What to do Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore


What to do Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore

Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore, located in the upper peninsula (UP) of Michigan, is one of the most picturesque areas of the Midwest.  The coastline here is absolutely breathtaking, lined with unique colorful cliffs made from ancient sandstone formations.  You can hike, kayak or take a boat cruise along the scenic Lake Superior Coastline to soak in all the views.  Further, the surrounding area has many stunning waterfalls and other unique scenery to explore.  Our guide on ‘What to do in Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore’ goes over seeing it all. 

Disclosure: This article contains affiliate links. That means that, at no cost to you, we may get a small commission if you purchase through these links. This helps us keep providing travel resources for you!

FYI This post is written based off two different trips both taken in early September 


What to do Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore: Hike Chapel Basin Loop

What to do Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore

Our first recommendation on what to do in Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore is to hike the Chapel Basin Loop.  Although there are many options and different combinations of routes to hike on the trails in this area, we recommend hiking the Chapel Basin Loop (see map below).  This hike gives you amazing views of the Pictured Rocks.  The North Country Trail, between Chapel Beach and Mosquito Beach, is the only place you can see these unique multicolored cliffs from land.  This hike will also take you past two waterfalls (Chapel Falls and Mostiquo Falls), to a unique rock formation (Chapel Rock) and to two beaches (Mostiquo Beach and Chapel Beach).  If you are only going to do one hike in Pictured Rocks, do this one! 

Beware that this hike is over 10 miles though so take into consideration your fitness level before completing it. Although there are out-and-back options on the trail, the shortest path to lakeshore is to complete it as a loop. For more detailed information on this hike see our Hiking Chapel Basin Loop Pictured Rocks Guide

We have completed this hike twice.  Once with our newborn daughter in tow and another with our newborn son as well as toddler daughter along.  For tips on hiking with an infant, see our How to Hike with a Baby post. 


Looking for great hiking boots?  Here are links to the ones we’ve used for 8+ years and highly recommend: Men’s Keen Waterproof Hiking Boots & Women’s Keen Waterproof Hiking Boots


What to do Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore: Sea Kayaking or Boat Cruise

Our next recommendation on what to do in Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore is to experience the Pictured Rocks from either a kayak or boat cruise.  We particularly recommend doing this if you are not hiking Chapel Basin Loop as these are the only other ways to see the Pictured Rocks in person.  See more information on Pictured Rocks Boat Cruises and Paddle Pictured Rocks with these links. 


What to do Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore: Visit Miners Castle, Beach & Falls

What to do Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore

From the upper viewpoint at Miners Castle, you can see the unique Miners Castle rock formation against the beautiful Lake Superior turquoise water.  This viewpoint is only a very short walk from the parking lot along a paved path.  You can hike to a lower viewpoint with some required elevation gain on the return trip but the view is not as good from close-up to Miners Castle.  As parents visiting with a young toddler, we really appreciated the little windows they had at all of the viewpoints for our daughter to look out and see the viewpoints safely.  The trails here were also very toddler friendly and paved, allowing our toddler to hike alongside us. 

You can also hike down further to Miners Beach and on part of the North Country Trail along the Lake Superior Lakeshore. The North Country Trail is the longest trail in the National Trails System stretching 4,800 miles, across 8 states! It is pretty cool if you can say you hiked on part of it.

What to do Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore

Be sure to stop and hike to Miners Falls while out this way (trailhead 2 miles before Miners castle parking lot, on the same road). This trail is 1.2 miles with 154 feet of elevation gain and is an out & back trail through the woods.  We really liked this trail and found it to be very serene.  Our newly 2-year-old daughter was able to easily hike it with us on her own two feet until we got to the viewing platform/stairs where we were glad we had our backpack carrier along. Dogs are allowed here on a leash. 


What to do Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore: Visit More Waterfalls in the Area

The area around Munising has many beautiful waterfalls.  Beyond Miners Fall, below are some other waterfalls to see.  Ranked from our favorite to least favorite waterfall.

Laughing Whitefish Falls

  • 1.0 Mile, 121 feet of elevation gain, out & back
  • Largest waterfall in the immediate area
  • Dogs are allowed here on a leash. 

Munising Falls 

  • 0.4 Miles, mostly flat but optional stairs to climb, out & back
  • Paved path
  • Dogs are allowed here on a leash

Wagner Falls 

  • 0.2 Miles, out & back
  • Dogs are allowed here on a leash 

AuTrain Falls

  • 0.2 Miles, out & back 
  • Dogs are allowed here on a leash

What to do Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore: Hike Beaver Basin Wilderness Trails

This area of the Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore is much less trafficked than the Chapel/Mostiquo area.  There are several different hiking options in this area, all offering a little bit different scenery.  You can combine these trails anyway you please.  

What to do Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore

Hike through the COVES section 

We hiked through the forest, past Little Beaver Lake and then west on the North Country Trail until the COVES group campsites.  The section of the North Country Trail we hiked on here was really pretty and felt untouched.  Throughout the COVES section, you can climb down into some of the different coves along the lake for even better lakeshore views.  

The forest trail, leading out to the lakeshore, is really unique as well with lots of interesting rock formations.  Alternatively, or as an add on, you could also hike around Beaver Lake and east on the North Country Trail. 

Note, you cannot see the Pictured Rocks from this hike, you can only see those on the North Country Trail in the Chapel/Mosquito area. You can hike to Spray Falls from this trail though and could continue on the North Country Trail to the Pictured Rocks section (although this would make for a very long hike – a great potential route for backpackers). 


What to do Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore: Day Trip to Tahquamenon State Park

Tahquamenon State Park, located along the Tahquamenon River, is rated as one of the best state parks in Michigan. This is because this park is home to the very large and impressive Upper Tahquamenon Falls. 

Day Trip to Tahquamenon State Park: Upper Tahquamenon Falls 

Tahquamenon State Park

This 50 foot waterfall, with its grandeur, will not disappoint and can be viewed from several viewing platforms.  It also can be viewed from a paved path but the best views are at the viewing platforms. The walk to each of these platforms is about 1/3 mile on a paved path as well as wooden stairs.  To get up close with the falls, go to the upper viewing platform.  For more encompassing views, go to the lower viewing platform.  We recommend going to both.  Each is about 100 stairs to climb up and down but completely worth the effort. 

Day Trip to Tahquamenon State Park: Lower Tahquamenon Falls 

Tahquamenon State Park

The Lower Falls is a series of smaller waterfalls but equally beautiful.  Here, you can walk down the path and onto the wooden viewing platform, about 0.5 miles, to see all the cascades in this area.  You can also hike through the forest around the falls as we did.  Another option here is renting a rowboat to ride out to a small island among the falls.  On this island, you get contrasting views of the falls and can go for a short 0.5 mile hike through the forest on the island itself. 

Day Trip to Tahquamenon State Park: Tahquamenon River Trail

You can also hike between the Lower Falls and Upper Falls along the Tahquamenon River trail. This trail is 4.8 miles one-way or 9.6 miles roundtrip.  We hiked a mile out and back of this trail, starting at the lower viewing platform from the Upper Falls. The trail was beautiful!  When we visited, the weather was questionable and we did not want to be stuck in the rain on a 9+ mile hike with our 5 week old daughter so we opted not to do the whole trail but that would be a pretty way to see more of the park.  

During peak season (not when we were visiting on a weekday in early September), there is a shuttle (Jordan’s Shuttle Service) that runs between the Lower Falls and Upper Falls. This shuttle will take you back to where you started your hike for a fee, at either the Upper Falls or Lower Falls, so you would only have to hike the trail one way.  

If you hike between the falls, you may have the trail all to yourself.  When we hiked part of the trail, we saw no other people on it (granted it was on a weekday, not during peak season and questionable weather). Most people drive between the two falls (about a 10 minute drive). 

Other Tips on Tahquamenon State Park

Between hiking and exploring at the Upper Falls and Lower Falls areas, we ate at the Tahquamenon Brewery. This restaurant is very conveniently located in the Upper Falls parking lot.   We’d highly recommend you break up your visit this way. The food and brews were on-point here.  

Note: Tahquamenon Falls is about 1 hour and 20 minutes drive from Munising. 


What to do Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore: Paddle the Lazy Au Train River

A family friendly adventure floating down the lazy, mostly sand bottom, Au Train River.  Paddle Au Train is a family run, 3rd generation UP business.  Paddling this lazy river is a great way to enjoy the outdoors in the peaceful Au Train area. 


What to do Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore: Take a Ferry to Grand Island 

Grand Island is located in Lake Superior, about a half mile off the mainland city Munising, Michigan. 

Grand Island is a great place to spend part of a day or all day exploring.  Here, you can hike, bike (20 miles around the island), kayak/canoe or take a bus tour. For more information on Grand Island rentals click here. For even more of an adventure, you can camp overnight here too. 

See a map of Grand island here and ferry schedule/cost here.


What to do Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore: Day Trip to Grand Marais 

Grand Marais is home to a very pretty section of coastline along Lake Superior and a cute little town.  Here, we hiked to a lighthouse, a waterfall and sand dunes. We also stopped at a former log slide and got coffee from a trendy local shop. 

Day Trip to Grand Marais: Au Sable Lighthouse

Grand Marais: Au Sable Lighthouse

Our first stop in Grand Marais was a hike to the Au Sable Light Station along the Lake Superior coastline.  This lighthouse was built in the 1870s to help ships navigate after many shipwrecks had occurred in the area.  We visited on a very windy day with extremely large crushing waves on Lake Superior and it was very obvious to us why this lighthouse was needed.  This hike is 3 miles round trip and is very flat, wide and easy.  Dogs are allowed here on a leash.  

