Manoa Falls

easiest waterfall hike on Oahu

Manoa Falls Haike + SaltWaterVibes

Hiking to a waterfall had always seemed like a far out dream until moving to Hawaii. If you are on Oahu and are looking for an amazing waterfall experience check out Manoa Falls. This 1.5 mile loop is the easiest waterfall hike on the Gathering Place

Manoa Falls Hike on Oahu + SaltWaterVibes

Located in Manoa Valley, this hike will take you deep into the Manoa Rainforest. The surrounding plants and trees + humidity will truly make you feel like you are in an escape to the Amazon. It is such a beautiful hike because everything remains so green all year long due to constant rainfall. Being a rainforest, Manoa see's a lot of light showers almost daily. So, be prepared by always bringing a rain jacket. This trial can be very slippery when muddy so check conditions before attempting. 

Manoa Falls Hike on Oahu + SaltWaterVibes

Another unique aspect to this trail is the Bamboo Forest! I love walking through Bamboo here in Hawaii because it is something I never dreamed possible growing up. The best bamboo forests are on the Road to Hana on Maui and the Lulumahu Falls Bamboo Forest on that trail head. 

Manoa Falls Hike on Oahu + SaltWaterVibes

Manoa Falls is actually a two tiered fall. Hiking to the second fall is not recommended as it has proven to be fatal. Please do not attempt this hike unless you are an expert hiker. The first fall is a legal trial that has proven to be safe and a beautiful payoff.  

Manoa Falls Hike on Oahu + SaltWaterVibes

The trail head does have some incline and stairs. It is recommended to wear tennis shoes due to possible muddy conditions, but I have done this hike in my slippers so it is not necessary. Bring lots of water and snacks to enjoy once you made it to the falls!

Manoa Falls Hike on Oahu + SaltWaterVibes

where should i park?

You can park on the trial head grounds for $5 but to avoid this fee and add a warmup to the hike park in the nearby neighborhood! 

i forgot water what should i do?

There is a food stand called Rainbow End Snack Shop that sells drinks, snacks (i.e Banana Bread) and Shaved Ice! 

can i swim here?

This waterfall is not for swimming. While some people risk it and jump in I would advise stepping back. There are plenty of other falls to take a dip in here in Hawaii like Jack Ass Ginger Falls! Always be cautious of Leptospirosis, you can read more here. 

Manoa Falls Hike on Oahu + SaltWaterVibes

How to get here


Manoa Falls is located in the Manoa Valley just outside a neighborhood. To get to the trial head you will either hop on the highway (H1E or H1W depending on where your coming from) and will exit at the King St. Exit. Turn left on Punahou St. and continue it until it becomes Manoa Road. Once on Manoa Rd. you will continue until the falls trail head. You can park inside the state grounds for $5 but for a free day find legal parking in the neighborhood and walk to the trailhead. The extra .25 of a mile is nothing when your already going on a hike :) 


After rainfall this trailhead can become extremely slippery. Please use your best judgment and check conditions before going. Be aware the it rains often in the Manoa Valley so if attempting please wear proper attire. Bring lots of water and snacks. Please do not venture off the trailhead and respect the land. Always pick up your trash. Please do not swim in the fall and be aware of the bacteria Leptospirosis in the water. 

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