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Top 5 favorite Hawaii waterfalls: HAWAII Magazine Facebook poll results


No. 3 (tie)


Where: Kipahulu, Maui
400 feet
Access: 3- to 5-hour hike on Pipiwai Trail from Pools of Oheo (aka Seven Sacred Pools) at Haleakala National Park’s Kipahulu Visitor Center, 10 miles south of Hana on Hana Highway

It isn’t easy to get to Waimoku Falls. First off, there’s the winding Hana Highway, which you have to drive all the way to Haleakala National Park’s oceanside Kipahulu Visitor Center, 10 miles beyond Hana. Then there’s a two-mile hike up Oheo Gulch, crossing Pipiwai Stream several times and a thick bamboo forest. But, oh, what a reward when the trail ends with a full view of Waimoku—the largest waterfall on Maui.



Where: Hamakua Coast, Big Island
Height: 1,450 feet - total (two drops)
Access: Closed to public. Visible in Waipio Canyon and by air tours.

Situated on the northern Hamakua Coast, is lush Waipio Valley, known as “The Valley of the Kings.” It was the boyhood home of King Kamehameha I, who established the Kingdom of Hawaii in 1810 and served as its first monarch. Surrounded by cliffs up to 2000-feet high, this deep valley is about one mile across. The Big Island’s tallest waterfall, Hiilawe Falls, cascades down 1,300 feet in the back of the valley. The paved path into the valley is a steep access road (4-wheel drive vehicles only). Most hikers park at the Waipio Valley Lookout. From there, a black-sand beach about one mile down the road. Further down is Kuluhine Falls, and at the bottom of the valley there’s a view of Hiilawe falls. The trail to the beach is public, but much of Waipio Valley is private property. If you plan to explore beyond the public access areas, seek out permission or sign up for a guided tour.

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