Explore the most popular dog friendly trails in Hawaii with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Aloha! Hiking again Friday, Saturday, and Sunday this week. I have hiked most of the hikes on this island many many times! It is often windy and/or rainy but we never have issues as we always have the right gear supplied when we go. If you're looking to hike and want to link up or get some ideas of what this trail looks like feel free to reach out to me on my Instagram @mike.karas or mikekarasphotography@gmail.com. Bring plenty of water for this hike and other hikes out here in Hawaii.

I went the other day, it got pretty muddy and wet towards the top. If you have crampons that will help. I'm going up this Sunday the 19th. if you'd like to join send me a message on instagram @angelo_q. Make sure to bring food and water and maybe some layers because it can get pretty windy and wet up top

This was absolutely amazing. The most gnarly hike I’ve ever been on. I was terrified on the last hour to the top as it was super windy and you are walking on the ridge most of the time. Did this two days ago and I’m still sore. Super worth it but not sure I would ever do it again. This is a HARD hike and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. Use spikes if you can - seriously muddy and the spikes saved my life. The way down seemed much easier after what we experienced on the way up but still sketchy. If you do it alone, guaranteed you will find some people to chat with and help you out. I suggest starting before 8am.

hiking
2 days ago

Take DEET or similar as there are lots of mossies.

Did not go to the final waterfall but even so the view was spectacular and worthwhile. Muddy, sure, but just dunk your feet at the numerous crossings and wash it off. Really enjoyed the first bamboo section just after the initial crossing.

This was amazing. My don is 6 and it was his very first HIKE!!! It does get a bit muddy so wear comfortable gear you do not mind getting dirty. Trust me it can wash off. No jeans, no slides, n9 crocks and no sandals. It does have a lot of traffic through it but that means you can't get lost. The waterfall is beautiful. Wear sun screen and Bug spray very important.

Hiked this solo on 7/8/18. Forgot to review. Did the ridge starting in Moanalua, down the stairs, back up the stairs, then back across the ridge where I started. That was pretty brutal! 14 miles, 9 hours or so tracking on the Apple Watch. It was rainy for part of it and windy on the sketchy parts. Not for the timid.

hiking
3 days ago

Great adventure! Super muddy and trials aren’t well marked, but it’s fun finding your own path, and finishing at a beautiful water fall. We couldn’t find the first waterfall, so we went to the secret falls. This is where the pictures are taken. There were places to jump into the water.

We really enjoyed this hike which was our first in Kauai. As others have warned it was muddy, but nothing too bad. The hike included a little of everything-hiking through forests, mud and some scrambling. Lots of great views throughout the climb up. I definitely recommend continuing past the picnic tables at end for some fun scrambling to incredible views. We were the second car in the lot at the trailhead when we started at 8. Lot was full when we returned.

hiking
3 days ago

This was for sure closer to 10 miles one way, beautiful trail with lots of tiny waterfalls and beautiful views.

Completed this hike on 2018-08-07 via the "legal" way (start from Moanalua). My review does NOT apply to the Haiku Stairs. There are a lot of invitation to hike/ solicitation for guides on this review page. I'd like to provide some objective info regarding the risks and difficulty for people considering this hike.

Conditions on that day: No rain. Good visibility. Trail mostly dry, which lowered the risk factor significantly for us considering the wind (see below), but we encountered some spots that are very muddy. *Most* of the time we found a way to walk around the mud. Very strong, and more importantly gusty, wind on the ridge (~40+mph gusts). I'm reasonably fit/agile and I got knocked off balance and stumbled a couple times. Consider this with the fact that, in some parts of this trail you're hiking on a narrow ridge with steep cliffs on BOTH sides. Sometimes your margin of error is 1 or 2 steps. Yes you read that right.

Technical difficulties: Can be very muddy/slippery. Some steep climbs that require using your hands. Narrow, exposed trails. Spikes and hiking poles will make the hike easier, and more importantly, SAFER. You will encounter some loose dirt/rocks. People in my group were young, active people of average to above-average fitness. No expert hikers. Undoutedly a strenous hike, but we all completed the trail. ~3 hours up, ~3 hours down.

The risk of this hike depends heavily on rain and the wind. Both can change quickly. If the trail is not slippery AND there's no wind, this trail is manageable for reasonably agile, sure-footed hikers. However, slippery/windy conditions can make this trail very dangerous. If you want to do this hike, fully recognize the risk you're taking and use common sense - don't go alone; don't go in the dark; don't do it when you're not well rested, etc. Even then, go with the expectation that you might have to turn back if you don't feel safe. Falling off a mountain is a shitty way to die and your friends will have to have a very awkward conversation with your family.

Oh yea the views are phenonmenal, but you already know that. you get to take in full views of both the windward and leeward sides of the mountain.

