Motorcycle Rides

Best Motorcycle Roads & Destinations in Hawaii, United States

Best Motorcycle Roads & Destinations in Hawaii, United States

1. Introduction

If you are interested in exploring the tropical islands of Hawaii or “the Aloha State,” you will find plenty of routes suitable for motorcycles to traverse while providing both riding enjoyment and natural scenery.

Despite the relatively small scale of the scattered Hawaiian islands, you will have the opportunity to navigate the mountains, forests, beaches, and valleys that make up this beautiful paradise nestled in the Pacific Ocean.

If you are not planning to rent a motorcycle, the biggest challenge of your motorcycle trip will be bringing your vehicle over to Hawaii. But if you manage to secure transportation, you will be able to travel across one of the United States’ highly recommended destinations for motorcyclists.

This article will help speed up the planning process by discussing Hawaii’s famous motorcycle roads and destinations.

2. Best Roads and Destinations in Hawaii

2.1 East Maui Loop

Starting in Paia, you will begin traveling along Hawaii Route 37 which will have you winding southward. Shortly after you depart from the small community, you will come close to Fourth Marine Division Memorial Park and Hui No’eau Visual Arts Center. If you are willing to make a slight detour when drawing closer to Kula, you may be able to check out the Ocean Vodka Organic Farm & Distillery.

Distance: 108 miles
Time: 4 hours 27 minutes
Start: Paia
End: Paia

Drawing closer to the bend along Hawaii Route 37, you will travel within the vicinity of the Ka’Ono’Ulu Ranch Cooperative Game Management Area, Kula Forest Reserve, and Polipoli Spring State Recreation Area. As you curve around before you transition onto Pilani Highway, you should be able to make out Maluaka Beach, Little Beach, Makena Beach, Ahihi-Kinau Natural Area Reserve, and Kanaio Natural Area Preserve.

Continuing eastward, you will come across scenic spots that will overlook the Pacific Ocean such as Manawainui Gulch and Manawainui Gulch View Sea Cave. After you transition onto Hana Highway, you will come across Alelele Falls Viewpoint, Wailua Pool, Waioka Pond, and Hamoa Beach. Curving around the bend along Hana Highway, you will ride just outside the perimeter of Kīpahulu Forest Reserve and Hana Forest Reserve.

Traversing northwest along Hana Highway, you will ride beside Wai’ānapanapa State Park, Pua’a Ka’a State Wayside, Hanawi Natural Forest Reserve, and Koolau Forest Reserve. Places of interest to keep an eye out for along the way include Hana Lava Tube, Makapipi Falls, Hanawi Falls, Kahanu Garden, Garden of Eden Arboretum, and Haipua’ena Falls.

Drawing closer back to Paia, you will be within close proximity to the Spirit of Aloha Oceanfront Botanical Gardens, Pe’ahi, Pauwela Point Lighthouse, Wiliama Kaʻuhane Kaʻaimoku-Ah Chan-Poʻopaʻa, Ho’okipa Beach Park, and Baldwin Beach Park.

2.2 The Hana Highway

Starting at the northern tip of the island of Maui, you will embark southward via Hahana Road. You will eventually turn eastward which will take you to the entrance of the Hana Highway, the Road to Hana Mile Marker Zero.

Distance: 39 miles
Time: 1 hour 57 minutes
Start: Peahi, Haiku-Pauwela
End: Hana

Winding around towards the southeast, you will come across the Twin Falls Maui Waterfall, Haipua’ena Falls, Garden of Eden Arboretum, and Keōpuka Inlet Seabird Sanctuary. Along this section of the route, you will travel along the length of the Koolau Forest Reserve.

As you ride the rest of the length along the Hana Highway, you will come across Upper Waikani Falls, Hanawi Falls, Makapipi Falls, and Hana Lava Tube. You will be within the vicinity of Hanawi Natural Forest Reserve, Hana Forest Reserve, and Waiʻānapanapa State Park.

2.3 West Maui - Highway 30 & 340

While you are still close to Kahakuloa, you should be able to grab a quick bite to eat at either Braddah Chic’s Stop or Julia’s Best Banana Bread. For the first several miles of the route, you will travel into the northern region of the West Maui Natural Area Reserve. As you pass into the Kahakuloa Game Management Area, you will have the opportunity to hike up the Olivine Pools Trailhead and the Ohai Trail.

