On a holiday in Maui you will find the best spots for surfing, some of the most gorgeous sunrises and sunsets in the world, and an abundance of natural beauty. With their national parks, Pacific air, beaches and waterfalls, a visit to Maui will leave you with picture perfect memories of your vacation.
Hana is a small and peaceful town on the eastern coast of Maui. It is known as one of the less touristy Hawaiian lands. The drive to Hana is beautiful (about 52 miles from Kahului,) but can take some time as the roads are narrow with sharp turns. Don’t let the slopes here scare you; the Hana Highway offers some of the best views on the island. On the road leading to Hana you will drive past rainforests and grand waterfalls.
Haleakala National Park:
The Haleakala National Park is 30,000 acres of public land that spans the southern and eastern coastline of Maui and features the island's highest peak point at 10,023 feet above the sea level. Regardless of where you are in Maui, you will be able to see the mountains of Haleakala.
If you are adventurous and up for a hike, you can climb to the top of Haleakala, passing streams and waterfalls on your way, for stunning views above the clouds. If you want to take it easy, there are other trails in Haleakala for beginners. Many visitors heading to Haleakala also make it a point to wake up early in order to catch the breathtaking sunrise.
Pools of Oheo:
The Pools of Oheo are about 15 minutes from Hana and are well known in Maui. Here you can find an abundance of waterfalls leading to tranquil pools along the way. Visitors can even step into some of the mini pools. Be sure to look out for the signs!
Near the Pools of Oheo you will come across the Pipiwai Trail, which will lead you to the Waimoku Falls. This cascade of water is an astonishing 400 feet in length and it takes about 3 to 5 hours to reach from the Pipiwai Trail.
Things to do
You can fish year-round in Maui without a license, and fish are known to bite here! However, fishing charters do fill up quickly so it might be helpful to make a reservation as soon as possible. Some of the fish found in Maui waters include skipjack tuna, barracuda, bonefish and Pacific blue marlins. Companies such as Jayhawk Charters, Finest Kind Sportfishing and Kai Palena Sportfishing allow you to sail the warm waters and cast a line or two.
Maui has some challenging courses for the golf connoisseur to try their hand, check out
for the best courses.
Where's a better place to learn surfing than Hawaii? Whether you are a beginner or carry your surfboard everywhere you go, there are few better places in the world than Maui to ride the waves. With the right instruction, dedication and practice, you can return home from your trip in Maui as a surf pro! Big Kahuna Adventures, Goofy Foot and Outrageous Surf School are just a few of the companies where you can get surf lessons.
However, there are certain areas such as Maui’s North Shore where it is not suitable for beginners to try their luck at the sport. There are some locales dedicated to professionals because of the fierce waves and dangerous reefs.
If you are visiting Maui during December until May, you have the chance to see the largest mammals on earth. There are companies like Gemini Sailing Charters or Trilogy Excursions which take guests into the water so they can be close to these friendly giants. Smaller boats can put you closer to the whales, while large vessels have to keep their distance for the safety of these magnificent creatures.
Keawakapu Beach and Papawai Point Lookout are two of the best beach spots on the island to whale watch from afar. Arrive early for a good spot in the sand and don't forget to bring your binoculars!
For more ideas on things to do in Maui, check out our
travel ideas guide
Restaurants and shopping:
From five-star gourmet dining to local restaurants, you are sure to find plenty of eateries in Maui that will suit your palate. Avocados, fresh Hawaiian seafood, passion fruit, papaya and broccoli are very popular and grown on the island, so choose dishes with these ingredients at the to get a taste of the local fare. Pina Coladas made with fresh pineapple are always delicious and a signature cocktail in Maui.
Lomilomi salmon, Portuguese soup and chicken katsu are excellent local favorites to chow down on, and Da Kitchen, Koho Grill and Bar and Mala Ocean Tavern are some of the top rated restaurants in Maui.
If you want to find specialty boutiques only known in Maui, head to the towns of Wailuku or Makawao. Antique galleries and clothing stores with artwork and fashion found only on the island are perfect for a little retail therapy. However, there is no shortage of art galleries in Maui, so regardless of where you are you are sure to run into exquisite local art which will make for a great wall hanging back home!