Maui, Hawaii. A good time was had in Maui: from getting our butt-cheeks out and enjoying Little Beach, jumping off a cliff to Paraglide with ProFlyts, and taking on the world-famous Road to Hana. Relax and adventure, this island has it all. Maui, meaning “Valley Isle,” is known for its diverse landscapes where you can be in the desert, tropical, volcanic, and rural conditions. Packing will be interesting. Enjoy these Maui travel tips.
BLOG PRE-WORK: CLICK HERE. Go ahead and open that link up. It’ll take you to my Google Bookmarks of “favorite spots” and places I want to go to.
View of “Big Beach”
Where we stayed, and why? Kihei. Drew Welch recommended that we remain in Kihei (Key-Hey). Honestly, we didn’t remember why we stayed there until it hit around 3:00pm – Happy, Happy Hour! Nearly 5 minutes from our Airbnb, there’s a place called the “triangle,” which is a plethora of restaurants and bars that have fantastic happy hour appetizers and drink specials. This is important because Maui is expensive. The location of Kihei is centrally located on the island, you’ll find gorgeous beaches and an easy drive to literally anything else on the island. Use this link to Airbnb to sign up and check out locations. Plus, I get a referral bonus if you book. Help a gal out.
Rent the car! You’ll need a car. You can’t walk from “tourist spot” to “tourist spot” as the island is quite rural and really stretched out. We rented a little 2-seater convertible, and that was not a good idea. Our luggage didn’t fit into the back seat (because there wasn’t a backseat), and it was somewhat cramped. We’d recommend renting a jeep or something a bit rugged, especially if you’re doing the Road to Hana.
Recommended Playlist from a fellow blogger: Hawaiian Music Playlist by Stephanie Adachi
When is the best time to go to Maui, Hawaii?
Whenever you have that paid vacation, sweetheart! “They say” the best time to go in regards to the weather is April – May, and September – November. Recommended to avoid the crowds and rain.
What food and drinks are a must in Maui, Hawaii?
Okay, here’s the thing. We like food and dranks. Everything on the island comes from the island. It’s fresh and natural and delicious and everything we’d ever want out of life. Here are some “must-tries” in Maui:
- Banana Bread: sweet, with a chance of nutty. Best consumed at Halfway to Hana.
- Fresh, Maui Gold Pineapples: Anywhere you go, they’ll be there. Best consumed at the Maui Gold Pineapple Tour (or at the Pau Maui Vodka tour, like us). You can take these boogers on the plane with you. No extra fees.
- Poke Bowl: Go, try, and enjoy. You’re probably not going to like my description. It’s delish.
- Shave Ice: Grab some any chance you get. Also, surprise! There’s ice cream at the bottom. Also, it’s “Shave” ice. Don’t go looking like a tourist with that ‘D’ in there.
- Moco Loco: Josh ate this every chance he got (and I snagged bites). It’s a Hawaiian delicacy found on the breaky menu. It’s a pile of white rice, topped with a hamburger patty, fried egg, and wavy-brown gravy drizzled on top.
- Hawaiian Kalua Pork: Juicy, baby! Enjoy this pulled-pork bare or on a Sammy.
So, what should we do once we’re there? Honestly, this year was busy, busy. We completely winged this trip, and I could tell you “fun-stuff” to do while you’re there. However, we were a HOT mess when it came to planning things. We also don’t like to sit still. Though, we had an excellent time…, It’s up to you what you’d like to do. Maybe I could draw you a map, buddy.
Southwest Maui: Kihei
- Happy Hour in Kihei: Download the Maui Happy Hour app and get to scootin’
- Happy Hours: Lava Rock Bar & Grill, Maui Brewing Co., What Ales You Tap House, Three’s Bar and Grill, Dog & Duck Irish Bar (where we spent Thanksgiving)
- Ululani’s Hawaiian Shave Ice: a famous spot for a chilly treat.
- Big & Little Beach etiquette: Oneloa, Makena, or Big beach are a few names of this locally-loved beach. The waves are big, knocking off my glasses and leaving me blind the rest of the day. However, the water is crystal clear, making it great for snorkeling. Head over the hill for some nude-beach action. Take a few risks and join the crowd on this “butt-cheek bay.”
- Pro-Tip; have respect and learn etiquette.
North Maui: Pa’ia, Northern Drinking Tours
- Maui Pineapple Tour: Start here! You’ll learn all about this fresh, sweet fruit that can only be found in Maui. This is your history lesson for the rest of the trip.
- Hali’imaile Distillery Tour & Tasting Room: Go on a guided tour and tasting of where Pau Maui Vodka is created. Enjoy the rum, we bought some!
- Ocean Vodka Organic Farm & Distillery: On the slopes of Haleakala, enjoy tastings and tours of this famous vodka.
- Pa’ia: Charming town where you can feed the hippies, local shop, enjoy food, and great happy hours!
- Our Faves: Charley’s Restaurant & Saloon, Rock & Brews, Milagros Food Co. and Hana Pa’ia
- Mama’s Fish House: World famous, you’ll need a reservation 6 months in advance.
- Ho’okipa Beach Park: Highly recommend for surf, sun, and fun. Bring a picnic. No, we didn’t see any turtles, though it’s famous for turtles. We didn’t see any.
- NorthShore Zipline Co.: We didn’t do, but looks fun.
Oh, the chickens…
- Proflyght Hawaii Paragliding: Best experience ever. We ran off the cliff and paraglide our way down with the lavender patch, cliffs, and ocean as a view. 11/10 would do 100 times again.
- Kula Lodge: After the patch, we enjoyed the upscale mountainside lodging with food. You’ll break the bank, but it’s okay. Food is excellent, views are to die for.
- Ali’i Kula Lavender Patch: Enjoy the lavender patch and tropical gardens. Free entry if you paraglide.
- MauiWine: Delightful cottage-Esque winery will have you dazzled with history and tastings. A further blog to come.
- Maui Chocolate Tours: Recommended, but didn’t go. I would encourage you to try it out after the winery.
French Onion Soup from the Kula Lodge (YUM)
Older folk and families book up the resort communities in West Maui. Think tourist-y. Things close early, but there are gorgeous views, shopping, and crowds. Think “commercial.”
- Lahaina Town will go over activities, suggest tours and luaus
- LonelyPlanet gives an excellent description of the beaches to choose from
- Mokulei and Honolua Bay, google and go
- Nakalele Blowhole: spouting water high, prepare to get wet! Bring water for the hike.
- Mendes Ranch: Horseback ride on the dirt trails for the high cliff and a beaut-view of the ocean.
- Kaukini Gallery: Stop off and grab some locally made art!
- Kapalua Trails: Hiking trails near the hotel for the more adventurous family fun day.
Northeast Maui: Road to Hana
Road to Hana to world-famous. You can head over to the link (blue letters to the left) and catch up on our trip.
Okay, that concludes my tour of Maui. Thanks for stopping by!
Pro-tip: Don’t drop your camera