Distance: 22 miles
Time: 47 minutes
Start: Kahakuloa
End: Lahaina

As you depart from the dense wilderness, you will pass by the Nakalele Blowhole, the Nakalele Point Lighthouse, and the Acid War Zone Trail. Further southwest on the Honoapiilani Highway, you will have the chance to relax at Punalau Beach, Slaughterhouse Beach, and Kapalua Bay Beach. You can also take your motorcycle close to the coast and check out DT Fleming Park, Kapalua Ironwoods, and Makaluapuna Point.

During the final stretch of the route, you can take a stroll along Honokōwai Beach Park, Kahekili Beach Park, Black Rock Beach, and Kaanapali Beach. Scenic spots to look out for as you approach Lahaina include the Myths of Maui Luau and Baby Beach.

2.4 Kona to Hawaii Volcanoes National Park

Leaving Kailua-Kona, you will begin to make your way northeast via Hawaii Route 190. You will travel within the vicinity of Kaloko-Honokōhau National Historical Park and Honua’Ula Forest Reserve. Some scenic spots that you may want to make slight detours toward include Kekaha Kai State Beach and Mountain Thunder Coffee Plantation.

Distance: 102 miles
Time: 2 hours 26 minutes
Start: Kailua-Kona
End: Hawaii Volcanoes National Park

Farther along the length of Hawaii Route 190, you will pass through the Pulu Wa’awa’a State Forest Preserve. As the route begins to straighten out the further you head east, you will be near the Ka’Ohe Restoration Area, Ka’Ohe Game Management Area, Mauna Kea Ice Age Natural Area Reserve, Hakalau Forest National Wildlife Refuge, Hilo Watershed Forest Reserve, and Kīpuka’Āinahou Nene Sanctuary.

Approaching the final stretch of the route, you will curve southwest along Hawaii Route 11. Traveling along this stretch of road, you will be within range of Puna Forest Reserve and Pu’U Maka’Ala Natural Area Reserve. Eventually, you will arrive at the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park.

2.5 Waimea to Nā Pali Coast State Wilderness Park

While you are still in Waimea, you can visit interesting attractions including Hale Puna, Captain Cook Landing Site, and Russian Fort Elizabeth State Historical Park/Pāʻulaʻula. Departing northward via Hawaii Route 550, you will encounter Kekaha Lookout, Niihau Lookout, and Red Dirt Waterfall. If you are willing to take a slight detour, you can take a walk over the narrow suspended bridge known as Obake Bridge if you are feeling adventurous.

Distance: 19 miles
Time: 43 minutes
Start: Waimea
End: Nã Pali Coast State Wilderness Park

Entering the southern wilderness area closest to the Puu Ka Pele Forest Reserve, you will proceed to wind around close to Hohonu Awawa Lookout, Waipoo Falls Lookout, and Pu’u Hinahina Lookout. You will also pass by Waimea Canyon State Park plus have the chance to hike up Iliau Nature Loop & Kukui Trail.

After you have cleared the more barren, mountainous landscape, you will come across Kalalau Lookout and Pu’u O Kila Lookout. You will also be able to get a closer look at the wilderness by hiking up Cliff Trail Lookout, Black Pipe Trail Loop, Awa’awapuhi Trailhead, and Alakai Swamp Trail. You will also be able to check out the exhibits on display at the Kokee Natural History Museum. You will then pass in between Ku’la Natural Area Reserve and Kōkeʻe State Park as you make your way to Nā Pali Coast State Wilderness Park.

2.6 Poipu to Polihale

While you are still in Poipu, you should take advantage of your proximity to local food establishments and try Hawaiian cuisine at Merriman’s Kauai or Keoki’s Paradise. You can also get a good view of the Pacific Ocean if you decide to take a stroll along Poipu Beach, Kiahuna Beach, Koloa Landing, Baby Beach, Lawa’i Beach, or Hoai Beach.

Distance: 31 miles
Time: 1 hour 1 minute
Start: Poipu, Koloa
End: Polihale State Park

Leaving Poipu behind, you will head north along Ala Kalanikaumaka Street which will take you up to Koloa. You can check out the buildings that remain or were built over Old Koloa Town or check out Anne Knudsen Park. You will then begin to head westward via Hawaii Route 530.

