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The Beautiful Kapalua Coastal Trail

The gorgeous Kapalua coastal trail is an easy and lovely walk along the northwest coast of Maui. The trail follows the rugged coastline where lava fields drop dramatically into the ocean. The trail is a combination of boardwalks and walking trails with mostly easy footing. If you walk the entire trail as an out and back, the trail is about 2.5 miles and has minimal elevation gain.

Below you can see everything you need to know about how to hike this incredible trail as well as a few other suggestions for things to do in the area.

If you are doing this as part of driving the West Maui Loop, check out this post.

While you’re in Kapalua, stop to visit the Dragon’s Teeth and Labyrinth.

Hiking the Kapalua Coastal Trail
Hiking the Kapalua Coastal Trail

Quick Look at the Kapalua Coastal Trail

Distance: 2.5 miles
Elevation Gain: 200 feet
Difficulty: easy/moderate

The Kapalua Coastal Trail begins at the Kapalua Bay Beach and follows between the Kapalua resort and the ocean. You will pass several cliff areas, and several beaches including Oneloa Beach, and Fleming Beach.

The trail travels over so many different surfaces and is best hiked in sneakers. Flip flops or sandals are difficult on the lava and sandy sections.

Map of the Kapalua Coastal Hike

Things to Know about Hiking the Kapalua Trail

When to Hike the Kapalua Coastal Trail

The Kapalua trail can be hiked all year long, but is best hiked early in the morning or late in the day. Mornings are especially lovely when the wind is lighter. There is very little shade along the trail, so if it is a very hot day, it can feel like the sun is beating down on you.

How to get to the Kapalua Hiking Trail and Where to Park

To get to the Kapalua Coastal Trail, located in West Maui, Hawaii, you can start by driving to Kapalua Bay. Once you reach the bay, park your vehicle in the designated parking lot and then walk towards the beach. From there, follow the signs that indicate the start of the coastal trail.

Another option is to drive towards Kapalua and park on the right where the access trail to the Dragon’s Teeth begins. This parking lot is small but may actually be less crowded.

Kapalua Coastal Trail Hike

What Else to do in and Near Kapalua

Kapalua is a fun and beautiful coastal area in Northwest Maui. Whether you are staying in the area or doing a drive up and around the northwest part of the island, there is lots to do in the area. Below are a few other suggestions.

  • Enjoy the beaches
  • Go Surfing
  • Visit Lahaina
  • Hike to Ohai Trail
  • Visit the Blowhole
  • See the Dragon’s Teeth and Labyrinth
Kapalua Coastal Trail

Where to Stay in Kapalua

Kapalua is an upscale community and most of the places to stay are upscale resorts. If you are looking for something more low-key, consider looking just south in Lahaina. One of the best resorts in Kapalua is:

Montage Kapalua Bay – a beautiful resort with beach access

You can also book an apartment or room through KBM resorts. You can see some of the options here.

Kapalua Coastal Trail

Details of the Kapalua Coastal Trail

We started the Kapalua Coastal Hike from the northside and hike to Kapalua Bay Beach after also visiting the Dragon’s Teeth and Labyrinth during our 1 day drive around the northwest coast of Maui. The trail was enjoyable and offered incredible views. Since we hiked this as a one way trail, it took us about 45 minutes, but I would give yourself about 2 hours if you are planning to hike it as an out and back and take some time to snap some photos and enjoy the views.

This is a popular trail and you will likely see others out enjoying the walk.

Lava Sea Arch on the Kapalua Coastal Trail
Lava Sea Arch on the Kapalua Coastal Trail

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