maui

Top 8 things to do in Maui, Hawaii

1.  Relax on the beach

With so many great beaches around the island, pick a spot and hunker down for a relaxing afternoon. For more, see my post about the best beaches around Maui.

maui hawaii kihei beach
maui hawaii kaanapali beach
maui hawaii beach

2.  Go hiking

One of my favorite things to do, there are lots of trails and not enough time. I did the Waihee Ridge Trail, but there's so many other options around the island. The views alone will be worth the hike. Make sure to research the distance and difficulty level of the trail before going.

maui hawaii waihee ridge trail
maui hawaii waihee ridge trail

3.  Road to Hana

It's not the destination, it's the journey. Although it sounds very cliché, it definitely holds true for the Road to Hana. There are so many stops that it's impossible to do it all in one day. Check out this post for the highlights.

Road to hana maui hawaii

4.  Haleakala Crater

The Haleakala Crater is a popular spot to watch the sunrise or sunset. Make sure to check out this post for tips on what to pack, info on reservations, and admission.

haleakala crater maui hawaii
haleakala crater maui hawaii

5.  Eat the local Hawaiian food

From Hawaiian-style poke to banana pancakes, there's so much wonderful food around the island. You can find some of the best eats in Maui in anything from a food truck on the side of the road to a fancy sit down restaurant.

maui hawaii local fish

6.  Check out some waterfalls

Waterfalls are speckled all over the island. If you do the Road to Hana, you'll come across plenty along the way.  

road to hana maui hawaii waterfall

7.  Get shave ice

Uluani's Hawaiian Shave Ice is the most popular spot to get shave ice in Maui. With a few locations around the island, be sure to get the "POG" (passion fruit/orange/guava) to get the full Hawaiian experience!

hawaiian shave ice maui hawaii ululani

8.  See the Banyan Tree

On the west side of Maui is Lahaina, where the Banyan Court Park is. Here you'll find the oldest and largest banyan tree in Hawaii. 

banyan tree lahaina maui hawaii

Best Eats in Maui, Hawaii

Whether you're looking for breakfast, lunch, dinner or something in between. You're sure to find something you'll like here...


Kihei Caffe

A great place for breakfast with large portions. It's located right across the street from the beach and has a large patio with outdoor seating.

1945 S Kihei Rd, Kihei, HI 96753

Banana-Macademia Nut Pancakes (be sure to get the coconut syrup!)

Banana-Macademia Nut Pancakes (be sure to get the coconut syrup!)

Loco Moco with Pork Fried Rice

Loco Moco with Pork Fried Rice


Maui Bread Co

A bread-lovers paradise! This place has a wide assortment of fruit-flavored breads, savory pastries, and breakfast treats. 

2395 S Kihei Rd #117, Kihei, HI 96753

maui bread co hawaii
maui bread co hawaii
They have gluten-free options, too. The Ube Mochi was delicious!

They have gluten-free options, too. The Ube Mochi was delicious!

maui bread co hawaii

Da Kitchen Express

This place is known for it's traditional Hawaiian cuisine with a modern twist. The food is filling and it is known to be one of the more affordable options in Maui.

2439 S Kihei Rd a107, Kihei, HI 96753

Chicken Katsu Sandwich

Chicken Katsu Sandwich

Fried Spam Musubi

Fried Spam Musubi


Geste Shrimp Truck

If you have a craving for Hawaiian shrimp, this is the place to go. Since everything is made to order, be prepared to wait. It will be well-worth it, though, and you will not be disappointed.

Located on Kahului Beach Road next to Kahului Harbor

geste shrimp truck maui hawaii
Spicy Pineapple Shrimp Plate

Spicy Pineapple Shrimp Plate


Wow Wow Lemonade

Refreshing lemonades made from local produce. Perfect after a summer day in the sun. You can order your beverage in a souvenir mason jar and bring it back for a refill of any lemonade for $5.

1279 S. Kihei Rd #309, Kihei

wow wow lemonade maui hawaii
Strawberry Lemonade

Strawberry Lemonade


Ululani's Hawaiian Shave Ice

Be warned, you will never be able to enjoy shaved ice the same way again after you leave Hawaii. Their ice is so fine, that it literally melts in your mouth. No chunks of ice that need crunching. Each snowflake perfectly and evenly captures the juice. A treat that both the young and young at heart will be sure to go back for again and again.

