HARD 1,211 reviews

Haiku Stairs [CLOSED/ PRIVATE PROPERTY] is a 2.4 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Honolulu, Hawaii that offers scenic views and is rated as difficult. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, and nature trips and is accessible year-round.

2.4 miles
2565 feet
Out & Back


nature trips




private property

no dogs

NOTE: This trail is CLOSED TO THE PUBLIC and violators/trespassers are SUBJECT TO $1000 FINES, COMMUNITY SERVICE, BENCH WARRANTS, AND/OR ARREST. If you receive a citation you will be required to appear in court. PLEASE NOTE: The act of being ON the stairs is ILLEGAL and trespassing on government property. A powerful storm passed over the island of Oahu on in 2015 which caused significant damage to the stairway itself, rendering it dangerous and unusable. Hikers MUST be mindful of neighborhood residents who live in this area. Noise complaints, parking violations and exiting the trail via residential properties will result in a fine. The ONLY LEGAL WAY to get to the TOP of the Haiku Stairs can be found here: https://www.alltrails.com/trail/us/hawaii/moanalua-valley-trail-to-the-haiku-stairs-stairway-to-heaven. Again, it is ILLEGAL to be on the HAIKU Stairs at any point along the route.

1 day ago

I’ll climb the stairs Sat, Jan 20th, for the 217th time.

The most recent post on my Instagram @Hawaii_Mountain.Man.Matt will give you an idea for an impactful photo perspective.

5 things you should know about the hike:

(1) It is the safest way to reach that elevation on Oahu.

Over the last 70+ years, no one has ever died falling on the stairs*.

(2) There is a ton of trash at the top.

Bring a folded heavy-duty trash bag to help with that.

(3) No matter what, don’t go near homes!

Think: when is the last time you woke up at 3am and whispered: "Honey I think there's someone outside the house!"

Two people have recently been shot on the street by a high powered air rifle fired near the intersection of Kuneki and Makena. Both times the projectile broke the skin. That was wrong of the shooter, but also not surprising.

(4) The back way is more dangerous, but worth considering.

Near the base of the stairs, there is one unmarked Honolulu Police Department vehicle roaming to catch hikers.

After the November 12th escape of killer Randall Saito from the mental facility behind the neighborhood, security is on best behavior using off-road vehicles to apprehend hikers.

On a usual morning, a roving HPD officer, a stationary guard and two roving guards secure the area.

The penalty has some variables, but here are the components:

(1) $1,000 fine
(2) Jail, no longer than 6 months. (incarnation is rare)
(3) Legal fees (a defense attorney charges $800 - $1,500 for the case)
(4) Usually 80 hours of community service.
(5) Legal fees for expungement.
(6) Visa/Immigration hurdles
(7) Impact on professional life.
(8) Return travel and accommodations to attend court, community service, etc.

The setback ranges from $3,000 for simple cases, up into the hundreds of thousands over the length of a career for military members reduced in rank, folks who lose their security clearance or a professional license, etc.

Going up the front way, as amazing as it is, is not worth playing Russian roulette with the penalty, so don’t “just risk the ticket”.

Have a plan.

‘Three routes through the bamboo forest’ is not a plan I recommend. Police have internet also.

People who say they “just did it”, were (1) luckily, and (2) don’t know how lucky. (But with the experience of one hike under their belt, they are confident enough to share some guidance with you about what they ‘do know’ lol.)

Public record shows hundreds of hikers are caught each month. Understandably they don’t want to be online incriminating themselves, but if I could speak from their position, I would say each one believed well-intended advice.

I usually savor the feeling at the top for a couple hours with hot food and a hammock. While I’m there, people sometimes come from the back side and say they will go down the stairs. I warn them about the probability of trouble, but they are usually adamant about taking a ticket rather than “almost dying”.

There is some validity to that. Although no one has ever died falling on the stairs, over the years many people have gone missing attempting to gain access from the back way.

So be prepared.

The right pair of shoes is your most important piece of equipment for the back way. Inov8 is my favorite brand for the ridge, but any shoe with aggressive (toothed) tread will do. They cost about $140 a pair locally.

If you go the back way, bear in mind Moanalua park trailhead hours are 7am - 7pm. Entering or exiting the park outside of these hours is likely to get you ticketed. (Moanalua neighbors are agitated about the new traffic going up the back side and have pressured the police to maintain a presence in the park.)

As far as coming from the front: I can’t post my plans online. I hope you understand why.

But when we climb the stairs, we approach peacefully and respectfully to enjoy the deep beauty in nature which heals our souls. People need this, and I hold that it is immoral to keep the medicine of mana from the people of earth who are so hungry for relief from the unnatural.

