Maui is the second-largest of the Hawaiian Islands and is my go-to destination. As an adult, I’ve visited the “Valley Isle” at least once every year since 2014.
Maui has something for everyone. Whether you’re looking for picturesque views, breathtaking beaches, historical sites, or excellent plate lunches, you can find it on Maui.
This is my list of things you cannot miss while you’re on this fantastic island!
Where To Stay On Maui
Before we get into the 8 things you cannot miss on Maui, where are you going to stay when you book your trip to the island?
Maui has many hotels to suit every group size, with boutique hotels to adult-only hotels. There is a hotel for every group on the island of Maui.
- Maui Coast Hotel – Located close to Kamaole Beach Park and Wailea Beach, this hotel is a great base to explore the local area and try out nearby watersports, including kayaking and scuba diving.
- Ho’olei at Grand Wailea – With a mixture of one, two and three-bedroom villas, the villas have full kitchens, living rooms and excellent reviews, making it a perfect place for a girls’ getaway. The resort also has a full-service spa.
- Montage Kapalua Bay – This resort has one, two, three, and four-bedroom rooms with kitchen and living room areas. The four-bedroom room sleeps up to 10 people, making it perfect for an extensive girls trip or bachelorette party.
- The Westin Nanea Ocean Villas – This resort is located in Lahaina, close to Kaanapali Beach, Black Rock and Whalers Village. The resort has beach access and a swimming pool along with one, two and three-bedroom villas.
- Hotel Wailea, Relais & Chateaux – This adults-only resort has two restaurants, a swimming pool, a fitness center and a beach shuttle. Along with an open plan feel and filled with luxurious details.
- The Mauian – Boutique Beach Studios on Napili Bay – This aparthotel is the perfect place to stay for a small group with a mix of king and queen rooms with small kitchenettes. The hotel is located on the beach and close to Lahaina Harbor, with many watersports options.
- Hana-Maui Resort – With the Spa at Travaasa, this hotel is the perfect place to relax with your girls. This resort has two swimming pools and a fitness center along with the spa. The rooms vary between bungalows and studios.
Vacation Rentals On Maui
There are so many great vacation rentals on Maui, so we’ve combed through hundreds of options to put together a list of our favorites.
- One-of-a-Kind Maui Rental – Inside the villa, four bedrooms are ideal for sleeping up to 10 guests, whether on a bachelorette party, girls’ getaway, or family trip.
- Three Bedroom Condo – Sleeping ten guests, this ocean view villa is a great place to stay for a bachelorette party, girls’ getaway, or family vacation. Located within the Honua Kai Resort, this condo has access to swimming pools, an on-site restaurant, fitness center and spa.
- Kapalua Bay Villas Two Bedroom Condo – Located within the Kapalua Bay Villas Resort close to Napili Bay and its surrounding beaches. The condo has two bedrooms and can sleep up to eight guests comfortably.
- Majestic Beach House – Sleeping up to eight guests within this three-bedroom, two-bath home located in Hana.
- Makena Surf Turquoise Cove Villa – This three-bedroom condo can sleep up to eight guests with incredible oceanfront views. The apartment has a large open-plan kitchen and living area with a large balcony perfect for relaxing and drinking an evening cocktail.
Best Tours On Maui
There are plenty of fun tours in Maui. Here are five that are great for a trip to Maui.
- If you and your group or bachelorette party like being active and exploring, then Maui is a great place to get outdoors! You and your group can take incredible hiking tours of waterfalls and the rainforest.
- Maui offers incredible snorkeling with reefs and lots of marine life. You can even take a sailing and snorkeling trip from Maui to explore reefs off the coastline and visit islands.
- Another incredible once-in-a-lifetime experience from Maui is to take a sunrise hike to Haleakala National Park.
- No visit to Hawaii or Maui would be complete without experiencing a Maui Luau, traditional Polynesian food, dancing and music.
- A great evening activity for you and your family or girl gang is to take a sunset dinner cruise to watch the sunset over the mountains and ocean.
Maui has so much to offer and no matter what you are looking for, you can find it here. Whether you are a first-time visitor to Maui or have been numerous times, I hope you can find something new on my list of things not to miss!
