Maui is one of the most popular tourist destinations for people visiting Hawaii, and it definitely deserves to be. It is the second largest Hawaiian island, following The Big Island, and has plenty to offer to its guests. No matter if you are looking for a relaxing getaway or an adventurous vacation, Maui will suffice every traveler in you.
One popular resort area to stay in Maui is Ka’anapali Beach. Ka’anapali has numerous resorts to choose from, all right on the beach. There is a whole row of resorts, and there is a boardwalk you can walk along the beach to each of the resorts. When staying at a hotel on the Ka’anapali beach, you could enjoy all your beach time, shopping, and relaxation without ever having to get in your car. At the end of the boardwalk is a shopping center, Whaler’s Village, which is home a huge variety of stores, and also many different restaurants. Since it is right on the beach, you can easily walk down in your swimsuit to grab some Hawaiian Shaved Ice or Frozen Yogurt to cool down. They also have many restaurants for lunch and dinner, and many serving a delicious variety of tropical drinks. You will not want to leave your Maui vacation without trying a Mai Tai or a Blue Hawaiian. As far as hotels go, we recommend Ka’anapali Beach Hotel. It is an older hotel, but because of this it has all the Hawaiian charm that you hope for. You are treated like family, and they are always there for you when you need information. They even have nightly entertainment, such as hula dancing, that you can enjoy while resting from your beach days.
Right next to Ka’anapali Beach is the historic town of Lahaina. Lahaina has an assortment of shops and restaurants to choose from, as well as many art galleries. For Jimmy Buffet fans, you can eat at Cheeseburger in Paradise, however be prepared for their usual long waits. Lahaina is an old whaling port, and has been made into an artsy district. You can spend hours exploring Lahaina, day or night. Lahaina also has Napili Beach, which is called a “hidden gem” by many visitors. Napili beach is known for being calm and quiet, so this is a great choice for days when you are wanting more relaxation.
One main attraction that brings travellers to Maui is whale watching. Humpback whales make an appearance in Maui from November-March, but February and March hold the greatest chance of seeing them. Humpback whales migrate from Alaska to the warmer waters of Hawaii to breed. You will probably have a chance to see whales just from standing on shore, but the best way to see them is to get up close and personal on a whale watching cruise. We recommend Sail Trilogy, which offers smooth sailing catamarans directly from Ka’anapali Beach, unless it is too windy, in which case they will sail from Lahaina harbor. Speaking from experience, there are few things more magical than sailing next to a great humpback whale.
Another attraction that many people come to Maui for is the Road to Hana. Much like the quote by Ralph Waldo Emerson, “Life is a journey, not a destination”; this holds true for the Road to Hana. This is a long scenic drive that you can spend all day taking. Be sure to make many stops and enjoy the whole journey. The Road to Hana is definitely a popular tourist drive, so beware that it will probably be crowded. It is also a tight and curvy road, so be cautious and mindful while adventuring.
While in Maui, you will also want to stop at Mama’s Fish House, which is considered one of the best restaurants in America. It is located on the North Shore, and is nestled in an old beach house. You will find amazing service and delicious food in this traditional Hawaiian restaurant.
Another popular activity that you might not want to miss while in Maui is attending a luau. There are many to choose from, but two of the most popular ones are the Old Lahaina Luau and the Royal Lahaina Luau. A luau consists of a feast and live entertainment. You will get to try local Hawaiian cuisine, and also quench your thirst on Mai Tais. After you have satisfied your hunger, you spend the night watching and listening to amazing song and hula dancing. A Hawaiian luau is a great activity for families, and is something you will always remember from your Hawaiian vacation.
As far as amazing sights, you will want to visit Mt. Halaekala, which is a dormant volcano that reigns over 10,000 feet high above sea level. You must drive up many switchbacks to get to the top, but many visitors say it is their favorite place to visit in Maui. Whether you are an early riser or a night owl, you should try to catch either sunrise or sunset on top of this volcano. Since it is so high above sea level, be prepared for cold weather.
The Maui coffee industry has grown tremendously over the past decade. One of the biggest estate that grows coffee is the “MauiGrown Coffee” estate, which is 500 acres on Ka’anapali, near Lahaina. This estate offers four varieties of coffee: Yellow Caturra, Red Catuai, Guatemalan Typica, and the namesake Maui Mokka™. The Maui Mokka™ is the most unique to Maui; it is very small compared to the other varieties grown here. This seed originated in Ethiopia, and is harvested in the late fall. Like many Hawaiian coffee estates, the land that the coffee is grown on in Maui also used to be dedicated to sugar cane production, but for the past 20 years these 500 acres have been dedicated to growing and harvesting coffee beans to be enjoyed on the island and abroad.