Amazing views. Not too bad climb. But it's muddy. Better to bring a walking stick. There were few walking sticks that people used at the beginning of the trail. Find a good one and that will help you coming down.

hiking
4 days ago

Beautiful views, easy hike with kids!

hiking
5 days ago

Humid but not hot due to tree and then fog cover. Occasional fantastic views. Muddy, trail runners are okay. Overall great!:)

hiking
5 days ago

pretty nice little hike, wouldn't recommend on a wet day. awesome scenery

hiking
5 days ago

The 'trail' to the upper Manoa Falls ( right above the state maintained fall) is directly above it. There should be a sign telling you not to go further. Walk past it and scramble up a bunch of rocks. You should also be able to see an old rusted fencing to your right. Soon, you will get to a huge banyan tree. Proceeed to climb up it via its rooting system. Then you will come to a ledge. From here, there will be another set of roots to climb. Once over these two humps, you will get onto another ledge veering to the right. Follow it and you will come to the second falls with a sizable swimming hole. Thread carefully. Search in the photo album and you should find some of my older second Manoa falls with pool photos and the steep climb to it. The first time I discovered this hidden pool was in 1991 with a bunch of local hikers.
Aihualama Trail- Once you veer left past the official Manoa falls trail, you should be on the official Aihualama Trail. Yes, its muddy and some parts are rocky and uneven. The trail takes you to Pauoa Flats via a series of switchbacks thru bamboo groves, old banyan trees and guava forest. At the end of Aihualama Trail, you come to a fork. Right takes you to a nice lookout point overlooking Nuuanu valley. Left takes you to other trails like Nuuanu, Kalawahine, Manoa Cliffs and Puu Ohia. Pauoa Flats Trail is getting an upgrade with a plank walk.
Do check out my personal website for more hiking
ideas.
https://paulcpeh.wixsite.com/mysite

The main trail is easy to follow. $5 parking fee (cash only) total for the 3 of us (1car). Highly trafficked when we went and it seemed people just wanted to stand where they shouldn’t (behind the signs AND doing nothing-not even a picture). So expect to wait a while for a clear picture. You will get muddy and must have bug repellant of some kind on. Many families and dogs on the main trail too.

We searched for the upper falls trail to find after “getting lost” the trail was destroyed by a rockslide. We stayed on a secondary trail for a good hour admiring the bamboo forest. I’m not sure the significance of that trail, as it lead to another trail loop totaling some ridiculous mileage, so we turned around (needed gps at that point). In total think we walked 6 miles.

Overall good experience. Close toed shoes are a must. You will get muddy and bit by bugs. The waterfall’s beautiful and the bamboo forest is something too.

hiking
6 days ago

Like others said, lots of mud. We did the trail two days ago and the river seemed like it might have been higher than other times. I had read reviews of people being able to keep at least one foot dry, no way that was happening for us. In places you had to walk through calf deep water or risk jumping from slick rock to slick rock. Trail can be hard to find and there are many offshoots. Overall, it's a great adventure in a beautiful place.

hiking
6 days ago

http://www.dlnr.hawaii.gov/recreation/files/2013/09/Oahu-Hiking-Map_HonoluluMaukaTrailsSystem.pdf
If you don't have a car, you can always take The Bus #5 till the end of Manoa Road and walk into the park where the official trailhead is. You can also take #5 to the intersection of Manoa Road and Nehoa, and walk down Nehoa till you get to Makiki St. Walk up Makiki St till you get to an open grassy area. Follow Makiki-Heights Drive till you get to Makiki Nature Center at the hairpin turn. This is where the trailhead for Maunalaha and Kanealole begins. From here, you can take either route, and follow the interconnecting trails ( the link to the pdf file above) to different spots along the Tantalus Trail system. My favorite spots are the Pauoa Flats Lookout Point, Manoa Cliffs Trail with a bench, and Manoa Falls via Aihualama Trail.
Another alternative is take bus #4 to Nuuanu Pali and get off before Kimo Drive. Walk up the Nuuanu - Pali Drive till you get to the Judd Trailhead. From here you can do the Judd Loop or go straight to Nuuanu Trail, after crossing the stream. The Nuuanu Trail will end at Pauoa Flats Trail. From here, you can either go left to Aihulama Trail or Pauoa Flats Lookout or turn right to Puu Ohia Trail, Kalawahine Trail or Manoa Cliffs Trail.

hiking
6 days ago

http://www.dlnr.hawaii.gov/recreation/files/2013/09/Oahu-Hiking-Map_HonoluluMaukaTrailsSystem.pdf

I will climb the Haʻikū Stairs, aka Stairway to Heaven, Monday, August 13th, for the 278th 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!"

Most neighbors are friendly, but some are aggressive and even violent. Tourist blood has spilled in the neighborhood more than once in the past year.

(4) The back way is less safe, but worth considering.

