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Incredibly crowded trail with tourists. Impossible to go your own pace. The trail is mostly paved and has long sections in tunnels and up stairs. The views at the top were decent, but still very disappointing for such a famous hike.

I dared the rain with this one because it’s been on my list for a while now—it was incredibly muddy and slippery, but the views were stunning at every point! I happen to really enjoy challenging climbs, too. It’s a straight uphill climb that’s very clearly marked from previous hikers. However, I would recommend this only for the experienced or brave because it becomes exponentially harder with any sort of rainfall. There are strong root systems, rocks, and two sets of rope to help with the climb. The descent turns into more of a controlled mudslide, though.
Park at the fish pond just past the trailhead. There will be two entrances, but go into the one with a concrete bench and memorial. Be prepared to come out extremely dirty! The oceanfront makes it easy to wash off.

Loved the hike !! Did all falls ...took a few spills due to the wetness on the narrow trail .....

4 days ago

This hike was harder than I anticipated, but well worth the climb. In order to reach the first summit, you will maneuver up muddy slopes and will need to climb several rocky areas with the aid of ropes. We stopped at the first peak and took some amazing photos. Views were breathtaking. Climbing down proved to be more difficult than going up, but there are plenty of trees and roots to grip onto as you descend. Would highly recommend this hike. Wear proper footwear.

Too many tourists, however the views at the top were breathtaking. Definitely worth it.

Beautiful hike, super wet today. Waterfalls were amazing! Hike safe!

One of the best hikes/climbs. :) In my first try I got to all three peaks thanks to the beautiful weather today. It's demending, relatively hard. It's worth the sweat and effort. Exhilarating, exciting!

If it's raining or wet, think twice about going around the crater ridge unless you have cleats and rope. Mildly treacherous mud climbing and sliding will ensue. A light amount of rain had all of the falls raging, making the third one impossible to cross the standard way, instead requiring dangerous and fun mountain goat gymnastics up both sides to make it to the top. At that point you can go left to find the exit route, or go right and try to hurt yourself. Results after 6 hours: bruised, cut, sore, mud covered, smiling.

As always, please continue leaving as much of your trash on the trail as possible, it gives me great satisfaction to collect it.

Great trail, lots of tourists though.

This hike was gorgeous at the top with beautiful views of water and Waikiki. The only negative thing I could say is that this hike was definitely harder than other people have described. I am a runner and in great shape and this isn’t a walk in the park. I saw people in flip flops and Sandals and I was shocked. There are a lot of crowds and I would definitely recommend coming early.

12 days ago

Let me add some details. When people say get there early, 8:15 on a Sunday morning is not early (when we got there). The parking lot was full, several buses were parked and the place was jammed. We went back out and parked across the street from the entrance at the Community College Park lot. Easy walk in from there. For the actual hike, you basically queue up and march up the path/stairs. During the hike up and down you are single file because people are going both directions constantly. In the 1.5 miles up and down we probably passed 500 people? 1000? Just a lot of people. I prefer hikes where miles covered+dogs seen > number of people seen so this wasn’t for me. Still gave it three stars for the views and the fact that the queue actually moved at a decent speed. My wife also recommends using the bathrooms at the community college park as well since the bathrooms inside Diamond Head had lines out the door.

My wife and I hiked this and it was a great view from the top. It is relatively busy hike with numerous tourists, but worth it for the view.

The place is certainly historic and an icon for the area, but it's not a trail I'd hike again with anyone given the number of tourists that frequent the area. Recommend any diamond head crater seekers to gauge the number of buses in the area before committing to the hike.

The views are great and would have been better with a sunrise but cloud cover didn't allow. Also, wear good shoes, lots of uneven terrain and stairs.

Holy cow this thing is hard, first and second waterfalls are what one normally expects, but third is almost rock climbing followed by a climb along a ridge with winds threatening to blow you off, do not attempt of its raining! All that said, beautiful trail, amazing sights, and the view from the peak! Definitely do this hike if you can handle it!

Very crowded. Go for the view at the top.