61 South Kihei Road, Kihei, HI 96753 (Several other locations)

uluani's hawaiian shave ice maui hawaii
uluani's hawaiian shave ice maui hawaii
uluani's hawaiian shave ice maui hawaii
uluani's shave ice maui hawaii
Passion fruit/Guava/Coconut and "POG" (Passion Fruit/Orange/Guava)

Passion fruit/Guava/Coconut and "POG" (Passion Fruit/Orange/Guava)


Down the Hatch

Featured on Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives, they have a daily happy hour from 2pm-6pm and a comfortable outdoor courtyard. A nice place to sit and relax after a day of shopping on the strip.  

658 Front St #102, Lahaina, HI 96761

down the hatch maui hawaii
Lobster and Crab Grilled Cheese Sandwich

Lobster and Crab Grilled Cheese Sandwich

Lava Lava Shrimp

Lava Lava Shrimp


Coconut's Fish Cafe

Popular with both locals and tourists, this is a family-friendly restaurant that is a casual place to grab a great meal. You'll find something on the menu to satisfy everyone.

1279 S Kihei Rd, Kihei, HI 96753

coconuts fish cafe maui hawaii
Fish Tacos (one order comes with 2 tacos)

Fish Tacos (one order comes with 2 tacos)

Local Style Grilled Mahi Mahi Plate

Local Style Grilled Mahi Mahi Plate


Maui Brewing Company

Brand-new in 2018, this is a very large facility with plenty of room to accommodate the crowds. They feature 36 craft and specialty beers on tap, as well as daily live entertainment.

605 Lipoa Parkway, Kihei, Maui, HI 96753

maui brewing company hawaii
The brewmaster pizza - Kukui spicy sausage, pepperoni, roasted bell peppers, olives, red sauce

The brewmaster pizza - Kukui spicy sausage, pepperoni, roasted bell peppers, olives, red sauce

Cheesy tater tots - House-made, with smoky house-made ketchup

Cheesy tater tots - House-made, with smoky house-made ketchup


Mama's Fish House

Rated as one of the most popular restaurants in Maui, it's a classic favorite. Located on the North Shore, we chose to visit this restaurant after the Road to Hana. It is guaranteed to be crowded, but usually no wait if you sit at the bar.

799 Poho Pl, Paia, HI 96779

mama's fish house maui hawaii
Asparagus Bisque

Asparagus Bisque

Homemade bread

Homemade bread

Traditional Hawaiian - Mahimahi and Ahi with Big Island wild boar slow-cooked in a ti leaf, traditional Hawaiian sides of octopus luau and Ahi poke

Traditional Hawaiian - Mahimahi and Ahi with Big Island wild boar slow-cooked in a ti leaf, traditional Hawaiian sides of octopus luau and Ahi poke

Mama's Stuffed Fish - Stuffed with crab and lobster, baked in a macadamia nut crust

Mama's Stuffed Fish - Stuffed with crab and lobster, baked in a macadamia nut crust

Mama's Stuffed Fish - Check out that stuffing

Mama's Stuffed Fish - Check out that stuffing

Guava cheesecake with hana breadfruit

Guava cheesecake with hana breadfruit

Road to Hana in Maui, Hawaii

If you plan to venture out on the Road to Hana, make sure to leave early in order to make the most of your day. Hana Highway is only about 64 miles long, but the road itself is very windy and narrow. You will come across about 50 bridges that are only wide enough for one car and approximately 620 curves through a tropical rainforest. There are several stops and landmarks along the way. Make sure to take a map and prioritize the stops you would like to see along the way. Also, however tempting, make sure not to spend too much time in one spot. Each stop will likely be better than the last, it's that beautiful.

Kuau Store   This store is located near Paia. We stopped here to grab breakfast and a picnic lunch. Make sure to have food and drinks with you. There are a few food stands along the way, but their hours vary and it's better to be prepared.

Kuau Store

This store is located near Paia. We stopped here to grab breakfast and a picnic lunch. Make sure to have food and drinks with you. There are a few food stands along the way, but their hours vary and it's better to be prepared.

Inside Kuau Store

Inside Kuau Store

Fresh poke (one of the best I had in Maui) and yes, it was ready by 7:30am

Fresh poke (one of the best I had in Maui) and yes, it was ready by 7:30am

Ho'okipa Beach Park

We stopped at Ho'okipa Beach Park to eat the breakfast we grabbed at Kuau Store. This park has plenty of picnic tables and public restrooms. We also saw our first wild mongoose here.

Breakfast sausage sandwich on a croissant

Breakfast sausage sandwich on a croissant

When in Hawaii, you eat poke for breakfast

When in Hawaii, you eat poke for breakfast

Ho'okipa Beach Park

Ho'okipa Beach Park

Ho'okipa Beach Park

Ho'okipa Beach Park

Twin Falls

Located at mile marker 2, this will most likely be your first actual stop on the Road to Hana. 