(5). This is the real Hawaii!

Perhaps because you have literally stepped “into” it 3,992 times, the stairs facilitate immersion. It’s a full body workout (because of the handrails) and the activity melts your physical senses until you’re open to let go and sense spirit more keenly. You rise from civilization into a world where magic is the usual.

People think they’re going for the epic view of morning colors, painting the landscape with divine creativity.

But what they discover along the way is they’re going up to find themselves. To recognize the blueprint of their soul in nature, to feel the heartbeat of paradise, and to realize they are inextricably part of that majesty.

They all say: “I researched this, but I had no idea it was going to be this good.”

Sometimes I skip a week, other times I go twice a day, but no matter how sore I am from my last climb, once I start, I’m lost in joy.


2 days ago

Aloha! I do various guided hikes with photos on Oahu. I hike often/weekly. I will be hiking this Saturday. Feel free to check out some examples of photos on my instagram @mike.karas. You can message me there or at mikekarasphotography@gmail.com.

14 days ago

Hey everyone! Looking for someone experienced to go up with either the 13th or 14th of January early morning to see the sunrise. Please and thank you!!! My number is 2078083013. Visiting from Maine:)

15 days ago

Amazing sunrise hike

15 days ago

Excellent Trail. I made a comprehensive video for Hikers using the Moanalua Trail to the Stairway to Heaven. It can be viewed on my YouTube channel: Green Beret Unlimited.
Check it out! Beautiful views and tips.

15 days ago

Watch out for the lady in the White House by the gate to the old school we had our taxi drive down that road to drop us off she immediately went inside her house we gave our driver the cash and booked to the left into the forest on the path and continued to the bamboo forest, we couldn’t find a solid entrance so we just ran to the beginning of the stairs saw a car must of been the guard but he either didn’t notice us or care lol either way I wasn’t stopping to talk haha great hike we did it about 3 pm

22 days ago

Will be in Kaneohe till the 8th of January. Have never done this hike and would love to come along if someone knows the ropes and is willing to have me tag along! Contact me (408)784-5385

Thanks, Mohammad.

23 days ago

Hello hiking family! I'll be on Oahu January 23-31 and I've been dying to do Stairway to Heaven! I would love to do this hike with someone who knows the ropes! Feel free to email or DM me! amandag1027@gmail.com or @mandagraves

24 days ago

One of the most memorable days of my life! This hike was incredible. My advice is to find someone to go with that knows the area and the stairs well. I used a guide and am happy I did.

29 days ago


I hike all over Oahu pretty regularly. Check out my IG @VentureAloha and to hike with me slide in the DM’s.

30 days ago

I’ve done my research on this trail and like most people feel:
1) its a bucket list item hike.
2) the risk of getting fined makes me nervous.

I would love if someone was interested in hiking this with my boyfriend and I 12/23-12/25. We are experienced hikers so I don’t worry about being in shape. Instagram DM @cassondra.nw

If there is someone who is a local guide I would be willing to buy them a beer or just pay them cash. :)

1 month ago

Beautiful views all around!

1 month ago

Hi there, Haiku Stairs seem to be the highlight of Oahu island. As such, as everyone else, we would like to do the trail sometime between 18-20 January 2018, To somewhat lower the risk, would some local guide us through? Anyone like a "guide" :)? Or can we just join anyone who knows the place? THX (krapinec@seznam.cz)

1 month ago

Amazing hike. Well worth the risk.

1 month ago

The list of hikes I haven't finished is getting shorter and I keep finding myself needing the stairs! I wish I knew a way in that didn't involve trespassing on personal private property. That's where I draw the line and why I haven't done it. I look forward to getting up there but it will more than likely be from the backside. Be safe and pick up after yourself!

1 month ago

fun challenging climb!

1 month ago

First time in Hawaii ever feel like Im on a life mission to do this hike either way I don't care..Im gonna try Tuesday morning the 5th or 6th if anybody wants to go..if you can guide me ill buy you lunch, beers and drive...thanks



1 month ago

Looking to do this trail tomorrow afternoon. Would love to have a guide for me and my friends. Thanks in advance! @nick_haste (IG)

1 month ago

Aloha! I do various guided hikes and photos on Oahu. Feel free to check out my instagram @mike.karas. You can message me there or @mikekarasphotography@gmail.com.

1 month ago


We are two friends looking for someone to do this hike tomorrow or after tomorrow. If you want to join us let me know. My email is kalfarolara@gmail.com

Thanks :)

Load More