Haleakala National Park camping provides you with the opportunity to connect with nature. Whether you're looking to save a few dollars or trade the same old hotel room for something truly different, pitching a tent in one of the prettiest parks in America will be a memorable experience. Halekala National Park preserves one of Maui's biggest natural landmarks—a dormant volcano of the same name. In addition to the crater, the park is home to several amazing ecosystems along with several Haleakala campgrounds.
If you need a place to get some rest after a day of Haleakala hiking, one of the campgrounds will provide a place that you can call home while you're spending time in paradise. The two primitive Haleakala campgrounds are not accessible by car, only by hiking. Permits are required and can be picked up from the visitors center at the park headquarters. They are free of charge, but you must listen to a short orientation overview before you get the permit. Scout groups and other educational groups can reserve their space, but the general public can make arrangements if space is available.
Primitive camping isn't for everyone, and if that's you, you might want to try one of the wilderness cabins or a campground that allows vehicles. The cabins can be reserved online up to three months in advance of your desired date. Like the primitive Haleakala Campgrounds, staying in one cabins requires some hiking of between three and ten miles. The cabins are stocked with some cookware and a propane stove, but you'll need to bring any food and linens with you. Since the nightlife is nothing but warm tropical breezes and the stars above, you might want to bring a good book with you too.
The third option for Haleakala National Park camping is much more accessible—no hiking is required for the Hosmer Grove and Kipahulu drive-up campgrounds. Hosmer Grove is located partially towards the summit in the cloud belt, while the other is closer to sea live and accessible via the Hana Highway. Like the primitive campgrounds, reservations are not accepted until you've arrived at the park. Both sites have barbecue grills, pit toilets, and picnic tables available. The Hosmer site has water, but guests of Kipahulu need to supply this basic necessity. A truly scenic nature trail begins and ends at Hosmer Grove.
Image: Rick McCharles (flickr)