Stretching for 52 miles, across 59 bridges, and around 620 curves, Maui’s famous and historic “Road To Hana” is not for the weak of stomach. Despite being listed on The National Register of Historic Places and as one of the Top 10 Scenic Drives in America by Lonely Planet, for many Maui visitors, the thought of enduring the switchbacking, nearly three-hour drive is simply too much too handle.
In a nutshell, they would rather pass up seeing the entire east end of the island than get behind a wheel on that road.
Luckily for all would-be Hana travelers out there, Mokulele Airlines and the Travaasa Hana hotel have recently partnered to bring back twice-daily service from Maui’s Kahului airport to Hana’s coastal airstrip beginning on October 1. Along the 20-minute flight passengers of the nine-seat Cessna will be privy to waterfall views and the lush rainforest, which blankets the eastern swath of the island.
With fares starting at $59 each way it’s definitely a pricier option than fueling up the rental car and tackling the hundreds of turns. As part of the partnership, however, guests who opt to book a three-night all inclusive stay at the hotel will be given the tickets for free, a nice perk of spending three days in a town regarded as one of the most beautiful and relaxing of anywhere in the entire Hawaiian island chain.
While the flight option dramatically reduces the commute time for Hana travelers, given the notorious tradewinds on the island’s eastern flank, I can only assume it’s still going to be a bumpy – yet beautiful – flight.