“This delightful trail climbs through lush tropical forest and bamboo groves to streaming waterfalls.
— Megan W
River/Creek · Views · Waterfall
The large banyan tree partway through the trail is a great spot to let kids romp, and the mostly moderate grade is a good intro to hiking for older kids.
This extremely scenic trail parallels the freshwater Palikea Stream as it cascades through Ohe'o Gulch. With many points of interest scattered along its length, the Pipiwai Trail deserves its good reputation.
The water here can be contaminated with e.coli and other dangerous bacterial organisms - keep your head and open sores out of the water. Don't swim if the water is muddy- this is an indication of rain higher up and imminent flash flooding.
From the visitor center parking lot, follow the well signed paths past the thatched house and onto the Pipiwai Trail. This forested route is mostly shady as it ascends steadily up the valley. Watch your footing on the rooty slippery spots. Soon you arrive at the Falls at Makahiku followed shortly thereafter by an enormous banyon tree that is sure to rival any you've ever seen. This is a good place for a break and fun for the kids to scamper about.
Cross several bridges and arrive at a thick, towering bamboo grove penetrated by a well maintained boardwalk. This serenely eerie and magical spot is the highlight for many visitors. The trail ends in a deep valley with the impressive 400-foot Waimoku Falls at the head. Depending on the amount of recent rainfalls, the cascade will either be a rushing torrent or a wispy trickle. Retrace your steps back downhill to the visitor center.
Although the mileage is low, the trail feels more strenuous because of the hot, humid weather. Be prepared for intense sun or rain. As of this writing, there is no food available for purchase in the park so bring your own refreshment.
Flora & Fauna
Huge banyon tree