Day Trip to Grand Marais: Log Slide Overlook

Grand Marais: Log Slide Overlook

Next, we headed to the Log Slide Overlook. This overlook is a very steep sand dune that was used to slide logs onto ships in Lake Superior many years ago.  This steep log slide offers pretty views along the Lake Superior shoreline. You can hike down the log slide but we would not recommend that as it is exceedingly steep and people often need to be rescued while attempting to do this.   The overlook is just a short walk from the parking lot but be prepared to walk in the sand briefly.  Dogs are not allowed here. 

Day Trip to Grand Marais: Sable Falls

Grand Marais: Sable Falls

After the Log Slide Overlook, we hiked at Sable Falls. The short (0.33 mile) hike to this pretty waterfall is well worth the effort. You hike mostly down a wooden staircase. After the falls, you can continue down to the beach. It is less than 0.25 miles further down to the beach but note the beaches on the other hikes we did on this trip are, in our opinion, much prettier.  There is also a trail (0.5 miles one-way) to some sand dunes that we opted to hike on as well. Dogs are allowed to hike on a leash here with you.  

Other Grand Marais Tips

While in Grand Marais, be sure to check out the trendy The Dream Bean Machine for some coffee, tea, smoothies or baked goods.  This Volkswagon van turned locally owned small coffee shop is super unique and cute.  

Although we did not have time for it, another place to consider checking out is Lake Superior Brewing. Note, dining options are very limited in Grand Marais and many have limited hours.  Especially after peak season, be sure to check the hours prior to planning to eat anywhere here. 

Note: Grand Marais from Munising is about 1 hour drive


What to do Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore: Visit Kitch-Iti-Kipi Spring

Kitch-iti-kipi Spring

Kitch-Iti-Kipi Spring is a large natural freshwater spring, located in Palm Books State Park.  The very clear and turquoise water is unlike any we have seen before.  At the spring, there is a self-operated pull raft, with the middle cut out for better water views, that takes you across the spring and allows you to get a close-up look at the spring.  It is neat to see the spring bubbling up and the fish that live in the spring scurrying about.  We would recommend trying to visit the Kitch-iti-kipi Spring on a weekday to avoid crowds.  It is a popular attraction as there is little to no effort required to see it. It is only a short walk from the parking lot on a paved path. 

Note: Kitch-Iti-Spring is about 50 minutes drive Southeast from Munising. 


What to do Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore: Take a Shipwreck Tour

Take a glass bottom boat tour to see the unique shipwrecks beneath Lake Superior as well as sandstone cliffs and caves along the shore.  Get more information on these tours here. Open Memorial Day weekend through the end of September. 


What to do Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore: Dine in Downtown Munising

There are plenty of different types of restaurants to dine at in Downtown Munising.  If you only stop at one place, we recommend stopping at Muldoon’s Pasties to pick up a pastie (pronounced PAST-TEE) traditional UP delicacy (individual pie filled classically with meat and vegetables). Another favorite spot of ours was Pictured Rocks Pizza. 


Where to Stay near Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore

After looking for the perfect place to stay as a family near Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore, we were so happy when we found the Northwoods Resort in Au Train, about 10 minutes west of Munising.  This resort is close enough to all of the activities in the area yet tucked away from the hustle and bustle. It is truly the perfect place to unwind after a day of exploring.  This resort has been family owned and operated for 3 generations.  It is family friendly and most of the accommodations are dog friendly.   And with charming cottages and large lake houses, there is something to fit everyone’s accommodations needs.  Located right on Au Train lake, it’s the perfect place to relax and drink your morning coffee/tea.  For more on staying at this place, please see our Where to Stay Near Pictured Rocks post. 


FAQs about Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore 

When to Visit Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore?

Visit in the summer, ideally June-September. The weather is best during this time and the most tour options/ businesses are open during this time as well.  Outside of that window, tours offered are very limited due to cooler weather as well as less visitors. 

Where to Stay near Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore?

We recommend staying at the Northwoods Resort.   For more on staying at this place, please see our Where to Stay Near Pictured Rocks post for more details. 

Is Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore Dog Friendly? 

No. Most of the trails along Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore do not allow dogs.  However, many of the shorter inland waterfall trails in the area do allow dogs.  Please see the waterfall, Miners Waterfall and Grand Marais sections above. 

Looking for a dog friendly vacation in the Midwest? See our Dog Friendly Apostle Islands Guide, Dog Friendly Door County, Wisconsin Guide and our A Day at Starved Rock State Park guides.  

Pictured Rocks Map for Visual Reference of Area

We hope this guide helps you plan your trip to Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore.  Anything you’d add to our guide? We’d love to hear your feedback and questions.  Please leave us a comment!

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Where to Stay Near Pictured Rocks


Where to Stay Near Pictured Rocks

While planning our most recent visit to Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore, we are so happy we found the Northwoods Resort.  Located right on Au Train lake (about 10 minutes west of Munising) with peaceful lakeshore views, this resort offered us the cozy northwoods lake cabin family vacation we were craving.  It provided us with easy access to Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore yet was tucked away from the hustle and bustle of Munising.  This family friendly resort was truly the perfect place for us to stay at and relax while visiting Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore with our family.  Here’s a run down of why we found the Northwoods Resort to be the perfect spot to stay while visiting Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore!

Located near Munising and Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore 

Our top reason we loved staying at the Northwoods Resort is that the resort is close enough to all of the activities in the area yet tucked away from the hustle and bustle of Munising.  With being only a 10 minute drive from Munising, you have easy access to anything you may want to do there while being afforded the peace and quiet offered by staying a little west in quaint Au Train.   It is truly the perfect place to unwind after a day of exploring the area. Please see our What to do Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore for more information on activities in the area. 

Small Business and Family Friendly  

We always love supporting small and family run businesses.  This resort has been family owned and operated for 3 generations.  The owners, Erin and Jake, do a great job making sure you have everything during your stay.  Being a family run business, all of the accommodations are family friendly.  Most of the accommodations are dog friendly as well, making the resort a great place to visit with your whole family. 

Where to Stay Near Pictured Rocks

Where to Stay Near Pictured Rocks: Great Outdoor Space 

Located right on Au Train lake, the properties at this resort are the perfect place to relax and drink your morning coffee/tea. Some of the accommodations are right along the lakefront while others are just across the street.  At the cabin we stayed at, we had a private lakefront backyard with a pier, deck and fire pit.  Our favorite part of this was being able to wake up with lake views.  Our 2 year old daughter loved watching the ducks swimming in the lake from the big living room windows too. 

Where to Stay Near Pictured Rocks

Something for Everyone’s Budget and Needs 

With charming cottages and large lake houses, there is something to fit everyone’s accommodations needs and budget here.  We stayed at Wielands cabin right on the Au Train lakeshore.  This property is perfect for a bigger/extended family – 3 bedrooms with a loft and sleeps 8.  There are also smaller, less expensive cabins you can stay at as well.   See the Northwoods Resort website for more information and specifics on each cabin.  

Where to Stay Near Pictured Rocks

Activities Onsite 

The Northwoods Resort also owns and operates Paddle Au Train which is located just steps aways from most of the resort properties. Here, you can rent a kayak/canoe and paddle the Au Train river.  Paddling this lazy river is a great way to enjoy the outdoors not far from your accommodations. Likewise, less than 2 miles down the street, there is the Northwoods Outpost that has delicious pizza and ice cream.  It was so nice to have a dining option so close by.  

Onsite Staff

Unlike other online rental platforms, at the Northwoods Resort onsite office, there is always someone there from 9am-5pm daily to answer any questions or address any concerns.  The staff is also very responsive via phone call or text as well.  Being locally owned and operated, there is always someone nearby to help if any issues do arise, giving you peace of mind in case you do need something during your stay. 

We hope this guide helps you plan your stay near Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore.   We can’t wait to visit again.  Visit the Northwoods Resort website or call (906) 892-8114 to check availability and book your stay.  Erin, one of the owners, is a great resource while visiting the area and during your stay as well.  She is a fantastic host, allowing you your space yet is available for any questions!  


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Devil’s Lake State Park Guide


Devil’s Lake State Park Guide

Devil’s Lake is one of the most popular and scenic Wisconsin state parks.  The picturesque bluffs and rocks that line this lake make Devil’s Lake a great place for many activities.  Whether you want to go for a picturesque hike, have a beach day or rock climb, Devil’s Lake has a lot to offer.  Located in central southern Wisconsin, about 45 miles northwest from Madison, Devil’s Lake State Park is an easy day trip or overnight camping trip from not only Madison but Milwaukee, La Crosse and Wausau as well.  After visiting this park many times, here is our guide to visiting Devil’s Lake State Park. 

Disclosure: This article contains affiliate links. That means that, at no cost to you, we may get a small commission if you purchase through these links. This helps us keep providing travel resources for you!


Devils Lake State Park Guide: Hike Around the Lake 

Devil’s Lake State Park Guide

If visiting Devil’s Lake State Park, make sure to go for at least one hike. We recommend that if you’re only doing one hike, that you hike around the entire lake, connecting the East Bluff and West Bluff trails.  This loop hike is approximately 5 miles long with 1000 feet of elevation gain (highlighted in yellow on map below). 

