The 5 Most Important Things You Should Know Before your elopement in Maui At Haleakala

Elope above the clouds - a sacred ceremony at Haleakala National Park, Maui.

Haleakala National Park spans at about 3,265 acres and covers Maui’s highest and lowest points on the island- making this an awesome place to elope because you can have the best of both worlds for your Maui Elopement! You can say your vows to your beloved 10,023 feet above the ocean in a picturesque Mars like environment (think epic volcano top views) – here after referred to as Summit District- or you can get married in Hana- which is the lower elevation, ocean-jungle side of Haleakala National Park, hereafter referred to as Kipahulu District.

Here are The 5 Most Important Things You Need To Know for your elopement in maui


Legal areas available for ceremony

-You have 2 location areas to choose from for your haleakala elopement-

Summit District

This area is at the top of the volcano with gorgeous panoramic views of the ocean and the whole island of Maui on a clear day- sometimes you can even see the Big Island! On a clear day it is a serene walk above the clouds, the perfect place to watch the sunset and moonrise simultaneously, a true Maui treat.


Kipahulu District

This area is the coastal-jungle maui side of Haleakala NP. To reach this area, you have two options- drive through the Road to Hana a beautiful, lengthy, twisty-turny road or come in from Kaupo. If you’ve eloped on the summit of Haleakala and want portraits in any of the Kipahulu spots- I recommend getting there through Kaupo side. If you want to have a ceremony at any of the Kipahulu spots- I recommend coming in through the Road to Hana.

Maui elopements can be a lot if you don't know where to start planning. If you need support, or just want to pick my brain with questions, make sure to book a free 10 minute elopement consult!

Approved Summit District Areas for Ceremony

Pu’u’ula’ula (Red Hill)

This is Haleakala’s Highest Peak and offers stunning views from the tippy top of Maui! There isn’t an official “trail” here but more of a walking path. Things to note if you choose this location- the parking lot is small and fills up quick! Especially for sunrise & sunset, as this spot offers the best view for watching the sunrise (or set) and the moonset (or rise). The parking lot capacity is about 35 cars- so you’ll want to arrive extra early if you want to get a spot.

Privacy Level

Little to None

To scroll around on google maps click here:

Haleakala Visitor Center

This area has guard rails and has a lot of foot traffic. I don’t recommend this area as it doesn’t offer that much private-intimate space away from people. However, it does offer cool views of the craters and is super accessible, as it is paved & flat. This area would be great if you’re planning on having guests that don’t or can’t hike.

Privacy Level

Little to None

To scroll around on google maps click here:

Pa’ka’oao (White Hill)

This is one of my favorite locations for ceremony! It’s a short ten-minute hike from the parking lot and is near the bathrooms (with flush toilets) because yes I know that matters ;) White hill offers beautiful views of the craters as well as all of Maui- on a clear day. If Red Hill was your first pick, but you couldn’t get a parking spot- White hill is a great second choice! There is a flat area over-looking the craters that is big enough for ceremony with guests!

Privacy Level

Little to None

To scroll around on google maps click here:

Kalahaka Overlook

Another gem with a beautiful backdrop for ceremony and exchanging vows with your partner. Although all of these areas are shared spaces- this spot has waaaaay less tourists & foot traffic! 

Privacy Level

Doable! More breathing space here.

To scroll around on google maps click here:

Leleiwi Overlook

A 15-minute walk to a beautiful outlook over the craters! Parking is on the main road and is limited to about 10 cars.

Privacy Level

Most private area of summit approved ceremony sites.

To scroll around on google maps click here:

Approved Kipahulu District Areas for Ceremony

-Kūloa Point and Kūloa Loop Trail Coastal Trail from Kūloa Point to Kīpahulu Campground.

These areas are all in the same vicinity. The Kuloa Loop Trail is a short ½ mile loop to an ocean view that leads back to the Kipahulu Visitor Center. On the trail you will also see the Seven Sacred Pools also called the Pools of Oheo- definitely a sight to see and can be incredibly healing to take a dip in the pools.

Privacy Level

Little to None

To scroll around on google maps click here:

For more Hawaii Elopement Photography inspiration, click here!

2.   Sunrise or Sunset Ceremony

You’re going to want to choose a ceremony time- both sunrise and sunset on Haleakala Summit are EPIC so there’s no right or wrong here, however; if you choose to elope at sunrise you will need to get a “sunrise reservation” it’s only $1 and is put in place to regulate the massive swaths of tourists coming into the park for sunrise.


This is important as step 2 because you can’t apply for your ceremony permit until your photographer sends in their $50 permit and insurance to the permit office.

4.  Apply For Your Ceremony Permit

Apply ASAP! The application fee is $150 and there is a limit to a maximum of 25 people that can legally be part of your ceremony. When you apply for the permit (email is best) you will need to include your photographer’s business insurance. The permit office also requests that you submit your ceremony application no less than 2 weeks before your proposed date.

Ps: If you’re eloping at sunrise, include your “sunrise reservation” in your ceremony permit application- if you don’t include it your permit application will be denied.

To get all the details click here:

5.   Hire An Officiant

There are so many officiants on Island that can officiate your wedding! Some officiants will even apply for the ceremony permit for you- helping you tune out the administrative process side & focusing on the fun part- the getting married part! ;) I also provide my clients with a “How to Elope Guide” that has a whole section of Recommended Vendors- which includes officiants, catering, musicians, bakers, hair & makeup artists & more.

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Not feeling Haleakala as your ceremony spot? Let’s chat about other location ideas or see one of my guides about how to get eloped.