Pukalani means "window of heaven" in the Hawaiian language. Clouds form above and below the community on Haleakalā, leaving Pukalani sunny most of the time with cool and often brisk temperatures. Pukalani is one of the few places besides Haleakala and Kula that one can view the northern, western, and eastern sides of Maui.
Situated on the slopes of Mt. Haleakala at around 1,500 feet elevation, Pukalani is usually 5-10 degrees cooler than sea level districts. The winter evenings can get down to 45 degrees. While the town evokes a laid-back, country atmosphere, it has a commercial center that includes major grocery stores, coffee shops and restaurants, including a Starbucks. Pukalani also has an 18-hole golf course and sports fields.
Pukalani is home to King Kekaulike Highschool which, in 2013, was named one of the “Best High Schools in Hawaii" by US News & World Report and one "America's Most Challenging High Schools" in The Washington Post's annual index of schools and is one of two Maui high schools offering a Hawaiian Language Immersion Program.