Driving The Road To Hana With Shaka Guide
Updated: Aug 30, 2019
Road trips are always exciting. For me, being out on the open road seeing awesome landscapes is such a thrill. I mean, who doesn’t love exploring different terrains and learning new things?! And one of the best road trips I’ve ever been on has been the Road To Hana.
Driving The Road To Hana (aka The Perfect Road Trip)
The 64.4-mile long Hana Highway is the ultimate road trip. Wrapping around the North, East, & parts of the Southern coast of Maui, the drive has more scenic views than you can possibly imagine! Expect to see jaw-dropping vistas, magnificent waterfalls, and lush rainforests just to name a few.
As you drive along the Road To Hana, you’ll quickly come to see why the Road To Hana Driving Tours are some of Shaka Guides most popular tours.
To give you a feeler on what to expect, check out this video on the Classic Road To Hana Tour. Remember, even though this video mentions the Classic Route, all the same experiences you'll see in the video are in the Loop and Reverse Routes as well!
The Shaka Guide Road To Hana Driving Tour Comparison
Because this road trip is so epic, Shaka Guide has created three different Road To Hana Driving Tours.
Let’s learn about each one of them and find out which is perfect for your Maui adventures.
Classic Road To Hana Driving Tour
This is the most common route tourists take to experience the Hana Highway. This driving route starts near the airport in Kahului and ends at Paia. It takes 2-3 hours driving to the turn around point at the Seven Sacred Falls and begin the trek back. All in all it’s about 4-6 hours of driving.
But, you should budget around 10-12 hours to see all the sights and activities.
You find natural attractions like beautiful waterfalls, enchanting beaches, and more along the way which makes the driving experience very unique. The turns on this route are less challenging compared to the other two Road to Hana options which makes the Shaka Guide Road To Hana Classic Driving Tour easy and flexible for driving.
Advantages of driving along the Classic Route:
✓ There are fewer challenging turns and it’s an easy driving route.
✓ The entire route covers beautiful scenic spots to stop and enjoy nature.
✓ It is a safe route as you don’t require driving too far. The natural attractions start
just twenty minutes from the starting point.
✓ You get driving guidance, road marks and guardrails to drive through this
beautiful scenic route which makes it family-friendly.
Disadvantages of driving along the Classic Route
🗴 Less challenging and might remain crowded with tourists' cars and buses.
🗴 You need to return through the same route, so the driving charm reduces.
Loop Road To Hana Driving Tour
The Loop route is a beautiful route starting from Kahului and ends at Kula. However, unlike the Classic tour, it doesn’t guide you to take a U-turn at Kipahulu. Instead, you continue driving and circle around through the Haleakala Volcano and the back side of Hana.
The Shaka Guide Road To Hana Loop Route has more difficult turns compared to the Classic route. But the Loop route offers exceptional scenic views. Including sights you’ll only see by going beyond where the Classic stops and turns back.
Advantages of driving along the Loop Route
✓ Experience the scenic backside of Hana full with breathtaking natural beauty.
✓ Get amazing sunset view from the leeward side.
✓ More adventure compared to the Classic Route.
Disadvantages of driving along the Loop Route
🗴 Roads tend to get crowded in the beginning.
🗴 Driving timing is exceptionally long and around 8-12 hours
Reverse Route Road To Hana Driving Tour
Some consider the Shaka Guide Road To Hana Reverse Route to be the best for experiencing the Road to Hana. This scenic route starts from Kula and ends at Paia.
You can experience the Seven Sacred Falls located at the backside of Hana as you drive through the beautiful scenic road.
Advantages of driving along the Reverse Route
✓ This option is best for adventure travelers as the roads are more challenging with many turns.
✓ This option is also known to provide the best scenic driving experience to enjoy
the desolate beauty of the backside of Hana.
✓ This route includes the Seven Sacred Pools in Kipahulu located inside Haleakala
Disadvantages of driving along the Reverse Route
🗴 Longer driving distance so careful planning is necessary to complete the tour during daylight hours
🗴 It gets dark as the day progresses, so it can be unfavorable for hiking.
🗴 The roads are extremely challenging with many turns and single lane roads
which may have you driving along cliffs to get to your next destination.
How To Choose The Best Road To Hana Driving Tour
The best route for your Road To Hana Driving Tour will depend on your preferences and capabilities. If you’re traveling with kids or family, go for a less challenging route.
You might also prefer to stay overnight along the Hana Highway as there are many stop-over hotels available.
Also please know that some rental companies have restrictions when it comes to using their cars on the Loop or Reverse routes. Be sure to check with them first!
Nevertheless, the Road to Hana tour remains a must do when you’re on Maui. Whatever route you select, the environment and the experience of driving the Road to Hana is full of natural beauty.
If you’re still having a hard time choosing which tour is right for you, join the official Shaka Guide Facebook Group where you can ask all your travel related questions from others who’ve taken the tours! We’ll see you there and don’t forget to take Shaka Guide with you on the Road to Hana.