Haycraft Park is a small Maui park that lies along the beach. It often gets overlooked, but it shouldn’t as its more remote nature makes it an ideal place for visitors to enjoy a wilder, more scenic side of Maui.
To reach Haycraft Beach Park, start by finding the Maalaea Small Boat Harbor in Central Maui. Then, take Hauoli Street and follow it eastward until it eventually deadends at Haycraft Park. There aren’t going to be a lot of dedicated parking lot spaces here, about ten official spots including one ADA designated spot. In the rare chance this lot is full when you arrive, you can also park along Hauoli Street.
Haycraft Park itself does not have a ton of amenities. There’s a small parking lot to start, but you’ll also only find portable toilets and one outdoor shower situated along the footpath to the beach. There are also only two picnic tables, each outfitted with a barbecue grille. Haycraft Park does not have a lifeguard station or any dedicated lifeguards in the area.
But while there is a lot that Haycraft Park doesn’t have, for those who are hungry for a quiet piece of Maui, there are some other solid reasons to visit this park. After all, few amenities for you likewise means few amenities for others, making this park rarely crowded. So more sand, more shade, and more water for you and your traveling party to enjoy amongst yourselves.
The beach at Haycraft Park costs of soft golden sand that continues on beneath the water, making for some exceptional wading and swimming conditions. The park also has some exceptionally low-set, wide-branched trees that make for an ideal place to enjoy beach activities beneath their shade. They also are robust enough to tie up hammocks for those who want to enjoy relaxing off of the ground. Just take care with your feet as these trees do shed off branches and twigs with sharp needle-like thorns that can cause painful scratches and punctures.
During the summer, southern ocean swells create wonderfully rolling waves at the beach here. These waves offer fantastic surfing and boogie boarding for all types of skill levels. As such, while this park and its adjoining beach are more often quiet and free of crowds, you will see plenty of surf boarders and boogie boarders out in the water during those good wave days. More beginner and intermediate boarders will stay closer to shore to enjoy the last wave breaks while more advanced surfers will often head out when there is a big southern swell creating what are called freight train breaks further out. Large barrel waves also commonly form here, some say that one area of waves creates some of the fastest right-hand barrels in the world. Watching surfers take on these formations and get hidden from view for several seconds is pretty magical.
While the surfing here can be fantastic and the close swimming likewise very enjoyable, it is important to underscore the fact that there are no lifeguards here. The same summer swells that bring in excellent waves also create rip currents to send the water back out. Do not attempt to swim at or near these currents; always be mindful of such water conditions before entering.
One final advantage of Haycraft Park is how far east it goes before you hit signs of civilization or the land stops you from continuing. The beach from here goes on for miles, wrapping all the way around Maalaea Bay. So if you’re looking to spend several hours beach combing and exploring, Haycraft Park is going to be a top travel pick for you.
If you are going to enjoy that long walk, make sure to keep an eye out for signs leading to Kealia Coastal Boardwalk. You’ll find a ramp onto this boardwalk east of Haycraft Park. The boardwalk itself meanders along a marshy offshoot of Kealia Pond, offering pedestrians fantastic views of a unique Hawaiian environment and plenty of birding opportunities.