Upcountry Maui and Haleakala National Park

Upcountry Maui and Haleakala National Park.

 

The volcanic soil and sloped pastures of Mt Haleakala have sustained much of Maui’s farming and livestock for the past two centuries, and the paniolo (cowboy) ambiance is still strong in the areas like rustic Makawao.

A drive through the luxurious pastures of the Kula area will take you previous cattle ranches, vineyards with cellar-door sales, goat dairies and a substantial lavender farm (with a cafe and gift shop offering lavender variations of just about any food items or cosmetic product you can picture– and even those you cannot).

If you keep driving you can follow a long road up the flank of Mt Haleakala itself, up 3055 m (10,023 feet) to the summit, where you can explore the surreal, lunar-like landscape– home to distinct plants such as the ten-year-blooming Haleakala silversword, which grows no place else in the world– and look down at clouds filling massive volcanic craters listed below you.

If you can get up early (or stay up late) enough, book a tour to catch the sublime sight of daybreak from the peak; you can also have a van take you and a bike as much as the leading so you can ride– er, roll all the way down.