Road to Hana
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To visit East Maui you will need to take the Road to Hana. This is a 56 mile windy road with 56 one lane bridges and 300 ess curves. As daunting as it may seem, the road is well maintained and the drive will take you through very lush forests with waterfalls and spectacular views. The trip is about 2.5 - 3 hours each way (depending on how many times you stop). Leave early to avoid the traffic and give you time to enjoy the scenery without being rushed. To enjoy all of the attractions in East Maui plan to stay in Hana overnight. This will give you plenty of time to enjoy the beautiful beaches and even drive down to Oheo Gulch for a hike to Waimoku Falls and a bamboo forest. Go the the Road to Hana Guide for detailed information, maps, slide shows, and printable directions by mile markers.
The town of Hana is East Maui's main business center which caters mostly to the locals. There is only one hotel/resort, the Travaasa, but many condos available for 1-7 days. This is a quaint little town with some old churches, historical sites and a few restaurants.
East Maui beaches aren't the best for snorkeling (except Hana Bay which is great), but are the prettiest on the island. Make sure to stop at Hamoa Beach , Koki Beach , and Black Sand Beach (Wai'anapanapa State Park).
Further south of Hana is Oheo Gulch which is part of Halelakala National Park. Here you will find plenty of waterfalls , a bamboo forest and many hiking trails. It is possible to keep traveling south and wind your way back to Kula, although it is not recommended for rentals cars. This the road is not well maintained, partially dirt, very curvy and steep at time (worse than the road to Hana if you can imagine). Call for conditions if you plan on taking the route as the road is closed after heavy rains.
Visit the Keanae Peninsula on the way back. The rugged lava shoreline is breathtaking. This area is a favorite hangout for locals and if you are lucky there will be a local fair or event going on at the sports field.
The map below will have mile markers and places of interest for the Road to Hana.