Top 10 Waterfall Hikes In And Around West Maui Mountains, Hawaii - Updated 2024

waterfall hikes in west maui
| 4 min read

Maui, Hawaii is already a tropical paradise to begin with. If we look closer, there are hidden gems inside this utopia-like island. Whether you’re a new or an experienced adventurer, this place in Hawaii is the right one for you. More than its stunning beaches, other tourist attractions include its renowned falls and hiking trails. West Maui Mountains has a lot to offer — from amazing views to exciting activities, this place has it! If you are looking for an unforgettable adventure or want to feel a little closer to Mother Nature, read on for the best waterfall hikes in and around West Maui Mountains, Hawaii.

Travel Advisory

Trip101 recommends assessing the risks before hitting the hiking and trekking trails. Please be especially aware of the difficulty levels, the locations’ ground conditions, as well as the seasonal risks.

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1. Makamakaole Falls

waterfall hikes in west maui | makamakaole falls
Source: instagram

Makamakaole Falls — also locally known as “13 crossings” — is a fun and easy trail. Whether you are a 4- or 50-year-old person, this hiking trail is perfect for you. From its thick green forest to its refreshing swimming holes, this place is a hidden gem to be explored. If you’re an experienced hiker, you can complete the 3.2-kilometer (1.9-mile) trail and swim at one of the most beautiful waterfalls in Maui at the end. There are also four smaller waterfalls on the roadside that you can plunge into for a quick swim stop.

Makamakaole Falls

Address: Maui County, Hawaii, United States

Difficulty: Easy to Moderate

Hiking Distance: 0.5 mile (0.8 kilometers) round-trip

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2. Lower Makamakaole Falls

West Maui Mountain Sunrise
Source: Photo by user BirdsEyePix used under CC BY-SA 2.0

Lower Makamakaole Falls is just 1.9 kilometers (1.2 miles) from the Makamakaole Falls and also a part of the “13 Crossings.” Most people who have visited this falls say that it is hard to find but if you are that adventurer who will go the extra mile for this spot, it is guaranteed to be worth it! The main tier of this waterfalls is said to be more or less 60 feet (18 meters) high. If you are not really into hiking and just wanted to enjoy the view, you can catch a glimpse of this beautiful waterfalls past the 8-mile (13-kilometer) marker in Kaheliki Highway.

Lower Makamakaole Falls

Address: Maui County, Hawaii, United States

Difficulty: Easy

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3. Aliele Falls

Maui Waterfall (6947518980)
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user John Fowler used under CC BY 2.0

Aliele Falls is where you go when you really want to do on an easy hike, for it’s only a 10-minute hike from the road. Though Aliele Falls is altered, this 12-feet (4-meter) high waterfall is still worth seeing. To go here, you have to go through Waihe’e Valley Trail that is also known as “Swinging Bridges.” You might need to plan ahead if you want to see Aliele Falls because you need to book for your tour at the trail and the falls.

Aliele Falls

Address: Wailuku, Hawaii

Difficulty: Easy to Moderate

Hiking Distance: 4 miles (6 kilometers) round-trip

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4. Mana-nole Falls

One of the tallest waterfalls in this list, the Mana-nole Falls is estimated to be 1,000-feet (305-meter) tall although its waters flow lightly. Tucked in Waihe’e Valley of West Maui, this waterfall is ideally seen through Waihe’e Ridge Trail, or Waihe’e Valley Trail. Mostly enjoyed by the usual tourist through chopper tours, taking a short hike (2 miles or 3 kilometers round trip for Waihe’e Ridge Trail and 4 miles or 6 kilometers round trip in Waihe’e Valley Trail) to get closer to this majestic falls would surely pay off.

