Along the Hana Highway on Maui’s east coast, there’s a gorgeous 26-acre arboretum and botanical garden called the Garden of Eden. My parents, Andy and I toured this garden on recent visit to Maui. We all enjoyed meandering around the paths nestled between beautiful tropical blooms, trees, and shrubs of Hawaii and the South Pacific.
Most people stop at the Garden of Eden on the day they take the scenic drive along the road to Hana. We could easily identify the folks who were stopping as part of their road to Hana tour. They were the ones who were hectically racing around trying to get to the Puohokamoa Falls lookout and then hop back in their cars for the rest of their long drive. Instead of trying to cram too much sight seeing into one day, we took a special trip out to tour the Garden of Eden. By taking this special trip, we were able to tour at a slow pace and soak in the scenery. With the entrance fee being $10 per person, I think you’ll get far more value from the visit if you go on a separate day from the entire road to Hana drive.
The Garden of Eden brochure claims that they have over 500 plants botanically labeled. Obviously, I didn’t count them, but I can say, there’s more than enough exotic plants and trees that will capture your attention and inspire you to use the flower setting on your digital camera.
In addition to the gardens, you’ll also see exotic birds roaming around the gardens. We saw several peacocks prancing around on the grounds. The brouchure claims to have a bird show, too, but it sounds like catching that show is hit or miss based on the weather. Unfortunately, the show didn’t happen when we were there.
Here are some tips and things to know before you go:
- Garden of Eden is located 26 miles or 50 minutes from Kahului between mile marker 10 and 11 of Highway 360 on the mountain side of the road. As an aside, we toured the Garden of Eden after watching sunrise on Haleakala and our breakfast at Kula Lodge. We all agreed that those plans worked very well.
- This garden is open daily from 8am to 3pm.
- Admission is
$10 per person(update) $15 per person. Personally, I think that was a bit high, but so is everything else in Hawaii, right?
- Wear sneakers or hiking shoes that you don’t mind getting muddy. The paths can be slippery and muddy if it’s rained recently, which is a good possibility since it’s located in a rain forest.
- There are several picnic areas on the grounds, so consider taking advantage of that.
- If you make a special trip to the Garden of Eden, like we did, consider seeing some other nearby sites. The beautiful coastal village of Keanae is 15 minutes (6.5 miles) away. On your way back to Kahului, stop off at Hookipa Beach to watch the kite surfers. Also on your way back to Kahului, the town of Paia is a nice little place to stop to shop for souvenirs and there’s a great little shave ice shop, Aloha Island Shave Ice, at 77 Hana Highway in Paia.
To get a bit of an idea of what you might see at the Garden of Eden, take a peek at the photos we snapped from our visit.
Have you been to Maui’s Garden of Eden? How was your visit?