc sales area. No public phone, gas or food are available.
Hiking and walking are very popular within Haleakala National Park. In the Summit area two trails lead into the wilderness: Sliding Sands Trail and Halemau`u Trail. There are also many shorter trails available in this area. Both areas of the Park offer guided walks and programs on the geology and natural and cultural history of the area.
Sky-watching is a great way to escape the world! Stop at one of the several overlooks on the Park road or take a short walk away from the traffic noise to watch the clouds. The visual horizon in many places in the Summit area is up to 115 miles out to sea. Even cloudy skies can offer amazing sights including rainbows, moonbows and halos seen around your shadow. Haleakala offers one of the most easily accessible places to watch planets, stars and moons after dark. Rent a pair of 10x50 or 7x50 binoculars at one of the island dive shops, pick up a star map at Park Headquarters or Haleakala Visitor Center, and see if you can find the moons of Jupiter.
Visitors to this island park can participate in a myriad of outdoor activities. At Park Headquarters, Haleakala Visitor Center and the Kipahulu Ranger Station/Visitor Center have cultural and natural history exhibits. Rangers are on duty during business hours to answer questions and help you make the most of your visit. The most popular activities in the park include backpacking, camping, hiking, horseback riding, nature walks, stargazing, swimming, wildlife viewing and viewing scenery.
The Summit area of Haleakala is a three hour round trip drive from Kahului via roads 37, 377, and 378. Follow the signs posted along the Highway.