Sunset at the summit of Haleakalā has become increasingly popular in the last few years. There are no reservations required to enter the park for sunset, but visitors should plan ahead and be prepared for their evening trip to the summit.

Sunset over a visitor center parking lot as silhouettes of people watch
Visitors watch sunset from the Haleakalā Visitor Center parking lot.

NPS Photo / LM

Know Before You Go:

Proper preparation can make or break your sunset trip, so keep the following pointers in mind:

  • Be prepared to stop at the entrance station. Upon entering the park, all groups must purchase an entrance pass at the entrance station. The fee is waived by a valid National Park Service (America the Beautiful) pass. A machine is available for purchasing entrance pass if the entrance station is not staffed. Lines at the entrance gate can sometimes take several minutes, so budget extra time for your drive to the top.

  • Parking fills up fast. Spots at the summit are finite, and there is no limit on the number of cars that can enter the park for sunset. Plan to arrive with extra time to find a spot, and investigate several options so you have backup sunset viewing locations. Parking lots will close when they are filled to capacity. Keep in mind that sunset is beautiful throughout the park and even throughout the island--you don't have to be at the tippy-top to have a wonderful experience!

  • Dress warmly.The high elevation of the summit can be dozens of degrees colder than the beaches at sea level. The summit can also be windy and wet, so bring your layers. Check out current conditions before making the trip.

  • There is no food, drinks, or gas in the park. Be sure to bring everything you need for yourself, your group, and your vehicle before entering the park. Restrooms and drinking fountains are available in the summit.

  • Drive carefully. As you drive through the park, be aware that wildlife may become disoriented by your vehicle’s lights and land on the road. There are no lights or guardrails on the road up to or through the park. Obey all speed limits on your way into and out of the park.

  • Staying overnight within Haleakalā National Park is only allowed in a designated camping area. Reservations can be made at Hosmer Grove Campground in the summit district or in Kīpahulu Campground in the coastal district. Staying overnight or sleeping within a vehicle outside of a campground is prohibited.

A park employee speaks to a crowd of visitors next to the road as the prepare to watch sunset over the clouds.
Park staff rove the summit area to help keep visitors and endangered species habitat safe during crowded sunset evenings.

NPS Photo / C. Hernandez

Tips for a Comfortable Sunset:

  • Be flexible and have a backup plan. Weather, parking, or unforseen circumstances may cause delays or disruptions.

  • Bring something to sit on--a blanket or a chair can make a much more comfortable seat than pavement! No matter what you bring, be sure to stay on paths and paved areas only to protect our endangered species.

  • Stick around for the stars. Nobody likes sitting in traffic, so wait out the worst of the post-sunrise congestion by planning to do some stargazing. Check out our stargazing tips a good nighttime visit.


Sunset Times

January 1: 6:00 pm
January 15: 6:10 pm
February 1: 6:21 pm
February 15: 6:29 pm
March 1: 6:35 pm
March 15: 6:40 pm
April 1: 6:49 pm
April 15: 6:49 pm
May 1: 6:55 pm
May 15: 7:01 pm
June 1: 7:08 pm
June 15: 7:12 pm
July 1: 7:16 pm
July 15: 7:15 pm
August 1: 7:09 pm
August 15: 7:01 pm
September 1: 6:49 pm
September 15: 6:33 pm
October 1: 6:19 pm
October 15: 6:06 pm
November 1: 5:55 pm
November 15: 5:49 pm
December 1: 5:47 pm
December 15: 5:50 pm

Sunset times calculated from information from the Bishop Museum Planetarium.

Last updated: May 24, 2022

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Mailing Address:

Haleakalā National Park
PO Box 369

Makawao, HI 96768


808 572-4400

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