Devil’s Lake State Park Guide

We recommend parking at the south shore parking lot at Devil’s Lake and then hiking counterclockwise starting on the East Bluff Trail. The beginning of the East Bluff trail from the south shore is the most difficult/technically challenging area of the hike. There are many steep and exposed rock ‘steps’ in this section whereas other up/down sections of this hike are a bit less steep and without such big rock drop offs. It is best to do this part of the hike going up as well with fresh legs. On this section of the East Bluff trail you will also go past the interesting balanced rock formation. We have hiked this loop around Devil’s Lake many times in different directions and think this is the best route to hike it.  It will likely take you 2-3 hours to hike depending on your pace and how many breaks you take. 


Looking to hike Devil’s Lake State Park with your baby? See our How to Hike with a Baby guide.


Other Recommended Devil’s Lake State Park Hikes

East Bluff Woods Trail

1.3 miles one way, flat but about 500 feet of elevation gain involved to reach the trail

Hike in the woods parallel to the East Bluff Trail. You will not get any bluff views on this trail. However, you will have this wooded trail mainly to yourself as this trail is much less busy than East Bluff Trail. You can make a loop out of the East Bluff Trail and the East Bluff Wooded Trail, starting and ending at the south shore parking lot or the north shore parking lot. We like this trail because there are very few people on it and it’s very peaceful. If you are visiting on a busy weekend, this might be a nice escape from the people. Additionally, if you are staying for more than one day, this loop serves as a great way to break up the elevation by doing the East and West Bluff trails on separate days.

Tumbled Rocks Trail

1 mile one way, flat

Hike along the lakeshore where you parallel yet remain below the West Bluff Trail. This is an easy flat hike and is a great option for anyone who does not want to hike very much elevation. This trail is almost completely in the sun though, so try to do it very early or make sure that you have good sun protection. You can also hike this trail in a loop with the West Bluff Trail or combine it with hiking around the lake on the East Bluff Trail or East Bluff Woods Trail. 

Devil’s Doorway

2 miles, loop, 500 feet of elevation gain

This hike will take you past the impressive Devil’s Doorway rock formation. You can easily add reaching this spot onto hiking the Devil’s Lake loop too (see map, just off the East Bluff Trail). This hike requires some scrambling though and we would NOT recommend hiking it if baby wearing (which of late has been the only way we are hiking) or if you are afraid of heights/a rock scramble.  This is a unique spot but can get very crowded on weekends.  Last time we hiked this (without kids), it was so crowded it felt unsafe with little room to move. Try to hike this trail on a weekday or early in the day if possible.  

Grottos Trail

0.7 miles, one way, 100 feet of elevation gain

This trail takes you through the woods and along some pretty rock formations. This is a bonus hike if you are looking for an easy walk through the woods. The other trails are more unique and we would recommend those over this one any day. 


Looking for great hiking boots?  Here are links to the ones we’ve used for 8+ years and highly recommend: Men’s Keen Waterproof Hiking Boots & Women’s Keen Waterproof Hiking Boots


Visiting Devils Lake Guide: Devils Lake Beach

Devils Lake not only offers great hiking but also has several nice sandy beaches. You can spend some time at either the south shore beach or the north shore beach. The north shore beach is a bit busier and with a bit more infrastructure (larger concessions and more beach rentals). The south shore does not have as much infrastructure but is also a bit less busy.  On the west side of the south shore beach, there is a beach area for dogs as well.  Otherwise, dogs are not allowed in the main beach areas.  Therefore, if you are bringing your dog, be sure to stick to the south shore on the west side where it is clearly marked that it is the pet beach.  A boardwalk parallels this area as well, making it easy to differentiate from the rest of the beach.  

Devil’s Lake State Park Guide

We prefer the south shore beach over the north shore beach as we usually have our dog with us but both are very pretty and family friendly.  If you are hiking around the whole lake, you will see both of these beaches.  If you hike in the lake loop path in the direction we recommend, you will end up at the Devil’s Lake south shore beach, making it a natural relaxation spot after your hike. However, you can drive to either beach, making it easy to check out both.


Visiting Devil’s Lake State Park Guide: Go Camping

Pitch a tent or bring your camper to spend some more time at this park camping.  There are plenty of camping spots. If you want to visit over particular dates, be sure to make your reservations early (can be made as early as 11 months in advance) to get the dates you want as this park is a very popular camping destination. Use this link to reserve a campsite.  

Another option for overnight accommodations would be to stay in the Wisconsin Dells as that area is less than 30 minutes from the park and with many accommodations options.  


Devil’s Lake State Park Guide: Go Rock Climbing

With all the pretty rock formations throughout Devils Lake State Park, there are plenty of places where you can go rock climbing. Natalie has gone rock climbing at Devil’s Lake with a friend who has a lot of experience rock climbing and all the gear. If you are new to rock climbing, or do not have any of the gear, you can hire someone to take you rock climbing. On our most recent trip, we saw several people rock climbing with guides they hired. 

Here is a list of several outfitters/guides: 


Devils Lake State Park Guide: Dog Friendly 

Devil’s Lake State Park Guide

As previously mentioned above, Devils Lake is dog friendly. There is a dog beach and dogs are allowed on the trails on a leash. They are also allowed at the campgrounds on a leash. 

It is important to note though that some small dogs might not be able to climb up the rocks on parts of the trail very easily, particularly on the southside leading from the south shore parking lot up to the West Bluff Trail.  Our 30 lb cavapoo is able to get up most of these rocks but some parts are a bit steep.  We only had to carry him up one rock this last visit.  If you have a smaller dog than that, you may have to carry them more.  Be mindful of this, as it may be hard to keep your balance if you are carrying a dog. If this situation worries you, it might be best to leave your dog at home or avoid this trail. 


Devils Lake State Park Guide: Bring Food

There is a concession stand at both the south and north entrance of the park but both have very limited options.  We recommend you pack a picnic to enjoy at either the south or north shore beach where you have numerous picnic areas/tables to choose from.  There are also some restaurants in the surrounding area but options are very limited as well. 


Devils Lake State Park Guide: Use Wisconsin State Parks Pass

There is an entrance fee to every Wisconsin State Park ($8 per day). If you plan on visiting three or more state parks or one state park more than three times in the same calendar year, be sure to buy a Wisconsin State parks pass ahead of time. This pass is $28 (for WI resident, $35 non resident) and here is a link to buy the pass. We recommend buying this in advance. Depending on what time of day you arrive at any of the state parks, the entrance office may not be staffed and you will be left having to buy a day pass ($8, bring cash). 


Looking to explore other Wisconsin State Parks? See our Dog Friendly Door County, Wisconsin Guide that details hiking in 3 different state parks in Door County.  You may also enjoy reading our What to do Apostle Islands National Lakeshore for more information on Wisconsin travel. 


We hope this guide helps you plan your trip to Devils Lake.  Anything you’d add to our guide? We’d love to hear your feedback and questions.  Please leave us a comment!

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Maui with a Baby or Toddler


Maui with a baby

After visiting Maui twice with our daughter, at 3 months old and again at 20 months old, we have learned a lot about visiting Maui with a baby or toddler.  We’ve learned the most baby-friendly and toddler-friendly activities on the island to explore. We also have recommendations on what to avoid and how to optimize activities while visiting Maui with a baby or toddler.  From the beautiful beaches to the exotic rainforests to the endless beautiful waterfalls to the world’s largest dormant volcano, the adventures you can have on Maui with your baby or toddler are countless.  Here is a breakdown of our baby friendly/toddler friendly activity recommendations, where to eat, where to stay and general Maui with baby or toddler tips.   

Maui with a baby

For tips on traveling with a baby, please see our Top 10 Baby Travel Tips, How to Hike with a Baby, 5 Top Baby & Toddler Flying Tips and Flying with a Baby posts.

Disclosure: This article contains affiliate links. That means that, at no cost to you, we may get a small commission if you purchase through these links. This helps us keep providing travel resources for you!


Maui Baby-Friendly & Toddler Friendly Activities


Highlights of our trips to Maui with our baby, and then toddler, included watching sunrise over the summit at Haleakala National Park, hiking through a bamboo forest, seeing countless awe-inspiring waterfalls, hiking along the coastlines, exploring the mountains of Maui, driving the insanely windy Road to Hana, seeing sea turtles and relaxing/playing on the many of the perfectly picturesque white sand beaches. Continue reading below for more information on all the above. 


Maui with a Baby or Toddler: Visit Baby Beach in Lahaina 

Maui with a baby

Did you know there is a ‘Baby Beach’ in Lahaina perfect for your baby or toddler to explore?  ‘Baby Beach’ gets its name because it has much calmer waters than most other beaches on Maui.  This is due to offshore breakwater blocking and reefs that prevent many of the big waves from reaching the shore.  Our daughter loved playing here in the sand and splashing in the calm water.  Not only was the water calm here but there were also a lot of other babies and toddlers for her to see exploring the water, making her more curious about getting wet and less afraid of the water. Further, it was fun to have her play with some other babies and toddlers on the beach.  And as parents, it was nice to connect with other parents with kids of a similar age. 


Maui with a Baby or Toddler: Visit Other Baby Friendly Beaches

Maui with a baby

Some of our favorite days on Maui were spent at the beach playing in the sand and splashing in the waves with our daughter.  Here is a list of other beaches we found to have calmer water or natural reefs so that the waves broke before reaching our baby or toddler on the sand:

  • Maluaka Beach in Wailea area
  • Airport Beach in Lahaina 
  • Kaanapali Beach in Lahaina 

Further, we would recommend avoiding most of the beaches on the north side of the island with your baby or toddler as the waves tend to be notoriously more intense. Great for surfing, not great for a baby or toddler. 


