A great place to head for dinner & dessert! Betty's overlooks the Feast at LeLe lu'au show, which makes the view fantastic. We highly recommend trying the Mango Mud Pie! This restaurant is Gay owned. $$
Little panini shop makes perfectly pleasant sandwiches for breakfast and lunch with fresh ingredients! This is a good place for breakfast before the beach, and an excellent choice for a beach lunch. Gay owned and operated business. $
Great place for an Italian Dinner! For a truly exceptional experience, ask about Il Teatro, the private dining room off the herb garden, where the chef will cook a five course dinner for you personally at tableside! $$$$
Duo is so named because it is equally a steak and fish house. The servers are exceptionally well-trained and the food is fantastic. A sweet suprise accompanies your check: a giant spool of cotton candy! It's fun and frivolous. And because it's the Four Seasons, you also get a warm towel to wipe the sugar from your fingers. $$$$
By far the finest dining experience on Maui. Mama's provides a one-of-a-kind experience. You get an excellent, fresh meal with incredible views and very well-trained staff. Reservations are required. We recommend an early evening reservation to be able to enjoy the sunset. Well worth the indulgence. $$$$
Sansei's menu has several pages and features chicken, beef, fresh fish and some pasta dishes, but most diners go for the outrageous and flamboyant sushi. It's visually stunning! If you're in the mood for late night sushi, go for their late night happy hour! $$$
Originally the museum was a missionary home built in 1833 for Edward and Caroline Bailey. The house was built in the royal compound of King Kahekili, the last king of Maui. The buildings reflect the lifestyle of the people who lived in them and a story of growth and change. The Bailey House exhibits an outstanding collection of Hawaiian artifacts. Its unique displays include hundreds of Hawaiian and missionary artifacts as well as 19th Century paintings of Maui and its people. The Museum Shop offers the finest Maui traditional and contemporary hand-crafted items and books on Hawaiian heritage.
Along Front Street in Lahaina Town, you’ll find a banyan tree that almost occupies an entire city block! With sprawling tree limbs and dangling vines surrounding 12 major trunks, this enormous banyan tree is one of Maui’s popular landmarks. In 1873, the banyan tree was planted in Lahaina when it was just eight-feet tall. It now stands over 50-feet high and stretches outward over a 200-foot area. Many events and art exhibits are held beneath this giant banyan tree, which serves as an ideal gathering place for the public. The tree is located in the courthouse square near the harbor.
Rising more than 10,000 feet from the sea, Haleakala National Park stretches east from the winding road to the summit, and down the mountain’s flanks all the way to the ocean at the Pools of ‘Ohe‘o. A dormant volcano, Haleakala is not currently erupting. Certainly the Island’s most visible landmark, Haleakala is also one of Maui’s most memorable attractions. Even if you sleep past sunrise, you’ll want to get up early to watch the sun come up over Haleakala’s unusual lava forms. Bundle up and wait for the dawn—on a clear morning you may even see the neighboring Islands of Hawai‘i, Lana‘i, Moloka‘i, O‘ahu and Kaho‘olawe. Be sure to stick around for a little while after the sun comes up to see the dawn’s colors.
Ho’okipa Beach Park is one of the top spots for ocean sports and recreation in Maui. Located at Mile #9 on Hâna Highway (36), this breath-taking white sand beach boasts some of the best waves on the Maui coastline. A mecca for surfers of all ages since the 1930’s and the “home of contemporary surfing,” Hookipa Beach is among Maui’s most popular sites for events large and small. The Aloha Classic and Red Bull surfing competitions have come to Ho’okipa and the Maui Sports Foundation sponsors a number of events each year.
‘Iao Valley State Park is a peaceful, lush area centering around Kukaemoku, or ‘Iao Needle, a towering rock pinnacle. Kukaemoku soars 1,200-feet high and can best be seen in the early morning. There are plenty of great hikes to admire the area’s rich foliage, natural pools and scenic mountain views. There’s also a spacious picnic area surrounded by tropical gardens at Kepaniwai Park near Heritage Gardens. The area was the site of a famous battle where King Kamehameha I defeated Maui’s army to unite the Hawaiian Islands. Once here, it’s difficult to imagine the violent history of such a peaceful place.
At a bright green, wooden roadside stand outside the small former-missionary village of Kahakuloa, family members sell Julia's banana bread, a famously moist treat made daily from organic local bananas. Reaching the stand requires persistence and nerves of steel to navigate the coastal highway and its hairpin curves along towering cliffs overlooking Maui's North Shore. Along with the eponymous banana bread, the stand sells coconut candy, taro chips, and roasted macadamia nuts. Customers should gas up before venturing out and bring cash.
