• A view of the cinder desert


    National Park Hawai'i

There are park alerts in effect.
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  • Drive cautiously - Endangered birds land on roadway

    Nēnē (Hawaiian geese) are nesting in the park and may land on or frequent park roads and parking lots. Drivers are reminded to drive at the posted speed limits and exercise caution.

  • For your safety

    The Summit and Kīpahulu Districts are remote. An ambulance can take up to 45 minutes to arrive at either district from the nearest town. People with respiratory or other medical conditions should also be aware that the summit of Haleakalā is at 10,000 ft.

Native Hawaiian Land Division

Moku land divisions for the island of Maui
NPS Image

Prior to European contact Native Hawaiian rulers divided the Hawaiian Islands into distinct political regions. On each of the four larger islands: Kaua'i, O'ahu, Maui, and Hawai'i, lands were divided into wedge-shaped districts called moku.

The moku were further divided into land sections called ahupua'a. Ahupua'a were often bounded by ridgelines and typically encompassed an entire valley from mountain summit to outer reef. This type of land division allowed for each ahupua'a to contain nearly all of the resources that its inhabitants required for survival.

The island of Maui is divided into twelve moku, eight of which intersect within Haleakalā National Park. On the northeast edge of Haleakalā Crater the upper ends of the moku converge into one point, called Pōhaku Pālaha.

Pōhaku Pālaha

Pōhaku Pālaha can be understood in the literal sense as meaning a smooth or flattened rock, but it may also be described as the center from which eight districts of East Maui originate and "spread out" from.


For some Native Hawaiian's the Pōhaku Pālaha is also a representation of the concept of the piko. The piko, or belly-button, is considered a very sacred part of a person's body by Native Hawaiian's, and the Pōhaku Pālaha is considered by some to be the piko for the island of Maui.

Did You Know?

Did You Know?

The Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) built many of the trails and structures in Haleakalā National Park in the mid-1930s.