A ticket on the stairs is common and the judges have gotten tired of the case. The charge is Second Degree Criminal Trespass with these components:

(1) $1,000 fine
(1) Three dates, each about two months apart at the Kaneohe Courthouse
(2) Jail, no longer than 6 months. (incarnation is rare, averaging 1.6 out of 100 tickets)
(3) Legal fees (a defense attorney charges $800 - $1,500 for the case)
(4) Usually 60 hours of community service.
(5) Legal fees for expungement after some years of a clean record.
(6) Visa/Immigration hurdles.
(7) Impact on professional life.
(8) Return travel and accommodations to attend court, community service, etc.

The financial setback ranges from $3,000 for an average local, up into the hundreds of thousands over the length of a career for military members reduced in rank, professional licenses affected, working visas denied, etc.

Public record shows hundreds of tickets a month, but I suppose everyone standing in court started their morning hike knowing they had done the research.

There are techniques, but to be fair, everything posted online is a bit comical.

Two tips:
⁃ The guard is usually friendly and does not have the power to give anyone a ticket.
⁃ The police have internet also and are good at what they do all day every day.

(5) This is the real Hawai’i!

When I go, I approach peacefully and respectfully.

As we climb we are immersed, perhaps because we step “into” the experience 3,922 times. The activity melts our physical senses, and opens us to sense spirit. We rise from civilization to magic.

At the top, we savor hot foods and reflect for a couple hours in comfort, allowing the memory of the feeling to become part of us before the senses of civilization erase the nuances of that raw truth from our attention.

People think I go for the epic view, but along the way they recognize their own reflection in nature. They discover that they share an energetic blueprint with a land so majestic and find new appreciation for the landscape of their own soul.

They find that they climbed a mountain to see themselves in new light, so that the sunrise was the second, third or forth best part of the day.

They alway say: “I had no idea it was going to be this good.” Always with smiles, sometimes in tears.

I might skip a week or go twice a day, but even after so many times, once I start I’m lost on it again.

Aloha
@Hawaii_Mountain.Man.Matt

hiking
8 days ago

On this my second time on this incredible trail I was accompanied by my son and daughter in law, both very adventurous hikers. The trail is, as before, poorly marked with little indication of where to attempt the numerous stream crossings. As others have warned, this is NOT a hike for inexperienced or less than very fit hikers and definitely NOT a hike for young children. The water level in the stream can rise significantly without warning due to rains existing far from the trail. You will get lost on this trail and will have to back track on occasion. Twisted ankles and other trip and fall injuries are all to possible. Don’t expect a fellow hiker to be nearby for help. This trail is very lightly traveled.

Having said all that, the beauty of the hike and the accomplishment of reaching the triple falls makes this an epic hike and well worth the effort, if you exercise caution.

hiking
8 days ago

Cool little hike near the University of Hawaii. It’s close to Waikiki so it’s a bit of a tourist trap but if you have kids it’s well worth it.

It’s muddy most of the time so dress appropriately.

Omg, it's a killer, but it was so so good!!! I went with @mvrkb who does local tours for the low low, and we became instant friends! He's a superrrr awesome and friendly af local, and can help you out with whatever hike you need! If you decide to go by yourself, really consider the weather conditions, because I prob wouldn't have been able to do it without the spikes mark lent me.

hiking
9 days ago

Really short, muddy trail but great scenery. Pretty busy as this seems to be a tourist attraction.

Amazing hike! We went around 2PM on a Monday and the parking lot was almost full. It took about 2 hours for us to get to the peak and about 45 minutes on the way back down. The trail is heavily shaded until you get to the picnic benches. My dad wore basic tennis shoes and I wore chacos and while we were both fine, I would recommend proper hiking shoes. The hike is a pretty constant incline but there are a few spots to stop and rest along the way if needed.

Once you get to the "top" with the picnic benches, go past and to the left along the ridge. It's definitely a climb to the peak but nothing too crazy- the path is decently wide and the rocks are pretty sturdy. It's 110% worth the extra effort because the views are incredible.

Finally did this today! Started at 630 am ended shortly after 1 pm. Went with 2 L of water (Drank maybe half) and some granola bars. While it’s long, it’s not a super difficult hike. A good portion is slippery but as long as you’re careful, you should be okay. Really isn’t any need for spikes or fancy equipment. It was easy to find and navigate.

I am hoping to find a local or hiking enthusiast would be willing to take myself and 2 other girls on this trail while there from September 11th- September 18th. Email me at emily.skelly11@gmail.com or Instagram at skellllz1

Thanks for considering!

It’s an awesome and fairly easy as long as you take the right way. When it comes to a fork make sure you take the left if you aren’t looking for a challenge. The right is much steeper and can be exhausting in the heat. Many bunkers and definitely worth the view.

hiking
10 days ago

We hiked the loop portion clockwise and it was a quick 0.9 hike. Lovely foliage, no bugs and easy to see the trail. The trail was beautifully scented though the smell of wood smoke (campers?) crept in 1/3 into this slice of Hawaii heaven. Plenty of free parking along the road near the trailhead.

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