Maui with a Baby or Toddler: Hike and Explore Iao Valley State Monument

Maui with a baby

Iao Valley State Monument is a great place to spend a morning exploring the rainforest with your baby or toddler while visiting Maui.  This state park is among the rainforest-covered mountains in the heart of Central Maui. The climb up to the summit, where you can see the Iao Needle shaped monument (shoots 1,200 feet in the air from the valley floor), was not difficult and was much shorter than we expected. Through this area, there are approximately 0.6 miles worth of trails through the rainforest.  Our daughter loved looking up at all the local flora while exploring the paths.  This is an easy place to have your toddler try out some ‘hiking’ on the flat garden trails too. 

Cost: $5/person and $10 to park

Maui with a baby

Maui with a Baby or Toddler: Sunrise over Haleakala Summit 

Seeing the sunrise at the summit at Haleakala National Park is really a surreal experience. The sun rising over the dormant volcano among the clouds is really a sight everyone should see in-person in their lifetime.  Pictures and videos truly do not do this justice. The colors that illuminate the sky are out of this world. You really feel like you are in the clouds with the summit at 10,000 feet. This sunrise is a fun, and easy, event to do with your baby or toddler too as it requires no hiking but only driving up to the Haleakala Summit.  We liked doing this so much that we did it both times we visited Maui with our daughter when she was less than 2 years old. 

See Haleakela sunrise on your first day visiting Maui with your baby or toddler

Note, in order to reach the summit of Haleakla in time to see the sunrise, you will likely need to leave your place around 3:30/4:00 AM (check sunrise time at the time of your visit as it varies throughout the year).  If traveling east to west (like most people visiting from the US), try to do this on your first day before you are fully adjusted to the Hawaii time zone as it will make getting up so early easier on you as well as your baby or toddler.

Maui with a baby

Cost: $30/car (valid 3 days throughout the entire park) or free with America the Beautiful Pass (pays for itself if you plan to visit more than 2 National Parks in one year), $1 for sunrise tickets – bought ahead of time on recreation.gov as spots are limited for early entrance to the park for sunrise (can buy 60 days in advance).

For more information and for all the details on watching the sunrise at Haleakala, see our Haleakala National Park Quick Guide


Maui with a Baby or Toddler: Explore more of the West Side of Haleakala National Park

Also, while on the West side of Haleakala National Park, after watching sunrise, be sure to check out the Sliding Sands Trail and some of the other lookout points. This trail is over 11 miles long but you really do not need to hike all of that to get some amazing crater views.  Even hiking a mile or less each way will afford you stunning mars-like crater views.  Beware that this is a steep hike though and you have driven up to higher elevation. You need to be prepared to hike back up the steep crater while baby wearing.  Therefore, be mindful of your fitness level while descending into the crater as that is much easier than ascending up it. 

Maui with a baby

Cost: $30/car (valid 3 days throughout the entire park) or free with America the Beautiful Pass 

See our Haleakala National Park Quick Guide for other tips on what to do there, including seeing the East side of the park (the other side of the island) . 


Maui with a Baby or Toddler: Hike Waihee Ridge

The Waihee Ridge Trail is a 4.2 Miles round trip out & back hike with 1500 feet of elevation gain and affords some amazing, lush, mountainous valley views.  Although steep, this hike is doable while babywearing with a reasonable level of fitness.  Our daughter loved taking in the vast views on this hike as well as walking around at the flat summit of the hike.  Further, this hike was a tranquil forest escape from the crowds of beachgoers. 

Maui with a baby

On the Waihee Ridge trail, there is also a nice platform with some great views (arguably our favorite on the trail) about 1 mile into the hike.  If you do not want to hike the whole Waihee Ridge trail with your baby or toddler, hiking just to this spot would offer very rewarding views too for less effort.  

Important Maui with Baby or Toddler Tip: Have Sun Protection 

While hiking this trail with a baby or toddler, be mindful to have good sun protection for your baby or toddler as most of the hike has significant sun exposure.  The first half of the outbound hike is less rocky and a bit less steep with some sun cover.  The second half of the outbound hike is steeper, a bit more rocky and with virtually no sun protection

Important Maui with Baby or Toddler Tip: Arrive Early to Avoid Longer Hike, Crowds & Intense Sun

If you arrive at the Waihee Ridge trail after 9 AM, you will likely need to park in overflow parking that adds almost a mile each way of just walking on the paved inclined road that leads to the main parking lot. The trailhead is gated and open 7 AM – 7 PM daily.    We would highly recommend arriving earlier than 9 AM to avoid crowds, the direct/more intense sun and needing to park further away.  Also, hike on a weekday to avoid further crowds.

Other Miscellaneous Waihee Ridge Tips

Try to go on a clear day to avoid mountains being covered in clouds. Also, if it is raining or recent rain, the trail may be very slippery.  Moreover, do not have any belongings you can see in the car in the parking lot as breakins have been reported here. Bring everything with you or store any belongings in a covered trunk to reduce the break-in chance. 

Cost: Free


Maui with a Baby or Toddler: Kapalua Coastal Trail 

Maui with a baby

This 3 mile out & back round trip hike with 300 feet of elevation gain is a relatively easy coastal trail to complete with your baby or toddler.  It takes you along sand dunes and lava rock.  It is not stroller friendly but easy to complete while baby wearing.  Try to walk this trail early as it is completely exposed to the sun.  To access this trail, park at the public beach access lot.  

Cost: Free


Maui with a Baby or Toddler: Walk the Kaanapali Beach Walk

Maui with a baby

When visiting Maui with a baby or toddler, be sure to check out this lively 3 mile paved and stroller friendly path.  This path is along the beautiful resort lined Kaanapali Beach and is lined with many shops, restaurants and stands.  Our daughter loved being rolled along this path and waving to beachgoers on the way.  This beach is great for people watching but with that in mind, do not expect any seclusion here. Feel free to stop at any of the spots on Kaanapali beach along the way. 

Cost: Free


Maui with a Baby or Toddler: Walk the Wailea Beach Walk

If looking for another stroller friendly paved path, check out the 3.2 mile round-trip Wailea beach walk.  This hike takes you along the coastline past condos and resorts in this high-end area.  It makes for an easy walk.  It is less bustling than the Kaanapali Beach Walk and offers a level of serenity you will not find there.  Feel free to stop at any of the beaches along the way with your baby or toddler too. 

Cost: Free


Maui with a Baby or Toddler: Ali’i Kula Lavender Farm

Ali’i Kula Lavender is a botanical garden-like farm you can walk around and look at very pretty flowers, including many lavender plants, and other local flora.  Our daughter loved walking around the gardens and particularly smelling the lavender.  Visit this on the same day you visit Haleakela for sunrise as it is on your descent down the mountain. 

Cost: $3/person, less than 12 years old free


Maui with a Baby or Toddler: Drive the Road to Hana

This was the most memorable activity we’ve done on Maui.  With over 620 turns and 59 one-lane bridges, driving the windy Road to Hana is really an experience not just a drive.  Along the way, you will see many picturesque waterfalls, lots of cute roadside fruit stands, gorgeous coastline views and lots of pretty unique rainforest flora. 

IMPORTANT Maui with a Baby and Toddler Tip: Drive Road to Hana in 2 Days

We drove the Road to Hana in one day with our 3 month old daughter and it was less than ideal.  It was A LOT of driving for one day.  We highly recommend breaking your trip up into 2 days instead, especially if visiting Maui with a baby or toddler.  

The Road to Hana takes, at minimum, 2.5 hours to drive one-way.  With all the stops you will make to take pictures and with time spent waiting at one way bridges, budget for at least 3 hours, if not more, each way.  In addition, you will likely make some longer stops to hike, explore state parks or eat at the roadside stands.  Driving 6 hours with a baby or toddler in one day while trying to squeeze in all the activities, is not ideal when visiting Maui with a baby or toddler (not to mention the drive may be longer if you are not staying at the start of the Road to Hana; most people’s accommodations are about an hour from the start as the nicest beaches are further away). 

Road to Hana with a Baby or Toddler: Build Your Own Experience

The Road to Hana is really a ‘build your own experience’ activity as the stops you choose to take along the way will really create a different experience for each person who drives it.  You can’t possibly stop at and enjoy everything along the way, especially when visiting Maui with a baby or toddler, even if you are driving it in two days.  See our 5 Top Stops on the Road to Hana post to see our recommendations on where to stop on your journey.   Our favorite stops were the Twin Falls Hike in Haiku and the Pipiwai Trail Hike on the East side of Haleakala National Park, both which are baby and toddler friendly when baby wearing. 

Cost: Free to drive, variable cost for activities along the way


Maui with a Baby or Toddler: Hike Pipiwai Trail on the east side of Haleakala

This hike on the Pipiwai Trail (4.0 miles round trip, 650 feet of elevation gain) was our furthest away stop on the Road to Hana and well worth the drive. It is actually located after Hana so make sure to continue on to reach this trail in the east part of Haleakala National Park. 

This hike is super neat because you first hike through the rainforest and then through a bamboo forest before coming to the impressively tall Waimoku waterfall.  On the hike, you will also see a huge Banyan Tree.  The contrasting views keep your interest throughout the journey and is well worth the 4 mile round-trip hike. Our daughter loved looking at all the varying scenery around her while on this hike.  We would rate this hike as relatively easy as the elevation gain is well spread out. 