The entrance to Twin Falls has a fruit stand where you can purchase juices and snacks.

The entrance to Twin Falls has a fruit stand where you can purchase juices and snacks.

It helps to wear water shoes and clothes you don't mind getting dirty. 

It helps to wear water shoes and clothes you don't mind getting dirty. 

Compared to some of the other stops, there is quite a bit to explore in Twin Falls.

Compared to some of the other stops, there is quite a bit to explore in Twin Falls.

Twin Falls

Twin Falls

Bamboo in Twin Falls

Bamboo in Twin Falls

Rainbow Eucalyptus

You can find rainbow eucalyptus trees speckled along the Road to Hana. They are a spectacular site to see, like something out of a Dr. Seuss book.

rainbow eucalyptus maui hawaii road to hana
rainbow eucalyptus maui hawaii road to hana
rainbow eucalyptus maui hawaii road to hana

One-lane bridges

As mentioned earlier, be prepared to slow down for many sharp turns and one-lane bridges. Courtesy is to let a few cars pass before letting the other side go across.

road to hana maui hawaii
An unmarked lookout spot, somewhere before Mile Marker 16

An unmarked lookout spot, somewhere before Mile Marker 16

Ke'Anae Lookout

Located at Mile Marker 16, you'll get a wide variety of views to choose from. Also, if you're looking for some delicious warm banana bread, make sure to take this exit.

keanae lookout maui hawaii
keanae lookout maui hawaii
keanae lookout maui hawaii
keanae lookout maui hawaii
keanae lookout maui hawaii
keanae lookout maui hawaii
Aunt Sandy's can be found at the same exit for Ke'anae Lookout, well-worth the stop.

Aunt Sandy's can be found at the same exit for Ke'anae Lookout, well-worth the stop.

Not too bad of a line at Aunt Sandy's

Not too bad of a line at Aunt Sandy's

Warm, delicious banana bread

Warm, delicious banana bread

Upper Waikani Falls

Also known as the "Three Bears," this is a very photogenic waterfall that also serves as a nice swimming hole. Be warned, though, the hike down can be steep and slippery. This is located near mile marker 19.

A view of Upper Waikani Falls from the bridge. There's not a lot of parking, so be prepared to park up the hill and walk back down to it.

A view of Upper Waikani Falls from the bridge. There's not a lot of parking, so be prepared to park up the hill and walk back down to it.

upper waikani falls road to hana maui hawaii
upper waikani falls road to hana maui hawaii

Pua'a Ka'a Wayside Park

A small park off the highway near mile marker 22. A nice place for a swim, picnic, or just to stop and use the restroom.

pua'a ka'a wayside park road to hana maui hawaii

Hana Lava Tube

This was said to have formed almost 1,000 years ago. It is a self-guided tour that is located near mile marker 31. When we went, the entrance fee was $25/couple. They will give you a flashlight, which is necessary since there were no lights in the Lava Tube.

hana lava tube road to hana maui hawaii
Red Ti Garden Maze

Red Ti Garden Maze

The entrance to the Lava Tube

The entrance to the Lava Tube

hana lava tube road to hana maui hawaii
hana lava tube road to hana maui hawaii

Waianapanapa State Park

This is located near mile marker 32 and entrance is free. Waianapanapa State Park is made up of beaches, freshwater caves, burial sites, and camping sites. It was one of our favorite stops on the Road to Hana, so be sure not to miss it. 

waianapanapa state park maui hawaii
Papilla Beach- black sand beach

Papilla Beach- black sand beach

Papilla Beach- rated one of the top beaches in America. The black sand provides a sharp contrast against the luscious greenery and aquamarine waters. Be careful, though. The tide can rise fairly quickly. So, it's not one where you want to lounge around and sunbathe.

Papilla Beach- rated one of the top beaches in America. The black sand provides a sharp contrast against the luscious greenery and aquamarine waters. Be careful, though. The tide can rise fairly quickly. So, it's not one where you want to lounge around and sunbathe.

black sand beach waianapanapa maui hawaii
black sand beach waianapanapa maui hawaii
blowhole waianapanapa maui hawaii
waianapanapa state park maui hawaii
waianapanapa state park blowhole maui hawaii

Wailua Falls

This is located near mile marker 45 and you will be able to see the waterfall from the bridge. There are parking spots located right past the Falls, so make sure to stop and capture the view.

wailua falls maui hawaii
wailua falls maui hawaii

Pools of Ohe'o (Seven Sacred Pools)

The Pools of Ohe'o are located in Haleakala National Park. Entrance to the National Park is $25 and valid for 3 days. So, if you plan on watching the sunrise or sunset from Haleakala Crater, make sure to save your receipt!

seven sacred pools ohe'o maui hawaii
The Seven Sacred Pools

The Seven Sacred Pools

seven sacred pools ohe'o maui hawaii
seven sacred pools ohe'o maui hawaii
seven sacred pools ohe'o maui hawaii
Another one of our favorite stops on the Road to Hana. Makes sure to save plenty of time to explore this park, there's a lot to see!