As you continue to head west, you will transition onto Hawaii Route 50 which will take you within proximity of Kalawai Park and the Kukuiolono Japanese Garden. While you are traveling along the Kaumualii Highway, you can get a good look at the surrounding region atop the Hanapepe Valley Lookout. If you decide to look around Hanapepe, you can walk over the Hanapepe Swinging Bridge.

Navigating close to the coast of the Pacific Ocean, you should be able to make out Russian Fort Elizabeth State Historical Park/Pāʻulaʻula just outside of Waimea. As you start to wind northwest, you can get a closer view of the Pacific Ocean if you choose to walk along Kekaha Beach and Barking Sands Beach. If you have an interest in birds, you may want to admire the wildlife at the Kawai’ele Waterbird Sanctuary. As you coast around the western perimeter of the Kekaha Game Management Area, you will finally arrive in Polihale State Park.

2.7 Nu’uanu Pali

If you choose to stick around Kailua, you have the opportunity to check out Kailua Beach Park, Kawai Nui Hiking Trail, and Pillbox Hike if you wish to admire natural beauty while staying close to civilization. If you wish to have a better view of Kailua Bay, you can head down to Castles Beach, Lanikai Beach, or Lanikai Pillbox.

Distance: 12 miles
Time: 27 minutes
Start: Kailua
End: Honolulu

If you choose to stick around Kailua, you have the opportunity to check out Kailua Beach Park, Kawai Nui Hiking Trail, and Pillbox Hike if you wish to admire natural beauty while staying close to civilization. If you wish to have a better view of Kailua Bay, you can head down to Castles Beach, Lanikai Beach, or Lanikai Pillbox.

Heading out of Kailua via Kailua Road, you will pass in between Kawainui Regional Park, Kawainui Marsh Wildlife Sanctuary, and Hāmākua Marsh Wildlife Sanctuary. As you put distance between yourself and the city, you will pass by the Ulupō Heiau State Historic Site.

As you draw closer to Honolulu, you can take a slight detour if you wish to inspect and pay your respects at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific. When you make it to Honolulu, you can check out the exhibits at the Honolulu Museum of Art or the Aloha Tower.

3. Motorcycle Laws in Hawaii

3.1 Hawaii Motorcycle Helmet Laws

Because the U.S. Department of Transportation places emphasis on riding safely in Hawaii, every rider is urged to have a motorcycle helmet handy. Though it is only mandatory for individuals 17 years old or younger, strapping on a motorcycle helmet would significantly decrease the chances of you suffering severe head trauma.

3.2 Hawaii Motorcycle Passenger Laws

In Hawaii, you are not allowed to carry children under the age of seven. All passengers under the age of 18 have to fasten on a motorcycle helmet. If they refuse to wear one despite your insistence, you must deny them passage on your motorcycle.

Unlike cars and trucks that have multiple seats already installed, a motorcycle needs to have a separate seat fitted for the passenger by you. The options include either another saddle, an extension of the driver’s seat, or a sidecar.

3.3 Hawaii Motorcycle Equipment Requirements

If you wish to travel through Hawaii, it is your responsibility to confirm your motorcycle has been brought to an authorized service station and vehicle repair shop recently.

Your motorcycle typically cannot start if one of its primary functions is compromised like the engine. However, even if it is still able to move despite having suffered damage, you should refrain from traveling long distances until your motorcycle has been looked at.

When going over a checklist of components as you inspect your motorcycle, you should test whether these parts are working correctly:


Handlebars, wheels, tires


Front and rear brakes, brake light


Rearview mirrors, reflectors, headlight, taillight


Turn signals, horn


Controls, exhaust system, muffler

3.4 Hawaii Lane Splitting Laws

Even if you are alone on the road and there are no other vehicles nearby, you should never attempt lane splitting due to it being declared illegal in Hawaii.

It can be difficult to remember the important Hawaii motorcycle laws, so here is an article that focuses on this topic.

4. Parting Words

It hardly matters whether you take your motorcycle up close to an inactive volcano or travel on highways close to the coast, so long as it is a place you wish to visit. Hawaii has no shortage of wonders for you to witness with your own eyes. You never know what may await you around the bend so go forth on your motorcycle journey through Hawaii with an open mind.

Reading next

Top 10 Motorcycle Navigation Apps for 2022 to Guide You Down Uncharted Road Rides and Tours
Viking Bags Motorcycle Luggage Racks 101 Guide

Leave a comment

All comments are moderated before being published.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.