Important Maui with a baby or toddler tip: Arrive Early to the east Side of Haleakala National Park

We recommend arriving at this trailhead early.  When we arrived around 8am on a weekday, we were one of three cars, but by the time we left after completing the hike, the parking lot was completely full and cars were parking in an overflow lot. We are glad we got to enjoy this trail with our baby without the crowds.  

Cost: $30/car (valid 3 days throughout the entire park) or free with America the Beautiful Pass. See our Haleakala National Park Quick Guide for other tips on what to do there.  


Maui with a Baby or Toddler: Hike Oheo Gulch on the East side of Haleakala

You can also hike the shorter Oheo Gulch/Seven Sacred Pools trail on the East side of Haleakala National Park that is 0.6 miles roundtrip with minimal elevation change.  The trailhead is at the same spot as the Pipiwai Trail.  We completed this hike after the Pipiwai trail and found it to be very easy and scenic. This would be another great spot for your toddler to try out ‘hiking’ and is an easy spot to hike baby carrying. 

Note: The east and west side of Haleakala National Park cannot be accessed from the same road. They have to be accessed completely separately and you will not be able to feasibly visit them both in one day. 

Cost: $30/car (valid 3 days throughout the entire park) or free with America the Beautiful Pass.  See our Haleakala National Park Quick Guide for other tips on what to do there. 


Maui with a Baby or Toddler: Hike Twin Falls

The Twin Falls trail (1.8 Mile round trip, 347 feet of elevation gain) is a fun hike that takes you to three different waterfalls through the rainforest.  The first two waterfalls you encounter on this hike look similar and are a very short hike, about 0.2 miles from the parking lot.  The third waterfall is a bit further of a hike from those two but, in our opinion, was the most scenic of the three. Be sure not to stop hiking after the first two waterfalls.  You can also go swimming at this third waterfall.   

We took our time with this hike, hiking down to each waterfall and exploring around them, and it took us about 1.5 hours total.  The hike was relaxing, as it was relatively easy, and you saw a lot in a short period.  The trail, especially down by the waterfalls, was very slippery, as it had just rained when we visited so make sure to wear good hiking shoes. 

Important Maui with a baby or toddler tip: Hike on different day than when you drive Road to Hana

This hike is another stop on the Road to Hana, at the very beginning near MM 2.  We actually hiked this trail a different day than when we drove the Road to Hana as it was only about 10 minutes from our Airbnb. We are glad we did it this way, especially with our baby, as we did not feel rushed hiking it at all then as the Road to Hana is already a very full day experience. 


Maui with a Baby or Toddler: Take a family-friendly boat/snorkel excursion

While on Maui with our 20 month old, we booked a boat tour that took us out to go snorkeling at the pristine Molokini Crater.  On this boat tour, we were also fortunate enough to see whales on our way to Molokini Crater, unusual for the time of year we visited in April.  Although our baby could not participate in the snorkeling, she had the option to go swimming with us at Molokini Crater and had fun hanging out on the boat with us as we took turns snorkeling.  There also was a glass bottom room on the boat which was great for viewing into the water without snorkeling. 

Tip: If possible, bring another friend or family member on this excursion with you. We had a friend traveling with us at the time and it was nice to have an extra set of hands when taking turns between watching our daughter and snorkeling. 

For more on snorkeling on Maui and at Molokini Crater, see our Top 3 Maui Snorkeling Spots article.  

Cost: Varies based on company, approximately $150 per adult, $115 per ages 3-12 and children less than 3 are free with Fours Winds Maui (company we used) 


Maui with a Baby or Toddler: See Sea Turtles at a Beach

Seeing sea turtles on the beach is so cool and your baby or toddler is sure to think so too.  Two places you will likely always see sea turtles include Makena Landing in the Wailea area on the southern side of the island and Hookipa Beach near Paia on the northern side of the island.   Check out both to see how many turtles you can see.

Cost: Free


Maui with a Baby or Toddler: Visit the Maui Ocean Center

The Maui Ocean Center is open daily 9 AM -5 PM and is a great rainy day activity on Maui with your baby or toddler.  Here you can see plenty of different local marine wildlife.  If your baby or toddler is anything like ours, she loves with different animals and would love this.  We have not personally been here, as we had no full rain days during our visit, but keep this on the back burner if it does rain as an alternative to any of the above activities.  

Cost: Adult 13+ $39.95, ages 4-12 $26.95 and ages less than 4 free


Maui with a Baby or Toddler: Where to Eat


HuiHui

HuiHui was voted the best new restaurant of 2022, we couldn’t agree more.  We had a delicious Hawaiian Meal here (arguably the best food we had on Maui) AND our 20 month old daughter actually ate for free, making it our top recommendation on where to eat with a baby or toddler.  At the time of our visit, all kids under 5 ate for free which was an added perk to our delicious meal.  The waitstaff was also very kind and attentive to our daughter.  We both got food (Natalie fish, Sam Pork) cooked in a banana leaf and both dishes were perfect.  Our daughter got pizza and thought that was the bomb too.  


Monkeypod

This restaurant has two locations on Maui, one in Wailea on the south shore and one on Kaanapali beach on the west side of Maui. Everything in this restaurant is made from scratch. They are very well known for their Mai Tais (named best on Maui year after year). We really do not think you could go wrong with anything on the menu. We’ve eaten at both the locations in Wailea and Kaanapali.  We had really good meals at both! Our daughter was also given a lei at the location in Kaanapali making our dinner a little more special for her.


Food Trucks

Food trucks are literally EVERYWHERE on Maui.  There are parking lots filled with them in almost every town and ones along the road too.  Food trucks are a great option when visiting Maui with a baby or toddler for a less formal meal and everyone can get what they want at the meal.   


Maui with a Baby or Toddler: Where to Stay


We recommend staying in the Kaanapali Beach Area with your baby or toddler when visiting Maui.  This is a great area to stay with your little one because you are near the paved stroller friendly Kaanapali path and close to some of the best baby and toddler friendly restaurants and beaches on Maui.  However, if you are looking for more of a budget option and to be more centrally located/closer to the road to Hana and Haleakala Summit, we recommend staying in the Paia or Haiku area.   To find the perfect accommodations for you, we highly recommend booking through Maui Paradise Properties.  See out The Best Maui Vacation Rentals post to see a breakdown on why we found this to be the best platform for finding and booking a Maui vacation rental.  

Note, wherever you stay on the island, unless changing accommodations every couple nights, you will need to drive about an hour one way most days to get to your activities.  Unfortunately, things are spread out throughout Maui.  However, we found the driving manageable with our daughter as a baby and toddler.  Just be mindful not to pack too many activities into one day as everything takes longer with a baby or toddler than you would expect. 


Maui with a Baby or Toddler: General Tips


Visit for a week or longer

When visiting Maui with a baby or toddler, we recommend spending at least a week here, if not longer.  This will allow you plenty of time to see these highlights as well as to spend some time relaxing/playing on the beach. Honestly, most of our favorite days were beach days.  Make sure to leave time for plenty of beach days! 

Don’t overbook/plan your days

As mentioned above, everything takes longer with a baby or toddler and it is unrealistic to try to cram too much into one day.  Plan for less and do more depending on how things are going.  Setting realistic expectations for your trip is key to negating any disappointment. 

Remember, babies and toddlers live on Maui

If you forget something at home, there are plenty of stores (Costco, Target, Walmart, etc.) on the island where you will likely be able to get whatever you need. 


We hope this guide helps you plan your trip to Maui with a baby or toddler.  Anything you’d add to our guide? We’d love to hear your feedback and questions.  For tips on traveling with a baby, please see our Top 10 Baby Travel Tips, How to Hike with a Baby, 5 Top Baby & Toddler Flying Tips and Flying with a Baby posts.

For more tips on Hawaii travel, see other Hawaii guides including:

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Top 3 Maui Snorkeling Spots 


top maui snorkeling

Maui has some of the best snorkeling in the world.  This Hawaiian island, known for its crystal clear blue water and pristine beaches, makes it the perfect spot to see some of the best fish, marine life and coral while snorkeling.  After numerous trips to Maui and snorkeling all over the island, here is our guide on the top 3 Maui snorkeling spots. 

Disclosure: This article contains affiliate links. That means that, at no cost to you, we may get a small commission if you purchase through these links. This helps us keep providing travel resources for you!


#1 Top Maui Snorkeling Spot: Molokini Crater 

Molokini Crater is hands-down the best snorkeling spot on Maui.  This crescent-shaped, partially submerged volcanic crater is an uninhabited islet located 3 miles off the west coast of Maui. The crater shape keeps the waters near it calm and great for snorkeling/visibility.  There are over 250 diverse marine species here, including many different colorful fish and over thirty types of coral. Further, the water in the crater is very clear and you often afforded 150 feet of visibility.   We saw so many variable bright and colorful fish as well as tons of different pretty coral during our time.  We snorkeled here longer than at any other spot because the fish, coral and viability was astounding. 

top maui snorkeling

To get to Molokini Crater, you need to take a boat. We highly recommend taking the Four Winds Maui Morning Snorkel to Molokini Crater tour.  We recommend the morning tour over the afternoon tour as the waters are the best for snorkeling in this area before the afternoon trade winds come in.  On this boat tour, on our way to/from Molokini Crater, we also got to see about 5 different whales (outside of whale season) and this was an added bonus to this trip.  


Looking for great yet affordable snorkel gear? This is the snorkeling gear we used snorkeling on our own in Hawaii.  


