Kaumahina State Wayside Park is the perfect stop while exploring the Hana Highway. It is 28 miles east of Kahulu and 22 miles west of Hana, making it the best halfway point for a restroom break, picnic, and stretching your legs.
Kaumahina State Wayside is part of the State Parks of Hawaii and sits on 7.8 acres. You’ll find a large grassy area with picnic tables spaced far apart near the parking lot. Although they’re not in the shade, they’re ideal for sitting to take in nature or for sharing a picnic lunch.
Many use Kaumahina State Wayside to get in some light exercise strolling the .1 mile path through exotic Hawaiian plants to the viewing area. You can take in the vast Pacific Ocean and Keanea Peninsula from this bird’s eye height.
The primary reason vacationers stop at Kaumahina State Wayside Park is to use the restrooms! However, some commented that they were dirty and trashed, but this may have been a fluke and not a consistent theme.
While researching Kaumahina State Wayside Park, we learned that many vacationers gave average reviews. After reading about the messy bathrooms, you can ascertain some reasons as to why.
So the real question to explore is this: is stopping at Kaumahina State Wayside worth your time? We’ll try to stay neutral and present the facts we’ve learned in our research.
Some travelers praise the view from the open bluff as being worth the stop, while others counter that there are better options further down the road.
If you enjoy hiking, there’s a trail that descends to the surf and loops back up to the parking area. Several hikers said they enjoyed the hike and enjoyed the beautiful flowers, ocean views, and bird watching. Many suggested bringing binoculars to enhance the experience.
We could not find specifics regarding the trail’s length, elevation, and estimated hiking duration, so plan accordingly and expect to do some climbing on your return to the top. Others warned that the trails weren’t well-maintained and may be overgrown, or you might have to climb over a fallen tree.
One mystery we found in our research is the cost. According to the Division of State Parks website, Kaumahina State Wayside Park is free. Yet, one respected travel website posted on March 2022 that there’s an $8 entrance fee. We suggest “planning for the worst but hoping for the best” regarding this scenario.
Currently, all of these pros and cons are a moot point since the park is currently closed due to staffing issues. We’re confident this will change, so check the Division of State Parks website for up-to-date information.
We can’t emphatically say one way or another if stopping at Kaumahina State Wayside Park is worth your time. However, since it’s at the midpoint, it does serve as the only restroom break between Hana and Kahulu.
Pack your toilet paper! Better to “be prepared” than sit and realize after the fact that you need a roll of paper like some travelers did. And since some have said the facilities were dirty, have your hand sanitizer handy.