The Kapalua Coastal Trail is an easy, beautiful walk along the northwest coast of Maui. The trail starts at the public access parking lot for Kapalua Beach and winds a mile and a half along the coast to D. T. Fleming Beach. Both the beginning and end of the trail are paved. In between there are sections of gravel, dirt, and boardwalk. By far the most spectacular part of the trail is the first two-thirds – from Kapalua Beach to Oneloa Beach.
The “trail head,” if you can call it that, is up the short flight of stairs in the picture to the right. You could take a stroller or wheelchair on this part of the walk.
Alternatively, you can walk along the beach and access the trail later.
Along the way you’ll see beautiful beaches, rugged coastlines, native plants, lots of turtles, and multi-million dollar homes, condos, and resorts.
The path out to the end of the point (shown in the map above) is well worth the modest extra effort.
Rugged little coves form the west end of Oneloa Bay. Watch closely and you’ll see turtles surface for air and glide through the water below you.
Oneloa Beach is a lovely stretch of sand with good snorkeling. Wear your swim suit and carry some snorkeling gear and a towel.
The trail turns inland at the east end of Oneloa Bay where is meets up with the Lower Honoapiilani Road. Here the “trail” is actually a sidewalk. Not so interesting here. Just past the Ritz-Carlton wedding chapel, the trail becomes a path through the grounds of the resort, finally winding down to D. T. Fleming Beach.
Return to your car the way you came. It’s just as nice going the other way.
GETTING THERE: Drive north from Lahaina to milepost 29, turn left at the stoplight and head makai (toward the ocean). Turn right at the T-intersection onto Lower Honoapiilani Road. Look for the beach access sign just past the Napili Kai Beach Resort.
For information on other hikes on Maui click here for Hana – Oheo Gulch and the Pipiwai Trail, or Hiking La Parouse Bay, or Haleakala – the Halemaluu Trail, or Haleakala – the Sliding Sands Trail.