#2 Top Maui Snorkeling Spot: Makena Landing

top maui snorkeling

Makena Landing Beach Park is another great snorkeling spot on the southern coast of Maui near Wailea. The water is clear and relatively calm here in the small protected bay area making for awesome snorkeling through the coral not far off the shore.  Also, you will likely not only see fish here but there is a high likelihood you will see sea turtles while snorkeling at Makena Landing Park.  If not snorkeling, you will likely see them on a rocky beach in a roped off area just north of the main sandy beach.  We also were lucky enough to see an octopus snorkeling here.  Snorkel in the morning to avoid washing machine waters that can develop in the afternoon. 


Pro-tip to prevent goggle fogging: Smear a very light coat of baby shampoo on the inside of the goggles and do not put them in the water after that (put goggles directly on your face) to prevent fogging.  Inexpensive and works like a charm! 


#3 Top Maui Snorkeling Spot: Mile Marker 14

top maui snorkeling

Mile Marker 14, aka Olowalu beach, is a bit of a local hidden snorkeling gem. It is not far from the popular Kaanapali beach area, yet most people do not know to stop here for great snorkeling. The waters off shore here are shallow, relatively calm and clear which make it a great spot for beginners to start to snorkel. Here, we saw a lot of different pretty fish, colorful coral and even a sea turtle.  Snorkel here in the morning for the best experience as waters can get more choppy in the afternoon and the area becomes more busy. 


We hope this guide helps you plan where to go snorkeling on your trip to Maui.  Anything you’d add to our guide? We’d love to hear your feedback and questions.  Please leave us a comment!

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Top 5 Best Hikes on Maui


Top Maui Hikes

Maui is one of the best Hawaiian islands to go for a hike due its contrasting scenery on nearly every part of the island.  From bamboo forests to lush mountains to desert landscape to waterfall paradises to volcanic rock trails, you’ll be in hiking heaven (or Mars).  After visiting Maui several times and hiking as many trails as we could there, here is our guide on the Top 5 Hikes on Maui.  

Disclosure: This article contains affiliate links. That means that, at no cost to you, we may get a small commission if you purchase through these links. This helps us keep providing travel resources for you!


#1 Top Hike on Maui: Pipiwai Trail


Pipiwai Trail, Haleakala National Park, 4.0 Miles round trip, 650 feet of elevation gain, out & back

This hike on the Pipiwai Trail was our furthest away stop on the Road to Hana and well worth the drive. It is actually located after Hana so make sure to continue on to reach this trail in the east part of Haleakala National Park.  

Top Maui Hikes

Unique Rainforest and Bamboo Forest Flora

This hike is super neat because you first hike through the rainforest and then through a bamboo forest before coming to the impressively tall Waimoku waterfall. On the hike, you will also see a huge Banyan Tree.  The contrasting views keep your interest throughout and the effort is well worth the 4 mile round-trip hike.  We would rate this hike as relatively easy as the elevation gain is well spread out.  

Top Maui Hikes

Arrive Early

We recommend arriving at this trailhead early.  When we arrived around 8am, we were one of three cars, but by the time we left after completing the hike, the parking lot was completely full and cars were parking in an overflow lot. 

Bonus: Hike Oheo Gulch 

You can also hike the shorter Oheo Gulch/Seven Sacred Pools trail here that is 0.6 miles roundtrip with minimal elevation change.  The trailhead is at the same spot as the Pipiwai Trail.  This trail will take you past the coastline, past a waterfall and through some pretty local flora.  We completed this hike after the Pipiwai trail and found it to be very easy and scenic. 

Cost: $30/car (valid 3 days throughout entire park) or free with America the Beautiful Pass (pays for itself if you plan to visit more than 2 National Parks in one year)

See our Haleakala National Park Quick Guide for other tips on what to do there, including seeing the west side of the park (the other side of the island).


#2 Top Hike Maui: Waihee Ridge


Waihee Ridge Trail, Wailuku, 4.2 Miles round trip, 1500 feet of elevation gain, out & back hike

The Waihee Ridge Trail affords some amazing lush mountainous valley views.  Although steep, this hike is doable with a reasonable level of fitness, even if babywearing.  Our daughter loved taking in the vast views on this hike as well as walking around at the flat summit.  Further, this hike is a tranquil forest escape from the crowds of Maui beachgoers. 

Top Maui Hikes

Astounding Mountain Views

On the Waihee Ridge trail, there is also a nice platform with some great views (arguably our favorite views on the trail) about 1 mile into the hike.  If you do not want to hike the whole Waihee Ridge trail, hiking just to this spot would offer very rewarding views for less effort.  

Have Sun Protection 

While hiking this trail, be mindful to have good sun protection as most of the hike has significant sun exposure.  The first half of the outbound hike is less rocky and a bit less steep with some sun cover.  The second half of the outbound hike is steeper, a bit more rocky and with virtually no sun protection

Arrive Early to Avoid Longer Hike, Crowds & Intense Sun

If you arrive at the Waihee Ridge trail after 9 AM, you will likely need to park in overflow parking that adds almost a mile each way of walking on the paved inclined road that leads to the main parking lot. The trailhead is gated and open 7 AM – 7 PM daily.    We would highly recommend arriving earlier than 9 AM to avoid crowds, direct/more intense sun and needing to park further away. 

Other Miscellaneous Waihee Ridge Tips

Try to go on a clear day to avoid the mountains being covered in clouds. Also, if it is raining or recently rained, the trail may be very slippery.  Moreover, do not leave any belongings you can see in the car as break-ins have been reported here. Bring everything with you or store any belongings in a covered trunk to reduce the break-in chance.

Cost: Free


Looking for great hiking boots?  Here are links to the ones we’ve used for 8+ years and highly recommend: Men’s Keen Waterproof Hiking Boots & Women’s Keen Waterproof Hiking Boots


#3 Top Hike Maui: Twin Falls


1.8 Mile round trip (without offshoots to each waterfall), 347 feet of elevation gain, out & back

Twin Falls is a fun and short hike. It takes you to three different waterfalls through the rainforest.  The first two waterfalls you encounter on this hike look similar and are a very short hike, about 0.2 miles, from the parking lot.  The third waterfall is a bit further of a hike from those two but, in our opinion, was the most scenic of the three. Be sure not to stop hiking after the first two waterfalls.  You can also go swimming at this third waterfall.   

We took our time with this hike, hiking down to each waterfall and exploring around them, and it took us about 1.5 hours total.  The hike was relaxing, as it was relatively easy, and you saw a lot in a short period.  The trail, especially down by the waterfalls, was very slippery, as it had just rained when we visited so make sure to wear good hiking shoes. 

This hike is another stop on the Road to Hana, at the very beginning near MM 2.  We actually hiked this trail a different day than when we drove the Road to Hana as it was only about 10 minutes from our Airbnb. We are glad we did it this way as we did not feel rushed hiking it at all then as the Road to Hana is already a very full day experience. 

Twin Falls Tip: Arrive Early to Avoid Crowds

We almost did not hike this trail due to reviews we read saying it was too busy. However, we saw less than 10 total other people when we hiked this trail at around 7am. We honestly felt like we had most of this trail to ourselves. We likely would not have enjoyed this hike as much later in the day when it is more crowded.


#4 Top Hike Maui: Sliding Sands


Sliding Sand Trail, Haleakala National Park, 11.5 miles (do not have to hike entire trail), 2873 feet of elevation gain, out & back

Top Maui Hikes

The Sliding Sands trail is over 11 miles long but you really do not need to hike all of that to get some amazing crater views.  Even hiking a mile or less each way will afford you stunning Mars-like crater views.  Beware that this is a steep hike at elevation though and you need to be prepared to hike back up the steep crater.  Therefore, be mindful of your fitness level while descending into the crater as that is much easier than ascending up it. 

Cost: $30/car (valid 3 days throughout the entire park) or free with America the Beautiful Pass 

See our Haleakala National Park Quick Guide for other tips on what to do there, including seeing the east side of the park (the other side of the island).


#5 Top Hike Maui: Nakalele Blowhole 


Nakalele Blowhole Trail, Poelua Bay, 0.9 miles round trip, 250 feet of elevation, out & back

Top Maui Hikes

This rugged coastal hike to get to the Nakalele Blowhole is short but involves a lot of unsteady footing and descending down (then back up) the lava rock.  Watching the blowhole from up close is pretty neat and makes this hike different from all the other hikes on this list.  Be sure to have sturdy shoes for this hike with the easy but consistent scrambling on the rocks. Though there are traveled paths here, there is no set trail to follow.


Bonus Top Maui Hike: Kapalua Trail 


Kapalua Coastal Trail, Kapalua, 3.0 miles round trip, 300 feet of elevation gain, out & back

Top Maui Hikes

This coastal trail takes you along sand dunes and lava rock.  It is very pretty and relatively easy.  It makes for a nice morning stroll.  Try to walk this trail early in the day as it is completely exposed to the sun.  To access this trail, park at the public beach access lot.  


We hope this guide helps you plan your hiking on your trip to Maui.  Anything you’d add to our guide? We’d love to hear your feedback and questions.  

For more tips on Hawaii travel, see other Hawaii guides including:

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The Best Maui Vacation Rentals 


Maui Vacation Rentals 

Planning a vacation to Hawaii and looking for a Maui vacation rental? Look no further!  When we were looking for the perfect Maui vacation rental for our most recent babymoon, we were so pleased when we found Maui Paradise Properties.  Their platform helped us find a vacation rental to fit all our needs during our trip.  Through their large inventory, easy to use platform, quick responsiveness, stellar in-unit amenities and concierge service, you are sure to find the vacation rental and experience you are looking for on Maui.  Here’s a run down on our experience.