Mana-nole Falls

Address: Wailuku, Hawaii

Difficulty: Moderate

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Other waterfall hikes on the island

5. King’s Garden Falls (from USD 116.0)

One of Maui’s most popular tourist destinations, a hike along the King’s Garden Falls would surely satisfy nature lovers and history buffs. The enchanting rainforest trail is filled with both ancient royal gardens and home to one of the largest prehistoric ferns in the world. The trail also includes the historic ancient water tunnel of the local lizard deity Mo’o. A hike to the King’s Garden Falls is both an exploration of the island’s rich history and its rare and endangered plant species.

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Maui The King's Gardens Waterfall and Rainforest Hiking Tour

Duration: 2 hours

128 reviews

6. Twin Falls (from USD 212.0)

Maui Twin Falls Waterfall, Sue Salisbury Maui Hawaii
Source: Photo by user Sue Salisbury used under CC BY 2.0

Underrated by most guidebooks and reviews, Twin Falls is best explored through a hike to both of its forks instead of doing the usual in-and-out drive-by. There is also a hidden hand-dug tunnel (constructed during the 1800s) and a prehistoric-looking cave in the hike trail. As one of the most crowded destinations in this list, Twin Falls is equipped with amenities including a snack stand, which serves island-grown fruit shakes and local baked goodies.

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Small Group Waterfall and Rainforest Hiking Adventure on Maui

Duration: 5 hours

1055 reviews

7. Puohokamoa Falls

waterfall hikes in west maui | puohokamoa falls
Source: instagram

Puohokamoa Falls is a two-for-one hike destination. Offering equally magnificent views, Upper Puohokamoa Falls and Lower Puohokamoa Falls are surely worth the hike. With a beautiful, sheltered viewing deck filled with local peddlers, Upper Puohokamoa Falls is a go-to family destination. On the other hand, Lower Puohokamoa Falls — located below the Hana highway — is easy to miss for mainstream tourists but is truly worth the trek.

Puohokamoa Falls

Address: Haiku, Hawaii

Difficulty: Moderate

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8. Hanawi Falls

Hanawi Falls Maui Road to Hana
Source: Photo by Flickr user dronepicr used under CC BY 2.0

Accessed from the town of Nahiku through an exciting trail, the 200-feet (61-meter) Hanawi falls is truly a sight to behold. Accessing the lower cascade of the Hanawi falls is a more exciting experience than the usual drive-by to the upper part of the waterfalls since it is surrounded by lush, tropical vegetation. Adventurers could also take a detour at the Nahiku Marketplace near the bottom of the Hanawi Falls. Nahiku Marketplace is a bustling cluster of restaurants, cafes, and stores with a vibrant ambiance.

Hanawi Falls

Location: Hana Highway, Haiku, Hawaii

Difficulty: Easy

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9. Makahiku Falls

Makahiku Falls
Source: Photo by Flickr user Brian Uhreen used under CC BY 2.0

The trail to the 200-foot (61-meter) Makahiku Falls is one of the most scenic routes in this list. Boasting a hidden bamboo forest in its midway point, the fairly short hike to Makahiku Falls is more rewarding than some of the longer hikes on this list. It also has one of the most pristine and protected pools that can create an infinity-like effect in calmer weather conditions. There is also a small cave-like formation upstream near Makahiku Falls.

Makahiku Falls

Location: Haleakalā National Park, Hawaii

Difficulty: Easy to moderate

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Enjoy your stay in the West Maui Mountains

Exploring the West Maui Mountains with its treasure trove of pristine and lush waterfalls is very rewarding for families, outdoor enthusiasts, and even history buffs looking for a quick nature trip. There is also a wide range of accommodation options for travelers planning a trip to Maui, from luxurious hotels with lazy rivers and exciting water slides to visually stunning boutique hotels. West Maui is indeed the perfect destination for any kind of traveler.

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Any must-sees we missed? Tell us about them in the comments section or write a post here to help out fellow travelers!
Disclosure: Trip101 selects the listings in our articles independently. Some of the listings in this article contain affiliate links.


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Maui Hermitanio is a Manila-based content writer. She is most interested in writing about international cuisines, popular food stops, and destinations with beaches and outdoor sceneries. She has...Read more

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