Waipio Valley Shuttle Tour Overview
Waipio Valley Road Restriction
Since February of 2022, due to unsafe conditions and unstable sections, the Waipio Valley Road has been restricted from most traffic. This means that the beach, hiking trails and all public lands accessed via the steep Waipio Valley road were essentially inaccessible to everyone except residents or workers needing to access their property in the valley. Then in September 2022, after a legal challenge, access to the valley floor was restored for all Big Island residents, county-permitted tour company operators, and those seeking to practice Native Hawaiian traditional or customary rights (as long as they use a covered 4WD vehicle – ATV’s are not allowed). Hikers and non Big Island residents in private vehicles are still not allowed on the road at this time. The overlook remains open for those who wish to view the valley from above and tours are once again available to go into the valley. Because of this restriction, a permitted tour is the only real option for visitor access to the Waipio Valley. We will update this article when new information becomes available.
Scenic and utterly magnificent, the Waipio Valley Shuttle tour is the original 4-wheel drive tour of “the land of curving water” and is a mesmerizing and intimate look at the valley. This incredible narrated tour of what is commonly called the “Valley of the Kings,” because it was home to many of the early rulers of Hawaii, is enjoyed by locals and visitors alike. If you prefer to hike into the valley or want additional information visit our Waipio Valley article.
The Waipio Valley Shuttle passes by many historical and sacred sites, including where Kamehameha the Great was said to receive word from Kūkaʻilimoku the war god, that he would be the future ruler of the islands. The valley was said to have thousands of residents living and working the fertile and productive land in pre colonial days, as well as supporting thriving fish ponds, banana trees, and several heiau.
The Waipio Valley Shuttle tour is truly an amazing look into the real natural beauty of old Hawaii, with roaming wild horses and gorgeous scenery as far as the eye can see. The tour will give you a view of Hi’ilawe Falls, a majestic 1,200 foot waterfall. The journey also includes a visit to an epic 2,000 foot cliff face stretching along the six mile valley and a walk through a fresh water river that flows directly through taro patches and deep valleys, and right into the ocean. If you love sightseeing, the Waipio Valley Shuttle tour is a wonderful way to spend a morning or afternoon on the Big Island of Hawaii.
In 1946 a devastating tsunami swept huge waves into the valley, destroying most of the settlement. After this storm, most people left the valley, and it has remained sparsely populated since. Much of the Valley is private property and the people who live here like their privacy, so please respect all signs and fences. The tour actually grants you access to some areas that are normally closed to the general public, and the guides will help you stay in appropriate places while seeing all the best sights.
The original 4-wheel drive tour of Waipio Valley is 1 ½ – 2 hours long, and offered Monday through Saturday at 9am, 11am, 1pm, and 3pm. Reservations are recommended one day in advance. *Tour information is subject to change.
Tour Contact Information
Waipio Valley Shuttle Location and Map
48-5416 Kukuihaele Road
Kukuihaele, HI 96727