Large Inventory with Variety of Properties 

Maui Paradise Properties has nearly 350 vacation rentals to choose from on Maui.  With one of the largest inventories of Maui vacation rentals, you can easily find the perfect place to stay.  Whether you are looking for a beachfront cabana, a quiet golf course condo or a unique home with ocean views, there are lots of options to choose from.

Maui Vacation Rentals 

When we were looking to book our babymoon #2 with our 20 month old daughter, we knew we wanted a place that was conveniently located yet quiet and tucked away from the crowds. There were several condos and homes we considered but ultimately opted for a golf course condo. It was less than a 10 minute walk to bustling Kaanapali beach/beach walk/shops yet tucked away from the busy and crowded Kaanapali resorts.  Our rental had stunning golf course views and a great patio for relaxing/enjoying meals.  This is a link to the exact condo we stayed at on Maui at the Kaanapali Royal. 


Best Maui Vacation Rentals: Easy to Use Platform

Similarly, using the Maui Paradise Properties website, you can easily search for the perfect Maui vacation rental for you with their easy to use search function.  Their online platform allows you to easily search by location on the island, size and availability to help narrow your search.  Then, you can easily book directly through the website.  We were able to find the perfect spot to fit our needs within 10 minutes of using this platform.   Keep in mind that booking direct will always get you the best rate (in comparison to using a third party platform such as Airbnb or VRBO which may incur additional fees). 


Quick Responses and Timely Assistance

During our stay, we needed assistance a couple times for miscellaneous needs that came up.  We got an immediate response via email or text and any issues we had were quickly addressed and solved.  It was so nice to have such great communication with our management service.  Also, unlike many other private vacation rentals/other third party booking platforms, Maui Paradise Properties has a team located right on the island ready to help you at any time.  This on-island management team provides great peace of mind and customer service.  


Best Maui Vacation Rentals: Stellar In-Unit Amenities

When staying at a vacation rental, unlike at an overpriced and crowded resort, you will have access to in-unit amenities that will allow you to save money while affording you more comfort during your stay as well.  

For example, our unit had a full kitchen and in-unit laundry.  Having a fully functional kitchen and a grill saved us hundreds of dollars on food during our stay.  Moreover, it made going out to eat a special treat and we did not get burnt out by eating out too much.  Likewise, in-unit laundry allowed us to pack less. Additionally, laundry came in clutch with having so many sandy beach days (where sand seems to end up everywhere, including parts of clothes, you didn’t think it would).  We also were able to come home with clean clothes in our suitcases rather than needing to rush to do laundry immediately upon arrival home. Having this option makes your transition back to reality a little less painful.   Further, most of the units offer a pool as well which is a nice option for enjoying the refreshing water without the saltwater or sand. 


Free Activity Booking Service 

Once we had our accommodations sorted, we started looking for fun activities to do. Our rental company referred us to Maui Locals Guide.  The best part?  This service is completely free to use with any property rented through Maui Paradise Properties.   While staying on the island, we were looking for the perfect surfing lessons for Sam.  Maui Locals Guide was able to help us find the most conveniently located lessons that were also less expensive than any other surfing lessons we found on our own.  The activity service will also take care of booking any activities you’d like to do while on the island, at no cost to you, and really makes planning your trip easier than ever.  


BONUS: Maui Paradise Properties can Manage your Property

If you happen to be one of the lucky souls that owns a Maui property, Maui Paradise Properties offers vacation rental or long-term leasing options to maximize your investment when you aren’t relaxing in paradise yourself.  They will take care of everything when it comes to managing your rental.  Inquire on their website to learn more!


We hope this post helps you book your Maui vacation rental.   We can’t wait to book our next trip to Maui! If you want to check out the company we stayed with, email reservations@mpphawaii.com, call 1-808-214-1011 or visit the Maui Paradise Properties website for the best prices and most up to date availability of all properties in their inventory.  We know you will find the perfect Maui vacation rental to fit all your needs. 


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Where to Stay in Old Town Alexandria


When researching where to stay in Old Town Alexandria, we wanted to be sure to find a place that matched the area’s picturesque charm.  We were so pleased when we found this mid-century modern Airbnb in the heart of Old Town Alexandria to stay at while visiting Old Town Alexandria.   This Airbnb has the perfect location. We were able to walk everywhere we wanted to visit in Old Town Alexandria.  Further, the apartment’s unique features and comfortable size provided us with a really nice place to call our home base in Old Town Alexandria for our extended weekend visit.  If you are trying to decide where to stay in Old Town Alexandria, look no further!  Here’s a run-down on why we think this mid-century modern Airbnb in the heart of Old Town Alexandria is the perfect place to stay when visiting Old Town Alexandria. 

Disclosure: This article contains affiliate links. That means that, at no cost to you, we may get a small commission if you purchase through these links. This helps us keep providing travel resources for you!


Walk Everywhere in Old Town Alexandria

This Airbnb is located on King Street, truly in the heart of Old Town Alexandria.  It is within walking distance of everywhere we wanted to visit in the area.  From this Airbnb, it is less than a 10 minute walk down to the waterfront and to many other restaurants and shops in the area.  It was so nice to just be able to walk out of our Airbnb and get to all the places we wanted to be without the hassle of a car.  And if you don’t want to walk, there is a free King Street Trolley you can take too.  One of our favorite restaurants, Taverna Cretekou (authentic Greek restaurant), we visited here is actually located just below the apartment, right out the front or back door. 

For all our recommendations on what to do in Old Town Alexandria, see our What to do in Old Town Alexandria post.

Comfortable Space

The space here was really nice and large.  For less than the price of most small hotel rooms in the area, we were able to have a large living area, kitchen and master bedroom/bath at this Airbnb.  This space was able to accommodate 3 adults (Sam, Natalie and Grandma) and 1 baby (14-month-old) very comfortably.  There is a master bedroom with a queen bed here and then a twin sofa bed in the living room.  You could likely fit one more adult in here if you wanted to but we would recommend this apartment for a family with 3 or less adults for the most comfortable experience.   This place also has a washer and dryer which is a HUGE win when traveling with a very cute, yet messy, baby. 

Note: If you are room sharing with a baby here (like we did), we do recommend using the SlumberPod for the best experience.  The bathroom is located through the bedroom and without it, you may feel like you can’t access the bathroom while your baby is sleeping.  The SlumberPod allowed us to room share with the baby and all get sleep.  It was also nice to not have to worry about using the bathroom while our baby was napping or sleeping.  Use ALWAYSHAVEATRIPPLANNED$20 for $20 off your SlumberPod order today.

Unique Antique Decorations 

This apartment has some really unique antique decorations and wall hangings from the middle of the 20th century.  Our favorite decor was the old movie chair seats in the hallway.  We got to chat with one of the hosts, Boyd, and he gave us a run-down on the antique decorations in the apartment and it was really cool to hear their history.  The decorations here really added another fun layer to our stay.

Great Host and Hostess 

Tessa and Boyd were fantastic at communicating with us and so accommodating for our stay. They allowed us to check-in early and check-out late, which was very helpful, especially while traveling with what felt like everything but the kitchen sink.  Tessa and Boyd allow you your space but are available for any questions you may have about your stay at the place or visiting the area.  

Other Units in the Area

If the unit we stayed in is booked for the dates you are looking at, don’t fret.  Tessa and Boyd have a total of 8 listings in the heart of Old Town Alexandria.  Visit their profile here to see all of them. They have different sized properties and likely have a size and price point to meet your needs.   Although we have not stayed at the other listings, we are certain they are all well-maintained/managed and uniquely decorated based on our lovely stay at their mid-century modern Airbnb in the heart of Old Town Alexandria


We hope this guide helps you plan where to stay in Old Town Alexandria. Book the same mid-century modern Airbnb in the heart of Old Town Alexandria we did or another one of Tessa and Boyd’s properties here. Please reach out to Tessa and Boyd with any questions on the area, they are a great resource for visiting the area during your stay.

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Where to Stay near Shenandoah


Where to Stay near Shenandoah

When researching where to stay near Shenandoah National Park, we knew we wanted to stay somewhere tucked away from the hustle and bustle of the National Park but also with a view, conveniently located near the park and with all the amenities we needed.  We were excited when we found exactly what we were looking for at this Charming Chalet Airbnb in Blue Ridge Wine Country.  This spacious chalet was the perfect retreat to the countryside from the city and had everything we needed (and more) for a very comfortable stay while exploring Shenandoah National Park.  Here is a full break-down of why we think this is the perfect spot to stay when visiting Shenandoah National Park. 


Plenty of Space for Everyone

The large spacious main living area and big bedrooms make this Airbnb perfect spot for you to relax with your family yet have your own space as well.  The main living space is inviting and there are many spots for you and your family to gather and relax including the stunning screened-in patio, the grandiose living room and the large kitchen island.   We particularly loved the views of the backyard from the screened in-patio.  We also loved being able to spread out in our own rooms.  The large kitchen was a huge plus too as it allowed us to cook all our own meals.  There is a grocery store, Food Lion, located about 7 minutes south of the Chalet that had everything we needed for cooking during our stay.  

