"I SURVIVED..." is the boast emblazoned on teeshirts, proclaiming the heartiness
of those who took the trip.
And with good reason. For this is the "Road to Hana."

At one time, in the not too distant past the road was a rough, pitted, formerly-paved strip, barely a lane-and-a-half wide, it's gnarled surface guaranteed to shake every nut and bolt in your car loose from its fitting. It was grueling and tortuous.

The road is paved now, but its 617 curves and numerous one-lane bridges can still be a daunting challenge for a driver. If you're planning to drive on your own, you should give yourself plenty of time, pack a decent cooler, stop often for the views, and if you can, rotate drivers. You may as well accept that the driver is going to miss much of the scenery, which is really the reason for the trip.

Our favorite way to travel is, of course, in a convertible, the pendulous jungle growth passing over our heads in the day, and the multitude of stars spinning in the sky above as we maneuver the curves at night. But, frankly, we've driven the road many, many times and we know the twists and turns and really love them. And we still stop often to take photos or just soak up a few minutes peace in the most beautiful place in the world.

And, there are easier ways to take the trip.

There are a number of guided motor tours from which to choose. They use vehicles as diverse as customized vans and giant buses. They have the distinct advantage of leaving you free to enjoy the spectacular views, and there's usually food, too.

You could hire an experienced private guide for a more personalized tour. They'll drive you in your rental car, and a number of such guides are available. A good private guide can often show you things and take you to places the tours don't go. And your schedule and itinerary can be modified at whim!

Any way you look at it, you MUST go. It's a ride through a land like no other, to a sleepy little bit of "Old Hawaii."

Maui, is surely one of the growingest places on earth! Consequently, there is ample opportunity for the local farmer or casual gardener to set up a stand and sell fruits & flowers along the Road to Hana. Many of these stands are unmanned, run on the honor system - take what you want and leave the money. And at a few stands, you'll find some of the most DELICIOUS! homemade treats. Enough to make Willy Wonka cry.



Click to return to HOMEPAGE