Maui’s various attractions and activities cater to just about every interest. While adventurers hike the dormant Haleakala volcano, more relaxed travelers can soak up the sun on one of many shorelines or test the fairways at one of the island’s 14 golf courses. But Maui isn’t just for beach bums and active types: The island offers up its own history and culture.
1. Road To Hana.
To find excellent views of Maui’s beautiful coastline, all you need to do is drive. Most people start their trip in Kahului with the intention of motoring 55 miles to Hana. The Road to Hana might seem short, but traveling it will most likely take all day given the number of scenic lookouts and other places to stop.
2. Helicopter Tours.
Consider getting a bird’s perspective on a helicopter tour, helicopters can access parts of the island unreachable by boat, car or foot. No matter which route you choose, you’ll be rewarded with stunning vistas of Maui’s waterfalls, craters, cliffs and valleys.
3. Kaanapali Beach.
One of Maui’s most popular strips of coastline, Kaanapali Beach stretches across 3 miles of the island’s northwest coast, offering plenty of space to surf and sunbathe. However, the coveted sand is just one of this beach’s many highlights: Kaanapali was Hawaii’s first planned resort area, and today it features several notable hotels and restaurants, two championship golf courses and the lively Whalers Village open-air shopping center.
4. Haleakala National Park.
Every year, more than a million tourists visit Haleakala National Park, home to the world’s largest dormant volcano. Haleakala’s summit stands more than 10,000 feet above sea level (in fact, you can see it from any point on the island). Once you reach the top of Haleakala, you can keep going down into the mouth of the volcano. The Haleakala Crater measures 19 square miles and offers a stark glimpse into Hawaii’s early beginnings.
5. Old Lahaina Luau.
The Old Lahaina Luau is one of the most popular things to do for first-time Maui visitors; those who have taken in the show highly recommend devoting an evening to this luau in particular for a fun intro to Hawaiian culture. While you admire the performers’ hula and firedancing skills, you’ll dine on Hawaiian specialties, such as kalua pua’a (pork roasted in an underground oven), fresh mahi-mahi and poi (mashed taro plant).
6. Maui Ocean Center.
If you find yourself facing a rainy day on the island, consider spending some time at the Maui Ocean Center. The vast Maui Ocean Center offers a variety of ways to get up close and personal with the island’s nautical residents, including touch pools and a tunnel beneath the 750,000-gallon Open Ocean exhibit (which houses more than 2,000 fish). While here, you can catch a glimpse of everything from stingrays to sea turtles to sharks.