8 Things You Cannot Miss On Maui
Maui has more swimmable beaches than any of the other Hawaiian Islands. You can find white, black, and red sand beaches here. With 120 miles of coastline, it’s no surprise snorkeling is a favorite activity that you can’t miss. My favorite spots are Kā’anapali Beach and Honolua Bay.
I love Kā’anapali Beach for its calm waters and its Black Rock, where you can find a variety of sea life. Honolua Bay is unique because it is a protected bay with clear waters that are excellent if you aren’t a strong ocean swimmer like me.
Pro Tip: There isn’t a parking lot at Honolua Bay. You will need to park along the street. Also, this is not a sand beach. It is rocks and pebbles, so make sure you bring beach chairs and flip flops.
Located in beautiful Upcountry, MauiWine has been in business for 43 years and has welcomed 4 million visitors. Head to the King’s Cottage to do a fabulous wine tasting learn about the wines and the history of MauiWine and the property.
They are probably best known for their pineapple wines, which are my favorites, but they also have exclusive small production wines and traditional sparkling wines.
Pro Tip: Since MauiWine is located in Upcountry, getting there involves some winding roads. I started to get a little nauseous on the way there because I wasn’t prepared, so make sure to bring some motion sickness tablets.
Haleakalā, or “House of the Sun,” is 10,023 feet above sea level. The desert-like landscape and beautiful views are worth the trip up if you can handle the winding road to the top.
If you are an early riser, head up for sunrise (book ahead of time). If you’re a night owl, go for sunset and some of the best stargazing ever, and if you want to see Haleakalā in all her glory, head there during the day. During the day, there are numerous hiking trails, and you can take a guided hike or wander around and enjoy the views.
4) Whale Watching
Whale watching “season” in Maui usually runs mid-December to mid-April. Maui always has whales roaming around the ocean, but during “season,” there are more active whales because they are migrating from Alaska. February is probably your best bet since this month is considered peak season.
With numerous tour companies to choose from, I recommend the Pacific Whale Foundation because they are a non-profit organization. The money they receive from their excursions and their retail store continues research and conservation of marine life.
5) Front Street
Front Street, which is located in Lahaina, is a famous historical street perfect for shopping, eating, or checking out an art gallery.
Since Front Street is the second most visited location on the island, it can get incredibly crowded, so try to get there early to score a parking spot and avoid a long wait at any of the numerous restaurants.
Pro Tip: If you park in the lot on Prison Street, pay attention to the signs and do not park where it says “bus parking only,” or you will get a ticket. I can’t tell you how often I’ve seen cars getting tickets because they ignored the signs.
6) Maui Swap Meet
The Maui Swap Meet is held every Saturday from 7am-1pm at the UH Maui College in Kahului. Admission is a whopping fifty cents per person, can you believe that? The Maui Swap Meet is my favorite, and I go every time I’m on the island.
You can find everything from beautiful jewelry, fresh produce, locally made apparel and some of the most beautiful wood carvings I’ve ever seen. Don’t forget to check out the Fresh Pressed Cane Juice/Hand Pressed Lemonade stand. They make the best lemonade I’ve ever had!
7) Enjoy A Plate Lunch
You can’t go to any of the Hawaiian Islands and not get a plate lunch. If you aren’t sure what a plate lunch is, let me explain. A plate lunch consists of some sort of protein, two scoops of white rice and a scoop of macaroni salad.
My go-to plate lunch is a Loco Moco-Hamburger patties topped with brown gravy and a fried egg (I get mine without the egg, I’m weird) and my favorite place to enjoy the Loco Moco is Aloha Plate Lunch in Lahaina.
8) Catch A Sunset
There’s something about a Hawaiian Sunset. I can’t really explain it, but they are unlike any others I’ve seen. No matter the time of year you are visiting, or where you are on the island, sunsets on Maui are unreal!
I always make sure I check the weather app on my phone so I know what time to expect sunset, then I find my spot and wait for the cotton candy skies to dazzle me. If you are looking for more good photography spots, check out my 8 Instagrammable Spots on Maui post!
Have you ever been to Maui? If you have any additional tips for our readers or questions please leave these in the comments below.
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We Are Travel Girls Contributor Melina Ponder
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