Most Popular Campgrounds in Haleakala National Park
Spread out over 33,265 acres, Haleakala National Park is divided into two main regions, the summit area of the dormant Haleakala volcano, and the coastal region of Kipahulu. In all it’s raw volcanic glory, local legend suggests that Maui, a demigod, imprisoned the sun at Haleakala to make the day longer. Lookouts on top of this mountain of solid lava provide breathtaking views of the moonscape below as well as the surrounding Pacific Ocean. Camping here should be on any true national park bucket-list.
These three campgrounds are your best way to fully experience the park and the beautiful island of Maui:
1. Hosmer Grove, HI
If you’re after adventure, then this campground is for you. Located at 7,000 feet above sea level, Hosmer Grove Campground offers a unique camping experience above the clouds. One of the best things about this campground is that it allows quick access to the summit of Haleakala, which is ideal for watching the sunrise. Sites here are available on a first-come, first-served basis, so arriving early is important for acquiring a spot. Also be sure to pack some extra layers, because it can get surprisingly chilly at 7,000ft.
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2. Holua Dispersed, HI
After a beautiful, 3.8 mile hike to the crater, you’ll find the Holua Dispersed Campground. Channeling a rustic vibe, camping at a dispersed spot means fewer people and a more intimate experience. Camping Permits for the area are free and can be obtained at the Headquarters Visitor Center. Not completely backcountry, the campground does have a water source as well as an outhouse near the campsites. If you’re exploring Maui and want to escape the crowds, this campground has you covered.
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3. Kīpahulu Campground, HI
Located about 2 miles south of the Kīpahulu Visitor Center, Kīpahulu Campground is a beautiful spot that overlooks ocean cliffs and is a short walk from Oheʻo Gulch. Campers are advised that Kīpahulu is wet, remote and far from most amenities, so come prepared. The campground is available on a first-come, first-served basis and is inside the National Park. So, there is no fee to camp here, other than the Kīpahulu National Park entrance fee. With plenty of hiking opportunities around the campground, including the popular Pipiwai trail which leads to Waimoku falls, this campground is a peaceful base camp for exploring the park.
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Making your way to the summit of Haleakala is the hike of a life time. Peering down at the moonscape below and looking out at the panoramic views of the Pacific Ocean is the best way to soak up this gorgeous national park. Whether you’re hiking down into the crater, following lush trails on the slopes or camping beneath the stars, exploring Haleakala is the ultimate adventure.
The Dyrt’s Ranger duo the Switchback Kids, who spent a year visiting all 59 National Parks, have put together this incredible video to document their firsthand experience in Haleakala with the hopes of improving the visit of others.
Switchback Kids Ranger Tip: Watching the sunrise at Haleakala is a must, but the crowds at the summit can dampen the experience a bit. A ranger told us to view it from Leilawi Overlook (a couple miles short of the summit by car) and we were ALL ALONE! It was still a magical view, and we had it to ourselves to experience.
And, in case you still (somehow) need convincing to fit this park in your summer itinerary, we present Haleakala National Park:
Win gear for camping Haleakala
When you review campsites across the US on The Dyrt, you get the chance to win outdoor gear. In Hawai’i, you have the chance to win a $100 gift card from Boost Oxygen, a $75 gift card from TREDAGAIN, and an MH2 Headlamp from Ledlenser. Check out the contest leaderboard, review your camping experience, earn points for your review, and you could win prizes!