The best carefree week you’ll have in Maui
You really can’t go wrong with Maui no matter what you do. What I love about this island and really the rest of Hawaii is that you don’t need to do much planning. Let island time kick in and when you feel like exploring just take this list and plan your day.
Being based out of Lahaina and staying at the Aina Nalu in my trip, we drove all around to do a little bit of relaxing and a little bit of adventuring.
Seven Things Not to Be Missed on Maui
1 Pipiwai Trail
This is perhaps the most amazing hike trail on the island that features a huge banyan tree, a smaller Makahiku Falls, dense bamboo forest which ends in the climax of Waimoku Falls. There is also the Seven Sacred Pools at Ohe’o so make sure you make the short walk there. If you’re feeling like taking a dip, this is the perfect spot. Make sure you bring your swim suit and towel!
You can get to here from the southern road if you’re not looking to do the full Road to Hana. Make sure you plan to be here for a good 3-4 hours.
2 The Southern Road to Hana
Traditionally people will do the Road to Hana to well…get to Hana which follows the northern coastal road but I actually enjoyed the southern road quite a bit more. It’s a lot more rugged and raw (portions unpaved) and there were a lot of opportunities to stop and take photos.
3 Ululani’s Shaved Ice
I lost track of how many times we ended up going here. Shaved ice is a staple in Hawaii and while this is a chained shop, it is unanimously the best on the island and I completely concur. My personal recommendations are to make sure you get the mochi, and try their calamansi lime, and mango. Their locations can be found on the Ululani’s website.
4 Haleakala Summit
I had the pleasure of watching the sunrise twice here (that’s how crazy I am) and each time it was completely different. The key here is to wake up as early as you can (leave your hotel latest 3AM). It’s a magical moment when you get to watch the fog lift as the sun peeks through the horizon (see below)
Personally, I think the best spot to watch the sunrise is to park in the first lot (not the upper one near the observatory) and make the small spiral climb up to the hill and perch yourself on the rocks there. The hike up looks long but it’s only 5 minutes and pretty easy.
If you are a lover of sushi and have always wanted to know what it would be like to dine in Tokyo, then you absolutely cannot miss Koiso in Kihei. I’m not even exaggerating how good it is here. Their omakase (chef’s selection) is only $45 USD and is a steal in my books. Just keep in mind that they’re typically booked several weeks out so make sure you make reservations in advance which you can only do by calling in (808- 875-8258).
6 Sea Turtles and Molikini
While marketed heavily all around the island, half day boat trips out to the crescent shaped caldera jutting out of water is worth the money. Sure you’re contending with hoards of snorkelers in the morning but it’s all worth it when you get to the end of the trip and hanging out with a family of sea turtles. It’s a memorable experience that you’ll never forget.
These Molikini tours are worth taking a look at.
7 Leoda’s Kitchen and Pie Shop
Leoda’s is located just outside of Lahaina, this was one of my favourite shops to stop by on my way in our of town. There was also a good reason to drop in to buy a different personal dessert pie each time. Their sandwiches and coffee are pretty darned good too so this also makes for a great lunch spot.
Sufficed to say, there’s a lot to do in Maui. What I love about it is that it honestly doesn’t take much planning at all. You can wake up each day and decide what you want to do, hop into your rental car and away you go.