Trip Highlights

Trip Highlights

  • Go hiking through the jungles of the West Maui Mountains, and take a dip beneath hidden waterfalls.
  • Venture to the Haleakalā Crater and photograph the island from atop this massive volcano.
  • Meet biologists at the Maui Ocean Center who work to rehabilitate sea turtles and sharks, then go on a snorkeling and whale-watching excursion with local naturalists.
  • Learn to surf in the gentle waters of a famous Maui break.



Rushing waterfalls and soaring volcanic peaks, fascinating heritage and stunning beaches—Maui is the ultimate tropical paradise. With dynamic Expedition Leaders and a National Geographic Expert, capture the island’s natural wonders on camera; get up close to fascinating marine life on snorkeling, surfing, and boating excursions; and lend a hand with service projects to help preserve the island’s delicate ecosystems.

Days 1-5: Lahaina, Maui, Hawai'i

Settle into oceanfront tents in Lahaina—once the capital of the Hawaiian Kingdom, then a whaling port, and now an artsy enclave. Dive into turquoise waters on snorkeling and dolphin-watching excursions; and visit the Maui Ocean Center, where biologists work to conserve native sea turtle and shark populations.

Venture to the island’s northern shores for an unforgettable hike to ancient lava flows. Search for mysterious petroglyphs and secret waterfalls in the West Maui Mountains, and take a surfing lesson in calm waters. Enjoy a day in South Maui, where we’ll visit a working sugar factory to see how raw cane is transformed into sweetener.


Travel inland to the heart of the island and settle into a small town near the base of the Haleakalā volcano, where traditional ranching and farming still thrive. Step into the cowboy boots of a Hawaiian paniolo, joining in on the action at a local rodeo. Head to the top of Haleakalā Crater, soaring 10,000 feet above sea level, and take in breathtaking views of Maui’s central valley.


Drive along the world-famous road to Hāna, making several stops en route to our destination. Splash in waterfalls and swimming holes; seek out green sea turtles along a black-sand beach; and get your hands dirty while farming a patch of taro—a staple in traditional Hawaiian cooking.

Upon arrival in Hāna, go hiking through bamboo forests to a stunning waterfall, and take a dip in the pool at the base of the cascade. In the evenings, gaze up at the stars alongside astronomers to learn traditional Hawaiian navigation techniques. On our final evening, we’ll celebrate and reflect on our experiences over a bonfire and barbecue with local Hawaiians.