Koko Crater Arch Trail
Koko Crater Arch Trail
4.5
About
Also known as the "Koko Head Stairs," this abandoned WWII railway track is a steep and challenging hiking trail with over 1,000 steps (but worth it for the panoramic views).
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  • Ron
    Tampa, Florida33 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Good tough hike
    I hiked Koko head on my last day in Hawaii. Koko head is pretty challenging but the view from top is worth the hike. Definitely hike at your own pace and bring water. Best time to hike is early morning or during sunset. Aloha
    Visited July 2023
    Travelled solo
    Written 1 August 2023
  • Chris Pouliot
    8 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Challenging but the view is worth it!
    The climb up is something that needs to be done in the morning before it gets too hot. The view at the top is breathtaking, well worth the effort. Beware on your way down however as it is easy to slip and tumble (my wife did and got banged up). Took us 1h40mins to get up going slowly and taking multiple breaks. Bring lots of water and snacks as there is nothing available at the top....
    Visited August 2023
    Written 5 August 2023
  • Happiness54300038802
    1 contribution
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Good challenge for 76 yo man
    My son’s family lives near Koko head and impulsively I went one midday. I didn’t feel all that well at about 900’ (of 1,000’) so I didn’t finish and just came back down. I’m short so the stairs were tougher for me then, say a switch back trail. Also, I felt insecurity with footing and had to be cautious, otherwise I envisioned slipping and damaging a knee or worse. Because I didn’t get to the top I can’t really give it a proper review, but I can say that the next time I’m over there, I’m bringing hiking pole(s). What I liked best was the exertion level by time as it has the right amount of both for me.
    Visited October 2023
    Travelled solo
    Written 10 November 2023
  • Alexis O
    Grand Rapids, Michigan186 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Beautiful Views at the Top
    This was hands down the most physically demanding and mentally challenging hike I’ve ever done, but the views at the top made it worth EVERY bit of suffering! The key things to keep in mind are to take it slow, bring and drink LOTS of water, go EARLY to avoid the heat, and pay attention to where you’re walking. This would not be a good hike in wind or rain. There are lots of places to pull off the trail to take breaks and there is a section that is pretty sketchy with exposed drop between the rail ties, but there is a bypass if you want to play it safe!
    Visited December 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 22 December 2023
  • Paul Stewart
    Cameron Park, California53 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    This is a beast, but nothing like you have done!
    I like to push myself on certain hikes and this a great one to test you. That said, I believe anyone can do it, but you just need to pace yourself and rush. Just turn around when you are out of gas and enjoy the view, then March on. They have pullouts to rest and sit if needed. One water bottle is enough, but a cool drink waiting for you in the car….🙏🏻👊🏼 I you are not afraid of heights and can focus well, take the railroad ties all the way up and down. If not, take the dirt trail pull-out for the section where the ties have a 40-50 drop underneath the gaps. Once at the top, explore the different paths for the plethora of views.
    Visited December 2023
    Travelled with friends
    Written 30 December 2023
  • CEO
    Haleiwa, Hawaii2,310 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Views from the top.
    We hiked up to the top of Koko Crater on Tuesday at around 8 am. The trail was not too busy this early in the morning. And the sun is not as intense as later on in the day. It took us around 35 minutes to reach the top. We made several 1-2 minute stops to enjoy the views and take pictures. The steps are well maintained. Wear sport/hiking shoes with good support and grip. Steps are higher than standard stairs. It's safer to hike on a dry day. I suspect it can get slippery when the steps and loose gravel are wet. The best rewards when reaching the top are the awesome views. We hiked down after about 20 minutes. The hike down was faster. Watch your steps and be careful on the way down. There is no need to rush. We stepped aside to let people pass. Parking is free. There are bathrooms at the park but none on the trail. It's good to bring water and stay hydrated.
    Visited March 2024
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 1 March 2024
  • Noelle DeLeon
    Baltimore, Maryland64 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    A challenging hike but worth it!
    It is truly an amazing accomplishment to get to tackle this hike. It was so nice to experience people being kind and uplifting to other people. We all wanted to finish this hike. Definitely worth your time and effort to get to see the views from the top. Loved the renovations they have done to make the trail safer.
    Visited February 2024
    Travelled solo
    Written 4 March 2024
  • Brian F
    Toronto, Canada22 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Great workout, free & awesome lookout
    One of the few free, but awesome adventures on Oahu. As everyone says...go early, take water, and for any weekend warriors..take your time and rest often, to make sure you get to the top. The look out is great. Two days later, and my calves and quads are still burning, buy worth it.
    Visited March 2024
    Travelled with family
    Written 13 March 2024
  • Kchaney16412
    Plymouth, Indiana14 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    A must try!
    This was on our list to do and the more we read and talked to others, we really doubted whether or not we could do this! haha. We traveled as a family with a 17 year old son and almost 14 year old son. We are all pretty active in our daily life and this was still TOUGH! We went as early in the morning as we could per recommendations. We had to rent a car and the rental car shop didn’t open until 8, so I’d say we didn’t get to Koko until 9 or so. We packed plenty of snacks and water and brought a light backpack and wore plenty of sunscreen. This was a brutal hike from the first stair. My husband didn’t make it more than halfway. He was afraid of injuring himself. My sons and I made it to the top, but needed to take several breaks along the way. There is plenty of step offs. The views from the top were breathtaking and worth the climb. But it was really hard. I would do it again, especially since I know what to expect now. I would still recommend going early in the day and taking fruit/nuts/water to eat along the way up or at the top before you come back down. Great experience! and it is FREE!
    Visited March 2024
    Travelled with family
    Written 30 March 2024
  • Joe R
    1 contribution
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Loved it, amazing views with every step
    Thoroughly enjoyed it. Haven't hiked in years but managed- just. Partner chose to stay midway as it does get much steeper as you get closer to the top. Definitely take water and good shoes and was extremely windy off the main tracks at the top by the cliff edge. Highley recommend.
    Visited March 2024
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 8 April 2024
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4.5
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BrakiWorldTraveler
Belgrade, Serbia18,626 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2024 • Family
Koko head is right across Hanauma bay in the southeastern part of Oahu.
Parking beneath is free at a huge parking lot, though difficult to find spaces on weekends when we've visited.
From the bottom you see the cut path going straight up through lush greenery. It looks both, scary and challenging.
It took us around 40 min to reach the summit with very often breaks (I am 55).
Imo, it's more a challenge and adventure of personal satisfaction than for the views. Views are nice, but better are from both, Diamond Head and Tantalus lookout (the latter you reach comfortably in your car).
However, if this is your cup of tea do it, specially because I've read they're going to dismantle the stairs. Personally, I wouldn't do it again.
Written 9 June 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