Another one of our favorite stops on the Road to Hana. Makes sure to save plenty of time to explore this park, there's a lot to see!

seven sacred pools ohe'o maui hawaii
A large Banyan tree on the trail. There are several other self-guided hiking trails that weave through forests of bamboo and lead you to majestic waterfalls.. The Pipiwai Trail is one of those trails, which we did not have time for on this trip.

A large Banyan tree on the trail. There are several other self-guided hiking trails that weave through forests of bamboo and lead you to majestic waterfalls.. The Pipiwai Trail is one of those trails, which we did not have time for on this trip.

Mama's Fish House

Rated as one of the most popular restaurants in Maui, it's a classic favorite. Located on the North Shore, we chose to visit this restaurant after the Road to Hana because it was on the way back to town. It is guaranteed to be crowded, but there's usually no wait if you sit at the bar.

mama's fish house maui hawaii
mama's fish house maui hawaii
Traditional Hawaiian Plate

Traditional Hawaiian Plate

Mama's Stuffed Fish

Mama's Stuffed Fish

Guava Cheesecake

Guava Cheesecake

The perfect end to a busy day of exploring the hidden wonders of the Hawaiian rainforest. You will likely be exhausted, but it will be a day well-worth your time. The sights, sounds, and memories from the Road to Hana are nothing like you have ever experienced before. Even if you don't quite make it to all of the stops on your list, you are bound to see something magical. Be ready for it.

The perfect end to a busy day of exploring the hidden wonders of the Hawaiian rainforest. You will likely be exhausted, but it will be a day well-worth your time. The sights, sounds, and memories from the Road to Hana are nothing like you have ever experienced before. Even if you don't quite make it to all of the stops on your list, you are bound to see something magical. Be ready for it.

Hiking the Waihee Ridge Trail in Maui, Hawaii

Waihee Ridge Trail

Hawaii has some of the most beautiful hikes in the country.  The Waihee Ridge Trail does not disappoint. It is a 5-mile moderate trail (round trip) that ascends 1,500 feet through Jurassic-like terrain. One important tip: start your hike earlier in the day; you'll have a better chance of missing the heavy clouds that roll through as the day goes on.

The entrance does not look like much of a hiking trail. However, once you get past this steep road, you'll find refuge in a canopy of trees.

The entrance does not look like much of a hiking trail. However, once you get past this steep road, you'll find refuge in a canopy of trees.

The start of the Waihee Ridge Trail. Because of the 1,500 ascent, you will be going uphill for the majority of the hike (until you make your way back down).

The start of the Waihee Ridge Trail. Because of the 1,500 ascent, you will be going uphill for the majority of the hike (until you make your way back down).

This breathtaking view of the valley is about one mile into your hike. A nice place to stop and catch your breath.

This breathtaking view of the valley is about one mile into your hike. A nice place to stop and catch your breath.

Another view of the valley

Another view of the valley

As you can see, the clouds are starting to catch up to us.

As you can see, the clouds are starting to catch up to us.

maui hawaii waihee ridge trail
The higher you climb, the more likely you'll be walking in the clouds (literally). A fun adventure, nonetheless.

The higher you climb, the more likely you'll be walking in the clouds (literally). A fun adventure, nonetheless.

maui hawaii waihee ridge trail
A great place to get away from the crowds and enjoy true peace and quiet. Most of the time, it felt as if we had the trail to ourselves. 

A great place to get away from the crowds and enjoy true peace and quiet. Most of the time, it felt as if we had the trail to ourselves. 

Unfortunately, the clouds beat us to the top! We did not make it in time to see what spectacular view was waiting for us, but we did stop and sit at this picnic table before we made our descent.

Unfortunately, the clouds beat us to the top! We did not make it in time to see what spectacular view was waiting for us, but we did stop and sit at this picnic table before we made our descent.

maui hawaii waihee ridge trail
maui hawaii waihee ridge trail
If the beach doesn't do it for you, head to the mountains. You'll be sure to find your sense of wonder somewhere in between where the sky meets the sea.

If the beach doesn't do it for you, head to the mountains. You'll be sure to find your sense of wonder somewhere in between where the sky meets the sea.