Manoa means thick, vast, depth, solid or thickness in the Hawaiian language. Manoa valley receives almost daily rain, even during the dry season. Manoa is the location of the first sugarcane and coffee plantation in Hawaii (1825). Today, Manoa is a residential neighborhood and home to the University of Hawaii at Manoa. Deep into the Manoa valley begins a trail that leads through a lush rainforest and ends at a beautiful waterfall. The waterfall is 100 feet tall and the amount of water varies by the time of the year and the amount of the rainfall. In the summer months, the waterfall may be described as thin.

The Hawaiian name for the waterfall is Waihi, which means “trickling water.” The waterfall creates the Manoa Stream, which begins at the base of the fall and runs through the valley. This stream eventually joins with the Palolo Stream to form the Manoa Palolo drainage, which then enters into the Ala Wai Canal. At the waterfall, there is a trail off to the left that takes the hiker up multiple switchbacks and through a bamboo forest. This Aihualama Trail offers beautiful views of Honolulu and Manoa valley. The Aihualama Trail is not suitable for novice hikers.

(Source: Na Ala Hele, the State of Hawai‘i Trail and Access Program, established in 1988 and administered by the Division of Forestry and Wildlife – Department of Land and Natural Resources).© Saepae, Y.S. and Kohr, M.K. (2016) Manoa Falls. All Rights Reserved.

Trail Guidelines

Recommendations: Children ages 6 years and older preferred, closed toed shoes, anticipate some muddy parts to the hike, bring a camera.

Tour Includes: Bottled water, bug spray, walking stick and keepsake botanical guide with map. Includes round trip transportation to and from Waikiki Hotels.

Train Length: 0.8 miles/1.3km
Terrain: Rainforest, lush valley moderate hike with uneven paths towards end of hike.
Elevation: 800ft

Waikiki Transportation Pickup Schedules: 7:00am to 10:00am; 1.00pm to 4:00pm
Cancellation: 48 hours
Trail Length: 0.8 mi/1.3 km
Terrain: Rainforest Lush Valley
Elevation: 800 ft.
Activity: Pedestrian


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