This park protects a portion of the dormant 10,000-foot-tall shield volcano that makes up most of the island of Maui, including a 2-mile-wide crater at the volcano's summit.
Visitors can see rare native birds, hike through landscapes of colorful cinder cones and lush rainforests, and explore trails through the wilderness and along coastal areas with waterfalls and freshwater pools.
Haleakalā means “house of the sun,” and in Polynesian folklore, the demigod Maui (for whom the island is named) is said to have climbed to the top of the mountain to lasso the sun, forcing it to travel more slowly through the sky, lengthening the day.
House of the Rising Sun
One of the most popular activities at Haleakalā is to watch the sun rise from the top of the mountain. Visitors driving to the summit must make a reservation at www.recreation.gov to secure a spot.
The sunrise at the crater in Haleakala was spectacular and a special way for us to celebrate our 50th wedding anniversary. Maui, a relatively small island, has a huge diversity of flora and geological structures.
More about Haleakalā
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Blog Post Tuzi ... What? The Origins of 12 Unusual National Park Names Tuzigoot. Great Egg Harbor. Yosemite. Who came up with these names? What do they mean? Sometimes they come from one person, sometimes a whole culture—but the stories behind these memorable monikers reveal interesting details about these places and the people who have loved and lived in them.