There are many exciting things to do on the Hawaiian island of Haleakala. Haleakala stretches from the summit all the way out to the sea. This amazing island is surrounded by an alpine zone, dry forests, and subalpine scrublands. Along the Kipahulu area on Haleakala’s windward slopes, you can see beautiful rainforests, and you can access the pools of Oheo. Here are some of the best activities to do on Haleakala.
Sunrise and Sunsets
The Haleakala is at a really high altitude which enhances the view of the skies. On Haleakala when the weather is nice, and the skies are clear you can see three other islands from Haleakala lookouts. The three Haleakala lookouts include Molokai, Lanai, and the island of Hawaii. The sunrises and sunsets look absolutely stunning. Many tourists wake up to watch the sunrise early in the morning. You must have a reservation to attend sunrises because they can be really overcrowded. It’s best to arrive earlier to have a good spot. It’s also very important to remember to bundle up because the temperatures can reach below -40 degrees. Sunsets are much less crowded and also are a sight you don’t want to miss. You can stargaze all night because the park is open 24 hours. Haleakala even offers stargazing programs over the summer.
Hiking and Horseback Riding
Hiking the trails, and horseback riding throughout Haleakala is also a main attraction. The summit has a variety of different trails in the Kipahulu area. The Keoneheehee trail and the Pipiwai are the most popular. Hiking times range from a half hour to three-day camping expeditions. You can also explore the park by horseback. Horseback riding programs are held throughout the summer for anyone who wants to experience Haleakala by horseback
See Endangered Species
Haleakala National Park has a variety of different invasive species that you can’t see anywhere else. The Hawaiian state bird, the Nene (Hawaiian goose) can be heard throughout the island. The endemic ahinahina plant (Haleakala silversword) is very rare and can only be found along the upper slopes of the Haleakala. The silversword can take 50 years to bloom, so finding one is considered a poetic gift. The rare Haleakala silversword perishes after one single flowering. The National Park service even watches the Haleakala silversword very closely. Tourists should respect them and avoid harming their ecosystem.