Baby, Toddler and Kid Friendly

This place was so accommodating to our daughter, who was 14 months old at the time of our visit.  The Airbnb had a pack n play, high chair and stand alone baby seat for us to use.  It was really nice to have all these things here ready for us and not have to bring them while traveling.  Bonus–there also was plenty of books and toys for our daughter to enjoy.  As you can see from the pictures, she really loved ‘reading’ all the books.  The open concept of the main living area here also is a very baby/toddler/kid friendly floor plan.  It was easy to keep an eye on our daughter from the kitchen and other parts of the main living space. 

Close to Shenandoah National Park

This Charming Chalet Airbnb in Blue Ridge Wine Country is close to the National Park yet far enough away from it to avoid the crowds.  Unless you are staying in Shenandoah National Park itself, where there can be a lot of traffic, there are not a lot of great close lodging options. From our Airbnb, it was less than an hour to most spots we wanted to explore. We particularly liked being only 30 minutes away from the White Oak entrance on the outbounds of the park.  This area of the park sees less traffic than others and was truly our favorite spot in Shenandoah National Park as it was scenic and felt secluded on our early morning hike.  For a full breakdown of our Shenandoah National Park recommendations, she our One Day in Shenandoah National Park guide. 

Fantastic Host

Connie is a fantastic host.  She is very responsive, kind and accommodating.  Her attention to detail was well appreciated too.  For example, when we arrived, each of our beds had chocolate on them.  Little touches like this made a huge difference.  She also allowed us to check-in a little early and this was so appreciated while traveling with our baby.  She also has lived in the area for over 30 years and is a great resource for exploring the area.  When you arrive, she has a printed guide of things to do in the area, beyond Shenandoah National Park, and we found it very helpful.  


We hope this guide helps you plan where to stay when visiting Shenandoah National Park. Book the same Charming Chalet Airbnb in Blue Ridge Wine Country using the link here.  Please reach out to Connie with any questions on the area. As mentioned before, she is a great resource about the area during your stay.

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One Day in Shenandoah National Park


When planning our trip to Shenandoah National Park we knew we were only going to have one full day to explore the park, so we wanted to make the most of it.  We reached out to friends who live near the park and read many other blogs about the area.  Through this research, we are confident we have put together the best one-day Shenandoah National Park itinerary out there.  Although you could spend upwards of a week in the park with its over 500 miles of hiking trails, we felt one-day was enough to get a good feel for the park by hiking several highlight trails and driving through the park.  Here is our One Day in Shenandoah National Park guide. 

FYI: This post is written based on a hike taken in mid-October.  We took this trip with our 14 month old daughter.  For all our baby travels tips and tricks see our Top 10 Baby Travel Tips, Flying with a Baby, 5 Top Baby & Toddler Flying Tips and How to Hike with a Baby posts. 

Disclosure: This article contains affiliate links. That means that, at no cost to you, we may get a small commission if you purchase through these links. This helps us keep providing travel resources for you!


Fun Facts about Shenandoah National Park

Before we get into our One Day in Shenandoah National Park itinerary, here are some fun facts about Shenandoah National Park. 

  • 50 species of mammals live in Shenandoah National Park
  • Shenandoah National Park has one of densest populations of black bears in US
  • Over 199,100 acres are encompassed by Shenandoah National Park
  • Shenandoah National Park has over 500 miles of hiking trails including 101 miles of Appalachian Trail 
  • The park was established 1935 but had a controversial start. About 500 families (about 2500 people) were uprooted to establish this National Park leaving many abandoned settlements. 

Best Hikes to Do with One Day in Shenandoah National Park

During our one day in Shenandoah National Park, we hiked 3 different trails to get a taste of the waterfalls as well as experience the expansive Blue Ridge mountain views Shenandoah offers.  The first trail, the Lower White Oak Falls Trail, we hiked in the morning. Then, we headed back to our Airbnb before driving into the main drive of the park to hike the Stony Man and Upper Hawksbill Trails.  We picked each of these trails because of the views they offer as well as their location in proximity to our accommodations.  These trails give you a good overview of what the park has to offer and are also manageable to hike in one day.  Here are the 3 trails we recommend hiking with one day in Shenandoah National Park.   

#1 Lower White Oak Falls via White Oak Canyon Trail

Start your day hiking to the scenic Lower White Oak Falls. This out-and-back trail leads to a stunning and serene waterfall in Shenandoah National Park.  We hiked here on a crisp fall morning and did not see another soul on our hike out.  It was exactly the peaceful hike we were looking for that morning.  This was our favorite hike we did in Shenandoah National Park despite not offering classic Shenandoah Blue Ridge Mountain Views.  Soaking in the serenity of nature helps us rejuvenate.   

Park at the White Oak Boundary Parking Lot

To access this trail and waterfall, park at the White Oak Boundary Parking Lot.  Be sure to park at the White Oak Boundary parking and not the White Oak Canyon Parking. The hike will be significantly longer from the Canyon Parking, which is on the main drive of the park and MUCH busier than the Boundary Parking.  From the White Oak Boundary Parking lot, it is a 2.8 mile round trip hike with 400 feet of elevation gain.  It took us about 1.5 hours to complete, including stopping to take pictures and relaxing at the waterfall for a bit. 

2.8 miles round trip, 400 feet of elevation, out & back, see map below 

AllTrails Lower White Oak Falls via White Oak Canyon Trail

#2 Stony Man Trail Shenandoah National Park

Next, hike the Stony Man Trail. This hike can be accessed from the Stony Man Parking Lot right off the main drag of the parkway (Mile 41.7).  This 1.5 mile loop hike with 318 feet of elevation brings you to an overlook of Shenandoah Valley and Massanutten Mountain.  From this spot, we could see part of the parkway we had driven on and some of the contrasting fall colors well.  This is a good bang-for-your-buck hike as you are able to see great views on a relatively short hike. 

1.5 miles, 318 feet of elevation gain, loop, dogs are not allowed on this trail, see map below

AllTrails Stony Man via AT

#3 Upper Hawksbill Trail Shenandoah National Park 

Next up is the Upper Hawksbill trail.  This trail can be accessed from the Upper Hawksbill Parking Lot off the main drive of the parkway (Mile 46.5).  The Upper Hawksbill trail leads you to the highest peak (4,050 feet) in the park and offers 360 degree views of Shenandoah Valley, the Blue Ridge Mountains and the Virginia Piedmont.   If you only have time for one trail, do this one as it is another great bang- for-your- buck hike, giving you expansive views at the Summit on another relatively short hike.

2.1 mi, 488 feet of elevation gain, out & back, see map below

AllTrails Upper Hawksbill


Tip: Stop at Lookout Points while driving on the Shenandoah National Park Parkway

There are so many pretty lookout points in the park that you can enjoy right from your car or a short walk from your car.  Stopping at these spots along the main drag of the park will help break up your drive as well.  There are SO many to stop at.  Our favorite lookouts were ones where we were facing east in the park.  

Looking for great hiking boots?  Here are links to the ones we’ve used for 8+ years and highly recommend: Men’s Keen Waterproof Hiking Boots & Women’s Keen Waterproof Hiking Boots


Other Hikes to Consider with a Day in Shenandoah National Park

Below are some other hikes we considered doing with our one day in Shenandoah National Park. You may consider adding on or exchanging for one of the trails above depending on the time you have on your trip. 

Doyle River Falls (Mile 81.1)

This hike takes you through the woods to two unique waterfalls. This beautiful trek through Wilderness takes you along cool, clear mountain streams to two unique waterfalls. It is a 3.4 mile out & back hike with 1181 feet of elevation gain. See this AllTrails Doyles River Trail link for more information on this trail. 

Blackrock Summit (84.4)

This is a 1.1 Mile loop hike with 180 feet of elevation gain.  This is another hike, on part of the Appalachian Trail, that leads to expansive views over Shenandoah Valley and Massanutten Mountain.  It offers similar views to the Upper Hawksbill Trail and the Stony Man Trail.  See this AllTrails Blackrock Summit via Trayfoot Mountain and AT link for more information on this trail.  

Old Rag Trail

This 9.4 miles loop hike with 2582 feet of elevation gain is one of the most popular and challenging hikes in the park.  The Old Rag hike affords you sweeping mountain views after a tough rock scramble.  You need a permit to hike Old Rag since 2022.  Use this link, Old Rag Day Use Ticket,  to book a permit. These permits were in ample supply during our weekday early fall visit and less competitive to get than at other National Parks.   We had permits booked but opted not to hike this trail as you can get very similar and even higher views from some of the shorter trails we hiked.  If you want to avoid the rock scramble, you can hike to this same lookout from Berry Hallows. See this AllTrails Old Rag link for more information on this trail.  

For a breakdown of all the trails in Shenandoah National Park, see our friend Anna’s Blog Post– 15 Best Hikes in Shenandoah National Park.  She helped us plan our trip and pick out the best trails.   We are so grateful to Anna for all her advice! 


Where to Stay Shenandoah National Park

We recommended staying outside of the park at this Charming Chalet Airbnb in Blue Ridge Wine Country.  This spacious chalet was the perfect retreat to the countryside from the city and had everything we needed for a very comfortable stay while exploring Shenandoah National Park.  The serene views from the screened in patio were stunning.  See our Where to Stay Near Shenandoah post for a full breakdown on why we loved this Airbnb


Did you fly into DCA to visit Shenandoah? If so, be sure to check out the charming and picturesque Old Town Alexandria when in the area too. See our What to do in Old Town Alexandria and Where to Stay in Old Town Alexandria posts for some inspiration.


We hope this guide helps you plan your one day in Shenandoah National Park. Anything you’d add to our guide? We’d love to hear your feedback and questions.  Please leave us a comment!

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