Insider Tip: The bread is usually sold out for the day by 2pm, so plan your visit accordingly.
Located on Maui’s south-central coastline, this scenic wetland area encompasses about 700 acres and is home to a variety of Hawaiian water birds including the black-necked stilt and Hawaiian coot. The Refuge is the site of habitat restoration projects as well as local environmental education, bird watching, photography, and other wildlife-oriented activities.
The Reserve was established in 1992 and is a natural basin for the 56-mile watershed in the West Maui Mountains. A boardwalk over ponded areas allows close-up viewing of native Hawaiian water bird species as well as migratory water birds who come from as far away as Asia, Canada, and Alaska. The ponds were initially created by entrepreneurs beginning an aquaculture catfish venture which closed in 1995. Subsequently the ponds were restored by the Fish and Wildlife Service.
At the Maui Tropical Plantation, take a narrated tour of 14 of Hawaii's most popular fruit and flower crops. See coconut husking and enjoy field stops for great photographs. Enjoy plantation-made fresh fruit dishes in the restaurant and shop in the Country Store for "made-in-Maui" gifts. Sixty acres of fields filled with papaya, guava, mango, taro, macadamia nuts, and coffee can be viewed from the tram that travels through the plantation.
The story of Maui’s Winery is a great story of sustainability. In 1974, the winery in collaboration with Ulupalakua Ranch began growing grapes, remaining true to the area’s agricultural heritage. While waiting for the grapes to mature, they decided to develop a sparkling wine made from the plentiful pineapples on Maui. A scant amount of this wine was produced, but the public response to the wine was so positive that it was decided to pursue the endeavor of making a still pineapple wine. Three years later, Tedeschi Vineyards released a Maui Blanc pineapple wine from local fruit. In 1984, after years of labor and development, the first grape product was released: Maui Brut Sparkling.
Look down the slopes as you approach Ulupalakua, and you will see the flourishing vines of Tedeschi Vineyards. Here, syrah, chenin blanc, chardonnay, malbec and viognier thrive at an 1,800-foot elevation in Haleakala’s rich, volcanic soil—the secret ingredient of successful winemaking in the tropics.
The drive from Kapalua, around Nakalele Point and on to Wailuku is extraordinary. Nakalele Blowhole is the result of the ocean wearing away the shore below the lava shelf. With each wave, water is forced through a hole in the lava shelf resulting in the "eruption" of water similar to a geyser.
The "blowing" of the water varies dramatically depending on tide levels and wave action. High tide and strong surf result in the best effects. The blowhole can be seen from the road when the wave action is right or you can hike down to the area - just don't get too close!
With over 600 hairpin turns and 54 narrow bridges, the famous Road to Hana is much less a thoroughfare as it is a life lesson. Slow down and enjoy the ride, there’s a surprise around every corner. From plunging seaside cliffs to the favors of fresh Island fruit from a roadside stand, this is a journey to awaken all your senses. When you stop to explore, be sure to park well off the road and respect private property signage. If you depart early, when the rain forests are particularly magical in the morning light, you can avoid afternoon traffic. Plan at least three hours each way.
The Pools of ‘Ohe‘o (Seven Sacred Pools) is located on the rugged northeast coastline just past the town of Hana. There are dozens of pools fed by fresh water streams from Maui’s famed Haleakala¯ volcano, creating a dramatic playground of lava rock basins and terraced waterfalls. The arduous but truly spectacular main trail ends at beautiful Waimoku Falls, which plunges 400 feet from a lava rock wall. It’s best to arrive early before the parking lot fills up.
Twin Falls is the first easily accessible string of waterfalls and pools on the Road to Hana. It also has one of the better snack stands on the journey. Twin falls is typically underrated by guidebooks, and is a worthy stop.
You must budget your time properly here if you are cramming the Road to Hana into only one day.
Remote, wild, low-cliffed volcanic coastline offering solitude and respite from urban life. Lodging, camping, picnicking, shore ﬁshing and hardy family hiking along an ancient Hawaiian coastal trail which leads to Hana. Excellent opportunity to view a seabird colony and anchialine pools. Other features include native hala forest, legendary cave, heiau (religious temple), natural stone arch, sea stacks, blow holes and small black sand beach.