13 days ago

Sweet hike. The initial approach has some scrambling and the views from atop are amazing. If you continue upwards, the trail eventually follows the ridgeline (which can definitely get a little bit scary). There are other trails in the same vicinity so will definitely come back to this one

14 days ago

Definitely a favorite. Unlike hikes where you can feel every mile, this hike felt a lot shorter than it actually was. Astounding views. Gets your heart pumping and your adrenaline racing.

You have to park a few roads away from where the trail begins. If you start to drive past the security booth, the guard will stop you and let you know that cars can’t enter but you can pass by on foot. You’ll walk a bit down the road until you reach the sign (very obvious) and immediately enter the forest, mud and all.

Soon the terrain switches to pine forest (someone must explain these elusive pine trees to me) and then becomes more rock-like, with lots of boulders, dirt, and trees to hold on to. The trail grows steeper and even though there were many ropes, I found that the terrain wasn’t quite as thigh-burning (90 degree angled) as others. The rocks you’d climb were at a 45 degree angle - nice and steep but more cardio-focused than muscle-focused.

As you reach the first peak, you have to boulder a little to get to the top, and then walk along a rock-ridge. The wind feels great and the height is exhilarating. It’s definitely not for children or anyone afraid of heights. Many people go on to the second and third peaks but from what we heard, the second peak is lower and less impressive than the first (it has an unimpeded view of the island), and the third is much more dangerous for a similar view. It’s a lot steeper than the first and unless you’re an experienced climber with your own rope, it’s not recommended.

We chose not to do the second/third peaks and instead enjoyed the first peak for a while, then headed down. We ran into numerous helicopters along the way (on this hike and others), at least one being a rescue chopper. They get so close!

I highly recommend this hike for people who love heights. Overall I’d say it was a moderate hike, took us about 3 hours round-trip including the 30 min. photo break at the top, numerous conversations with other hikers we ran into, and idle chitchat.

Instead of starting at the parking lot where the trail starts, we parked in the neighborhood past Diamond Head Rd. and started walking from there, which doubled the length of it (but not the elevation). This way is nice because you get to walk through the tunnel and don’t have to pay for parking.

Even though the hike is fairly easy and there are a lot of tourists, it’s extremely enjoyable. The terrain is constantly changing and presents you with little surprises. You wind up and around the mountain for most of the hike until you reach a few sets of steep, manmade stairs, and then scamper through a tower with a few levels before coming out the top. An amazing view of Waikiki and other parts of the island ensue.

My favorite part was running up the stairs, it was a good little workout. Even if you’re an avid hiker I highly recommend this one, it’s a perfect break from high intensity hikes yet still satisfying.

A good quick hike. I would definitely go early morning as our group went in the afternoon and it was very crowded and hot. But overall a good hike to see the island.

Best hike on the island - tons of mud and tons of fun - if you are old and slow and take lots of videos and it is rainy - plan on a 10 hour hike

15 days ago

Such a nice little hike. Been looking to do this one for a long while and finally did it today. It was a nice day out and the trail was completely dry. Our car was fine on main road parking area, just don’t leave any valuables or anything in plain sight, just like anywhere else on island. The trailhead is the opening with 2 signs and the cement bench. There is currently a memorial there as well. It was a really quick hike but we could see how it could be a harder mess if it was wet. We did a bunch of exploring up top and could have spend more time.

Fun, fairly quick hike not far from Honolulu. Generally kid friendly. Highly recommended if you’re visiting in the area.

Puka was pretty small but the views are magnificent! Stayed by the ridge the whole time. started at the right side of the fence coming from the Makapu'u Lookout parking lot.

16 days ago

Very short and steep hike. Make sure to brings lots of water! Climbing up we had no breeze, until we made it to the top. The views are breathtaking.

Fantastic hike
The second and third peak are only for experienced hikers

It’s a awesome hike I suggest you go early in the morning to avoid tourist traffic

It's a awesome hike I suggest you go early in the morning to avoid traffic

18 days ago

absolutely beautiful hike - trail was a little muddy but had good footing the whole way up to the first peak. we rode our bikes to the entrance of the golf club & locked them to a fence. when we got back they were gone so if you plan on biking be careful of the risk. would definitely recommend though! very fun and 360 views of the windward side of island.

Entry level hike...easy with great views of Honolulu

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