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Ultimate Guide to Hiking Lulumahu Falls on O’ahu, Hawai’i

Ultimate Guide to Hiking Lulumahu Falls on O’ahu, Hawai’i

Lulumahu Falls is a popular hiking destination for both locals and tourists on the island of Oahu, Hawaii. Despite its popularity, the waterfall retains its natural beauty and offers visitors a peaceful escape into the lush greenery of the surrounding forest. The short hiking trail leading to Lulumahu Falls is a mild trail although it can get muddy. The waterfall itself is a magnificent sight to behold, with its cascading waters and tranquil pool at the base.


In this guide, I’ll share everything you need to know about hiking to Lulumahu Falls, what to expect, and how to get there.


Many people come unprepared for hiking on Oahu and that’s why there are so many rescues. Make sure you at least have the basics and you will be prepared for bad weather or any mishaps on the trail. A headlamp, rain jacket, and good hiking boots or shoes are the three main pieces of gear you need. Below are my four Hawaii hiking essentials.

  • Arcteryx BETA AR Rain Jacket: This is my go-to rain jacket. It’s super light, folds down into a tiny ball, and protects brilliantly in a storm. This one never leaves my backpack.
  • Salomon X Ultra 3 Mid GTX Hiking Boots: For the best ankle support, waterproofing, and durable exterior I’m a fan of tough but light hiking boots like these Salomons for my adventures.
  • Black Diamond Head Torch: I can’t tell you how many times, I’ve arrived back from a hike unexpectedly late. I always keep this lightweight but strong headtorch in my bag for the unexpected.
  • Darn Tough Socks: These are the most comfortable hiking socks I’ve ever worn and last for years. They also have a lifetime warranty and you just send them in with a hole and they replace it no questions asked.


Lulumahu Falls is a popular hiking trail located in the lush rainforest of Oahu, Hawaii. Here are some key details about the hike:

  • Hike Distance: The Lulumahu Falls hike is approximately 2 miles (3.2 kilometers) long, taking hikers through a tropical forest with streams and bamboo groves.
  • Hike Duration: The hike typically takes about 2 hours to complete, depending on your hiking speed and the number of stops you make to take in the scenery.
  • Hike Difficulty: The Lulumahu Falls hike is rated as moderate due to some muddy sections and uneven terrain. Hikers will also need to cross streams and navigate over rocks. This hike is suitable for most hikers, but may not be recommended for the elderly or beginners.
  • Hike Incline: The hike has an incline of approximately 160 meters, taking hikers to an elevation of 305 meters above sea level.


a couple of people sitting in a swimming pool.
a view of a beach with palm trees and a swimming pool.
  • Ultimate Luxury: Lotus Honolulu – Diamond Head View, Great Waikiki Location
  • My Favorite: Aston Waikiki Beach – Best value in Waikiki & Great location
  • Value Hotel Waikiki: Surfjack Hotel is easily the best value (luxury) hotel in Waikiki


For hikers interested in exploring Lulumahu Falls, there are a few parking options available. The most convenient parking area is located on Pali Highway, near the intersection with Nuuanu Pali Drive. From here, hikers can access the trailhead by walking up the road and taking a left onto a dirt path near a small guardrail. It is recommended that hikers arrive early to secure a parking spot, as space can be limited.

As for the distance from Waikiki, the parking area is approximately 8 miles (12.9 kilometers) away from Waikiki and can take anywhere from 20-30 minutes to drive depending on traffic conditions.



When you book your Hawaii Rental Car online, I personally recommend and always use Discover Cars. They search for both local and international companies, so you get the best deal!


There are a few entrances to the Lulumahu Falls Hike but they all connect after a few hundred meters. I suggest downloading the trail map from AllTrails so you know which turns to make and where to begin.

This easy hike on Oahu began with a scenic walk through a lush forest with towering bamboo plants and dense vegetation. It’s amazing how quickly you can leave the Pali Highway behind and be completely surrounded by green forest.

The trail had some early decisions to make with a few t-intersections. There were some slight inclines and rocky terrain but nothing to worry about. As we continued along the path, we were greeted with the peaceful sound of a flowing stream and several river crossings.

The path cris-crosses the stream three times in total but it could be more or less depending on the exact route you choose. You’ll see that even though it is a simple trail, due to the number of intersections and offshoots.

As we approached the waterfall, the sound of the cascading water grew louder. When we finally arrived at the base of the falls, we were the only ones there. It’s unusual to have the falls all to yourself. The water was crystal clear and reflected the surrounding greenery. The pool at the base of the falls was perfect for swimming and a little respite from the hot and humid conditions within the forest.

The highlight of this Oahu hiking experience was swimming under the waterfall itself. The cool mist from the water added to the refreshing sensation and was the perfect way to cool off after the hike. We spent some time relaxing by the pool, taking in the beauty of the falls before making our way back to the trailhead.

lulumahu falls hike

In total, the hike took us just over two hours and was a fun little afternoon adventure.

lulumahu waterfall


This parking lot is a crime hotspot. This is mostly because thieves know that tourists will be gone for at least two hours when they park their cars here. It is very common to see broken glass from smashed windows on the ground here. The best way to stay safe and avoid this from happening to you is to remove every single item from within your car. Don’t leave any valuables in the car at all. I make sure the entire car is empty and there isn’t a single item for a would-be thief to be tempted by.

lulumahu falls parking lot
lulumahu falls

I hope you enjoyed this guide to the Lulumahu Falls Hike on Oahu, Hawaii.



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