We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Road to Hana and beyond, driving the back side around?

Englewood, Ohio
Level Contributor
1,740 posts
81 reviews
Save Topic
Road to Hana and beyond, driving the back side around?

Is it possible to drive to Hana and on around the island in a loop, behind the back side? Are the road conditions not good? Is it safe? What are the details I need to know? Thanks.

Kapaa, Hawaii
Destination Expert
for Maui, Hana, Oahu
Level Contributor
45,883 posts
3 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: Road to Hana and beyond, driving the back side around?

All major rental car companies will prohibit you from driving any further than Kipahulu. The vast majority of folks will turn around and go back the same way they came. It is fairly safe, some of the road is in good condition, but very isolated. It can also wash out with just one good downpour.

Hartford...
Level Contributor
1,276 posts
17 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: Road to Hana and beyond, driving the back side around?

Yes you can drive all the way around.

Road conditions are fine, mix between gravel and asphalt. Bumpy in certain areas that hug the coastline at certain spots

IMHO you are safe, wash outs do happen under heavy rains and road is mostly single lane in many spots including where it hugs coastline.

Most car rental companies have language in their contracts (small print) that if something were to happen accident or break down you could be held liable for damages or tow which I believe would be expensive.

I've done the loop many times and havent had any issues, that doesnt mean something wont happen to you. I did call my insurance company and made sure my AAA was up to date.

Thrifty/Dollar rental aggreement which I have saved states "must drive on maintained and hard surface roads". You can be your judge on what that means.

Lots of info about this topic, if you do a search you can read for days.

If your squirmish about driving or tense up in tight spots dont do it and just turn around at Oheo.

Oahu, Hawaii
Destination Expert
for Oahu
Level Contributor
24,671 posts
Save Reply
3. Re: Road to Hana and beyond, driving the back side around?

Aloha,

From the TQs. above right:

tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g60630-i845-k35115…

You'll find a lot of other informative threads as well.

Enjoy your time on Maui.

Aloha

Camarillo...
Destination Expert
for Maui
Level Contributor
4,734 posts
9 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: Road to Hana and beyond, driving the back side around?

>> rental aggreement which I have saved states "must drive on maintained and hard surface roads". You can be your judge on what that means. <<

Actually, no. If something happens and the car breaks down or is damaged, it will be the rental company that decides what this means. And that is why they say not to drive past Kipahulu. And if you cause damage while in violation of your contract, your personal credit card coverage will likely be null and void as well.

Do people make the drive? Yes. If something does happen while you are on that part of the road, it could be many many hours before help arrives and could be very costly. Is it worth that risk?

If it is important to you to see that part of the island there are other options: Take one of the guided excursions and let someone else drive. Valley Isle Excursions is excellent for this. You could also rent a beater from one of the local rental companies in Kihei that do allow their vehicles on that stretch of road.

Edited: 2:46 pm, October 30, 2013
Minnesota
Destination Expert
for Maui
Level Contributor
12,364 posts
47 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: Road to Hana and beyond, driving the back side around?

If you want to do it without voiding your car rental contract, Kihei Car Rental rents jeeps and allow you to do this drive selling additional insurance for it also. Also, you do want to make sure it is a safe time- no heavy rains in mountains etc where the roads will wash out.

Hartford...
Level Contributor
1,276 posts
17 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: Road to Hana and beyond, driving the back side around?

VC where does it actually state not to drive past Kipahulu in any signed or initialed contract with any car rental aggreement?

Like I mentioned I was going by personal insurance not credit card insurance which is correct they will not cover you if your found in violation of the contract.

And if your car breaks down in Kipahulu it will take many hours to get help there as well.

To some it would not be worth it and to some it would.

Oahu, Hawaii
Destination Expert
for Oahu
Level Contributor
24,671 posts
Save Reply
7. Re: Road to Hana and beyond, driving the back side around?

Aloha,

A real lilfe story:

…blogspot.com/2013/10/traveling-backside-wit…

S W Arkansas
Destination Expert
for Kihei, Maui, Hana, Haleakala National Park
Level Contributor
10,543 posts
16 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: Road to Hana and beyond, driving the back side around?

I'm the driver of that little green jeep in the blog link post #7. We were fortunate that the gravel section had just been graded. i wish I could remember how long this section was.. several miles. I have driven this when it was like a wash board, and the filings in my teeth were rattling. All it takes it is a nice rain and some heavy pickup local traffic and there goes the road!!

The paved section of patched and double patched on double patched miles were very rough. Very narrow one lane road with completely blind 90 degree turns in the area that voids your contract.

To see some of the backside with out breaking your contract head up to Kula and the winery and beyond. You can drive 20 or so miles before you get to the washed board patched road which is part of the no no section.

Edited: 4:15 pm, October 30, 2013
S W Arkansas
Destination Expert
for Kihei, Maui, Hana, Haleakala National Park
Level Contributor
10,543 posts
16 reviews
Save Reply
9. Re: Road to Hana and beyond, driving the back side around?

20 or so miles past the Winery...

Hartford...
Level Contributor
1,276 posts
17 reviews
Save Reply
10. Re: Road to Hana and beyond, driving the back side around?

barefoot your sunrise pics were awesome!!