DKPuck
Muncie, IN1,073 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2024 • Family
The views at the top are gorgeous, but this is a tough hike of 1000+ stairs. Don't be ashamed to take breaks, everyone but the fitness freaks took breaks every 20-30 steps as you get farther up. Steps are steeper higher up than the top. But worth it!
Written 1 June 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Jacqueline B
22 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2024 • Family
This trail is difficult but 100% worth the view! Come early to avoid the heat and crowds. Also don’t follow maps instead park at the baseball fields near by the trailhead start.
Written 27 May 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

John D
Pasadena, CA5 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2024 • Solo
This was a personal test and I’m so proud to do it! From my awesome Uber driver Misa who got me there, the awesome people who helped cheer me on and helped keep me safe and the encouragement and support from family, friends, colleagues, this should be on your “must-do!” Shout out to the folks wearing rucks and weights who flew past me but still managed to slow down and called me “sir” in the nicest way, without saying “move over boomer” 😆 and for the folks my senior who reminded me how far I have to go, rock on!!
Written 17 May 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Sarah Lake
San Luis Obispo, CA16 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2024 • Solo
I have wanted to this hike since I heard about it. I’m a sucker for some good views. I’m very active and fit and as all other reviews say— this hike is HARD but an extremely fun challenge. I went around 8am, didn’t bring water (10/10 don’t recommend that), made it up to the top in 15 minutes (humble brag), snapped some pictures and made my way back down. There are two parts of the track that are off of the ground and that was slightly terrifying on the way up and down but doable.

Take water, go early, rest if you need to, but it’s gorgeous at the top. Do it for the gram.
Written 29 April 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Stephanie
Philadelphia, PA260 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2024 • Couples
This hike was super challenging. It is a steep incline essentially the whole way up. There are some steps that are falling apart and if you are not wearing sneakers with good traction, you could easily slip. Many many people are totally winded the whole hike (I’m talking fully panting) and take breaks often. ALL THAT BEING SAID: do it! The views are worth it.
Written 25 April 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Joe R
1 contribution
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2024 • Couples
Thoroughly enjoyed it. Haven't hiked in years but managed- just. Partner chose to stay midway as it does get much steeper as you get closer to the top. Definitely take water and good shoes and was extremely windy off the main tracks at the top by the cliff edge. Highley recommend.
Written 8 April 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Kchaney16412
Plymouth, IN14 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2024 • Family
This was on our list to do and the more we read and talked to others, we really doubted whether or not we could do this! haha. We traveled as a family with a 17 year old son and almost 14 year old son. We are all pretty active in our daily life and this was still TOUGH! We went as early in the morning as we could per recommendations. We had to rent a car and the rental car shop didn’t open until 8, so I’d say we didn’t get to Koko until 9 or so. We packed plenty of snacks and water and brought a light backpack and wore plenty of sunscreen. This was a brutal hike from the first stair. My husband didn’t make it more than halfway. He was afraid of injuring himself. My sons and I made it to the top, but needed to take several breaks along the way. There is plenty of step offs. The views from the top were breathtaking and worth the climb. But it was really hard. I would do it again, especially since I know what to expect now. I would still recommend going early in the day and taking fruit/nuts/water to eat along the way up or at the top before you come back down. Great experience! and it is FREE!
Written 30 March 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Brian F
Toronto, Canada22 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2024 • Family
One of the few free, but awesome adventures on Oahu. As everyone says...go early, take water, and for any weekend warriors..take your time and rest often, to make sure you get to the top. The look out is great.

Two days later, and my calves and quads are still burning, buy worth it.
Written 13 March 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Noelle DeLeon
Baltimore, MD64 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2024 • Solo
It is truly an amazing accomplishment to get to tackle this hike. It was so nice to experience people being kind and uplifting to other people. We all wanted to finish this hike. Definitely worth your time and effort to get to see the views from the top. Loved the renovations they have done to make the trail safer.
Written 4 March 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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Koko Crater Arch Trail (2024) All You MUST Know Before You Go (with Photos)

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