Hawaii May 14, 2019
Escape Into The Forest On This Easy 2.5-Mile Trail In Hawaii
There’s no doubt about it: the Hawaiian Islands is easily one of the greatest hiking destinations in the country — and maybe even the world. With miles and miles of trails that ascend mountains, traverse ridgelines, and lead to breathtaking natural beauty, Hawaii is truly a hiker’s paradise. But not all trails are created equal, and this gem, though lesser-known, is one of our current favorites — especially if you want to get away from the hustle and bustle of Honolulu for a while.
Measuring in at just 2.5 miles, the Makiki Valley Trail leads you on an expeditious adventure through the Hawaiian jungle without having to drive outside of the Honolulu city limits, and we seriously can’t get enough.
Ready to get away from it all? Your journey will begin just 3.6 miles from the infamous Tantalus Lookout at the Hawaii Nature Center in the marvelous Makiki Valley.
This loop is actually a combination of three trails within the Na Ala Hele Trail & Access System: as you stand at the trailhead, you’ll find Kanealole to the left, and Maunalaha to the right, both named after the streams that run alongside them. These trails are connected at the far end by the Makiki Valley Trail, which, when strung together, form one of the island’s best forest hikes.
Head left, and you’ll enjoy a leisurely stroll past a bubbling brook. Head right, and you’ll face a beastly incline and a maze of knotted roots and rocks. Either way, you go, you will experience some elevation gain and will want to be prepared with sturdy shoes.
While you might want to look down at your footings, don’t forget to pause and look up every once in a while. Not only will you discover draping vines, but parrots and other exotic birds have been sighted in this area. Why? Well, rumor has it that they are a relic of Paradise Park, a bird park that once operated one valley over in Manoa.
Tree branches have formed tunnels, providing ample shade, and even on a hot day, you’ll still experience the tropical breeze as it makes its way through the valley. Descend into a gulch, cross a few springs past mountain apple trees, and enjoy views of the valley stretching into the sea.
You’ll approach an important junction midway through your journey. Here, a bench to sit and catch your breath or enjoy a snack and the junction with Ualaka’a Trail, which leads upwards into a maze of trails that give hikers the ability to tailor each hike to their particular desires on any given day. This area is an absolute paradise for hikers of all skill levels.
This hike truly has it all: not only will you enjoy a pretty decent workout but you will also feel as though you’ve entered a fairytale forest. So, what are you waiting for? A hike along the Makiki Valley Trail is sure to leave you feeling accomplished and refreshed. Just don’t forget your camera!
Address: 2131 Makiki Heights Drive, Honolulu, HI, 96822
Have you ever embarked on the enchanting Makiki Valley Trail? If so, share your experience with us in the comments below. Then,
click here to discover another Hawaiian forest hike that showcases another side of Oahu.