This is one of the largest beaches in Maui, with golden sands extending nearly 2/3 of a mile long and 100 yards wide. Visitors can swim or snorkel in these pristine waters, picnic in the shade, or simply sunbathe on the seemingly endless expanse of sand.
Big Beach is located south of Wailea near the Makena Beach and Golf Resort and provides a secluded alternative to more crowded beaches in Kaanapali and Lahaina. Nestled between two black-lava outcroppings, Makena offers protection from the trade winds and provides great views of the islands of Molokini and Kahoolawe. Picnic facilities and restrooms are also available.
Black Rock was formed from one of the last-gasp lava flows on west side of the island. It is a rocky outcrop at the far North end of Ka’anapali Beach and blocks off access (from the beach) to the lesser-known Ka’anapali Resort beach called Kahekili Beach Park.
The Hawai’ian name for Black Rock is Pu’u Keka’a, and ancient Hawaiians believed that this was the place where their spirits went to jump off to join ancestors forever. Unlucky souls who could not be shown the way by their family ‘aumakua (guardian animal spirit), would wander and attach themselves to rocks in the area. This is likely where the “it is bad luck to take a Hawai’ian lava rock” superstition comes from.
Nowadays Black Rock is used by the younger generation as a leaping-off point for fun in the ocean. There is also a resort-sponsored sunset torch lighting (that also ends with a jump.)
Snorkeling and diving are also excellent all around this point. Weaker swimmers should beware that the water becomes deep quickly.
Long, sandy sometimes crowded beach backed by ironwoods (read: shade) and full facilities. Next to Kapalua resort and the Ritz Carlton.
This world-class beach is much less developed far less touristy than Ka’anapali Beach, however conditions can become dangerous during high surf with strong rip currents and powerful waves common.
For experienced surfers or spongers there is often good surfing and boogie boarding during North swells.
Weekends, holidays & pau hana can be crowded.
Half-mile long sandy beach, runs to the end of Kihei, where the road departs from the shoreline. Good for swimming, laying out, boogie boarding, snorkeling or just lazing in the sun.
On the north end there are exceptionally alive tidepools (check them out at night – during a full moon if you have the chance) and good snorkeling around the outcropping. The southern end of this beach also has a small pocket of good snorkeling. Swimming is good and serious swimmers will enjoy doing laps along the entire length of the beach.
An interesting fact is that approximately 400 yards offshore there is an artificial reef made up of 150 car bodies that were dumped here from a barge in 1962.
The draw for most visitors here is nudity. While public nudity is technically illegal in Hawaii, it has been generally accepted that this is a nude beach, and the law is not enforced here.
There is also a drum-circle and fire dancing on Sunday afternoons into the evening. (If you’ve taken the right stuff, you may even think you’re in the parking lot of a Dead show back in the day.)
There is also boogie-boarding and surfing access from this beach.
Access to Little Beach is from Big Beach. Park at the first Big beach lot, and walk to the North (right) end of the beach. There is a trail over the rocky outcrop of an old lava flow.
The beach sand slopes gently in to the bay, and wave action is usually minimal (except during large summer swells) so it’s a good beach for little ones. There are also plenty of sea turtles, and the snorkeling and shore diving gets progressively better the further out on the northern side (Nahuna Point) that you go. There is also plenty of sea life and shallow reef to explore in the large bay, on calm days this can be a very good place to learn to snorkel.
The island’s premiere shopping and entertainment destination. The home of Maui’s only department stores, Sears and Macy’s, plus more than 100 shops and restaurants, from cool island-style boutiques to such national names as American Eagle Outfitters, Pacific Sunwear, Foot Locker and Forever 21.
And it’s the place where Maui folks and Maui visitors get going with a gourmet cappuccino, savor fabulous cuisine at Ruby’s Diner or Koho Grill & Bar, or chow down on fun international fare in the Queen’s Market Food Court. And it’s where we enjoy hot Hawaiian music on the Queen’s Stage, and treat ourselves to an ice-cream and a movie. And, of course, it’s where we relax with friends over drinks and pupus at a café table, and talk story. So join us for some real local aloha. It’s all here at The Queen Ka`ahumanu Center – located in the heart of Maui, and in the hearts of Maui folks.
A day of shopping. A day at the beach. They’re separated by the mere flick of a towel. A hand through your hair says you’re ready for lunch. While slippers highlight your dinner attire. With local stores, designer boutiques, fashion, art and restaurants, it’s not a mall. It’s your vacation.